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Author Topic: The hat and helmet modification thread  (Read 11638 times)
J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #25 on: March 29, 2018, 10:38:09 pm »

Some progress!

1. I found two finials, the first listed above in 3-7/8 inch tall Aluminium, and  another one in 5 inch Cast Iron whic looks like the last one I posted above. Both are available for pickup in the morrow.

Cast Aluminium 3-7/8 inch tall

Cast Iron 5 inches tall

I suspect the cast iron one will be very heavy. But it's so inexpensive it's worth a shot.

2. I have decided that a Velcro attachment would be least invasive to the top of the cap. The "wool" part of the Velcro can be sewn to the top of the hat without changing the nature of the hat, because it would be black and blend with the fur. Any thread used to sew the edges will disappear completely from view (you can't just rely on the Velcro glue - it tends to creep).

3. The ear flaps can remain with snaps as originally planned. It's easy to screw "male" snaps to the wood rosette. The "female" snaps would be punched through the ear flaps.

4. The rosette is ready for pickup. If I can tomorrow, if not on Saturday.

5. The eagle is AWOL. Last notification was that it had been "despached" from a station in China 11 days ago. No notification of crossing the ocean or arriving in the United States. This leads me to believe that the seller lied and did not use an ePacket, instead opting for some other shipping method. It's not the first time that an item arrives without tracking. Or the item is lost :-/  I can always buy the same eagle from eBay. I won't find out until Saturday.

6. I will figure ot how to have several detachable finials for the base plate. It would be nice to have a small round ball for every day use, and to not threaten passengers in arplanes or public transport Grin Also I'd like to have a golden "plume" (tassle), in the form of a curtain tieback, from Walmart, which I've used before Cheesy


To get something like this

« Last Edit: March 30, 2018, 09:46:05 am by J. Wilhelm » Logged

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« Reply #26 on: March 30, 2018, 09:35:55 am »

So I managed to get the wood rosette today. Later today I'll get the spikes.

The wood rosette turned out to be very nicely carved. The wood (Rubberwood) is fairly hard - as hard as mahogany, with similar grain, just a light colour, and that makes sense as a requirement for the CAM milling. The block is fairly heavy and has a maximum thickness of one inch. It should not be difficult to screw the snap fasteners. The rosette will need to have a hole carved at the bottom to make space for the "navel" of the cap.

Apparently, the price of this rosette was low because it was a factory reject with "visual damage" according to the sticker. If this is a "damaged item," then the factory standards must be very high; to be honest I found very little wrong with it, other than the surface needed a bit of sanding to erase some of the marks from the milling. The wood grain was "teased up" from the action of the cutters, yet even with milling marks, the surface was much smoother than any 3-D printing, actually, so it takes very little effort to bring it to perfection.

Because of the high porosity of the milled wood I will probably want to prime the surface first.  I will use the Velcro hook side on the wood and the cap will get the Velcro wool side with additional reinforcing stitching. I believe this is the correct approach for the reasons that it allows a greater contact area, hides the attachment better and allows for adjustment of the position of the spike, which I could not do if the block of wood was snapped or bolted into place.

This is what the rosette looks on the hat (right click to zoom/ in MS Windows see "properties" to get  the image URL):








« Last Edit: March 30, 2018, 09:43:01 am by J. Wilhelm » Logged
Miranda.T
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« Reply #27 on: March 30, 2018, 10:52:43 am »

That is coming together very nicely! The rosette fits perfectly, and I do like the idea of the 'plume' from the spike. Hopefully your front piece will appear from the maelstrom of the international postal system after not too long a delay  Smiley

Yours,
Miranda.
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« Reply #28 on: March 30, 2018, 11:12:45 pm »

That is coming together very nicely! The rosette fits perfectly, and I do like the idea of the 'plume' from the spike. Hopefully your front piece will appear from the maelstrom of the international postal system after not too long a delay  Smiley

Yours,
Miranda.

Thank you dear Miranda,

I have run early this morning to pcih the fence finials. One is aluminium and the bigger is cast iron. The thing is there is a tremendous difference in weight between the two. The aluminium one is alsmost a bit small and as light as a feather. The cast iron one is a porker that weighs well over a pound. Could not set the large spike on the hat because it scrunched the hat flat under its weight.  Here are the pickel components for comparison:

Right click to zoom in / Windows: right click to get image URL


It looks like they're very different in size but they're only one inch apart, actually. The problem is the volume and density of metal.



