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Topic: Mad Hatter's Hat Project
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Feb 14, 2010 03:36PM)
I am building illusions to fit the theme of Alice in Wonderland for a new show for my daughter. The first thing I'm building is a Mad Hatter's hat reproduction for her to pull a rabbit out of. I am attempting to construct this out of fiberglass using a foam mold. The outside of the hat will be lined with tapestry.

I will post pictures as I progress.


Dan
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Feb 14, 2010 04:40PM)
Wow! I'm really looking forward to seeing that!
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Feb 15, 2010 12:04PM)
The progressive pics would be interesting to watch. Looking forward to them too.
Message: Posted by: ringmaster (Feb 15, 2010 07:52PM)
You going to use Mark Wilson's hat, or Johnny Depp's?
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Feb 15, 2010 10:11PM)
Day number one of carving the foam form.

This is only the rough stage. The over-all size will shrink 1/2" all the way around and I may reduce the height by 3-4 inches. Height of hat in the picture is 20 inches and the head diameter is 12 inches.

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/TheHattersHat.jpg]Original Mad Hatter's Hat[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Hat_core.jpg]Plywood Form Core[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Hat_core2.jpg]Attaching Core to Foam[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/hat_foam.jpg]Gluing the Foam[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/hat_foam2.jpg]Gluing the Foam[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/hat_rough.jpg]Rough Carving[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/hat_rough3.jpg]Rough Carving 2[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/hat_rough4.jpg]Rough Carving 3[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/hat_rough5.jpg]Rough Carving 4[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/hat_rough6.jpg]Rough Carving 5[/url]
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Feb 15, 2010 10:37PM)
Great progress and great photos!
Message: Posted by: Andrew H. (Feb 16, 2010 12:38AM)
WOW...Looks cool, your daughter should be very proud of you!
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Feb 16, 2010 12:05PM)
Great photos! Out of curiosity, what did you use to carve the foam so well and smooth?
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Feb 16, 2010 12:35PM)
I used a small hand saw for the bulk removal, a wood rasp for shaping and a Porter Cable detailer electric sander with 50 grit paper. I set the hat in a horizontal position and put a long dowel through the wooden core like a rotisserie. I rotated the hat by hand and sanded with the detailer sander similar to working a lathe. I still have a lot more sanding to do but I'm happy with the result of just one days work.

This type of project is new for me and I am grateful for this Workshop forum. I have gotten a lot of useful information from researching this site to start this project. I hope my trial and errors can help someone.

Dan
Message: Posted by: tabman (Feb 16, 2010 03:47PM)
Looks like a fun medium to work with. Thanks for the pics and the progress updates. When sanding that foam with the Porter-Cable electric, is the foam dust any kind of a problem???
Message: Posted by: Regan (Feb 16, 2010 04:06PM)
Dan, this looks like it will be great! Just in time for the new Alice In Wonderland movie too!
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Feb 16, 2010 04:10PM)
Tabman,

I worked outside and wore a good dust mask, glasses and gloves. I didn't notice a lot of foam dust in the air, but I will pay more attention when I sand again and report if there is any difference.

Dan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Feb 16, 2010 04:18PM)
Regan,

The Alice in Wonderland theme is something that my wife Kristen and Danielle have wanted to do for a couple of years now. Perfect timing that this movie is coming out and a new generation of kids will see it.

As I was collecting the material to start this project I was originally going to model this hat from one of the books pictures or from the Disneyland's ride and paint it a solid color. When I heard about the movie, I decided to make it look like Johnny Depp's hat.

Dan
Message: Posted by: Regan (Feb 16, 2010 04:45PM)
[quote]
On 2010-02-16 17:18, Zazz wrote:

As I was collecting the material to start this project I was originally going to model this hat from one of the books pictures or from the Disneyland's ride and paint it a solid color. When I heard about the movie, I decided to make it look like Johnny Depp's hat.

