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The perfect example of “cool doesn’t have to be complicated,” Chaintool’s robot costume made out of old Clorox bottles rocked the Southwest last year. Made out of “laundry detergent bottles, crutches, and football shoulder pads,” it looks more like an early Star Wars prototype. Chaintool talks about his favorite tools (of course!), the importance of space exploration, and why Halloween is great. What’s he wearing this year? You’ll have to wait to find out – Interview by Arwen O’Reilly, Staff Editor.How would you describe yourself?
Hmmm, I think I am should be described as a goo-filled fleshbag. A little hairy on the outside and for the insides … well, I’d rather not talk about that. As for personality … ummm, ecentric, disorganized and distracted … I’m a bit of a recluse/hermit … I spend most of my time making crap … all sorts of crap … If you want to know the basic questions, I’m a chef by trade and a poor student in reality.

What possessed you to spray paint detergent bottles and make a robot costume?
A friend of mine did a similar thing; the apartment building I was living at had many laundry rooms and after about a month or raiding the trashcans I had enough to build. The project won at the Santa Fe Recycled Arts Show in 2005. I feel confident that my new costume (don’t worry, you’ll find out what it is in a few weeks) will be as succesful.

What interesting projects are you working on right now?
Well, I make a lot of fork, spoon and knife people, I carve a lot of wood out of old used furniture (or whatever junk/trash I come across), I’m in the midst of making a plexiglass thing-a-ma-bob that circulates water to the top and lets it fall down through a series of tubes and spinny things to hang on your wall. I also do a lot of stuff that girls like (make candles, LED jewelry, and soap … girls are real suckers for that sort of thing). As for future projects, hopefully in a few paychecks, I’ll papasan chair that will hover above a ring of powerful electromagnets and be tethered in place. I also want to make a coffee table that has glass on top of a pool of ferrofluid that you can manipulate with magnets.

What new idea (in or outside of your field) has excited you most recently?
I am enthralled by space exploration. Here in New Mexico we have a private space center being built and in just a few years pointlessly rich people can take a quick trip to space. That is a great thing; I see us humans finally starting to get off this rock. Hey, perhaps we’ll find aliens and then we as all humanity will quit fighting one-another and we can fight the aliens instead. Ya know, thats what we need for world peace … aliens.

What are your favorite tools/books/websites?
Chaintool: I like my dremel, my glue stick, Instructables, the Make blog, americanantigravity.com and lately I’ve been reading a few books about Nikola Tesla. Fascinating dude, he was, too bad he was screwed over so many times and underfinanced.

How do you feel about Halloween?
Chaintool: It’s the one day of the year that I don’t feel like a fool wearing 30 pounds of trash that I fashioned into a costume….

What’s one tip you’d give to other makers or users of Instructables?
Before you throw away your garbage (ie: old cell phones, electronics, etc.) take it apart… there’s alot of useful old junk that can be recreated into new junk.