Both of which definitely work, either way... The cast iron one however, is a problem due to its mass, in spite of more closely resembling the larger Prussian style spikes.

This is what the smaller aluminium one looks over the hat in place


And this is the way the iron spike looks like on the hat (using a small box underneath to support the weight of the spike)


While the larger one seems more proportionate, remember that the hat is actually oversize. It is definitely larger than a baseball cap and even larger than an actual pickelhaube helmet - looks can be very deceiving.

Even though I like the larger one better, I'm thinking I would avoid using the cast iron spike, unless I try to reproduce the same design by whittling my own from a block of wood. While I was trying to avoid turning my own spike, cutting one from a rectangular block of wood should be easier if I cut with sharp knives. I should be able to do that much.

I will also look at getting a small wood sphere (easily obtainable at the hardware store or hobby shop in the form of a door knob), so the cap may be worn without a sharp spike.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2018, 11:46:36 pm by J. Wilhelm » Logged
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« Reply #29 on: March 31, 2018, 12:33:44 pm »

Hobby shops may have large wooden beads  A sphere with a central hole ready drilled that you can widen if needed to take a horse hair plume or just to fit securely on the spike.
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« Reply #30 on: March 31, 2018, 12:46:35 pm »

Hobby shops may have large wooden beads  A sphere with a central hole ready drilled that you can widen if needed to take a horse hair plume or just to fit securely on the spike.

That would go so well with the aluminium spike; spike to ball to plume would be spot-on.

Yours,
Miranda.
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« Reply #31 on: March 31, 2018, 08:54:10 pm »

Hobby shops may have large wooden beads  A sphere with a central hole ready drilled that you can widen if needed to take a horse hair plume or just to fit securely on the spike.

That would go so well with the aluminium spike; spike to ball to plume would be spot-on.

Yours,
Miranda.

For that there is one third alternative. At hobby shops you can find unfinished turned candle holders. The shapes are very similar to the real "plume holders" if you want to call them that. I'm on my way to the post office after work. To see if the "Eagle has landed" or of "Houston we have a problem."  Grin

(Though the way things are now politically, it's more like, "Eagle, this is Houston. WE have a problem!! Recommend postponement of return home at your discretion!").
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« Reply #32 on: March 31, 2018, 10:54:11 pm »

"Houston, we have a problem"

"Roger Eagle. Mission Control recommends that you attempt a $7 controlled burn and an orbit insertion around eBay"
« Last Edit: March 31, 2018, 10:55:45 pm by J. Wilhelm » Logged
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« Reply #33 on: April 01, 2018, 10:57:19 am »

Hobby shops may have large wooden beads  A sphere with a central hole ready drilled that you can widen if needed to take a horse hair plume or just to fit securely on the spike.

I may be able to do that as well..., but it'll come from the hobby shop. I was disappointed today to find out that my local hardware store no longer carries spherical wooden drawer knobs...

~ ~ ~

Alright. So while I resolve he eagle issue, I have taken it upon myself to whittle a spike out of wood.  I also found an interesting artefact which might help top dress up the small aluminium finial, but I'll leave that for later.

I found a handrail baluster post, a simple bar of wood made from Cedar, about 1-1/2 inches on each side of the square in size. The wood is extremely light, and reminds me of Balsa wood , but it's much tougher than balsa wood. I started by outlining the shape of the finial I wanted. Basically I wanted a finial which looked like the cast iron finial. Due to the size of the bar, the finial would have to be thinner.

I used a box cutting retractable knife to make the cuts. Not the thin variety! That would be dangerous, but rather, the large double width type. Why? because the blades are sharp and flexible, like a pairing knife. This is important to achieve the curved cuts without breaking the blade while you whittle.

Since I didn't have a French Curve, I used a kitchen knife as a stencil. The  blade's curve was suitable to copy the shape of the iron finial...



In order to make the 3D cuts, I outlined the entire piece from all sides with a pencil. The idea is to try to preserve the pencil marks as much as possible during the cutting, so as to ensure one can keep the proper proportions. The easy thing to do is cut at 45 degrees from the faces of the bar,, taking the "corners" of the material off.