Dan
[/quote]

Smart move!
Message: Posted by: tabman (Feb 16, 2010 11:45PM)
[quote]
On 2010-02-16 17:10, Zazz wrote:
Tabman,

I worked outside and wore a good dust mask, glasses and gloves. I didn't notice a lot of foam dust in the air, but I will pay more attention when I sand again and report if there is any difference.

Dan
[/quote]

Thanks Dan. Just curious about the foam dust. Seems like it could be wicked like plexiglass dust.
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Feb 20, 2010 08:18PM)
Just got back from Tap Plastics with fiberglass supplies. This thing is not going to be cheap.

Dan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Feb 25, 2010 10:48PM)
[quote]
On 2010-02-15 20:52, ringmaster wrote:
You going to use Mark Wilson's hat, or Johnny Depp's?
[/quote]

I'm going to try and build Johnny Depp's hat for this themed show. I made a Mark Wilson's Alakazam Hat last year for her. Here is a picture.

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Portfolio%20Photos/IMG_0706_Edit-1.jpg]Mark Wilson's Alakazam Hat [/url]

Dan
Message: Posted by: tabman (Feb 25, 2010 11:34PM)
Great picture. I love the "hat."
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 6, 2010 06:50PM)
Started to epoxy fiberglass the hat today.

Dan
Message: Posted by: tabman (Mar 6, 2010 08:33PM)
Great. Post some more pictures when you get a chance.
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 6, 2010 11:00PM)
Below is a picture of the mold on the rotisserie. I just applied the Mold Release and one layer of glass. Tomorrow I will apply another coat of epoxy fiberglass.

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Hat_Glass.jpg]Applying Mold Relase Agent[/url]

Dan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 7, 2010 11:34PM)
I applied the second coat of epoxy fiberglass today. Next step after resin cures is to apply filler and sand.

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Hat_fiberglass.jpg]Second layer of fiberglass[/url]

Dan
Message: Posted by: EsnRedshirt (Mar 8, 2010 09:04AM)
Must be a trick of perspective, but that hat almost looks big enough to pull a person out of (okay, maybe a small child...) How much do you estimate it will weigh?
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 8, 2010 10:23AM)
The hat is 20 inches high and the elongated part of the top of it is 20 inches. I haven't weighed it yet but it is not very heavy right now, even with the foam and plywood core.

Dan
Message: Posted by: RayBanks (Mar 9, 2010 11:36PM)
I know you are probably real close to being finished but I ran across this for anyone else who might be interested.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Burtons-Mad-Hatter-Hat/
Message: Posted by: Regan (Mar 13, 2010 05:13PM)
Looking good Dan! Danielle is very lucky to have a father that can....and that is willing to build all these nice props for her!

Regan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 13, 2010 10:18PM)
I enjoy building them. I am lucky to have a daughter that uses the things I build for her and a wife that creates routines for them.

Here are a few more photos:

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Hat_Filler1.jpg]Hat Filler 1[/url]


[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Hat_Filler2.jpg]Hat Filler 2[/url]


My daughter, Danielle, just had an article in the March edition of The Linking Ring magazine. It turned out really great. Please ready if you have time. Here is a thread with a link to the article.

[url=http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=352528&forum=220&4]Surprising Young Lady[/url]

Dan
Message: Posted by: Regan (Mar 14, 2010 03:08PM)
Dan, that was a nice article! Congratulations to Danielle! (And to you and your wife too). I had not put it together until I started reading the article when I received my Linking Ring magazine this past Friday, but I remember when Danielle first started performing magic. You or your wife had inquired about some sort of routine (may have been a patriotic theme) for your daughter. We emailed (or PMed) back and forth about it. She was going to perform for her ring I believe. It was several years ago, and I think Danielle was just a little thing at the time. Wow.....I can't believe how far she has come. I'm thankful to know she really stuck it out! It's good to finally realize who you all are. I knew you, but I did not really know your association with one another.

