The Electric Giraffe Project
29th March, 2014 by

Giraffe Project Acknowledgements

Gary Stadler: What can I say? He’s my alternate dad, chief engineer, chief motivator (even if it’s with a cattle prod) and dragon extraordinaire. He gave me more grief and poking over this project than anyone. But he also gave me the land, the space, and many tools in his workshop to be able to complete the giraffe. He ordered most of the heavy parts for me on ebay while I was at work, and paid for most of them and gave me time to pay him back. It would have been impossible without him. But most of all, when I first nervously told him about the concept, and expected him to roll his eyes at me and say, “yeah right!”, he instead looked up in the air, letting his mind see what I was talking about, nodded, and said, “Yeah, you should do that.” Thank you Gary.

Larry Adams: Larry’s been a long time friend now, going on 20 years! Gah! Larry gave me a small welder and a plasma cutter to start the project with. I could have used Gary’s stuff but Gary was also in the middle of a big project, and needed his tools all the time. So this gift was HUGE for me, and got me started on learning how to work with steel. With a welder and a plasma cutter, the world of steel opened up for me and I’ve never had so much fun in my whole life. Larry was also “Human Ballast” for the very first steps the giraffe frame ever took, a feat that was very brave indeed.

Celestia Knapp: For helping finance the trip out to BM, along with some special lighting for the giraffe bought at the last minute. I was running out of money and getting scared. She came through and gave me a loan to keep things running, and was my copilot in driving out to Burning Man. In the past I’ve made a lot of these trips alone. This year was a lot more fun, having someone along for the VERY long drive at 45 mph the entire time!

Neal Kern: Neal has this gorgeous Miller welder he wasn’t using, and loaned it to me for the duration of the project. I’ve since decided to buy it off him. Without that welder I would have run into serious welding issues. The little welders we have are great, but only up to a certain gauge steel. This thing is so powerful it can weld anything I can possibly come up with. That saved the project and kept it going for sure, leaving nothing really to stop me. Thank you Neal!

Charles (Swarty) : Charles was cool. He’d stop by here and there, offer encouragement, and welded up the giraffe’s neck after he Gary and I redesigned it. Time was running out and Charles gave a fair amount of his time to get the project back on track. The giraffe would have had a VERY stiff neck if it wasn’t for his help!

Steve Birch: Wow, Steve just shows up out of the blue at Burning Man, and hangs with me for two days putting lighting and final touches on the machine so I could get my day and night operating license for the playa. He was a huge help, and has since become a good friend. He’s also doing up this website for me. Something I would love to learn how to do, but I just haven’t got the time. He’s been wonderful with his support of the project. Thank you Steve!

Mike Hennig and Valerie Power: For being utterly cool and always showing up at the right times to lend a hand and just be great friends in the process. Mike documented much of the giraffe’s construction, along with video tape of the giraffe’s first steps. I can’t wait to post all that stuff! Valerie painted parts of the giraffe, and helped a bit during final assembly. Brave girl indeed!

Julie Kremen: Designated as “The Princess” on her first outing to Burning Man, Julie met Celestia and I in Reno to complete her journey out to the playa, and proceeded to utterly amaze us with how unfazed she was by the dust and heat. She’s taken many images of the giraffe, at home during construction, out on the playa, and at Burning Man’s decompression party in San Francisco. As we get them all sorted out, I hope to show you more and more of her excellent photographic talent.

Everyone else: To everyone who gave me words of encouragement and financial support, thank you. This project is dedicated to everyone I’ve ever met, both family and friends alike. Also, to all the people I will meet in the future as a result of this project!

Tamiya Corporation: Tamiya has built many of the models and toys I played with as a child, and inspired in me a sense of detail and art to model making. This project is also dedicated to the people who built the tiny little model giraffe, and it is my sincere hope that someday, people from Tamiya get to see and ride this machine. To have the original designer or team that developed the little giraffe on the big one would be a dream come true for me.