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Old 19-02-2010, 09:34 PM   #41
Captain Sci-Fi
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Tools Images of parts....

Hi Starman,

Thanks for the confirmation, if you have any illustrations of the parts could you send via email or post here please? If I can find one of this type it would make a great pattern for study. I have seen some old technical manuals possibly from the manufacturer state the actual dimensions.

Due to the unpredictable weather here my Halfords trip was postponed until Saturday. I really would like to pin his scale down once and for all.

Tomorrow should see more progress.

Cap'n
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Old 02-03-2010, 12:54 PM   #42
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Tools Robert the Robot plan set available to order....

Hi Guys,

Things have been busy with the forum changes and I am quite a long way behind where I expected to be at this stage. Having said all of this a lot has been happening with the help of a few key people and the plan at least is finalised.

I am very happy to announce that George Bagley has offered the copyright to his fantastic blueprint of Robert. George as some may know was the chap that built the model that inspired this kit in the first place. He is a brilliant model maker and illustrator and has studied Robert at great length. We have had much discussion comparing notes and debating ideas. He has helped with suggestions and I couldn't fault his work so in the end I have made the decision to follow his drawings.

There will be a assembly instructions included with the kit but George has offered to allow me to publish his drawing set to help with board funds. I am preparing them so they can be sent to the printer. They will be output on 24" sheets with every detail shown in full scale and in colour on good quality paper.

Here is a provisional illustration from the cover:



If you would like a set (and support the best forum in the universe) please Paypal 25.00 + postage as follows:
UK 2.50
Europe 3.50
USA and worldwide 4.50
Payments via Paypal please:
bernie.walsh@mac.com
Please remember to add a buyers note including your full name and address as this will be used to make your shipping label. This set will be rolled in a sturdy postal tube.

I am still progressing to a kit with all tubes and hardware to build a full scale puppet version but will be concentrating on completing the UFO kit and recover the release schedule I have planned for this year.

Bernie.
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Old 05-03-2010, 08:13 AM   #43
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Here is a link to George's build

http://www.hobbyshed.co.uk/model_kit...bert_robot.htm
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Old 05-03-2010, 03:31 PM   #44
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That thing is incredible. Very nice.
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Old 05-03-2010, 07:51 PM   #45
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The finished Robot looks excellent - but I do see a couple of things odd about the plan above.

The black line around the top of the chest comes down the front in a perfect half circle whilst on the original puppet it seemed to come down the sides and sort of level off across the front? Are you looking at that as being a defect on the original that should be corrected?

Also with the chest again, half way down where the wider upper chest tube ends and the thinner stomach tube starts, on either side the upper arm tubes are above this point on the plan whilst on all the photos that I have the upper arms are half way down past this point! So either the arms on the puppet stretched or the ones on the plan above are way too short? I'm not an expert on this subject but these bits immediately stand out to me as looking wrong so anyone know the answer?
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Old 06-03-2010, 04:46 PM   #46
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Default Robert Plans

Hi Mark42,thanks for your comments on the Robert drawing. I am including a pic of Robert to show that the drawing does conform to the proportions of the arms and body features you mentioned. The upper body arc is in the correct position and as for the arms , the measurements were taken from full size pictures like this one.The only difference being that where the spring that passes through the arm from the shoulder I drew in an arc, where in realty the weight of the arm would pull down on it along with the mid arm section causing a change in length. Hope this covers your concerns. Thanks again.

Last edited by Starman; 06-03-2010 at 04:49 PM. Reason: photo not visible
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Old 06-03-2010, 10:49 PM   #47
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Thanks for the reply.
I understand what you've done then, you've drawn the shoulder joints in tighter so the arms are raised. You can see from this XL5 technical spec sheet that the arms must be quite loose as they do hang lower.
Your picture was very good and the black line is very circular in it - while in all my pictures, like this one, it isn't!
Question - were there two robot puppets, or was it revamped, or is it tape that moves when the puppet is handled?
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Old 06-03-2010, 10:58 PM   #48
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The tape idea sounds likely. It's probably hiding a less than neat glue joint. I bet you a pound it works out to 1/8th of an inch (3.2mm) wide which is a width of Letraline that seems to be used a lot in all the series. I will say it looks the same width as the stripes under the chin and around the collar.

Last edited by DX-SFX; 06-03-2010 at 11:01 PM.
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Old 06-03-2010, 11:03 PM   #49
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Oh, and if it is the Letraline that can be persuaded around curves, the damn stuff does shift with handling.
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Old 07-03-2010, 12:43 AM   #50
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The tape may be covering a joint but the joint doesn't look as though it was cut circular - more eliptical which apears to flatten out depending on viewing angle.
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Old 07-03-2010, 10:16 AM   #51
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Tools Robert's chest line....

Hi Guys,

I am betting that the tube making his upper body was cut on either a table or more likely a band saw at 45 degrees. This would result in a wide surface area in just the area we are looking at. When the disk was bent to cover this surface I can well imagine there was a lot of "wiggle room" along this joint especially if they filed it to follow this angle.

This would, more than likely, result in what appears to be a flattening effect at this joint. All the parts look to be hand made in this area and the tape line which I think is actually a car trim would move under the heat of the lights when under filming conditions.

