Monday, April 4, 2011

Giant hands part 1

This is a picture of the beginnings of a very big project.
The goal is to make four pairs of articulated giant hands. They needed to be light enough to be operated easily by actors in a fight scene. Two pairs needed to go from an open hand to a fist and two of them needed to point.
I used the basic measurements of my hands and multiplied by three. I then spent a long day at the chop saw cutting three finger bones and one hand bone for each of the 40 fingers
For the joints of the fingers I used the nuts from toggle bolts.
I pre-drilled through the PVC and the toggle nut (be careful, you might want to use something besides your hand to hold the toggle nut down while drilling into it), then I screwed them together. At first it looked like the screws were going to hold, but I later had to replace some of the joints with machine screws and nuts because the screws worked their way loose.
The springs in the toggle nut are strong enough to make some of the finger tip joints spring back on their own, but the ones closer to the knuckle need some help from gravity to open back up.
 After assembling all the fingers (with a lot of help from some awesome students) they were screwed to 1x4 bases
The inside of the base was filled with upholstery foam to sandwich the hand and make the pieces easier to control.
In an upcoming post I will show how we finish the framework of the hand, cover them with skin and rig them up to move easily and consistently. But for now check out the effect of the giant hands.

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