Saturday, February 28, 2009
Thursday, February 26, 2009
These are the parts I'm starting off with: A meat grinder part (bottom), a floral candleholder end (center) (I'm guessing), and a chromed drink pour spout (left). For the grip I've decided to fabricate my own and cast it in resin pieces(right). Each side will have a faux ivory carving inset into the dark colored base. I've made the rough model of the grip by cutting black acrylic sheet and gluing several layers together. To round it off a bit I've filled in the cracks with pink Bondo™ body putty and sanded it down. Next I will make a rubber mold of the grip, then cast it in resin and rework that to get the final shape.
My inspiration came from the pocket pistols of the 19th century, that ladies (and gents) could carry unobtrusively. I love the grips that have the fancy carving on them, and thought of how it would be relatively easy—with my experience working with resin—to construct a nice one in the Steampunk style. Also when I found the pour spout I felt it would make a great middle section of the raygun. Notice some of my sketches for this project.
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Hey Tom, here's my guess:Particle Accelerator- air nozzel
Above are the found objects in context. Faucet, trophy part, rook, lamp part, and air nozzle.
The one found object that no one has yet identified will be recognized by winners. Above is a photo of the original parts after molding. Careful study could yield a lightbulb moment. Earlier clues (and guesses by readers) and the original contest listing with rules should be read by anyone venturing a guess. Good luck! I expect a winner soon.
Saturday, February 21, 2009
Pictured are a video game controller, kerosene lamp top, sprinkler head, small cordless drill, welding goggles, slingshot, water sprayer, ornamental eagle finial, and best of all--a crosssbow with darts! Wowzer, what a haul!
Friday, February 20, 2009
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
The acorn nuts holding the bad air transmutators onto the leather mask were a bright brass, and needed to be subdued. By searching online I discovered liver of sulphur, a chemical used to tarnish brass and bronze, and proceeded to purchase a small bottle. The results are lovely! I also fabricated the eyepiece out of acrylic sheet, then molded it in silicone rubber and cast two of them in a faux copper. The results are splendid, with its rivets making it look rather like a porthole from Capt. Nemo's Nautilus.
The only step left is to buy and install some small rivets to hold the trunk in place. I will photograph the mask and post pictures here in a couple of days.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
So the parts you are guessing are the particle accelerator, pulse delineator, grip, and two pieces making up the exhaust port.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Then the seam is sewn together using two needles and waxed thread. The wax keeps the stitches from coming loose. The needles go through the same hole in opposite directions, and the thread is pulled tight after each stitch. I started at the butt end, and worked up to the top where I tied the thread off.
Friday, February 13, 2009
The United Federation of Doll Collectors invited me to submit a design for a souvenir doll for one of their upcoming conventions. The "Dancing Doll" was my submission. Apparently it was not what they were looking for.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
After the raygun was finished, I started designing the leather holster. I began by studying existing holsters online. I knew that a traditional technique was to wet form vegetable tanned leather around the gun, which has the effect of stretching the leather a bit and creating a custom fit. After sketching out the basic idea I wrapped a paper towel around the gun and marked out the rough shape.
I then made a pattern using heavy cardstock. By stapling the pattern together I was able to carefully fit the gun into the paper holster and make corrections as I saw them. This picture shows the four different patterns I made, starting at the left and working to the right. I decided to make some decorative cut-outs in the leather. I chose diamonds as a larger version of the pattern on the grip, and the zig zags, which reflect the shape of the dorsal fin on the gun.
The final pattern fit to my liking, so I then cut it out of the 5-6 oz leather. Designing the pattern in cardstock is a whole lot cheaper than experimenting directly with the leather. Cardstock is stiffer than leather, so it doesn’t behave exactly the same, but it worked out well enough.
The previous photo shows the raw leather pieces cut out, with holes punched for rivets and snaps. Next I dyed the leather black, and began attaching the pieces together, both by sewing and riveting.
Once that was all finished, I soaked the leather holster in warm water. I dried it off as much as possible, then inserted the raygun into it, stretching the leather just a bit to create a snug fit. I left it overnight in a warm place to dry out. Next day I sprayed the holster with an acrylic sealer to maintain its shape.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Every boy dreams of owning a raygun, and as a soon-to-be grandfather, I have tapped back into my boyhood fantasies. I decided I had to build my own rayguns after being inspired by the works of Tinkerbots and Greg Broadmore of WETA Workshop. The Raughnold Model 81 is my first gun.
Following Tinkerbots example, I have created the raygun by assembling found objects, along with some parts I’ve fabricated. It is a marvelously challenging art form: Bringing together disparate objects into something new—a process through which the individual parts disappear into the whole. Part of making it all work together for me is adding bits and pieces to help disguise the original parts so that there is no distraction.
I have intentionally not shown the gun in progress as I wanted to hold a contest in which you, the viewers, attempt to guess which found objects I used. In the model 81 there are five objects that I can identify. All were acquired at either a yard sale or a thrift shop. The first person who can correctly identify all five objects will win one of the rayguns, which I am selling on Etsy for $95.
Anyone can participate. Submit the list of your five objects as a comment. If after one week no one has correctly identified all five objects, then I will give out a clue. Each week that passes without a winner will lead to another clue. Please submit only one guess per week. After I have given a clue you are welcome to guess again. The contest will continue until someone correctly guesses the five objects.
Clue #1: None of the objects are gears, nuts, bolts etc.
We have here an extremely rare raygun manufactured in the late 19th century by the Swedish manufacturer Raughnold. This is their model 81, famous for its sleek lines and fine balance, coupled with its extremely effective vaporizing ray. The functioning of the raygun is not well understood, but we do know that the power generator in the center of the gun sends a ray through the pulse delineator which is amplified by the particle accelerator.
Measuring over 14” long, this beauty is solidly built, yet light enough to be handled even by those of the feminine persuasion. From the particle accelerator nozzle all the way to the rear exhaust port, this raygun exudes quality. The gun is cast in resin, with a hand-stitched leather grip. A custom wet-formed leather holster will be available soon.