Author Topic: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build  (Read 12073 times)

katsu

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It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« on: December 27, 2013, 05:33:51 AM »
Hello, I was recently bitten with the idea that "HEY! I can make Crow!"

I tracked down some parts as pictured below, the set isn't complete but with the next paycheck I'll have the beak and hands.



So.. most of the Body, shoulders, eyesockets, basket! I even got a test vacuform pull off the soap dish!

I am not sure if I will fill in the soap dish as I've seen others do, I always get nervous defacing 30-40 year old stuff!

The intention is to make my own eyesockets/eyes, the control assembly and the arms, and source the rest of it (which I have most of now)

I had a few questions I wanted to ask to make sure about things before I commit and start drilling, but if it's not appropriate to bombard you guys with a ton of questions let me know. Here goes...

  1) Is the hockey mask too small? I don't know if it's just that it LOOKS bigger on the show or if I got the wrong size?

This is a close-up of the size label.

  2) When vacuforming, I've seen most people using polystyrene for crow's eye cowl. Is there a reason for this other than cost? I was tempted to get some black ABS which might look a bit nicer for painting and be stiffer. The polystyrene test pull I showed above tore pretty easily.

  3) Do people ever vacuform the floralier? I am going to build my first crow with the originals, but I was pondering buying a third now to serve as a vacuform plug in case they become super rare (like all of the other components) down the road. But I'm worried about the aesthetic appearance of it versus the originals.

  4) The cast resin parts I got for the shoulders are pretty strong, but I worry about the strength of cast hands. Has anyone here had any problems with this? It's another "probably won't happen" worry, but I'd hate to break mine from something benign like a short drop. Or if there is even any kind of alternative?

  5) I saw a lot about making one's own arms with dowels or plastruct, and that there are different lengths involved, but could not find any definite information on how long the upper versus forearm assemblies should be. I do want it to be as close as possible to the season 2ish+ Crow.

  6) Am I supposed to remove the flower from the soap dish? I was able to get the part out of the polystyrene but it sort of didn't look right with the giant flower pattern on it. It seems like most "bought" vacuform pulls have it without the flower, but I had read somewhere that accurate crows had a certain flower on them... That may have just been the KTMA one, but I don't know for sure.

  7) I've looked around a bit and haven't found any good tutorials on making a decent Season 5+ Cambot outside of a Christmas ornament. Is there any good accurate information I'm not finding on this?


Thanks for any help I can get in getting started on this. I hope to be able to show off a good crow soon!

SynaMax

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2013, 11:18:16 PM »
Hello, I was recently bitten with the idea that "HEY! I can make Crow!"

I tracked down some parts as pictured below, the set isn't complete but with the next paycheck I'll have the beak and hands.



So.. most of the Body, shoulders, eyesockets, basket! I even got a test vacuform pull off the soap dish!

I am not sure if I will fill in the soap dish as I've seen others do, I always get nervous defacing 30-40 year old stuff!

The intention is to make my own eyesockets/eyes, the control assembly and the arms, and source the rest of it (which I have most of now)

I had a few questions I wanted to ask to make sure about things before I commit and start drilling, but if it's not appropriate to bombard you guys with a ton of questions let me know. Here goes...

  1) Is the hockey mask too small? I don't know if it's just that it LOOKS bigger on the show or if I got the wrong size?

This is a close-up of the size label.

  2) When vacuforming, I've seen most people using polystyrene for crow's eye cowl. Is there a reason for this other than cost? I was tempted to get some black ABS which might look a bit nicer for painting and be stiffer. The polystyrene test pull I showed above tore pretty easily.

  3) Do people ever vacuform the floralier? I am going to build my first crow with the originals, but I was pondering buying a third now to serve as a vacuform plug in case they become super rare (like all of the other components) down the road. But I'm worried about the aesthetic appearance of it versus the originals.

  4) The cast resin parts I got for the shoulders are pretty strong, but I worry about the strength of cast hands. Has anyone here had any problems with this? It's another "probably won't happen" worry, but I'd hate to break mine from something benign like a short drop. Or if there is even any kind of alternative?

  5) I saw a lot about making one's own arms with dowels or plastruct, and that there are different lengths involved, but could not find any definite information on how long the upper versus forearm assemblies should be. I do want it to be as close as possible to the season 2ish+ Crow.

  6) Am I supposed to remove the flower from the soap dish? I was able to get the part out of the polystyrene but it sort of didn't look right with the giant flower pattern on it. It seems like most "bought" vacuform pulls have it without the flower, but I had read somewhere that accurate crows had a certain flower on them... That may have just been the KTMA one, but I don't know for sure.

