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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My Most Detailed Prop Build for 2013 FINISHED

One of my goals for this year was coming up with a method to make my figures so that I could vary the poses from the standard straight style. Most of my stand up props are made with 2x4 legs and pvc upper bodies which work fine but it didn't offer much variety.
Since I bought a welder last year and am trying to learn to weld, I decided to give a steel body a try. It would allow me to design props in a wider variety of poses and be plenty rigid and strong so that they could handle pneumatic cylinders for upper body motions.
I was inspired for my first try at this by a small concept drawing I found for a character for the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. He was never used and I thought it would be really cool to try and bring him to life.



I started out with a pvc frame and used the joints and fittings from Spider Hill Prop Works - http://www.spiderhillpropworks.com/store/index.php?route=product/category&path=35 to build up the design and try different poses. They worked great for this and would actually be great for the final prop if it was static.



However, since I wanted a 3 axis talking skull and pneumatically controlled arms, I needed a stronger framework so it was on to the metal work.
After lots of cutting, fitting, welding and grinding he started to take shape.





My original idea was to take the Lindburg skull that I had mounted a Triaxial 3 axis skull kit in - http://triaxialskulllabs.com/webstore/ and just add a skin to which I would then paint up. Not the best solution as it didn't really look like I wanted but it would do. My good friend Bobzilla happened to stop by the house and saw what I was working on and asked if he could help with the skull. I was ecstatic to have his great talents applied to the project and quickly handed the skull over to him. Here's the skull after the first bit of work by Bob with a lot of work left to bring him to life.



I'll be updating the thread as the build progresses. You can see the completed video on post 112 on page 12.

Here' the combined build video

 

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Registered
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Looks like a good start, but keep in mind that you will have to clothe him too. Having the torso and limbs flexible enough so that you can get clothes on him/her without having to do major surgery on every garment can be a major time and money saver.
 

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Super Moderator
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This guy will be able to stand up to a hurricane:)

I love the concept sketch.
 

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Slowly Losing My Mind
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Geez Halstaff,
You've pretty much spear-headed that project and it shows in that nice tutorial. Luv the sparks flying in that pic. Great looking concept!

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Looks like a good start, but keep in mind that you will have to clothe him too. Having the torso and limbs flexible enough so that you can get clothes on him/her without having to do major surgery on every garment can be a major time and money saver.
I'm fortunate that my wife is very skilled seamstress and she's custom making the entire costume. We did spend quite a bit of time during the design phase discussing exactly how the clothes would fit. She's done some preliminary work on it but she really needs to wait for me to complete the construction before she can fit everything.
In fact, the only reason this guy gets to come into the house is that she'd rather not have to work on him outside.
 

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Clean "cut"
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This is gonna be sooo Rad!!
 

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In Remembrance
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A great inspiration. Looking forward to more pictures of the build. And a live in seamstress, now that is what I call planning ahead.
 

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IN MEMORIAM - A Wee Bit Wicked....
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:jol:He looks great, I really like the concept sketch...sort of a "Scallywagg" with some "hot loot" to sell mixed in with Animal from the Muppets, what with the wild hair and all, very lovable in a creepy way! Very nice work on your welds.:D
 

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Humanitarian of the Year
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Concept looks great, the frame is awesome. I always admire your work before and after I saw your display.

P.S. Get some welding leathers (front leathers) to protect you from the slag blasting off the metal. Trust me
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Concept looks great, the frame is awesome. I always admire your work before and after I saw your display.

P.S. Get some welding leathers (front leathers) to protect you from the slag blasting off the metal. Trust me
Funny you should notice the lack of welding leathers. I do have them and use them when welding but for these pictures, I took them off. My son who's a professional photographer, took the grinding pictures for a presentation he was giving to a high school class. He didn't like how the picture looked with the leathers on as he preferred the color contrast without them. He was trying to show the difference exposure settings made when trying to capture moving images.
 

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Humanitarian of the Year
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Heh, just making sure. You should have seen my last safety vest from all the slag that burned holes through it.

Edit: also, just wanted to make sure youn had them since you said you were new to welding :)
 

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Pumpkin Hill Gravekeeper
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Too cool. Just waaaay past cool. Is he going to be selling candy perhaps? From under his coat?
 

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Headless & Haunting
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Can't wait to see him finished! Great work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
MONDAY MORNING UPDATE

He's coming along with some of the muscles and brains being added. I tested the pneumatics and am very pleased with the arm motion.



The head is also making progress and more like a face and less like a skull.

 

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I love that face!
 
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