Then one can start cutting material from the faces of the wood block. This means half of the pencil marks will disappear, so we will have to re draw them later.


The finial starts taking shape, and then, when one has to cut the other two sides, one must use a stencil again to redraw the lines (projection onto a slanted surface), and then continue cutting:



At which point you have a finial. The cuts consumed three blades of the retractable knife, but the knife didn't break in the process.

The biggest problem I had was achieving a sharp edge in the interface between the long concave surface and the short concave surface. The wood was so soft it kept splitting there. The pointy end of the finial, however was no problem because the tip was in the direction of the blade, it was just like sharpening a giant pencil. So what I did to cover my mistakes was to dull that edge and drill a series of holes along that edge. I also provided a "waviness" to the edge to simulate a rough cast metal piece, similar to the uneven edges in the cast iron finial.

I'm not sure how this is going to look in the end, but this is the best I can do with the tools I have. I can apply a lot of sanding to smooth surfaces, but the hand cut surfaces will not be perfect. I simply don't have the way to make them perfect, but then again, the cast iron finial was not perfect either. Now I'm wondering whether I should add some texture to the surface to emulate the roughness of the iron finial, and perhaps hide the small imperfections in the surface.


After cutting, I beveled the holes a bit with a dremel and made the bevel outline oval in shape. That also helps hide imperfections in the positioning of the holes


The finial is light as a feather- even lighter than the aluminium finial. But it's as tall as the iron finial:


And this is what it looks like on the hat:


I'm a bit ambivalent about it. I'd like the finial to be a bit more finished, but outside of sanding, I don't think it'll get much straighter than that...


~ ~ ~

I'll be ordering a second eagle from eBay tonight. I inquired with the Chinese seller on AliExpress. He told me the item was "still in transit" and extended my right to complain by 20 more days :/  I'm not waiting.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2018, 06:23:04 pm by J. Wilhelm » Logged
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« Reply #34 on: April 02, 2018, 10:02:08 pm »

I was rumaging though my hardware boxes and I found this old urn-shaped wood finial. Its not a replacement for the spike but I was thinking is a good alternative for those times you don't want a dangerous spike on the airplane or the bus:


These type of finials originally came with a two-pointed wood screw, meant to be inserted into a wood post (baluster) of some sort, or perhaps a thick wooden rod for a heavy curtain. I've looked around, and can't find finials in this size anywhere anymore, and its made of a rock hard wood, that is almost polished. Most wooden unfished finials today are much larger and heavier (for wooden fence posts), or Chinese made from Bondo-type materials and finished in gaudy 18th. C. patterns meant for equally gaudy curtains - I imagine anonther consequence of the post year 2000 construction boom where too many people found themselves with great wealth from the IT industry, I guess.


Perhaps it could be adapted with an extension for the plume, which oddly is also a curtain/drapery component. It looks like there was a screw on the top and I forget what I used that finial for...  Cheesy

« Last Edit: April 02, 2018, 10:03:53 pm by J. Wilhelm » Logged
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« Reply #35 on: April 05, 2018, 11:03:12 pm »

I think your home-made spike looks excellent; impressive whittling skills there. The urn-shaped one should look very fine with the plume attached. So, what's the plan for painting these up?

Yours,
Miranda.
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« Reply #36 on: April 06, 2018, 01:51:10 am »

I think your home-made spike looks excellent; impressive whittling skills there. The urn-shaped one should look very fine with the plume attached. So, what's the plan for painting these up?

Yours,
Miranda.

Thank you dear Miranda!

I've polished the spike a bit as it still looked too rough, and I rounded the base, because the square base doesn't look right.


I turned the spike 45 degrees. I think this looks a bit better and hides some of the imperfections.



I'm pondering giving some texture to the wood, but otherwise the idea is simply to prime the surface before painting, to avoid the wood "soaking up" all the paint and then showing the grain of the wood. That will be a bit tricky, and I'm less than impressed with the performance of Rostoleum paints, even though I know I'd rather have Epoxy based paint than other enamel ones.

