Saturday, June 11, 2011

Eleanor’s Big Sister Syringe


I am still trying to figure out just how much of Eleanor Lamb’s Big Sister armor I can get done for Melinda.  The helmet has pretty much kicked my butt so far.  I’m not sure why. I may just have some sort of block with it.  I am still moving forward with some pieces and right now it is looking like Melinda will be the end game non-helmeted version of Eleanor.Eleanor Big Sister
This version may be out.


Eleanor_Lamb_ConceptEnd Game Eleanor 2
This version is in.

Even back before the helmet started kicking me around, I was working on the needle/syringe thing on her arm.

The back story of the prop is that the Little Sisters would use that to extract Adam from their victims.

The Big Sisters just take it up a notch or two or three.


Some of the early concept art, like the above, the Big Sisters have actually attached a bayonet to the end of the needle.  Fortunately that didn’t make the final cut.

Using the action figures as reference, back in February, I started on the build.

I used some 1/4” plywood, an old plastic shelf leg, and some dowel rods for the main body.

syringe - 1syringe - 2

I sculpted the valve wheels from clay and would later paint them red.

syringe - 5

Now, here is where I stopped for a few months.  I don’t know why, but I did.  Then within the last two weeks, I got moving again, really fast.  Unfortunately, when I do that, I forget to take build pictures.  Sorry.

I made the glowing collection bottle from a clear ketchup/mustard picnic bottle I got at the grocery store, painted the inside red, and wired up some LEDs into it.  A push button on the bottom serves as the on/off and the “nipple” portion of the collection bottle.

Some copper and grey paint, old copper tubing I had lying around and this is what I ended up with.

syringe - 9

99% complete, but I am HAPPY!

syringe - 10
I have to mache and paint the pink bit and clean up some glue and a little aging, but again, I AM HAPPY.

syringe - 11

syringe - 12syringe - 19

syringe - 13syringe - 16
All lit up.

syringe - 17

Like I said above, just a little clean up and some aging and it is good to go.  The vambrace that this attaches to and then to Melinda’s arm is under construction too.

It is times like this, when the prop is close enough to done, that I can step back and enjoy it.  I really am very happy with how this has turned out and I’m amped up again to move forward with more.  Maybe I’ll even tackle the helmet again.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

May–Delta & Destro


May.  This was not a very productive month.  As far as getting Delta any closer to completion anyway.  For other projects, it was a very good month.  I began work on my version 2 of Destro’s mask, and upgraded my vacuum forming table…already.

For Delta, all that I got done was just cleaning up the wiring, lining the inside of the helmet with old Crown Royal bags, and getting the back pack started.  I have to say, that I think it actually looks pretty cool with all the bags in there.  It looks much better than just the raw foam that was visible.Subject Delta Helmet - 107Subject Delta Helmet - 109

This does serve four purposes.
1) It helps to seal down some of the Mache from pealing lose.
2) It covers the foam skeleton on the inside.
3) It allowed me to conceal and secure the wiring for the lights and fans.
4) It gets rid of a lot of Crown Royal bags.

I did route the wiring out the back and it will be concealed with the back pack.

Subject Delta Helmet - 108

The back pack is really just a board that the tanks will mount to, and the board will mount to the frame on the helmet.  I will likely permanently mount the board to the helmet, but the tanks will be removable for transport and storage.

Tanks on board

I need to trim this a lot shorter too, but I like the layout.

Well, big daddy Delta is not going to be the only costume that goes to Atlanta…hopefully.  I am also working on an updated version of my Destro costume from last year.

Destro with a Cigar

While I absolutely love this costume, I did run short on time and had to leave a few things in a state of half baked.  Mainly the back of the mask being made from vinyl and kept closed with Velcro.  With everything I learned from it, I am well under way with a version 2.

Back in March, I decided to try my hand at making a vacuum forming table.  The basic idea is you take a positive mold or sculpt, heat a piece of plastic until it is just about to melt, put it over the mold, and use a vacuum to suck all the air out and form the plastic around the mold. 

The table itself was easy enough to build, except for marking and drill over 1500 1/4” holes.  I went with a side by side version instead of the top down version.  My idea was that heat rises, so a heat source under the plastic would work best.

LotsaholesVacuum TableDSCN0169

I did line the heat side with WonderBoard, just forgot to get a picture.

I went with a toaster over as my heat source.  The one I picked up had two burners.

Poor Little Toaster OverWires

This lead to some heating issues.  Hot spots.  Uneven heating. Not enough heat.  All that lead to some rather interesting foil attempts at a solution.

Version 1 - Ghetto Mod 2Version 1 - Ghetto Mod

I had to eventually break down and get a second toaster over.  I looked at other options, but this was the cheapest and all I could afford.  Maybe one day there will be a version 3 with a more professional heat source, or at least a bigger toaster oven.

Version 2 - UpgradeVersion Two - Twin Controls

I could have likely run all 4 elements off just one controller, but I thought why try to increase my risks for a fire more than I already am.

With that all done and working, I took my original mask and made a vacuum mold of it.  I want to use it as a base for a sculpt and since it is already the right size and a great starting point, why not.

Destro - V1 Mold PullDestro - V1 Mold Pull 2

Next, I filled the new plastic mold with a fun little compound Melinda and I came up with of newspapers and water run through the blender and then glue and flour added.  I baked this for quite a while under a heat lamp and outside before I felt brave enough to remove it.

Destro - V2 Positive 2                                Destro - V2 Positive

I didn’t get any pictures of the final product, but it is working out great as a base.  I did try to do just a quick vacuum pull of just it with a few changes made by adding clay, and well, anywhere air could pull through, it did and caused the plastic to form around it. I ended up with a lumpy mask.

Destro - V2 NonClay Pull

I then just went and built up the rest of the features, evened out a few areas and gave the whole thing a coat with air dry clay to get a good solid working positive.

Destro - V2 Clay Sculpt                       Destro - V2 Clay Sculpt 2

I marked the eye areas with raised bits so I would know better where to cut for the eye holes later.

The pull from the clay piece turned out really well and I am on my way to a good Destro V2 mask.

Destro - V2 Clay Pull

This is only the front, but I will use it to build the back and will sculpt ear molds separately and put it all together.  My plan is to use rare earth magnets to hold the front and back together.  I guess that this will add the effect of also scrambling the CIA brainwave scanners as well.