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Old 31-01-2009, 12:52 PM   #1
David
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Default "Path of Destruction" Model Special Effects

Hey everyone!

I love this shot from the Thunderbirds episode "Path of destruction." It shows the crablogger crashing through a wall and the collapse of the wall is entirely convincing.

I was wondering if anyone had any ideas about how this wall was constucted to collapse so convincingly? I notice that individual bricks have been made. How do you think these were made? I was thining that maybe a thin layer of something was brushed over the stack of bricks to weakly hold it together.











Any ideas?

Cheers,
David
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Old 31-01-2009, 02:43 PM   #2
MkIXHawk
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I'm sure DX would have the definitive answer but my guess is wooden blocks, built into a wall with a thin coat of plaster of paris holding it alll together. The model was several feet long and presumably quite heavy so it would have little difficulty breaking through
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Old 31-01-2009, 03:58 PM   #3
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Could it be as simple as ... Hairspray?
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Old 31-01-2009, 04:29 PM   #4
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Perhaps that section of the wall was made of small scale bricks... ? And they do look to have a plaster coating. Judging by the look and colour of all the dust coming from it, a weak cement may even have been used to stick the bricks together too.....
However, whatever the methods used, it's a very convincing sequence in a terrific episode; I rewatched a few nights ago and am still struck by how good it looks...that Crabblogger itself is an incredible vehicle and was a firm favourite when it was first shown! Though I could never get lego-bricks to fit the shape properly compared to what i'd managed to remember of it from thte programme; I would often rush off to my lego box straight after the show in order to recreate what I'd just seen!! Oh to be 5 again..
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Old 31-01-2009, 06:09 PM   #5
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you can and still do get scale red clay bricks
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Old 31-01-2009, 09:16 PM   #6
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It's a bloody amazing episode but the sound effect they chose for the Crablogger always lets it down for me. The machine's gotta weigh many thousands of tons (if it were real) and yet they chose 'mum's hoover' for the engine drone. Dear oh dear.....
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Old 01-02-2009, 01:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by areteecee View Post
you can and still do get scale red clay bricks
I could also well imagine them simply getting a block of clay and cutting the bricks from it. It really is a most effective sequence, the only thing really detracting, (apart from that famous on again off again Sherman tank chassis bit on the rear left hand side) is that some of the wheels keep getting stuck while the tracks keep moving.
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Old 01-02-2009, 09:58 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yarvelling View Post
Though I could never get lego-bricks to fit the shape properly compared to what i'd managed to remember of it from thte programme; I would often rush off to my lego box straight after the show in order to recreate what I'd just seen!! Oh to be 5 again..
Haha! Yeah I used to do that too! I think it was "Duplo" instead of Lego though.

Thanks guys, It certainly looks like a thin layer of plaster holding the bricks together, the only uncertainty is what the bricks were made of. Can anyone clear this up?
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Old 01-02-2009, 12:00 PM   #9
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The blocks were probably wood and then held together with a weak mixture of plaster mixed with sawdust.
The sawdust reduces the mixtures binding properties and at the same time makes it more brittle.

Phil
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Old 02-02-2009, 08:33 AM   #10
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I wondered too, if they mightn't be wood from the colour. The larger block just below the corrugated top of the wall, in line with the C in Crab in the fourth photo looks to show signs of being sawn off.
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Old 02-02-2009, 12:56 PM   #11
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Good point there, Tony. Looking at them, they do not have the traditional indents on the top and bottom faces of the brick, and the end faces seem to be completely square. This suggests to me that they were made from standard lengths of square balsa strip, cut into the required length, and covered to resemble bricks.

If these were placed in a pattern to resemble a built brick wall, sprayed with an aerosol lacquer like hairspray, they could have a light dusting of flour blown on them whilst the hairspray was wet, it would stick. On impact the individual bricks break apart and give a convincing wall destruction sequence.
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Old 02-02-2009, 01:37 PM   #12
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I think balsa may have been too light; watching the sequence, the 'bricks' seem to have a fair weight to them, and don't bounce around like balsa probably would! It all appears too solid... Scale bricks may not have the recess that 'real' bricks do? I guess we'll never know for sure what was used.
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Old 02-02-2009, 03:07 PM   #13
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agreed, I always thought this looked very convincing

and the later shots of demolishing the houses

I think they may have "dusted" the bricks which I think may be wooden balsa blocks in something like chalk or talcum powder.

think about it if you construct something like that which is delicate, it would be hard to apply something like a plaster to it without it falling down.

its neat the way not every brick is individual, some stay together, I think that was done on purpose, as thats what a real brick wall would fall like.

Mike
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Old 02-02-2009, 04:00 PM   #14
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I imagined them assembling the wall lying flat down and then brushing on a thin layer of plaster or something to hold it together. They could then prop the wall up-right by sliding something underneath it to lift it.
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Old 02-02-2009, 05:44 PM   #15
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You could get miniature red clay bricks quite easily. I remember my brother having some for his model railway although they were vastly overscale in that case. From memory, and we're going back forty plus years, they were about 1" long.
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Old 02-02-2009, 06:05 PM   #16
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found some links....

http://www.miniature-gardens.com/miniatures/stones.html

http://theminiaturespage.com/workbench/682648/

http://www.jadarhobby.pl/plus-model-...ml?language=en
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Old 02-02-2009, 06:08 PM   #17
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There's quite few companies doing them now in 1/12th scale as accessories for Dolls House gardens.
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Old 02-02-2009, 06:57 PM   #18
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Ah yes, so there are. My parents were heavily into the dolls house making thing with a miniatures club they were part of, and often used these.
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Old 02-02-2009, 07:21 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony42 View Post
I wondered too, if they mightn't be wood from the colour. The larger block just below the corrugated top of the wall, in line with the C in Crab in the fourth photo looks to show signs of being sawn off.
Just imagine having to cut all them bricks up ,if made of wood?too time consuming i think,especially if on a time scale for filming.
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Old 03-02-2009, 06:32 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DX-SFX View Post
You could get miniature red clay bricks quite easily. I remember my brother having some for his model railway although they were vastly overscale in that case. From memory, and we're going back forty plus years, they were about 1" long.
Looking again at the screen-grabs, those bricks you mention look to be about about perfect! The Crablogger prop must have stood around 2ft high:



Cheers
Steve.
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