Hi there,

Well, a lot has happened in the last couple of weeks! My hubby and I have decided to check out SteamPunk. (If you don’t know what it is, it’s kind of Victorian meets Wild, Wild West, meets the industrial revolution if it had gone differently, meets Firefly the TV show.) We have started to gather the garb/clothing we’ll need, and to modify things (like children’s toy “guns”, you know the kind with the squishy foam “bullets” so one doesn’t loose an eye, that rimes with surf).

Anyhow, I digress. So here is the first mod (modification) I have done. It takes a keychain toy and turns it into a Derringer-like piece. I am calling it the Lilly of the Valley SP (Steam Punk) Gun.


First things first, I took out the 4 little screws that were holding the case on to the firing mechanism.

Then, I took the case off, and discovered a most wonderful thing! If you turn the mechanism upside down from the way the manufacturer had it, 1) it still fires, and 2) it actually looks like the barrels of some of the old fashioned Derringers.

I then realized I needed some sort of handle to go on it. Luckily, I had some left over Padouk wood (an African red colored wood) from when I took wood-shop in art school. So I made a wooden handle.


I then completely threw the original case away, and carved the handle. My favorite flower is Lilly of the Valley, so I decided to carve them into the handle as the design on the front side. I also drilled three holes in it so I could attach it with wire to the barrel. the wire is really for looks, as I also epoxied them together so the connection would be sturdy.


After I was finished carving it, I decided the edges needed some definition, so I wood burned just the very edges/corners of the design.


After that and while the iron was still hot, I wood burned a simple Lilly of the Valley design into the top and bottom of the handle.

Top of Handle

Bottom of Handle

After carving, I turned my attention to the barrel. I spray painted it a brassy-gold color and let it dry. Luckilly, I live in the desert, and it was dry by the time I reached the door to go back inside. Then I painted bronze highlights with a metallic acrylic paint and a brush. After it was all dry, I clear coated it, so the paint was sealed together.


I put a finish on the wooden handle at the same time as I clear coated the barrel, and set them both aside overnight to cure.


When they were fully cured, I glued the handle to the barrel and let them cure together overnight. I used E-6000 for this.


Then, I wired the handle to the barrel, and started gluing brass plumbers fittings, washers, jewelry findings, and clockworks to the barrel, trigger, and the pump.


Here is the finished front of the piece:

Completed Front

I had originally left the back of the handle blank. Honestly, I just didn’t want to spend another super hot summer day outside in the sweltering shed. I then had and idea I really liked! I screwed five little brass nuts, with five little brass screws to the back, following the curve of the handle. Here is the finished back view:

Completed Back

It does still fire the little foam “bullets”.

I didn’t keep track of the amount of time it took to finish it, so I won’t even hazard a guess. But it did take about a week off and on to take it from toy to SteamPunk.