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Timing is everything.


I want to get back to working on my zombie/cadaver project. I really can't until the front porch is done.

I have a couple of other projects that go along with the dead guy. One of them has a lot to do with the fact that dead guys are heavy, and having to lug them around can be a real pain.
So I'm working on a lightweight cadaver.

The basic problem is that the skeletons that I use for the base of the cadaver are made from injection-molded thermoplastic, and they are really quite heavy. While I could probably find a lighter weight skeleton, they would be prohibitively expensive, so I'm looking to mold my own and cast them out of lightweight urethane foam.
Now if you've ever done moldmaking, you know about undercuts mand what a pain in the ass they are. Well, skeletons are pretty much undercuts everywhere, and unless I wanted to mold small sections and assemble them by hand, I want to do something different and easier.
Mostly what I want the skeletons for is to make corpses, and the way that I make them, they have "skin". So if I use one of the purchased skeletons and use clay to do the original skinning, I can then pull a silicone mold that will have no undercuts. I will still need to do the arms, legs, skull, and torso separately, but that's a whole lot better than some 236 individual molds.
There are still some issues. Arms, legs, and skull are fairly straightforward, other than the skull also needing a neck to flare out to shoulders. The torso is a little tricky, because I essentially want a hollow chest cavity, and that is a funky two-part mold to make.

Another issue is connectivity. How do I connect the arms, legs, and skull to the torso in such a way that they remain flexible? Consider that this may need to be something done in a production environment, so it has to be simple, cheap, and effective.

And then there is fiberglass. To make the molds, I need to pour silicone, which is very flexible, then cover it with fiberglass to make a "mother mold", which provides stability and strength. I've never worked with fiberglass before. I'm kinda looking forward to it, other than the toxicity issues with raw polyester resin.

This technique has a lot of potential for what I want to do. Aside from the potential of creating corpses, I can do large props and set pieces as well. Architectural details. Tombstones. Gargoyles. Aliens. Robots. Dragons. Cthuloid creatures. Blondes.

I'm gonna have one hell of a basement.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
saveau
Sep. 23rd, 2004 10:20 am (UTC)
I want to make some powered battle-armor!
magicmarmot
Sep. 23rd, 2004 11:11 am (UTC)
That's probably something better left for a vacuuforming machine, or maybe friendly plastic. We'll figure something out.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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