Regan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 15, 2010 11:35AM)
Regan,

Thanks. People like you and others on this forum have really helped us through the years with suggestions and support. Magic is one of the things the three of us really have in common. It helps bring us together.


The next 2 months are going to be busy at work. Lots of O.T. on the weekends. I am going to have to use evenings after work to make progress on this Mad Hatter's hat. This and three other illusions need to be made for her new show. I hope I can get it done.

Dan
Message: Posted by: Regan (Mar 16, 2010 08:52AM)
[quote]
On 2010-03-15 12:35, Zazz wrote:
Regan,

Magic is one of the things the three of us really have in common. It helps bring us together.

Dan
[/quote]

Dan, I know what you mean. My wife and I have only one daughter, and we perform together (magic & music). I feel really blessed to be able to do it as a family.
Message: Posted by: Dr. Solar (Mar 20, 2010 01:28AM)
Hi Dan,

Very nice work on the hat. You do wonderful work for sure. I just wish I could get do that way to the club meetings more but the way the gas is, not so much.

The fiberglass resin does not attack the foam core? Maybe you can hip me to building a prop I have been putting off for way too long.

Best wishes,
Dr. Solar
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 21, 2010 07:43PM)
Dr. Solar,

The research I did told me that epoxy resin would attack the foam and polyester resin would not. I weighed the pros and cons of each and wanted the superior strength and lack of bad smell of the epoxy.

After I shaped the foam, I painted it with a thick coat of Elmer’s glue, followed by a lightweight spackle to get the shape I wanted and then a coat of latex primer and mold release. This put a barrier between the foam and the resin. It worked fine.

I did a test by putting epoxy directly on foam and it did eat it a little.

Today I removed the foam and I am happy with the results. I will post some pictures later.

Dan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 22, 2010 10:52PM)
Here is the latest set of pictures

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Hat2ndfiller.jpg]2nd Coat of Filler[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam7.jpg]Primed Fiberglass[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam8.jpg]Removing Plywood Core 1[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam10.jpg]Removing Plywood Core 2[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam6.jpg]Removing Foam 1[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam5.jpg]Removing Foam 2[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam3.jpg]Removing Foam 3[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam2.jpg]Removing Foam 4[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam1.jpg]Removing Foam 5[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam4.jpg]Removing Foam 6[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Peelingmoldrelease.jpg]Peeling Mold Release 1[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam11.jpg]Peeling Mold Release 2[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Removingfoam12.jpg]Peeling Mold Release 3[/url]


Dan
Message: Posted by: MagicB1S (Mar 23, 2010 07:05AM)
Looking good Dan, I cant wait to see the completed project
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 27, 2010 08:22PM)
This is my first weekend off of work in three weeks. I can finally get back to my project.

Today I fiberglassed the top and bottom inside of the hat and added a reinforcement band around the center. This should be the last of the glass work.

Dan
Message: Posted by: epoptika (Mar 31, 2010 07:05PM)
Zazz,
You are one very dedicated (and talented) dad!
Very impressive!
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Apr 15, 2010 08:58PM)
Hat is almost ready to cover with fabric.
Laid out table and will buy materials this weekend.
Bought most of the electronics today.

Dan
Message: Posted by: epoptika (Apr 16, 2010 11:02AM)
Anxious to see more photos of your project! :banana:
Message: Posted by: Chris LaBarge (Apr 20, 2010 08:35AM)
Yes very anxious to see how things are going. I can't wait till my little girl is old enough to perform (hopefully she'll want to) so that I can get my hand dirty in projects like this.
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Apr 23, 2010 11:14PM)
Thanks for the interest.
Having fun building the workings of the table.
Very time consuming creating small parts out of aluminum.
Bought a sheet of aluminum for the hat brim today.

Dan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Apr 25, 2010 10:12PM)
Worked on the table this weekend.
Very pleased with the results.
Except for a few modifications the table workings worked the way I envisioned them to.

