How we were made
Dan had the idea over a year ago to create 101 Armistice day Soldiers to display at Aston Rowant Nature Reserve. Collecting and recycling materials namely hoarding signs from building sites he started to plan his project in October 2019. Brewers in Abingdon kindly donated paint & Aston Rowant Nature Reserve kindly gave permission for the Art Installation to go ahead on their site.
A lengthy process was started single handedly by Dan & help was given inbetween work & school from his 2 Sons when volunteers who'd offered help were hit with Flu & unable to help..
The Process involved
Cutting out from 51 8x4 sheets of reclaimed aluminium sheeting 204 manageable size pieces
Make template of Soldier
Cut out using a hand held jig saw
Create a surface to hand paint 105 Steel Bars 16ft long, paint & cover to protect from rain
Started painting 6 coats both sides but struggled with space for drying due to the constant rain. The damp weather really slowed Dan down
Made travel container from old Steele Pallets & Steele Dan had collected over the years
Cut to length 105 pieces of 12mm Round Steele Bar by hand held angle grinder
Heat to red hot & bend 105 12mm Steele Rods for Soldier Stands
Cut 340 3mmx20mm flat Steele Bar to three different lengths for Soldier Stands
Make a jig to assemble Soldier Stands from timber donated by Builder merchant Nicholls in Kidlington
Layout various components and jig and grind off paint in 6 places to allow for weld and attach all components together with 12 welds each soldier repeated this process 105 times.
Bend Stand rods in 2 places repeat this 210 times
Paint exposed metal on all stands
Attach stands to Soldier Silhouettes by drilling to attachment holes in 6 places and rivet by hand 630 times
Fit Soldier Silhouttes to custom made transporting container to take to Aston Rowant
A similar process was undertaken to create 75 poppy wreaths and 75 poppy stands
Load to Trailer
Travel to Aston Rowant Nature Reserve 27 miles
The installation has needed many consumabes namely Steele weighing approx a tonne to mount the soldiers and poppies, jig saw blades, sand paper, pop rivets, drill bits, grinder discs,and oxcyacetalene for welding of metal frames all funded by Dan himself.
This has been written to give an idea of just how much hands on work was involved in making this project happen.
Please support Dans efforts in raising funds towards The Royal British Legion by donating https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/m40soldiers