  7) I've looked around a bit and haven't found any good tutorials on making a decent Season 5+ Cambot outside of a Christmas ornament. Is there any good accurate information I'm not finding on this?


Thanks for any help I can get in getting started on this. I hope to be able to show off a good crow soon!

Great vacuumform pull!

1) I believe both Cooper XL7 sizes were used on the show, so it really doesn't matter but, if you are concerned, get a large XL7 and save the medium for another Crow or resell on ebay.

2) Yes, I believe all the cowl pulls are polystyrene for pricing.  I think Bob's cowl pulls are black ABS, but I'm not sure.  Generally, stronger is always better when making bot parts.

3) Trace told me at Dragon Con 2011 that some of the Crow puppets on the show did have vacuumformed trays.  Personally though, I like the strength of original parts, though they are difficult to keep paint on.  Again, ABS maybe a better way to go.

4) My Crow hands haven't broke yet, and I've taken my bots to a lot of cons.  IMO, the part you have to worry about the most is the bowling pin.  If using an original, be sure to strengthen the back (the top of the pin) so that the hockey mask won't eventually snap the bowling pin off.  I highly recommend using a resin bowling pin.

5) Ron posted some great measurements that I used for my 1/4" square ABS Plastruct arms.  These would definitely work for later-seasons Crow. 
Quote
11" / 10" / 10" / 10.75"

I think Crow for most of Season 2 still had full-length metal lamp arms.   Here's the original topic by Ron: http://www.botbuilders.info/index.php?topic=110.0

6) Pretty sure KTMA Crow is the only one with the flower on the soapdish.  And also, your soap dish isn't the KTMA flower variant, so you should be okay with taking that flower off.

7) I found a couple of slightly high-res images of Cambot, but there's been no real "official" tutorial of Season 5 cambot.  I really wanna build him too.  The best bet is to probably use salad bowls and place them together.  It also looks like Mike/Bill/Kevin-era Cambot actually has a real camera lens too.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2013, 11:23:45 PM by SynaMax »

katsu

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2013, 03:41:36 AM »
Thanks for the great reply!

I wasn't sure if the masks were sized differently or if the printed sizes were for the actual helmet piece. I guess I'll keep and use this one as a temporary until/if I can find a larger one. The paint is trashed on the metal parts though, I am going to have to remove it, strip it and re-powder coat it as the paint layer was fairly thick so the missing paint is obvious even if I spray painted it. I was struggling to tell by holding it against the cowl if it was too small.

I'm going to give the ABS a try soon then, I stripped the flower pattern off my soap dish since it's not accurate and I don't intend to do a KTMA crow. So a pull on the cowl and maybe one of the floralier cups (I don't have a spare floralier yet to make an exclusive vacuform plug)

The vacuform was pretty good, but I worry it's because I used a fairly thin gauge of polystyrene (Like 1/16) I'll be doing a 1/8 ABS pull which I am hoping will be strong enough, then creating a vector file off of a scan of the underside of the dish so I can laser out a backplate. We're not supposed to laser ABS or polystyrene in the shop, so I'll need to do Acrylic or figure something else out.

If there's no real official information on Cambot, I guess the only choice is to just fudge it and hope for the best. I found a tutorial on joecrow but it's pretty inaccurate. I was tempted to make it with a webcam as the eye so it could be functional!

Thank you again! I have a good starting point to really get into bashing the piece.

Ron

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2013, 12:40:42 AM »
Max knocks it out of the park again!

I'm so glad we've got knowledgeable folks here... now if we could get Joel to stop telling people the XL7 is a lacrosse helmet. ;)

katsu

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2014, 02:02:33 AM »
Thank you guys for the input! I've received all of my awesome components! Some of it is stuff I had found on eBay, and the parts I wasn't confident about (hands, beak, shoulders cowl) I got from sledge_riprock!



Thanks also go to my fiancee for "getting" me the parts (read: She asked what I wanted for my patrick Swayze christmas and I asked for some special parts)

The thing I am torn on now is.. I don't know if I want to do the "canon" mouth control system, or if I should do a "better" design that won't show the control string and be less break-prone.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2014, 02:30:19 AM by katsu »

Ron

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2014, 10:54:32 AM »
I've always done the traditional control string.

The trick is to go to the hobby store and get some silk craft string (thread).

Less friction = fewer breaks

katsu

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2014, 03:31:31 AM »
Thanks!

