The Neverwas Haul

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Presented By:
Shannon O'Hare
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Tell us briefly about your project. Is it a work of art or does it serve another function?

The Neverwas Haul is a three story self propelled Victorian house created from the imagination of Shannon O'Hare with a crew of approximately twenty people. Most of them brought little skills to the project but a lot of enthusiasm. Burning Man provided the original venue for the exhibition but it has also been on display at the Maker's Faire and the Carson City Parade. Moving the Haul is a major undertaking.

When did you start working on this project and how long did it take you to complete?

We started the Neverwas project in 2006 and we built it in six months. But we've been repairing and upgrading it ever since.

What was your goal in building this project?

To build a Victorian fantasy structure that's never been built before; a vehicle that defies logic and reason. A vehicle that delights the imagination and brings a lot of joy to many people.

Does your project help to solve a problem? If so what problem?

I think it creates more problems than it solves. It solves the problem of what to do with our spare time.

What makes your idea unique?

We don't think there is anything else like it.

In what capacity are you using bearings and what type of bearings?

The big wheels have trailer wheel bearings and custom make torsion axles. We tried to drive the haul with the big wheels in the beginning but that was a complete failure. There are six wheels supporting the Haul's ten thousand pounds each with bearings. The big wheels are now floating and only turn for looks. Steering is accomplished hydraulically. The front axle pivots on large bearings. The front axle is mostly concealed by the Cow Catcher, which has been renamed the Raver Catcher. Since the Haul is the Steampunk representation at Burning Man our motto is, "Damn the blinkies, full speed ahead."

What is the most important thing you want people to know about your project?

Our project has become a catalyst and icon for steampunk community and many tinkerers have been inspired by the Haul to go out and create projects of their own. If our rag tag crew can create something this wondrous, then anyone can do it.

How will you use the $5,000 prize?

Of course, we intend to buy many more bearings. But also, since the Haul is made from recycled and found components, which were pretty much worn out when installed, they really need replacing now. We desperately need a new engine and a few other major components. We have a new home for the Haul as of March 2012, but the rent is expensive.

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