It's just that I don't trust the "texturizing" feature of Rustoleoum. 8/10 times the finish doesn't look like the cap shows. So I may simply use regular metallic enamels. For a little more quality I could spend a little more and try to get an automotive ceramic based paint, but the colours will be mteallic-speckled, because that is what you do in automotive paint  Undecided

I also have to wait until the stupid eagle gets here, because I'd like to match all three surfaces as close as possible (whatever the Eagle looks like, will set the tone - if you pardon the pun) Grin

I will try to find domething top extend the urn spike. I bought an old fashioned pencil sharpener, and I was trying to sharpen 3/8" wood dowel. But I was also looking at brass door stops as potential spikes  Grin  The things Steampunks do...

Cheers,
JW
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« Reply #37 on: April 08, 2018, 11:54:12 pm »

The Eagle has finally shown itself in Chicago (Shee-caah-go in a nasal voice, as the locals say). It'll be here this week.

Unfortunately, I was very disappointed with the selection of paint shades at my local hardware store. The only colours are a very glossy (and fake looking) gold, a Rostoleum "gold" metallic, which looks like a champagne tone and a "Rostoleum Champagne which is just a shade lighter than the" Gold."  Undecided


Very bad choices, all of them. I'm heading to my local hobby shop to look for Testors enamel. The only way to get the shades o need. What may need to happen is a" soft" enamel covered in a harder ceramic lacquer, like a clear-coat technique. technique.
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« Reply #38 on: April 09, 2018, 11:36:42 pm »

UGH! I'm hating it. The whole thing. I tried and tried yesterday, only to find that any and all gold toned paint had been depleted from - apparently- all stores. All hobby shops, mega-markets and supermarkets had next to no metallic paints - all sold out.

I ended up spending WAY too much money on a "guilding paint" that turned out to be not much more than a glorified and re-branded Testors Gold enamel...  Tongue Not complaining about the Testors style enamel, but it ain't worth that much.

The gold paint is too bright. It had the unfortunate effect of amplifying every single microscopic defect the carved spike sported. Now the spike looks asymmetric. When I tried to erase the paint blotches and uneven surfaces by texturizing the paint, the job consumed copious amounts of paint and the end result looks horrible.


This is nasty. Exactly what I was trying to avoid. It looks like I'm going back to the drawing board. It's a good thing I didn't attempt to do anything with the carved rosette.

At this point, I'm wondering if it wouldn't be better to just finish the wood like wood is supposed to be, and make some convenient change to the story-line... "You can't wear metallic spikes on your head when flying on an airship. Airships are notorious for accumulating electrostatic charge when traversing the atmosphere - the spike concentrates the electric charge at the tip of the spike creating danger of sparks."   Tongue Undecided  Grin

Which actually is 100% true!!  Shocked

~ ~ ~

PS: The Eagle had landed.  Roll Eyes Finally. Now let's see what I got in the mail. It'd better be good news, man, because I'm stressed...
« Last Edit: April 09, 2018, 11:44:09 pm by J. Wilhelm » Logged
RJBowman
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« Reply #39 on: April 10, 2018, 02:53:48 am »

Several iterations of painting and sanding will get rid of the wood texture. That's how we did the pinewood race cars back when I was in the Cub Scouts.
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« Reply #40 on: April 10, 2018, 05:01:23 am »

Several iterations of painting and sanding will get rid of the wood texture. That's how we did the pinewood race cars back when I was in the Cub Scouts.


True, but unfortunately I still have the problem of the slight asymmetry in the spike. I can see that the gold colour really highlights any imperfections, and the asymmetry is just really noticeable with the gold paint. I have to grind a lot more to get it looking right. Also, the paint after 24 hrs is dry to the touch but a but gummy. It can't be sanded yet.

Meh. Not really an issue grinding again, but the worst problem is the colour. I'm really hating that colour now. Paint still looks like paint.

There are a lot fancier paints out there and plenty of techniques outlined right here at Brassgoggles. Alas, I'm not a master of paints, like Herr Doktor - assuming the paints were available anyhow. And judging from my corner of the world, there's a metallic-paint eating monster loose in this city. I don't understand what happened. The big box shops are empty.

And the smaller shops... we've lost a number of old-school hobby shops over the years. You know? the kind where you walked in, you had to duck on account of the airplane models hanging from the ceiling, walk past the scale trains, and there would be an entire wall of Tetsors, Airfix, and Revell paints ranging from a full set military colours, metallic shades and much much more? With a odd looking cashier with a little mustache, kind of like Monty Python's Mr. Gumby  Grin  

I know these companies still produce all these items, but probably I have to order online and wait for weeks, or even a month to get a hold of anything worthwhile.

