Biker Chili Cook-off Trophies

Back in 2008 Joker wrote a post about the Blackstone HOG Winter Chili Cook-off in Massachusetts between HOG Chapters. That inspired me to have the 1st Annual First State HOG Chili Cook-off last February. Diana bought me a Craftsman Router Table  and Router for my birthday and I used it to make the plaques for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.

base and deck painted orange

This year I kicked it up a notch by making trophies. I used some scrap wood for the base and top deck. I used the router to put a decorative edge on them. The base is a 5.5″ x 9″ rectangle and the top deck is a 5.5″ square. I painted them with Valspar “Autumn Blaze” 2002-1 Semi Gloss from Lowe’s.

pvc spray painted black 

I purchased two 2′ lengths of 2″ diameter PVC pipe and painted them with flat black spray paint. I cut them to 10″, 8″ and 6″ with my Craftsman Power Mitre Saw that Diana bought me for a housewarming present when I bought my house.

Cut the PVC to 10? 8? and 6?

base rod washers and nuts

I purchased one 12″ long threaded rod, two washers and two nuts for each tropy (1/4″ diameter). I drilled a big hole using a 7/8″ drill bit on the bottom of the base just deep enough to sink the washer and nut. Then I finished the hole all the way through with a 5/16″ bit, I drilled all the way through the top decks with the same bit. The bolt should have wriggle room unless you can make the drill holes perfectly vertical. If you can do that then go ahead and use the 1/4″ bit. Maybe I should have used my drill press. Maybe a tight fit with perfectly vertical drill holes would have made assembly easier. Now that I think of it, another set of washer and nut to secure the bolt to the base would have worked twenty times better. I wish I thought of that before!

drill hole in upper deck

tin can

We ate four cans of canned corn with dinner over a two night period and saved the cans. Took the labels off and washed them. Punched a 1/4″ hole in the bottoms using a nail and hammer to start the hole. Then a phillips head screw driver to make it bigger and then a nail set to finish the hole. Try to get the metal to point down rather than in.

Connect the pieces

inside the can view

under the base view

The next step is to connect the can on top to the top deck with the Base on the bottom with the PVC pipe sandwiched between the base and top deck. A washer and nut go under the base in the sink hole and a washer and nut go inside the can. Getting everything lined up and tightened up is a little tricky. Maybe wingnuts for inside the can would have worked better. Had to use small needle nose Irwin Vice Grips, 7/16″ crescent wrench, and 7/16″ nut driver to get the job done. I didn’t break out my socket set but a 7/16″ socket would have come in handy.

Diana made labels for the cans that have a diamond plate background. She mounted the labels using 3M Super 77 Multipurpose Adhesive in a spray can to glue the labels to the cans. The final touch is to glue a #1, #2 and #3 on the base. I got the numbers at A.C. Moore. they are 3.5″ high and cost $1.29 each. I painted them white and used Elmer’s Carpenter’s Interior Wood Glue to adhere them to the base.

the numbers

The trophies came out great! Now I’m thinking about how to step it up another notch for next year.

cropped off trophy