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Discussion Starter #1
Well, here's the start to my version of a CC, gonna be more of a Cauldron Reaper. The usual spray foam for the coals but did a bit of a twist for the burning EFX. Used a 30 light string of regular orange LED's and a custom made 20 light string of red flicker LED's. The flicker LED's are like the ones used in tea lights and have a nice random flicker pattern. I'm sure I'm not the first to use these but I haven't seen any posts on it. After the foam was cured, the lights were inserted into holes made with a phillips screwdriver. A little hot glue on each one secures them in place which makes it fairly easy to remove them if need be. Got tons of work to do on this project but it looks like it's gonna be a LONG Winter here!
 

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Love the effect of the flicker lights. I used flicker ones under my cauldron this year as well, but I've never done the coal, I put larger logs around the lights to hide them. Hoping to try this technique this year seeing as yours turned out so well!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks guys. My video camera sucks for low light recording, I had to leave the room lights on. It actually looks 10 times better in person with the ambient light down low. I'll try to take pictures as this project progresses.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
OK, making some progress. As I said, this is gonna be a Cauldron Reaper so doing things just a bit different. I wanted the head to be more in line with the body and I also didn't want the hump on the back so I came up with a design that uses a servo for raising and lowering the head. This also lets me control the head with a microcontroller. I only want the head to raise when he's triggered and then he'll talk. After he's done talking the head will go back down. I installed a counter spring on the head mechanism to assist the servo and make things nice and smooth. Got a long way to go but it's coming along.
 

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it looks as if you did a good job on bending the fingers too. what method did you use?
HM
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I used a heat gun, one finger at a time. These are modified parts from a CVS Pose-N-Stay. I have to say, pretty tuff stuff, you really have to get this material hot before it will bend, so hot you need to use an oven glove to handle it. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Just curious but did you carve a face into the branch? Nice touch,
Nice catch, there is a face carved into the stick. I can't take credit for the carving, it was done by my wife's Uncle many years ago. We have had that walking stick standing in the corner of a bedroom and I thought it would be perfect for this project. Just finished re-working the Skull with a nice "Sinister" look for the Reaper.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Nice work on that "plastic surgery"!

How'd you do that?
Thanks z0mbie st0mp. I sculpted the eye sockets using Apoxie Sculpt and then painted them to blend in with the skull. I'll be adding red LED's in the eye sockets for an even more sinister personality. Here's a pic of the wiper motor assembly. The plexiglass circle will hold the assorted bones, it's been sanded on both sides to diffuse the green rope light in the cauldron. I custom made the bracket for the wiper motor, it's fastened to the plywood base with rubber grommets to isolate the motor noise somewhat. The arm for the stirring stick has a 1/4" rod end bolted on, there will be a 1/4" stud epoxied into the end of the stick which will fit into the rod end, a little different than most CC's are done.
 

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Keeper of Spider Hill
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Great job on the motor mount. Everything looks nice and solid. ;) No worries about that coming apart. Are you going to use a PWM to slow it down? I am testing a couple right now. Have been able to get it to crawl and it still has plenty of power.
 

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Oak Lane Cemetery
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If your going to use fog coming from the cauldron you might want to drill a bunch of holes in that plastic. I used a piece of hardware cloth (wire screen) as a base to support my bones. The bones glued to one another provide rigidity and with enough bones the screen does not seem to get noticed by anyone looking at it. The attachment for the stick worries me a little too. Is the stick going to be straight up and rigid, or move in a more natural elliptical motion? I'm not sure that eyelet is going to provide enough looseness for fluid movement. Using a cup to loosely hold the stick lets it slide around and tilt naturally as it goes around. One thing I discovered during construction of mine is that it does not take a lot to get things binding up and jerking. I have a large washer coated in grease in the bottom of my cup and a short piece of rounded over fiberglass rod glued into the end of my bamboo stir stick resting in the center of the washer to give it extra sloppyness that prevents any jerkiness to the movement. Then again I'm using a reindeer motor in mine so I don't have as much torque to work with.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Diabolik - Thanks, yeah, using PWM controll for the speed, still waiting for it to arrive.

Nightfisher - The plexiglass diameter is about 4" less than the cauldron opening so my plan is to let the fog roll up around it, we'll see how well that works.
The stick pivot attachment is a rod end, not an eyelet, I've attached a close up pic. The rod end has more than enough pivot movement to accommodate the stick angle and the ball in the rod end also rotates. It should provide nice smooth action for the stick rotation, we'll see on that also. :rolleyes:
 

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I thought about adding red lights this year to my orange but never thought about about flickering. GREAT idea! Can't wait to see to see how this all turns out.
 
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