I remember when you could go to the hobby shop, then swing buy the local Radio Shack and get whatever you needed, before heading to the local burger joint to get a milk shake... all of your hobby needs could be accomplished the same day after you had an idea - just on a whim - when coming home after work. Now this is the world of online shopping and I find it very frustrating if I have to plan everything months ahead of time


*sigh*

A re-think is in order.
« Last Edit: April 10, 2018, 11:10:35 am by J. Wilhelm » Logged
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« Reply #41 on: April 10, 2018, 10:02:08 am »

I think your home-made spike looks excellent; impressive whittling skills there. The urn-shaped one should look very fine with the plume attached. So, what's the plan for painting these up?

Yours,
Miranda.

I think the plan now is to envision the system without gilding. Too many problems. Two days ago I swung past my local hardware shop and bougth a 3/8" (9mm) round dowel - and a pencil sharpener  Grin

The idea was to add a point to the urn shaped finial. This, below, is what the urn shaped finial looks like compared to the other finials; The urn finial definitely is one size smaller than the "pyramid" finials. But it doesn't look as "weak" as the aluminium finial, and it shares the larger diameter of the pyramid finials.


Now on the hat and over the rosette:





~ ~ ~

It's not the same, but it looks more refined than the other finials. If I don't screw up the finish, they have a chance of looking right.

To be honest, I'm very much put off by the gilding. I spent quite a bit of time on it, two days ago. Paint is basically plastic. I can make metal look great. I can make wood look great. But I can't make plastic look great. I guess it's not in my DNA.

At this point I think, I'd rather not chance it. I'd much rather explore finishing the finial in wood stain shades. This urn finial is unique in that locally I cannot source another one - I have to find an equivalent somewhere on the Internet. These finials, I remember now, belonged to the lids of my Steampunk computers. I kept one finial, just on case I ever sold another computer...

I guess I'll just argue that a metal spike would be electrostatically inconvenient inside a hydrogen airship.  Grin I could argue that avoidance of metal spikes is a measure to prevent accidental electrostatic discharge. But I'm afraid that in an electric field over at 100 kV/m it wpn't be much help in preventing St. Elmo's Fire  Grin

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St._Elmo%27s_fire

Quote
Characteristics

St. Elmo's fire is a bright blue or violet glow, appearing like fire in some circumstances, from tall, sharply pointed structures such as lightning rods, masts, spires and chimneys, and on aircraft wings or nose cones. St. Elmo's fire can also appear on leaves and grass, and even at the tips of cattle horns.[5] Often accompanying the glow is a distinct hissing or buzzing sound. It is sometimes confused with ball lightning.

In 1751, Benjamin Franklin hypothesized that a pointed iron rod would light up at the tip during a lightning storm, similar in appearance to St. Elmo's fire.[6][7]

Cause
St. Elmo's fire is a form of plasma. The electric field around the object in question causes ionization of the air molecules, producing a faint glow easily visible in low-light conditions. Conditions that can generate St. Elmo's fire are present during thunderstorms, when high voltage differentials are present between clouds and the ground underneath. A local electric field of approximately 100 kV/m is required to induce a discharge in air. The magnitude of the electric field depends greatly on the geometry (shape and size) of the object. Sharp points lower the necessary voltage because electric fields are more concentrated in areas of high curvature, so discharges preferably occur and are more intense at the ends of pointed objects.
The nitrogen and oxygen in the Earth's atmosphere cause St. Elmo's fire to fluoresce with blue or violet light; this is similar to the mechanism that causes neon lights to glow.


Cheers,

JWD
« Last Edit: April 10, 2018, 10:09:59 am by J. Wilhelm » Logged
Miranda.T
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« Reply #42 on: April 10, 2018, 10:45:36 am »

The urn certainly does look the part  Smiley. As to the finish, if you still fancy a metal look is there any metal leaf that could be applied to the surfaces? Obviously there is gold leaf, but I've no idea what that might cost to cover the ensemble...

Yours,
Miranda.
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« Reply #43 on: April 10, 2018, 09:23:15 pm »

The urn certainly does look the part  Smiley. As to the finish, if you still fancy a metal look is there any metal leaf that could be applied to the surfaces? Obviously there is gold leaf, but I've no idea what that might cost to cover the ensemble...

