Can someone suggest a way to build the MJY jaw assembly using the Allen screw design? Not really sure of how to fabricate that design. I'm going to be sculpting,then casting a gorilla skull and jaw in resin and would like to incorporate the design they used in the orignal puppet. I will probably cast a silicone face like the "Lone Animator" used in his puppet. Any suggestions or ideas would be great. I have an aluminum bar to work with also.
I just remembered StopMo Nick's demo of a breathing mechanism using a screw design. It seems similar to what I'd like to build for the gorilla puppet lower jaw.. Still a little unclear how it works.
The skull is a fairly complex piece. Keep in mind that the screw passes through two floating plates to keep the angle correct. The upper resin skull mounts to the brass block. This design is a masterpiece of engineering when you consider how long ago the film was made. Obie, Ray, and Marcel really knew what they were doing. Hope these pics help.
The breathing mech had a straight line movement - like Jeff says, for the jaw you have to allow for the fact that the jaw pivots in an arc while the screw travels in a straight line. So the blocks need to be able to pivot.
There is one similarity - I didn't want the screw screwing in and out of the chest plate, just like it shouldn't come out of the bottom of the jaw. It needs to rotate, but pull the jaw up and down. My solution was very simple and crude - a pair of nuts either side of the block attached to the chest plate, locked together. It had a smooth hole in that block, not a threaded one.
Jeff's jaw is way more elegant - it looks like the screw is maybe turned down to a smooth shaft where it goes through the jaw, so it rotates but doesn't screw up and down through the jaw block. The screwing action happens further up.
My gorilla jaw was cruder still - armature wire - I didn't have a need for really slow movement on the jaw, though it's nice to have that option. Same with eyebrows and other facial movements, sometimes you want a slow change of expression that can only be done with gears or screws, you have to make such small movements you can't even see them until you play it back in real time.
Greyguy had a great thread on his mech head (Corpse Bride head mech?) on the old board, I forget if it's continued on this one.
Thanks,the photos really cleared things up.