How to build your own Dalek

How Do You Build a Dalek?

Around 50 years ago, the first Daleks were entering production, built from a wood frame with various plastic, metal and fibreglass components. Built by external contractors Shawcraft, the the Daleks were an instant hit, resulting in fifty years of replicas, both faithful and a few that were a little more “out there”.

Dalek building has been an enduring aspect of Doctor Who fandom, but its methodology is often spoken of in hushed tones, like some mystical, esoteric knowledge possessed only by high priests of the art. To dispel this myth, the first issue of Kasterborous Magazine chats with Gareth Mugridge in the very first In the Shed feature, in which we find out just what is involved with building a Dalek – and what opportunities can arise (such as, for instance, your build appearing in Doctor Who!)

In recalling his Dalek building project, Gareth notes that

initially I was looking for something to do as a creative thing. Doctor Who had not long returned to our screens and the studio moved from Newport to half a mile from my house so I think that played a part, initially I was going to build a TARDIS, but didn’t know where to start.

While working for a bookstore chain as events co-ordinator, we were always looking for ways to engage kids, particularly with reading. We thought a Doctor Who day would be a good plan given our close proximity to the studios and the popularity of the show.

Let’s be under no illusions here: building a wood, MDF and fibre glass construct of any size is not for the faint of heart. Fortunately, Gareth provides readers with some great advice…

Read the full interview and get all the details in the first issue of Kasterborous Magazine, out now and available from the Kasterborous Store in print and electronic formats!


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