I do think they had more than one puppet too. Possibly more than two. During filming when smoke and other materials managed to get inside his body tubes, they fogged all the inner surfaces. So I am guessing to prevent production hold ups they would use a twin or triplet whilst one was being cleaned/repaired or restrung.

Despite my best efforts I still cannot identify the spring material used in his arms and legs. I have looked at quite a few differing materials, the last I tried was close but too stiff and held Robert in a "windmill position" The search continues....

Cap'n
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Old 07-03-2010, 10:42 AM   #52
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Bernie, I don't have any side shots to hand but if the upper body was drilled for the shoulder joints, those same holes could have been used as pivot points to pivot the body against a sanding disc to round off the top of the body. Much easier and quicker than trying to cut brittle old perspex with a saw in a complex shape. Even if the holes weren't used, offering it up to a sander is easier. You obviously need to fashion a method of keeping the tube in one upright position which is why I think a post going through the shoulder holes is an option. I use the same method to round off the ends of Eagle leg component and spine clamps.
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Old 07-03-2010, 11:41 AM   #53
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Default Profiling tube....

Hi Chris,

Very possibly you are right, tube is tricky stuff to measure and cut while keeping good accuracy. Building a jig to do the job would have been the best way although I guess we will never know for sure.

Any wood shop worth their salt would be able to make accurate cuts in just about anything with great precision. I am thinking of chair construction in particular where difficult geometry and cutting needed to be performed many times.

If I was to visit the puppet shops back then I would be loaded with several cameras and a huge note pad to record all these tricks and tips. The more I learn about these artists the more I really appreciate their skill and ingenuity.

Thanks for the insight mate

Cap'n
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Old 07-03-2010, 12:27 PM   #54
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This one is easy and would take a minute. You get a piece of thickish ply and drill a good hole in it at the right distance from one edge. Clamp the ply to the sanding disk table and insert the drill bit you used to drill the hole to act as the pivot pin. Using the holes drilled in the tube, slide it down onto the drill bit. You can now swing the tube from side to side on the pin which will give you a curved edge to the tube. It's also a brilliant way to make perfect disks which in that case would be made of sheet and you rotate the sheet against the sander a full 360 degrees. If you hold the ply in place with G clamps either side, you can loosen one end and then gently tap the ply nearer or further to the sanding disk as you go to fine tune how close the pin is to the sanding disk. Furthermore, you can angle the table the ply is clamped to and make Eagle launch pads with sloping sides from thick acrylic or wood (or resin). I did just that on a 22" scale launch pad although in that case I made up just an eighth of the circumference and used that as a pattern to mould the other sections.

Last edited by DX-SFX; 07-03-2010 at 07:48 PM.
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Old 07-03-2010, 02:26 PM   #55
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Thumbs up Workshop tutorial....

Hi Chris.

What we need is a workshop tutorial.

I have several jigs and fixtures I have made and can't live without. V-Blocks are a good example, various circle cutting jigs and geometry tools of all kinds. Just as interesting is the methodology in design approach.

We could include basic workshop equipment with equipment demonstrations and tools you can't live without like those mentioned above. We could also include reference books, there are several very good ones to explain the techniques commonly used to produce a satisfactory end result.

You pretty much did this with the soldering guide and it would expand on this. I'll start a thread and move stuff I think is appropriate plus adding as we go.

Bernie.
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Old 07-03-2010, 03:14 PM   #56
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If memory serves, Robert was created by sculptor, John Blundall. John is apparently still active in puppetry & theatre and has a website called "The World Through Wooden Eyes". There's no mention of his association with Supermarionation on the site, so it may be a sore spot to approach him on the subject. (I believe he chose to leave AP Films when the Anderson's began pursuing the notion that the puppets should look like miniature humans instead of caricatures or an artist's interpretation of a personality).
Anyway, maybe a polite e-mail from the Captain would persuade him to contribute some personal memories for this project. - You never know...

http://theworldthroughwoodeneyes.co.uk/index.html

info@theworldthroughwoodeneyes.co.uk

Last edited by TerraForm1; 07-03-2010 at 03:15 PM. Reason: Poor spelling
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Old 07-03-2010, 06:56 PM   #57
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Tools John Blundall....

Hi guys,

I have sent John an email asking him various questions I hope he doesn't think I am a nut case, I will blame Terraform1 if he writes back in anything but a good way!

It would be brilliant if we could get one or two of the workshop staff to contribute their technical expertise, just imagine what we could learn from them.

Cap'n
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Old 07-03-2010, 11:15 PM   #58
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I'm not convinced it's wire/cable or a spring. That would be too stiff. It needs to be much more fluid.
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Old 07-03-2010, 11:55 PM   #59
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Here is an almost side view of robert



I think the issue with the front black line appearing to change shape is caused by the complex curve you can see in profile; certainly not a simple job of rotating the body against a sander around the arm holes.

Mick
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Old 08-03-2010, 12:32 AM   #60
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Bit of a wild idea, but could they have used bass guitar strings? Fairly damned flexible and the low 'E' would possibly be the right thickness being approx 4mm diameter... Only thing being that around the time of the production most (if not all) commercially guitar strings in the UK would have been 'flatwound'.

Possibly piano strings could have been used?
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