Monday, November 18, 2019

The BB-Björn: Our Custom Droid Carrier For Disney's Galaxy's Edge!

Ever make something just for pun?

(That's not a typo.)

I only ask because that's how our BB-Björn droid carrier came to be! As soon as I made the joke to John, we knew we had to make one.

 
And so we did.

(Yes, that's a pacifier in the droid's "mouth." We do know how to amuse ourselves - which you can probably tell by my "Quick take the picture before I crack up" face.)

Best of all, we then got to take our BB-Björn for a spin at Disney's Galaxy's Edge!
  
 
 (This was back in September, so it was still 90 degrees and sweltering.)

 

 

 Please note John's incredible decal:
See how BB's Mickey ears are the umlaut over the O? John is especially proud of that part.

Puns aside, this is actually a handy DIY if you're planning to visit Galaxy's Edge, because get this: the droids you build there are interactive with the land! So of course you'll want an easy way to carry your droid where you can see it. 

To be fair, Disney does sell custom backpacks for their droids, but they're not very exciting looking, and they cost a whopping $70:


 Plus they don't convert to front-carriers.

By contrast, I used John's holographic Tamatoa backpack to make our carrier, which costs $10 Prime:

So much prettier, and the cheapskate in me loves getting dual-duty out of something we already have.

 The bag itself needs very little modification. First I folded down the top flap inside the bag, cutting off the top zipper edge so it would lay flat:

I glued this part down inside.

Next I cut off the outside zipper to give it a clean edge, though this is optional:

 
And finally we swapped out the straps. 

That's it!

Now, you could keep the straps as-is and just wear this as a backpack:


... but I wanted the option to carry it in front like a Baby Björn, both to fit the pun AND so I could see the droid talking and spinning around as I walked through the park.

To do this we added new adjustable straps that are extra long. The length adjusts with velcro, so it only takes a moment to change from short backpack straps to the longer criss-crossed carrier straps.
 
Sorry my hair is in the way, but hopefully you get the idea.

(My hair was such a sweaty mess at Disney that we re-shot some of these later at home.)

The crowning touch, of course, is John's decal:

We even did a little fancy Cricut work to get the two-toned outline on it.

And yes, of COURSE we'll share the files!
 
And here's the outline to stick under it:


You only need a mini backpack for this, and even with a pack as tiny as this one there's a little space left over to fit the droid's remote and my purse essentials. Because BB is a big ball, there's space in each of the 4 corners. 


This is BB-11, btw, which belongs to our friend Karen. We proudly informed the cast members who asked that we were "BB-sitting."

 I haven't tested this with any R2 units, but they look too big for this particular bag. Definitely check whatever backpack you want to modify first, just to make sure your droid will fit. If you're crafting this before you get your droid, then google the droid dimensions.
 
I should note the Galaxy's Edge droids are heavier than you expect, since their battery is like a brick. So if you're like me, you'll end up wearing this as a backpack through the rest of Hollywood Studios, and only flip it around to front-carry when you're in Galaxy's Edge itself. The droids only interact with Star Wars areas anyway, so I promise you won't miss anything.

Oh! Last thing: before you go, I have two more awesome droid carrying options for you. 

First, I was lucky enough to spot this couple during our visit:

Ahh-mazing. They're each wearing this cat carrier backpack, and then they added battery operated push-lights inside, which looks incredible at night.

 At about $54 each, those backpacks are still cheaper than Disney's option - though I think they'd be too big for the smaller BB units.

 And finally, I think you'll agree, this last droid-carrier is definitely the best option - if you can afford it:

Though I hear they're real fuel-guzzlers.

;)

I hope this sparks some crafty ideas out there! Stay tuned, and I promise I WILL post more photos from Galaxy's Edge eventually. I just took so many that I overwhelmed myself, ha, and still have to go back and edit them all.

******

If you're more interested in full-size BB units, then I can show you how to build your own life-sized BB-8 for less than $80!


 

16 comments:

  1. I'm so sad that I didn't have enough time to explore Galaxy's Edge really well on our last trip! We lucked out that boarding parties were no longer required but it was a day we had a photo shoot set up at 9 am and then the slowest breakfast ever with extended family before we could even get to HS... But I am looking forward to your posts and photos to go with my walk through of the area and the single rider/fast pass line for Smuggler's Run. (The rest of the family was nowhere to be found and a 2-year old on the ride seemed like a bad idea - don't even know if there was a height requirement - didn't check!!)

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  2. That's awesome! I think I'm going to use a folding backpack (the kind that fold up into a tiny pouch, so they're very flexible) and just fold down the front edge to do something similar when I do Galaxy's Edge in Disneyland in January. I'm SO excited to get an R-unit of my very own!

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  3. Did you use the Galaxy's Edge app to "enhance" your visit? I recently read an article about it and it sounds like it would be fun to use. The app interacts with different areas of
    Galaxy's Edge from what I understand. ~Elsie

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    1. Our friend Scott who was showing us around that day was using the app, yes! So I watched over his shoulder a few times, when I could be pried away from photographing every square inch of the entire land, lol.

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  4. I am so excited that you posted this! We're in the middle of planning a big trip to Orlando for June 2020 to finally take my CA born kiddo to WDW (he's been to Disneyland 6 or 7 times), and he really wants to make a droid in Galaxy's Edge. I've been pondering how to carry the darn thing so we can see it interacting while we're there and debating if we should just budget for one of their backpacks. I totally love your modified backpack idea, and the BB Bjorn is cracking me up (although my son won't get the joke)!!

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  5. Come for the droids, stay for the pun. 😅

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  6. Baby Bjorns are all over fb marketplace for 8-15, and I bet the droid would fit perfectly as is.

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  7. Something something pun in the oven... (I'm too tired to pun successfully tonight). But I love the BB-Björn! Shiny! I noticed the Mickey ears umlaut in the first picture before I noticed the pacifier. :D

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  8. Love it!! Fantastic pun, and fantastic craft! Is it crazy expensive to make one of the droids? Also, what did you use to attach the binky (I assume it wasn't permanent (my phone wanted that to be 'pregnant' which adds another level of hilarity))?

    In any case, I have been chucking about this for a while!

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    1. Don't quote me on this, but I believe the BB units cost $100 to make, with the R2s being a bit more than that, like maybe $120? Plus there are add-ons for personality chips.

      For the binky, I just used a little poster putty! I use that stuff SO MUCH, you never know when some non-permanent sticky clay will come in handy, ha.

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  9. Have you seen the card game Punderdome? I feel like this is something you would enjoy. Took a little time to get in the zone for this engineer, but it was fun.

    https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/533671/punderdome-by-by-daughter-father-duo-jo-and-fred-firestone-creators-of-punderdome-3000/

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  10. Man, I think you could make a fortune reselling those droids on eBay.

    Now I want to go to WDW JUST TO GET A DROID.

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  11. Can you please share how you did the outline on the cricut?? I've been trying to figure this out

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    1. Sure! John did it in Photoshop: you add a very thick Stroke to your text, making both the text & stroke the same color. Then save as a .jpg and upload to the Cricut Design Space.

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