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Discussion Starter #1
This is our feature musical number for 2013 -- Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen.


The band did 3 songs this year (BR, Monster Mash, and Grim Grinning Ghosts) along with 3 intermissions. We get over 3,000 people at Trick-or-Treat on Maryland Street in University Heights, San Diego. This was a big hit!

This is a collaboration between myself and neighbor Andy. It's a 22 servo, VSA driven setup. We use both a Medusa DMX and a Lynxmotion SSC32. We'll post more videos and some more detailed info on the build soon.
 

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One of my favorite Queen songs and phenomenal animatronics! I can see why you get over 3000 trick-or-treaters! This was absolutely amazing!

 

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I'm speechless. It's literally Disneyland in your yard!
 

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Penumbra, it's actually in a vegetable garden we grow right on the side of our house, directly behind the sidewalk. So it makes sense to have pumpkins (though we didn't grow them this year as we usually do).

We had street roped off and viewing from 2 sides to accommodate about 200 people at a time. Yeah, I love the compliment of it being like Disneyland! We got that over and over again, which is basically the gold standard :)

I need new songs for next year! Something with a front-man w/ strong background parts. Thinking Day-O by Harry Belafonte might be one, maybe another Queen song (Somebody to Love or Don't Stop Me Now).
 

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Awesome job!:cool:
Many thanks go to HalloweenJared for the inspiration and detailed tutorials. I'm going to post some of my own thoughts and recommendations soon as I learned a thing or two along the way. A few to note:

  • Using slightly more torque w/ ball bearing HiTech HS-425BB servos on the dancing prevented burning them out
  • We found 99cent store head flashlights with a single LED and focus able plastic lens that worked wonderfully for spot lights
  • Small 10W Malibu outdoor lights with color gels do an amazing ground lighting effect
  • 60 second intermissions both allow parents a break to convince young gazers to move along and give servos a chance to cool off.

More info and some how-tos on the way!
 

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UNBELIEVABLE!!!! Aaron Coleman - that was phenomenal!!!!! You should be very proud of yourself.... and if you don't take it down, just put a Santa hat on the skelly and elf hats on the pumpkins and you have a great Christmas display!!!! :)

Ok...maybe a different song perhaps...
 

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That's really fantastic!
I'll have to stop by and check it out next year. I live pretty close to you. La Mesa.
Thanks for posting this! :)
 

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Fantastic !!

I want to change my greeter routine next year. It is getting old. Looks like I have a model for a new routine. One question. Is your skeleton a bucky or is it a plastic walgreen unit?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Is your skeleton a bucky or is it a plastic walgreen unit?
The skeleton is a cheap $10 one I picked up at Spirit Halloween. It's a 4 footer, I think they sell them all over. The cheaper the better. We just took an x-acto blade to the whole thing and the thin cuttable plastic was key. There is 1 servo vertical with the horn sticking out the bottom of the skull for left/right, and there is one servo inside the head doing the jaw. For the neck movement we used a cheap R/C car steering arm.

I've got some video and images I can post today or tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
UNBELIEVABLE!!!! Aaron Coleman - that was phenomenal!!!!! You should be very proud of yourself.... and if you don't take it down, just put a Santa hat on the skelly and elf hats on the pumpkins and you have a great Christmas display!!!! :)

Ok...maybe a different song perhaps...
Thanks so much! Yes, that'd be funny to repurpose him. My street is crazy cool over halloween, then nothing for the holidays. Priorities. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Do stop by! 4200 block of Maryland St, 92103. You can't miss it, there are like 15 houses on the whole street and about 3000 people. Only from 6-10 on actual Halloween, then everything comes down.
 

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Wow this is just amazing... I am assuming you are using arduino controls? I would love to do stuff with those very very soon to have ready for next haunt. Disney can't hold a candle to you .... they don't own rights to the songs ;) Anyway I wish you were closer so I could see this in person but please post as many pics and vids as you can I would love to get more inspiration from your work!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I am assuming you are using arduino controls?
No, not using Arduino for this. Arduinos are great for simple linear motions / timers with servos. For this we used a joystick to learn the movement for each servo in to VSA software (http://www.brookshiresoftware.com/).

We have servo outputs on both the Medusa DMX board and the Lynxmotion SSC-32 board. I chose to use both because the MedusaDMX only has 8 servo ports but has some great LED dimming capabilities, and the SSC-32 has 32 servo outs. There's plenty of room still to add on to our setup.

Have a look at some photos from the build. I'll go through these and caption them a little later tonight or tomorrow, but you'll see some of the wiring challenges. We used ethernet to go to the servos, and speaker jacks for the LED connections.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/sets/72157637324043794/


HalloweenJared had a great how-to that was the basis for this: http://halloweenjared.blogspot.com/2009/09/mr-bones-and-gourditos-how-to.html

I'm going to expand upon that soon. Andy and I shot some videos in the garage pointing out how we programmed the routine in VSA. In short, it's very laborious. Every servo has to be thought through. Since we have 22 servos in the setup, 6 in the skeleton (Frank) alone, it's quite involved.

--Aaron
 
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