The envelope carts are an interesting
addition. When getting a special shape, one thing nobody ever counts on
(when you never have worked on a Special Shape) is the weight. The US Flag
Balloon "America One" weighs 550 pounds. Space Shuttle "Patriot" weighs
997 pounds. That means serious movers are required.
Originally, we were going to have to
build custom carts for moving these mammoths. Then, I discovered something
that could be modified to work from TSC, Tractor Supply Company. I love
Tractor Supply Company.
Both carts have served us well, look
nice and have big tires to get through difficult turf.
The Space Shuttle Cart:
This is an adjustable cart that could
be up to 6'x4' that is no longer adjustable. The sides originally could be
unhooked, making a flatbed type trailer. The problem was that the sides
were not strong enough to hold in the Shuttle bag. So I had to weld the
sides solid and I ran 1" square tube around
the top, securely welded in place to add reinforcement.
The sides and floor are wire mesh,
which is too abrasive for the fabric bag. The floor has a form fitted
painted plywood floor with custom lettering that says "Place Spacecraft
Here". The sides have PVC plastic inserted up against the wire and lettering
on the sides "Transporter-Crawler", which is what the machine is called
that take the real Orbiter to the launch pad. The PVC plastic says "I Brake
For No One" because this cart has no brakes. Get in its way, it shows NO
forgiveness. The rear is a spoof about the ongoing battle we have with the
Energizer Bunny for who has the tallest balloon.
This trailer has a 2000 pound weight
capacity and doesn't even flinch with the Shuttle on board.
The Flag Balloon Cart:
This cart is actually labeled a "Garden
Wagon" and the rear door was removable. The dimensions are 3'x5'. It was
welded securely in place because the Flag Bag would have just pushed out
the sides since the back wasn't connected. Teri then lettered the entire
cart with a flag on the sides and the warning "I Brake For NO One" on the
front and back. If you get in the way as this cart is rolling, it "Brakes for
No One". You will be hurt. It has a 1000 pound capacity and after having a
couple crew people on the cart with the balloon, we have exceeded the
maximum weight of the trailer. That collapsed part of the floor but I have
since brought in back into the shop and welded new reinforcements to keep
it from collapsing to the wheels. . No problems NOW!