Yours,
Miranda.

Well that's the problem. At this point the gilding will take the lion share of the cost. The paint jar alone cost as much as the carved rosette and the two metal finials combined. And the project will keep dragging on.

Having just heard rumours that the shop where I work will close in June (that doesn't mean I'll be unemployed, but at least I'll have to transfer), I'm not too keen to drag this process much further. I may want to get a new job now. So I'm stopping the frivolous spending and I'll suspend activity on the costume.

I'm going to be cavalier and make the move to finish the wood as wood, especially in light of the following :

The Eagle arrived! It's beautiful! The colour of the Eagle is an aged bronze colour, which already is very different to the gold tones discussed above.




I could push for matching the bronze finish. But given the lack of locally sourced metallic finishes, and the given fact that the cost of the paints or metal foil will likely exceed the cost of the rosette, finial and eagle, then I choose to use a wood stain that is complimentary to the eagle's bronze finish.

This is a first look at a full setup including finial and eagle. I'm really happy with the way the Eagle looks on the hat. The metal piece has a curvature already and it's very 3 dimensional. It will not, however be possible to curve it any further, because the cast metal would probably crack and crease along the 1 cm wide flange.



It will probably be easier to buy another rosette from the same source at a later time, when I can afford, time and moneywise to resume costume building.

So I'll plan for a future gilded rosette and plume, separate from the wood spike finial and rosette. Especially since the rosette is fully detachable.

Let's see what I can do from here  Smiley I'll be shopping around for appropriate wood stains, and I'll probably buy a simple carved rosette for 1 dollar or so at my local hardware store to see if I can do a watercolour effect with the wood stain(s). It should be interesting if on the carved rosette if I could mimic the shading  / weathering of the bronze.

I would love to do that in actual metallic colours. But it's not going to pan out with what I can source locally. I have to finish this project now while I look for a new job (and also I failed to mention I'm having issues trying to help my biological mother find an apartment thousands of miles from here... not fun. Sleepless nights. Real life is knocking on the door).

Cheers,

J. Wilhelm  Cheesy
« Last Edit: April 10, 2018, 09:43:21 pm by J. Wilhelm » Logged
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« Reply #44 on: April 10, 2018, 11:29:55 pm »

I remember when you could go to the hobby shop, then swing buy the local Radio Shack and get whatever you needed, before heading to the local burger joint to get a milk shake... all of your hobby needs could be accomplished the same day after you had an idea - just on a whim - when coming home after work. Now this is the world of online shopping and I find it very frustrating if I have to plan everything months ahead of time

I can now find things for sale that I never could have found back in the day, but I do have to wait for them to ship. What a shame that Radio Shack committed corporate suicide by becoming a cell phone store in the years preceding the "maker" boom.
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« Reply #45 on: April 11, 2018, 12:19:22 am »

The urn certainly does look the part  Smiley. As to the finish, if you still fancy a metal look is there any metal leaf that could be applied to the surfaces? Obviously there is gold leaf, but I've no idea what that might cost to cover the ensemble...

Yours,
Miranda.

Well that's the problem. At this point the gilding will take the lion share of the cost. The paint jar alone cost as much as the carved rosette and the two metal finials combined. And the project will keep dragging on.

Having just heard rumours that the shop where I work will close in June (that doesn't mean I'll be unemployed, but at least I'll have to transfer), I'm not too keen to drag this process much further. I may want to get a new job now. So I'm stopping the frivolous spending and I'll suspend activity on the costume.

I'm going to be cavalier and make the move to finish the wood as wood, especially in light of the following :

The Eagle arrived! It's beautiful! The colour of the Eagle is an aged bronze colour, which already is very different to the gold tones discussed above.




I could push for matching the bronze finish. But given the lack of locally sourced metallic finishes, and the given fact that the cost of the paints or metal foil will likely exceed the cost of the rosette, finial and eagle, then I choose to use a wood stain that is complimentary to the eagle's bronze finish.

This is a first look at a full setup including finial and eagle. I'm really happy with the way the Eagle looks on the hat. The metal piece has a curvature already and it's very 3 dimensional. It will not, however be possible to curve it any further, because the cast metal would probably crack and crease along the 1 cm wide flange.



It will probably be easier to buy another rosette from the same source at a later time, when I can afford, time and moneywise to resume costume building.