I found this last night while perusing, is this information any good? It looks official but it also conflicts a bit with things I've read around the internet!

http://sol.semo.edu/mst3k/botbuilding/Props%20&%20Merch/Bot%20Builders%20Guide/booklet_crow1.jpg
http://sol.semo.edu/mst3k/botbuilding/Props%20&%20Merch/Bot%20Builders%20Guide/booklet_crow2.jpg
http://sol.semo.edu/mst3k/botbuilding/Props%20&%20Merch/Bot%20Builders%20Guide/booklet_crow3.jpg
http://sol.semo.edu/mst3k/botbuilding/Props%20&%20Merch/Bot%20Builders%20Guide/booklet_crow4.jpg
http://sol.semo.edu/mst3k/botbuilding/Props%20&%20Merch/Bot%20Builders%20Guide/booklet_servo1.jpg

And something I am not too clear on... What is the point of the 3/4" PVC pipe? I had figured:
dowel -> eyes turning and tilting
1/2" CPVC -> turning the head
3/4" CPVC -> holding the body and channeling the other tubes
« Last Edit: January 07, 2014, 04:09:35 AM by katsu »

Ron

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2014, 08:12:05 PM »
The bot builders guide is basically broad strokes (in my opinion).

I've always used CPVC on my Crow builds.  Everything just nests easier (in my opinion)

katsu

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #8 on: January 07, 2014, 10:13:57 PM »
Ah, my main question was on the purpose of four different rods inside crow, as in.. what is the purpose of each of the pipes/dowels you list in this thread:
http://www.botbuilders.info/index.php?topic=83.0

I've got my 3/4 and 1/2 cpvc, just not sure what the dowel versus the 1/2" cpvc are for.

Ron

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #9 on: January 07, 2014, 10:40:12 PM »
This picture is sort of confusing without context...



The 3/4" 200 PSI PVC actually couples into a male/male fitting inside the upper Floralier.  That is the main rod for holding the body of Crow.

Then a 3/4" CPVC slides down inside that extended down further than however long to made the above rod.  This is for controlling the "neck", and allows turning the head left and right.  The rod extended above the top Floralier enough to mate with a 3/4" to 1/2" CPVC adapter.

Then a 1/2" CPVC extends up, mating with a 1/2" CPVC male/male adapter that passes through the neck of the bowling pin.  From there, a tiny bit of 1/2" CPVC extends up, entering the soap dish.

Then a 7/16ths wooden dowel extends down the entire inner length of the nest of rods to serve as a control stick for the eyes.

Again... this is just one way to do it.

katsu

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #10 on: January 25, 2014, 03:28:01 AM »
Thanks for the info!

I have my rigging slowly coming together! I got his mouth working using the riveted leather technique, and got to work on the eyes! I wanted to take advantage of some of the machines at the TechShop. You've seen my vacuform pulls, for the eyes I decided to 3d print some custom components.

These are modeled by me, and printed on my MakerBot Dual!



The plunger behind the ping pong balls has two prongs that go through holes drilled in the pingpong balls, held in place with some glue for now. If I fill the balls with expanding foam or something I can get a better fit.


From this angle you can see the lace holes for the strings to be fed through. The lace holes also serve as bumpers to keep from over-rotating the eyes.


The "claw" the wheel screws into is designed so it glues into the eye-rotation pipe and keeps the pipe from falling down (it has a lip extending out).


A front view. It offers a nice way to mount the eyes without having to glue them (and potentially having a wad of glue showing between them)

I rigged and tested it tonight and it worked. I'll upload it later. If anyone wants the 3d files, let me know! I can print them out too. Takes about 60 minutes to print all three at 0.2mm (My resolution preference)

Ron

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #11 on: January 26, 2014, 09:58:11 PM »
Any chance of putting this out on Thingiverse?  I'd love to print one for myself!

katsu

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2014, 11:19:43 PM »
I put it up. Let me know if it works, or if I can change anything:
http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:236103

I did reduce the radius of the wheel because it was giving him bug-eyes! The new design works quite well with my soapdish pull, as you can see in the main picture.

There is also an untested print for the handle mechanism as well.

Ron

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2014, 12:52:51 PM »
Thanks for posting it!

Side question:  Is your pin a reproduction? 

katsu

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Re: It's raw pork, he'll know what it means ...A Crow build
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2014, 10:46:02 PM »
Yes, it's from Bob! I heard too many horror stories about the strength properties of the originals, so I opted for a cast one (which still has the risk of shattering if I drop him..)