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Covered Wagon

Show the kids how to make this covered wagon craft and let their imaginations run wild. Make a whole wagon train and head for the wild west.


1/2 gallon juice or milk container
Cereal box or some cardboard
Regular masking tape
Brown paper bag
4 plastic container lids
1 big straw
4 small straw
4 feet thin wire (coat hanger)


Cut your container!
Start out by cutting your juice or milk container in half. This is fairly difficult to do, so take your time. I usually use a ruler to mark my cut line all the way around before I make any of my cuts. Then I like to use a utility knife and a pair of scissors to make all the cuts. You may have noticed that I used the half with the cap on it. This way, when someone sees my covered wagon, they will know what it was built from.

2. Tape your wagon body!
Next cover your wagon body with tape. I usually spend quite a bit of time on taping my projects so they will look cool. Starting from the bottom up, run your tape all the way around. Then overlap your tape a bit with additional tape and give it another layer. To completely cover the container's print, you will have to give it three or four layers of tape. The more time you spend, the nicer the job. Another tip is I always use scissors to cut the tape, trimming, altering and modifying as I go. I also modified the front a little. Its your project, so see what you can come up with.
Make the seat!
To make my bench seat I got a little carried away. The simple way is to cut two pieces of cardboard out for the bench sides and glue or tape them in place. Cut one or two rectangle pieces as shown, cover them with tape and attach them to your bench sides. If you feel up to the task you can make some fancy back supports. You can see in my photos that I used some pieces of old shishkabob sticks to make my back rest supports. Then I cut, covered and attached the back rest.

Make the cover frame!
Making the cover for your wagon is pretty simple. You could simply take a piece of paper and cut it to the width that you want and bend it into the shape you like and attach it to the sides of your wagon. You could also find some pipecleaners, or a bendable straw. We would love to see what you can come up with.

Make the cover!
I cut some staws into 6 small pieces and glued them into the inside of my wagon. You can tape them into place if you like. Then I cut three equal pieces of wire about 14 inches. But you can use anything you'd like... pipecleaner lengths or bendable straws work well too. I carefully bent them into shape and placed them into my straws. I then cut a piece of brown paper bag to fit over my wire supports. After making sure it fit, I crumpled it up so that it looks like old piece of canvas, and I then taped it carefully into place from the inside.

Wheels can definitely be difficult. A simple way to make them is by cutting out four circles from your cardboard box. Maybe even draw spokes and rims on them and then attach them to the sides of your wagon. But if you want your wheels to actually roll, here's what I did:

Make the axles!
Making the rear wheel axle and support is fairly straightforward. I cut a fat straw to the width of the bottom of my wagon, and then taped it onto the bottom as shown in the photo. I then inserted my axle straw into it. Leave your axle straw long and cut it to length when you attach your wheels.

Finish the axles!
For my front wheel axle, I decided I didn’t like its location on the wagon bottom... the wheels looked too close together to me. If you like, just repeat step five for the front of your wagon bottom. Instead I cut a rectangle piece of cardboard and taped it to the bottom with about an inch hanging out the front. I then taped my axle assembly to it. This is all up to you and how you want your project to look, so have fun and try different things.
Attach the wheels!
I attached my wheels using a hot glue gun. However, you could simply tape them on instead. First, I glued the wheels onto one side leaving my axle straw a little long. Next I glued my wheels onto the other side making sure that they were centered as best as possible. VOILÀ! — You're finished!

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More Boys Crafts, VBS Western Crafts, Western Crafts

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One thought on
“Covered Wagon”

  1. 1111 says:

    needs pictures

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