Roar! How to build Gassy Duncan Firebreath, the bonfire-night dragon

I’m not sure if it’s obvious, but I REALLY like fun and making silly things.  Here is the story of Gassy Duncan Firebreath. Sunny project! 🙂

    1. February 2016. Best mate Chris asks me to his 40th fireworks party. There is NOT to be a bonfire! What?!  Must fix this.  Decide I must make him a dragon fire pit. Detailed design drawing done on scrap of paper in the pub in between sets of Chris’s band.

      Design Drawing
      Design Drawing
    2. October 2016. Oh dear, promised to make a dragon. Hmmm.  Order barrel from eBay. Arrives in giant box. Much hilarity had posting myself round the office trying to surprise people 🙂
    3. Recruit best choice of person EVER to help – Dave has garage, tools, spare bits of metal, skill and loves a good project, like me! Thanks Ollie for the welding stuff too :).  Cut up barrel, re-weld lengthwise, weld toes together, create legs, attach a bar for the neck. Didn’t sing Flashdance once. Did burn toes (mine, not the dragon’s).
      montage1We have the semblance of a dragon after one evening (and lots more of Dave’s time – most excellent head construction!)  But it looks an eeny bit horse like in
    4. Right, must de-horsify dragon.  Wings required!  And a bendy neck!  Chicken wire, sheet of aluminium and brand new toy – power jig-saw. yay! Took a little while to work out what dragon wings look like.  (Thanks, the internet).

      Wings and neck made
      Wings and neck made
    5. Dragons must have scales!  Cue cutting up of a billion coke cans and attaching tops of cans with eeny bits of wire.  In hindsight, not the best idea, took faaaar too long!  The tail was much quicker just gluing together layers of tinfoil in scale shapes and sticking it on the chicken wire, and looked splendiferous.

      Scales and tails
      Scales and tails
    6. Yaaaay we have a complete dragon!
      yay again
      yay again

      But oh no, dragons must smoke and burn! Off we pop to the farm up the road to buy logs and fireworks. Possibly should have gone in the car and not on the bike as purchased a bag of pumpkins, loads of soup ingredients, dragon fuel, dragon nostril burners, mulled wine and Maria’s birthday presents on one very laden down and wobbly bicycle!

      It is unadvisable to carry logs, fireworks and several bags of shopping on a bike
      It is inadvisable to carry logs, fireworks and several bags of shopping on a bike
    7. Test burning of dragon at Maria’s birthday goes remarkably well.  Dragon does not catastrophically fail on the belly weld as Adrian giggled it would, nor do I catch fire running through nostril fireworks.  Dragon’s head does catch fire though, oops. Flammable paint.  Still, looks authentically scorchy now, yay.
    8. Dragon miraculously fits in Micra for the 5 hour drive oop north!  Wahaaay!  However, he has brought a stowaway friend. Part way round the M25, a ginormous TARANTULA walks across the inside of the windscreen in front of my face. Too scared to grab it and throw it out the window, and anyway, would probably crash car resulting in squashed tarantula but also squashed Sunny, so just have to live with the panic that I am driving in the dark and there is a tarantula now by my feet. Eeeee.
    9. Dragon reconstructed at Chris’ and the forecast rain buggers off and he is most welcome and makes lots of new friends. He is rechristened Duncan the dragon.Here he is in action:YAY!!!
Video of Gassy Duncan
Video of Gassy Duncan

Post-script.  It turns out, it is NOT advisable to leave a dragon unsupervised in the house while you are at work. Dragons are known for their mischievous capers, and Gassy Duncan is no different. I mean, really….

I came downstairs in the morning to find he'd raided the cupboards for snacks
I came downstairs in the morning to find he’d raided the cupboards for snacks
...and tried his nose at glue sniffing
…and tried his nose at glue sniffing
And fallen in love with a princess
he was well in to the Bake Off final
he was well in to the Bake Off final
Dragon boat racing
and went Dragon boat racing
Dragon's den
and built a Dragon’s den
Drag in drag
And wanted to be a Drag in drag
And became a Dragging dragon
He became a
Fell off the wagon dragon
Flagging dragon
and then was a Flagging dragon
George and the dragon
But he made it up with Saint George
Drag in his heels
And started Drag in his heels
Puff the magic dragon
Became TV star Puff the magic dragon
welsh ancestry
And discovered his proud welsh ancestry


1 thought on “Roar! How to build Gassy Duncan Firebreath, the bonfire-night dragon”

  1. Hi Sunny Bunny
    Great Dragon. Even better than it looked in previous photos. It’s wonderful the lengths you go to for friends – you’re truly a blessing and I’m lucky to have you in my life; even at a distance. Luv U Absolutely loads XXXXXXX

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