Dan
Message: Posted by: epoptika (Apr 29, 2010 09:53PM)
Is the rabbit going to be jettisoned out of the hat? :magicrabbit:
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Apr 29, 2010 10:02PM)
The stuffed rabbit will be delivered to just below the brim of the hat.
A foot switch will trigger sound effects, smoke and strobe from within the hat.

Dan
Message: Posted by: wa-na-be (May 17, 2010 01:16PM)
So anymore updates or pictures?
Message: Posted by: Zazz (May 17, 2010 10:39PM)
Have been working hard on the table. Made lots of progress this weekend. Went to about five different hardware stores today to buy, hopefully the last of the hardware needed.
Message: Posted by: Coin Nut (May 20, 2010 11:39AM)
Looking forward to the seeing completed work.
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Jun 1, 2010 07:12PM)
I have some more pictures of the hat and table and will load them onto Photobucket tonight. I will put the pictures I think will not reveal the secret to this illusion up after they are loaded.

If any of you are curious of the workings of the table I can send you a link to the table pictures.

Dan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Jun 1, 2010 11:47PM)
I've been concentrating on the table for a while now and neglected the hat. So far, the table works as planned with very little reworking needed.

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/HatFabric1.jpg]Fiberglass Hat & Fabric[/url]

Dan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Aug 29, 2010 11:39AM)
This project has been put on the back burner for a few months because of a couple family emergencies. I will start again this fall.

Dan
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Aug 29, 2010 02:23PM)
Dan,

I was wondering. But, we all work at our own pace for our own reasons. Hope everything is ok with your family.

~michael
Message: Posted by: Cyberqat (Aug 29, 2010 03:51PM)
[quote]
On 2010-03-13 18:13, Regan wrote:
Looking good Dan! Danielle is very lucky to have a father that can....and that is willing to build all these nice props for her!

Regan
[/quote]

I was going to say the same thing. A prop-master in the family, now there is a real blessing for any theatrically inclined youngster!

And I am somewhat amazed, btw, when you say this is a new kind of project for you because all the pictures look like they were done by an expert. I assume years of building other things must help when learning new techniques.
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Aug 29, 2010 06:01PM)
My wife's mother passes away last month, and my grandma passes from Alzheimer's last weekend. It's been a tough few months, but these things have a way of bringing together members of the family that haven't seen each other for years.

I learned a lot of what I know from watching, as a kid, my grandpa in his wood shop, who is now suffering from dementia. He was truly a master cabinet / furniture maker. My grandpa was always happy to help me with projects. We could have built some amazing magic effects if I would have caught the "magic bug" earlier in my life.

This small break in building this project is allowing me to step back and rethink the final steps of construction.

Dan
Message: Posted by: marD (Aug 29, 2010 07:54PM)
Dan,

I'm sorry to hear about your losses and hope that everything is well with your family. I have been following this thread with much interest. I have a desire to do what you're doing but no skill...lol.

Mike
Message: Posted by: Cyberqat (Aug 30, 2010 08:19AM)
[quote]
On 2010-08-29 19:01, Zazz wrote:
My wife's mother passes away last month, and my grandma passes from Alzheimer's last weekend. It's been a tough few months, but these things have a way of bringing together members of the family that haven't seen each other for years.
[/quote]

Best wishes in this difficult time, Dan. Lots of emotions, and even potentially conflicting ones, are normal at a time like this. Especially if you've had to deal with the heart-ache of dementia leading up to it. If you'd like my wife the seminarian to add their names to her regular prayer list, please feel free to PM them to me.

It sounds like your grand-dad was a talented man. I'm sure he'd be very proud of your work now if he was capable of really understanding it.

JK
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Aug 30, 2010 12:10PM)
Dan,

My condolences on your losses.

I agree with Cyberqat that your grandpa would be/is proud of your work.

~michael
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Aug 30, 2010 01:55PM)
Thank you.

Next time I am up-loading pictures, I will post a picture of a table my Grandpa built in high school and won first prize at the state fair.

