Building a Dream: ‘A Dune Buggy from Maruti 800’.

We thank Mr. Akshay Sharma for sharing his experience of making a Dune Buggy from a retired Maruti 800.

Author: Akshay Sharma

Introduction: Graduate in Mechanical and Automation Engineering residing in Jaipur and have sketching as hobby.

The Article: 

Since I was a little kid I had a dream of building my very own car. Fueling my imagination were shows like OVERHAULIN, Pimp my ride, Bangla banger and many other TV shows where they used to modify, restore and custom build vehicles for their client. The fuel supplied my dream even more energy. I was determined to follow-through on my dream and build my very own car, a car that will turn everyone’s head in awe of its beauty. It would be not just be awesome but it will be special.

This never ending love for cars has grown so much that no matter where I go, I’m always look out for cars. The time I step out of my house I think in mind “How great would it be if I see a Lamborghini today!”

After toiling hard for my engineering degree for four long years, I finally received the news I always wanted to hear the sweet sound of a ‘Project’ in which I needed to use all my knowledge, my imagination and my passion to create something out of the ordinary. As soon as this music reached my ears, my heart told me only one thing ‘Its Time!’ It’s time to unleash the full force of my dreams and passion in creating the vehicle of my dreams.

I brought out my drawing board and started jotting down the ideas for various types of car I could make. I felt good about going for a F1 car but the funding for it made me think it is better to go for another car.

But before I could finalize anything I had to make a team, a team sharing the same passion and love for cars that I have. Thus, my dream team was formed with me being the commander in chief (Captain).

Captain: Akshay Sharma

  • Mayank Singh
  • Himanshu Sharma
  • Swagat Purohit
  • Seshu Madhav
  • Harshith Mantri
  • Ashwani Kumar
  • Diwakar Srivastava

Even after much deliberation we were not able to come to any conclusion. The one day browsing ‘Youtube’ for funny fail videos I came across a video where a dune buggy failed to climb and crashed. That is when I had my ‘Eureka’ moment. I live in Jaipur and am surrounded by sand so why not go for a ‘Dune Buggy’. I pitched my idea to the team and before I knew it we were totally focused on it.

The major constraint was the budget. But that was taken care of easily. We had an old Maruti 800 the ex-king of Indian motor industry lying in my parking area. So we got our engine and exterior taken care of which was gonna cost us a fortune was now gonna cost us nothing instead it will free up the used parking space for us to use it for parking an active car.

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I was leading a team of 9 members working towards one goal a cheap Dune buggy with a great performance and ability to go through the rugged terrain. We started our work in October 2015. I came up with sketches and idea about the car. Being engineering student we modeled all my ideas into a computer model. We used different software for designing, analysis of forces, calculation which were a must. I am not going share the details of calculation as you know they are my trade secrets.  After everything was complete it was the time for fabrication.

We used Maruti 800 the donor and borrowed most of the parts from it. We did welding, cutting, grinding and other mechanical processes.

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The First Step: The Skeleton Begins

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The Second Step: The Skeleton in Progress

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Third Step: The Rolling Begins

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The Forth Step: Wheel Alignment

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The Fifth Step: Fitting in the Engine

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The Sixth Step: Finishing Touches

After working day and night and putting lots of efforts the car was finally completed in May 2016.

My dream now had a physical form and I was very happy about it. It really felt amazing when the thing that you had only dreamt about becomes a reality with you and your friend’s efforts, hard work and dedication. Everyone appreciated us for the work and loved what which achieved.

The feeling of driving a car you made using your own two hands, sweat and blood you pour into it cannot be compared with anything else. The car is an unusual one which is not seen commonly in Jaipur. People stared at me when I drove it the first time. They smiled and waved. I was so proud of my achievement that it showed on my face while driving my car. The breeze was splashing against my face and gave me a refreshing feeling.

All my joy and happiness came to a pause when I remembered that it was time for me to submit my car to the college as it was a part of my project and coursework. I still remember the night we took the car to the college. People on the road were following us. They we were asking about the car and the people in the cars passing by couldn’t stop looking at the car. It really felt so good but at the same time I felt really heavy departing from the love of my life with whom I had spent my days and nights.

But one hurdle still remained in all the effort we had put in and that was to name our baby. We were thinking that from day 1 but still were not satisfied with the 100 odd names we had thought of. Then we though we had made a machine and another person who had build a machine of his dream was Tony Stark A.K.A Iron Man. This made it easy for us now. The name we came up with was ‘Jarvis’ the ‘All Terrain Vehicle’.

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After all that happened I was atleast satisfied that I got to live my dream. I build a beauty that the people admired and loved. Now I am awaiting the result of my work. For me the amount of marks I get is of no value but how much my work is appreciated and valued has true meaning to me.

Also if you are interested in owing your very own Dune Buggy and have the budget for it let me know and may be in a few days you might own your very own. 🙂

Before and After

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