It took me around a year to build the gunk machine. The skeleton is constructed mainly from an old refrigerator, the controls from an old air conditioner. Two of the wheels came from a bicycle, three from a tricycle, one from a unicycle. It’s a six-wheeled gunk machine, though that wasn’t my original design. It needed two extra wheels just to stay upright.
I never intended to build a gunk machine, but that’s what came out of everything. I started off out in the old detatched garage, tinkering around a bit, cobbling things together. I tried my hand at welding. I soldered a few things. Mostly I used a hammer and nails and some strong glue.
I didn’t really have a plan, though I’d had a dream that I should build something. It was a cool fall evening when I fell asleep on the couch and dreamed what almost seemed like a great voice commanding me to build something. Though it didn’t specify what exactly I should build, or why. But I’ve been a pretty decent guy and felt it was probably in my best interest to listen to the voice. So I went down to the junkyard and picked up all of this stuff and started taking it apart and putting it back to together in the only way I knew how.
There have been some modifications. I added lights. I redid the upholstry. I took off some of the paint with a scraper and replaced some plastic appendages with old rusty metal pieces. It’s not pretty, but it’s a pretty good gunk machine.
For a whole year, I didn’t let anyone see it. Not even my wife and kid. I just told them that I was building something and that it was going to change our lives. The voice had told me that it would. When I unveiled it, my wife was pretty disappointed. My son thought it was great. He’s the one who coined the term gunk machine. It stuck.
It really has changed our lives. I take it everywhere, even to Target. People don’t really know what to make of it, it barely fits thorugh the automated doors. When it leaks oil, I just apologize.
People respond pretty well to apologies.