Dan
Message: Posted by: lin (Aug 30, 2010 03:53PM)
I'd enjoy seeing that. :D

best wishes,

Lin
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Aug 30, 2010 08:46PM)
Here are the photos of the table my Grandma and Grandpa gave me. I proudly display it in my living room.

The bottom of the table reads:
Roy Faria, 1938, 3rd year, Santa Rosa High

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Misc%20Stuff%202010/MapTable1.jpg]Grandpa's Map Table 1[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Misc%20Stuff%202010/MapTable2.jpg]Grandpa's Map Table 2[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Misc%20Stuff%202010/MapTable3.jpg]Grandpa's Map Table 3[/url]

Dan
Message: Posted by: lin (Aug 30, 2010 09:34PM)
Wow! A piece to be proud of, for sure!

Thanks :D

Lin
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Aug 30, 2010 09:38PM)
WOW! That is some amazing work!

I know what kinds of tools my Grandpa had available during that time period, which makes this work even more amazing. That must have taken him a long time.
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Aug 30, 2010 10:06PM)
Grandpa said he carved a state every day after school. He had a really good wood shop teacher, and they formed a wood carving club after school. This is one of the small projects he made and won awards during high school. He built a couple more larger tables with inlay, a dinning room table and chairs, and a hope chest with intricate rose carvings. All of this before he turned 18. He owned a cabinet shop for 45 years and had a great basement shop during his retirement years, and during those years, he built some truly amazing cabinets and furniture.

Dan
Message: Posted by: ClintonMagus (Aug 31, 2010 07:36AM)
"Small projects" such as this are small in size only! What beautiful work!
Message: Posted by: Cyberqat (Aug 31, 2010 01:58PM)
[quote]
On 2010-08-30 21:46, Zazz wrote:
Here are the photos of the table my Grandma and Grandpa gave me. I proudly display it in my living room.

[/quote]
Absolutely gorgeous. Thanks for sharing!
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Oct 9, 2010 09:26PM)
Started working on the hat again today. Made a nice spring hinge from a 10 inch piano hinge.
Installed the aluminum hat brim to the hat. Right now the brim is perfectly flat. I want it to curve up on either side to give the hat some shape. I'm nervous to do this because I have a lot of time into it and I don't want to ruin it. I'm thinking of bending it around a 2 inch pipe. Guess I'll practice on some scraps. Anyone have experience with bending 1/8" sheet aluminum? Will heating it help?

Dan
Message: Posted by: MagicB1S (Nov 9, 2010 07:01PM)
Any updates?
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Nov 9, 2010 08:28PM)
No updates since the last post.
I put the Hat on the back burner while I built the Queen of Hearts Illusion as per my wife's orders -
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=386550&forum=26&18

I have been brainstorming on a walk-through-mirror illusion that I will build after the Hat. As I have time during the holiday season I will resume this project and post pictures as I take them.

Dan
Message: Posted by: epoptika (Mar 23, 2011 02:56PM)
Anxiously awaiting photos of your finished product...

Beautiful job on the QH card prop.
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Mar 31, 2011 01:11AM)
Thanks for inquiring.
I have quite a few great photos of this project, but they are of the inner workings of the hat and the table and I don't think I should post them.
This project is not complete yet. I am busy rebuilding my family room but I am constantly thinking of ways to improve on this project.

Dan
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Apr 10, 2011 03:30PM)
Here are a few pictures of the hat with aluminum hat brim attached.

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/Hatbrim1.jpg]Hat with Brim 1[/url]

[url=http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p270/magicbydanielle/Mad%20Hatter/hatbrim2.jpg]Hat with Brim 2[/url]

Dan
Message: Posted by: Gary Shelton (Apr 13, 2011 10:21PM)
Zazz Adopt me PLEASE
Message: Posted by: Zazz (Jul 11, 2011 10:16AM)
I would like to win a trip to Disneyland to get reinspired to finish this project.

Please help to send me and my family there. Follow this link and vote on the two steps:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=423838&forum=32&4

Thanks,
Dan