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Topic: Noisy servos on animatronic figures
Message: Posted by: Bob Baker (Feb 16, 2011 03:55PM)
I've engaged someone to do some custom animatronics on a new figure of mine (alas, not Steve Axtell). In the videos of some of my guy's creations, I can hear the servo motor sounds as the characters' mouths are moving. I'm curious if those of you with animatronic figures (Axtell or otherwise) have audible servo sounds when the characters move or talk. If so, does the character's speech cover the motor sounds? Can you audience hear the animatronics?

Thanks.

Bob
Message: Posted by: wizardpa (Feb 16, 2011 09:58PM)
I'm not sure if I'm just more aware of my puppets servo sounds then my audience, or what, but what I've started to do is have some sort of background music playing while I do my hands free puppet routine. That along with my puppets speech through my PA I no longer notice those motor sounds.

Chris
Message: Posted by: Steve at The Dummy Shoppe (Feb 16, 2011 10:13PM)
I can't speak with any experience in animatronics, but I do know that servos in RC aircraft always have a background sound. Its just the nature of the beast. It is usually not heard on model aircraft only because you have a rather loud engine to block it out. On the ground doing preflight testing before starting the engine they can be heard. Two years ago, I was looking at the Axtel (tucan I believe) and I could hear the same type of sounds coming from the animated puppet. Wizardpa had a great suggestion of diverting the audience attention from the sounds by using background music.

Steve
http://www.thedummyshoppe.com
Message: Posted by: Wanlu (Feb 16, 2011 11:44PM)
Mine also has the same sound... I'm guessing all servos do.

So far, nobody has complained about that sound... I don't think anyone noticed the sound due to my loud sound system. :)
Message: Posted by: maps (Feb 16, 2011 11:55PM)
All servos will make some noise.I have not heard one servo that doesn't make a sound.Background music will definitely help.When the puppet is speaking or the act is on.unless you have dead silence,the audience will not notice it too much.
Or if the audience is very near you like as in a birthday show type setting,maybe it can be heard.
Message: Posted by: Bob Baker (Feb 17, 2011 05:49AM)
Thank you all for your responses. You have eased my mind. In a few months I'll be able to show you the animatronic figure and what he does.

Bob
Message: Posted by: tacrowl (Feb 17, 2011 09:02AM)
Sounds cool Bob! Can't wait to see it.
Tom
Message: Posted by: Steve at The Dummy Shoppe (Feb 17, 2011 11:09AM)
Bob,

Any chance of getting your guy to take some interim photos so we can all have a better idea of the process?


Steve
http://www.thedummyshoppe.com
Message: Posted by: Bob Baker (Feb 18, 2011 05:52AM)
Sure, Steve. I hope to have him in a couple of months. He is currently being sculpted.

B
Message: Posted by: tacrowl (Feb 18, 2011 07:08AM)
So I'm thinking he could make an appearance at VentHaven?

Tom
Message: Posted by: Bob Baker (Feb 18, 2011 07:36AM)
Next year, I hope. I want to have a well lived-in routine before I do it for my peers.

B
Message: Posted by: kidshowvent (Feb 18, 2011 09:03AM)
Bob, can you give us some photos during the process? I thought it would be interesting to see how this is done.

Mark
markwade@kidshowvent.com
Message: Posted by: tacrowl (Feb 18, 2011 01:48PM)
Bob - to heck with the routine. I want to see the cool new toy! :)

Tom
Message: Posted by: Bob Baker (Feb 18, 2011 05:55PM)
OK. You guys brow beat me into it. I'll post some pictures of the construction process, but not the final figure. He is, I think, a new concept in vent, and I want to surprise everyone with the act. Don't mean to be coy, but doesn't everybody love a surprise? No? Too bad.

:)

Bob
Message: Posted by: Bob Baker (Feb 18, 2011 06:16PM)
Here's the sculpting by Bill Nelson. This is as far as the work has progressed.

B

[img]http://i1206.photobucket.com/albums/bb450/rwbakermd7/FT.jpg[/img]
Message: Posted by: Steve at The Dummy Shoppe (Feb 18, 2011 07:21PM)
Wow! He is cool looking. Is his skin made of some kind of latex?

Steve
http://www.thedummyshoppe.com
Message: Posted by: Bob Baker (Feb 18, 2011 09:01PM)
This is just the clay sculpture. Next, Dan Lavender will cast him, make the actual head, and add the mechanics. Then the animatronics, and then Bill's final painting and costuming.

Bob
Message: Posted by: wizardpa (Feb 18, 2011 09:52PM)
He looks like Jean Luc Picard, from the Star Trek Next Generation Series.
Message: Posted by: Wanlu (Feb 19, 2011 12:13AM)
So cool...

Marc Ruben's new Swami is also RC and it was made by Selberg Studios :)
Message: Posted by: Bob Baker (Feb 19, 2011 05:47AM)
[quote]
On 2011-02-19 01:13, Wanlu wrote:
So cool...

Marc Ruben's new Swami is also RC and it was made by Selberg Studios :)
[/quote]

Unfortunately, Steve Axtell was too busy to take on my project. :(
Message: Posted by: Steve at The Dummy Shoppe (Feb 19, 2011 06:43AM)
Thanks for sharing Doc. You are boldly going where no Vent has gone before. We'll all be most interested in the finished character when you unveil him.

Steve
http://www.thedummyshoppe.com
Message: Posted by: CaptKirk (Feb 19, 2011 10:17AM)
That figure is going to be AWESOME when he's done. Nelson is a real craftsman/genius, IMHO. In my experience with RC planes, all servos make some noise when activated. They shouldn't be so noisy that the audience would hear them and it may be possible to deaden the sound with some kind of matt or shielding(??).
Message: Posted by: Steve at The Dummy Shoppe (Feb 19, 2011 11:31AM)
Kirk is right. I just tried on my RC airplane by putting a clear plastic tube over the activator arm and wrapping it with a thin layer of cotton batting. Almost made the sound disappear. However, if space is a tight consideration this might be problematic.


Steve
http://www.thedummyshoppe.com