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Steampunk Holmes and the Black Widow

Our hero, Steampunk Holmes, needs a cool ride, something totally radical. After searching for ideas I came across the motorcycle on the left, the Black Widow. It was designed by Mikky Solifague of Solifague Design in Russia. You can find some other images of it here. This is Mikky's 2007 design he has since updated in 2010, but I really preferred the 2007 design.

To make a long story short I contacted Mikky and asked permission to use its likeness in the Steampunk Holmes book. It's such a beautiful design I asked if he had ever built it. The answer was no, but if someone wanted to order one he could get it built. That set me to thinking.

Solifague Design's Black Widow
Remember the post I had about offering Steampunk merchandise for sale from within the app/book - done non-intrusively and with taste? What could be cooler than offering the Black Widow for sale? I spoke to Mikky about this and he was interested, and had someone in Moscow that could build it with some design changes. I wasn't comfortable having it manufactured all the way over in Russia. They would probably do a great job but with the language, distance, and time differences it would be difficult to coordinate.

I remembered having read an article about a race car engineer in Ohio who had built a real Batmobile in five months complete with a working jet engine (see pic below). It's been featured on Wired, Top Gear, Born Rich, Auto Blog, Endgadet and many other sites. The workmanship is really execellent.

I reached out to the engineer, Casey Putsch, to see if he would be interested in manufacturing Mikky's Black Widow. I was delighted to find out that he is interested! What's more is that Mikky loves the idea of having Casey manufacture his dream bike. I'm in the process of connecting Mikky and Casey so that they can modify the design of the Black Widow to be street legal and manufacture it in the United States!

What is really cool is that we will have Steampunk Holmes driving around London on this incredible chopper and people will be able to order the real thing directly from within the book itself - or at the least contact Putsch Racing to order one!

Now if that isn't the coolest merchandise associated with an entertainment property I don't know what is. I'm so excited!

It's not a done deal yet, but both Mikky and Casey are confident we can pull it off and have given me authorization to announce our intentions on my blog.

Update: 7/28/2011: Mikky has designed a side car to go with the Black Widow.

Just in case you didn't read about Casey's Batmobile, watch the video below and go to his web site to check it out. With Mikky and Casey joining forces to design and build the Black Widow you can bet its going to be the coolest motorcycle on the road. I can't wait to see the art work that Daniel will come up with showing Homes riding this bad boy!


Steampunk Virgin said...

I am interested in getting more involved in Steampunk culture. I work with Swiss mechanical watch movements, and I can see lots of applications in everything from watches to kinetic jewelry and even advanced clothing designs. I would love to work with someone who could help guide me, and with the internet location seems to be no restriction. Anyone interested?

davemayp said...

Hi Richard- I absolutely love the threads you are weaving together here- steampunk and classic literature in an interactive book app! I featured your project on my product design blog:
Thank you for sharing your process- and I look forard to the finished result!

App Book Producer said...

Hi Dave, thank you for the very kind article about Steampunk Holmes and his Black Widow! I actually tweeted about your article about two weeks ago! I can tell that you really did your research of our project before posting your article. Nice work.

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