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Neck armature/skeleton for big puppet  (Read 167 times)
TygerMin
« on: January 07, 2018, 11:38:54 am »

I want to do a Big Bird type puppet with a cable controlled mouth so I don't have to walk around with my arm in the air.  In planning, there are two areas I am seeking help with.

First is the skeleton/armature.  This will be six piece puppet where I create the head, arms, legs, and tail with me wearing a lab coat and pants for the body.  The neck and head will rest on my shoulders, and maybe attach under my arms with straps.  Is there a good way to utilize flexible pvc for this?  I know I could create "hula hoop" type circles, but how would I add vertical support?

Second is with the head.  Ideally, I would like it to be separate from the neck and attached to a helmet so it moved when I moved my head.  Does this sound possible?  Would it be semi-easy to accomplish?


« Last Edit: January 07, 2018, 11:41:29 am by TygerMin »
Floydaroo
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« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2018, 12:51:28 pm »

For the head, just build it out of 1" foam and use some PVC pipe running up to the top of the head and onto the top of a helmet. For the armature of the body, use stainless steel boning. going horizontal and vertical in a grid like pattern.
Floydaroo
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« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2018, 12:53:37 pm »

for the mouth mech, you could use some thin cable, around a pully in the top of the head, and down to a trigger of some sort. then use springs to open the mouth again. Just an idea
TygerMin
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2018, 09:05:39 am »

Boning is a great idea, thanks!  I could use a backpack frame which would add stability to the neck, and maybe also add some back spikes/fins to that area.  Could also possibly put the tail on that getup as well. 
Floydaroo
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« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2018, 11:27:48 am »

when you finish, post a pic, and keep us updated!
TygerMin
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2018, 08:26:12 am »

Will do!  Initial goal is to have it complete by May 5th, but I struggle with these builds so that is an initial goal.  I do enjoy having a white board at work to play around with though, need one at home Smiley

Floydaroo
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« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2018, 06:19:49 pm »

Great! It's never good to dive in without sketching first. I have a little sketchbook that is with me at all times. I sketch mechanics and designs in it.
TygerMin
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2018, 06:44:01 pm »

Mocked it up with pvc and sip ties.  May keep this and secure it with liquid nails.  Used an old dragon head to see how it may look. 

TygerMin
« Reply #8 on: Today at 09:35:57 am »

Used Liquid Nails Fuze It, so now have to let it sit a few days to cure and will see how well it will hold together.  The temptation is to cover the neck with foam, but I really need to work on the head and claw first.  For the head, thinking about using a foam head as a base, and building it similar to fur suit heads using plastic canvas and foam.  The mouth plate will be wood and foam, and I am using one of Pagestep's video as a guide.  Not sure yet how to attach a wood and PVC based mouth plate to a Styrofoam head.  Not sure what material to base the claw off of, as I want it to be able to hold a clip board, but the back will also have the triggers for both the mouth plate and the claw itself.  I will essentially be holding this piece the whole time, so need to keep it as lightweight as possible. 
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