Saturday, June 21, 2008

I have a new vice

No, I haven't taken up drugs, smoking, gambling or computer solitaire. I finally bought a larger, bolt-down-to-the-bench vice to replace the little clamp vice I've been using since I started this whole dummy-making business.

When I began, I wasn't sure I'd build a second vent figure after my first "Fred Project". Well... that was 21 dummies ago. Slowly by little, I've been upgrading my tools and adding more appropriate tools to my collection.

I'm supposed to be making a profit at this, but I keep making "capital improvements".

Oh, well. Can you say "write-off"?

Friday, June 20, 2008

I'll put a lid on it

My plea for clues to a Joel Leder book was answered by several fellow vent builders. I'd heard that his book contained instructions for making soft eyelids. Mike Brose and Ken Souza were both helpful by providing a link to Al Stevens' web-based directions for making soft blinkers. After studying the primer, I think I can pull it off (or should I say put them on).

Meanwhile, I'm about to start over completely with my hand sculptures. I have a new strategy for building an armature, which should guide me to forming hands that will look more human and less zombie-like.

Finally, my friend "Stanley" has found someone to annoy in Ohio. Good luck, little buddy.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Joel Leder

Anyone know where I can purchase a book on figure making by Joel Leder? The book is out of print. I'm interested in learning the technique of making soft blinkers and winkers.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Will work for suitcase

This fellow, dubbed "Stanley" for the time being, is currently accepting bids for his "services" on Ebay

Saturday, June 07, 2008

"Stanley" schemer

He's nattily dressed, so he seems harmless. But he can really talk trash. Stanley will be seeking a partner in crime on Ebay starting Monday (unless someone makes me an offer I just can't turn down).

Monday, June 02, 2008

Slick on a stick

The toothbrush handles I used as levers worked perfectly. Not only are they better looking, they work smoothly and they force the strings closer to the head stick. I'm very pleased with the outcome.

And as I predicted, the smooth plastic surface of the toothrush handles are very comfortable on the fingers.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Dr. Kenny

These surgical tools come in handy when working in small spaces (like the inside of a conversion head). The two items in the lower portion of the picture are hemostats. These are tweezers that clamp shut at the handles. The long-nosed feature of the tools are useful for getting into those tight spaces and grabbing things (like springs, cord ends, dropped nuts, balls of Magic-Sculpt, etc.). One pair has a straight nose, the other a curved nose. Once the tweezers grab the item in question, the clamp makes sure I can hold onto it without exerting continuous pressure.

The tool at the top is useful as a probe. One end comes to a sharp point, the other end has a flat surface. It works well for skewering balls of Magic-Sculpt or wood putty. The flat end is sharp and is useful for scraping out wood shavings in the control post grooves or patting smooth wood putty or Magic-Sculpt.

Now that I have these tools, I'm amazed I ever functioned without them.