So I'll plan for a future gilded rosette and plume, separate from the wood spike finial and rosette. Especially since the rosette is fully detachable.

Let's see what I can do from here  Smiley I'll be shopping around for appropriate wood stains, and I'll probably buy a simple carved rosette for 1 dollar or so at my local hardware store to see if I can do a watercolour effect with the wood stain(s). It should be interesting if on the carved rosette if I could mimic the shading  / weathering of the bronze.

I would love to do that in actual metallic colours. But it's not going to pan out with what I can source locally. I have to finish this project now while I look for a new job (and also I failed to mention I'm having issues trying to help my biological mother find an apartment thousands of miles from here... not fun. Sleepless nights. Real life is knocking on the door).

Cheers,

J. Wilhelm  Cheesy

Real life should have a health warning. I sincerely hope the work situation turns out for the best. At least  the hat is looking great!

Yours,
Miranda.
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« Reply #46 on: April 11, 2018, 02:28:08 am »

I remember when you could go to the hobby shop, then swing buy the local Radio Shack and get whatever you needed, before heading to the local burger joint to get a milk shake... all of your hobby needs could be accomplished the same day after you had an idea - just on a whim - when coming home after work. Now this is the world of online shopping and I find it very frustrating if I have to plan everything months ahead of time

I can now find things for sale that I never could have found back in the day, but I do have to wait for them to ship. What a shame that Radio Shack committed corporate suicide by becoming a cell phone store in the years preceding the "maker" boom.

I agree. I can get many more things now. But it impedes the creative process if all you want is many weeks away and you can't touch it when you are planning. Never mind my hobby of building audio systems... It was great to have a little store next to the supermarket where you could get all the stuff to do all your prototyping.
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« Reply #47 on: April 11, 2018, 02:49:17 am »


Real life should have a health warning. I sincerely hope the work situation turns out for the best. At least  the hat is looking great!

Yours,
Miranda.

For my own survival I hope so too. I don't want to go through what my mother is going through now! I really need to get smart.

The hat will come out well. I'm just too stressed to invest the time necessary to learn new techniques. I'm sure with time o could do a good job of metalising the wood. But it can't happen now.

I chose to ignore the obvious, the difficulty in gilding the wood, because it was nigh impossible to get the right metal hardware, unless I bought custom made Pickelhaube hardware or equivalent antiques. And the antique brass pieces would probably not fit the hat anyway, on account of the different size and shape. Wood was more readily available. And if I used 3D printing, I would have to prep the surface and then have to paint the piece anyhow!

It's best to proceed when the material is helping you, as opposed to fighting the material.

PS perhaps I can get a job selling metallic paint  Roll Eyes judging by the unusual demand, I bet it's good business.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2018, 02:51:47 am by J. Wilhelm » Logged
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« Reply #48 on: April 11, 2018, 06:58:10 am »

Colour test.  Rather than using a reddish or orange-ish tone. The bronze has a yellow grey and greenish tone to it. For matching the colour, MInwax's "Driftwood 2126"  comes closest.





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« Reply #49 on: April 12, 2018, 07:48:36 am »

So I passed by my local hardware store today. Upon closer examination, the "Driftwood" stain appeared to me to be a tad too gray and darker than I had envisioned. Comparing to other wood stains, I decided to go with something more traditional, like oak. In this case the Golden Oak 210. Still darker and redder than I had envisioned, but it's a beautiful semi transparent stain that will look good with the hyper polished finial I had in my toolbox.


I started by buying some slotted brass machine screws 6-32 standard US, which I cut to size, and matching threaded inserts so the finial could be threaded in place and replaced with something else, like a plume or a ball.


The bullet shaped tip of the finial was a standard 3/8 inch round dowel (poplar). To give it strength, I drilled a hole into the tip and screwed the tip to the urn with a drop of cyanoacrylate glue (not shown), abs a segment of steel 6-32 machine threaded rod. That tip is not going to break off.

Several layers of stain and a good wax, and this should look good, but hopefully not too dark to be appreciated...



Need to let it dry for 7 hours before waxing and presenting on the hat  Grin I want to make sure the stain brings out all the features of the carved pieces. The urn finial looks fantastic. The extremely dense and polished wood took wonderfully to the stain.

Cheers,

J. Wilhelm
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