How To Build A Barrel Car Train

How To Build A Barrel Car Train
March 7, 2016 No Comments Amusement Park Trains,Kiddie Rides,Trackless Trains amusementrides

Walk into almost any small town fair or festival and you are sure to see a small barrel train chugging around the area. These tiny trains usually have cars made from barrels and are used to transport children in and around the festival grounds. They are painted in many different colors with designs and lettering and are a great way to entertain your children. There is typically a driver who sits in the front car or barrel driving the train. These trains do not sit on a track, but rather can go almost anywhere as long as they can get through the crowd and over the terrain.

If you have enough room to run a barrel train where you live, you might consider making one for your kids or grandkids. All you need is several steel barrels, usually 55 gallons, and a few tools. You may have to purchase a few tools to use to customize the barrels and to turn them into safe seating for the kids. The train is usually pulled by a regular lawn mower or tractor which also serves as the train’s engine. You can also purchase wheel kits and wheel axle kits to attach the wheels to each car.

How To Build A Barrel Car Train
How To Build A Barrel Car Train


To get started, you will need to find some old steel barrels. The average size used is 55 gallons, but you can go larger if you like. You will also need enough wheel axles and wheel kits to fit each barrel and bolts, nuts, and a wrench. Additionally, you will need cinder blocks, measuring tape, a marker, automotive spray primer and paint, two-inch bolts, double-ended eye pins, and a 1/2 inch thick chain. The tools you will need include a jigsaw, sanding wheel or electric sander, power drill, wrench, and a channel iron.

The Construction

Using the cinder blocks as support and to hold it in place, place one of the barrels on its side on the blocks. Use the marker to draw the outlines of the section where the children will sit on the barrel. This opening should be the entire length of the barrel and be about two feet wide.

Using the line as a guide, cut out this section of metal from the barrel using a jig saw. This exposes the inside of the barrel. Next, use the sanding wheel or the electric sander to sand off the rough edges of the cut. The edges of the opening should be completely smooth so they cannot cut or scratch the children. You will need at least six or seven barrels to create your train. Of course, you can make more if you want a longer train.

After finishing the opening, turn the barrel over and weld a double-ended eye pin to the middle of the bottom. This is how the cars are linked together. Next, weld the wheel axles and install the wheels. Paint the outside and the inside of the barrels with the automotive paint and then apply a clear coat of varnish, if you like. Attach the chain to the first barrel to hook up to the lawn mower. Your barrel car train is complete and ready to take children wherever they would like to go.

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