Well I guess the waiting room won out as a concept! Here is the wire frame rendering of the carving blocks to make a pregnant woman for the waiting room. For now I just refer to her as Mom.
I am off to the shop to see if I can bring her convincingly to life. She is the smallest character that will have moving eyes that I have yet attempted.
I have been thinking about the cast of potential characters in a contemplated "Waiting Room" automata who might be waiting to see the doctor. One of them might be the distraught pregnant woman shown in the sketch below. She is distraught because she is having contractions. I have built a little prototype to test her belly rising and falling. Next thought will likely be her eyes rolling in sync with her belly and perhaps some hand movements. I'll have to wait to see where this goes!
Working on a few concepts for my next automata piece. Currently high in the running is a medical waiting room where a collection of people watch under the watchful eye of the attending nurse, and a "transformation booth where someone or something changes into something else.
If you have any creative ideas send me a note on my contact form or publicly leave a comment on this blog.
In my last post I described how I was going to repair my "Fishing" automata. Once I removed the top piece (first photo below) to gain access to the mechanism I decided to try some creative sanding to try to provide more clearance.
I was able to remove material on the sides of the Geneva drive wheel and the star wheel using a Dremel tool and then hand sanding. As a result I was able to create enough clearance for the Geneva mechanism to run smoothly. You can see the result in the photo below. The narrow slit of light on the left side of the disc was where the most interference existed. I removed material on the face of the star wheel and the face of the drive wheel as well.
The goods news is I did not have to cut out and replace the original part. The repair wash fairly simple and took little timeI did however removal material from the wheels and marred the original finish. I can live with this as I will likely keep this prototype in my personal collection and never sell.
The automata piece called "Fishing" that I completed earlier in the year requires a little rework! The mechanism in the centre left of the photo belowis the Geneva mechanism that causes a small fish to leap for the bait. The 1/4" thick plywood piece is the drive wheel and the 3/8" piece to the left of it is the star wheel. As you can see the drive wheel is not aligned correctly and binds on the pedestal (the stained 3/4" piece). The interference has gotten worse with this summer's humidity. It seems of a lack of clearance and the Geneva wheel not being installed squarely is the root of the problem.
The solution? Do some modest disassembly to gain access to the wheel and cut it off the drive shaft. Make a replacement, cut it in half with a fine saw, and splice it back together on the drive shaft. The original assembly was done with CA glue so removal of cams on either side to get the wheel is fairly involved.
Well, the loon watcher automata I was creating turned out to be much too officious looking to be simply admiring nature's beauty. He ended up appearing nosy, stoic and maybe even irritable, so I was compelled to rename him "Neighbourhood Watch". He is the classic nosy neighbour that sits on his porch and peeps into everyone's doing and complains bitterly about almost anything. The Tilley garb, including hat, khaki shorts, knee socks, and Topsider loafers identify him as a past adventurer now relegated to a more serene lifestyle. His only friend might be the Labrador Retriever.
I'll post a short video on Automata Gallery Page
Having recently completed Cottage Cabernet I am currently working on a similar piece called Loon Watching. It will be different as I try to make each piece I undertake unique. The mechanism will be similar but the character and actions will be different. I'll post a photo in a few of days. That's when I hope to finish.
The surprise reveal of Cottage Cabernet has occurred and now I can posted a photo of the finished piece. A video clip has also been added to my website. It is available through the Automata Gallery.
I will showing some of my work at the Buckhorn Art Festival this weekend. I will be onsite at the Caygeon Carvers booth, a local wood carving group I belong to. I will be there from 1:30 to 5:00 pm on Saturday the 17th. It would be fun to see you there! Here is a link to their website.
Automata is a creative blend of my life interests , engineering, art and woodworking.