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Halloween Animatronics From Halloween2go.com

Using a store bought mask for your animatronic props is nice and easy, but when realism counts, you need to take it a step further. By using the latest products available, you can make super realistic silicon masks and skins for your animatronics.

Making your custom silicon animatronic skin is not as difficult as it may seem. You need a styrofoam mannekin head to give you the general shape of a head.Then I rolled out some modeling clay with a kitchen roller and worked it around the general form. Afer about a half an hour of working the clay onto the styrofoam head, this is what I came up with. Not great, but it will do.


Using Alginate as a mold, I mixed it 1 part alginate powder to 2 parts filtered water. You have to mix it quickly, so when my wife was not looking I took one of the mix-master blades and chucked it into the drill. Mix fast until creamy! (about 90 seconds or so) I purchased the alginate from Brick In The Yard Mold supply. The alginate molds you make are not permanent. It's a organic material and shrinks so You need to pour your silicon skins the day you make the mold. Also, read the directions and warnings,

I just spread it on the shape by hand and in about 5 minutes, it was ready. The alginate does not stick to anything, not even it'self so clean up is quick. Even off the mixmaster blades. The alginate goes right over the top of the clay figure. Now that the alginate has set. It's time to plasterize it.
I bought a roll of plaster strips from Michaels crafts superstore and read the directions. Soak for a second in warm water and smooth them on top of the alginate. No big science here, just need some structure when you peel away the mold. The alginate will hold the details, but you need to at least make some kind of backer for support. The directions said to wait about 20 minutes, so I went in and watched the Olympics..

When you finally make your own silicon skins, your animatronic designs will take on a whole new meaning! I just peeled off the alginate, Plaster support- the alginate did not stick to the clay, so I can re-use it (make something better next time). An now I'm ready to start mixing up the silicon.

I also purchased the Platinum Silicon from Brick in the Yard Mold Supply. I read that the Platinum Silicon was the best solution for what I wanted to do, so that's what I bought.

The PlatSil Gel 10 mixes up at a One to One Ratio. The Pint Set they sell you can make 2 to 3 faces, depending upon how many coats you use and how thick you get it. I used 2 light coats on this mold and it worked out just fine. Now before I mixed the two parts together, I added in a 'Thickener' and a 'flesh tone tint'. Then mixed them toghether. It's all pretty easy!

Pulled the silicon free easily from the mold in about 30 minutes. Now it's time to detail and paint it.

Seriously, Your Halloween Animatronics will really look great using silicon skins!

Since you will need to paint the skin, you will want to purchase the tint kit. You can mix up some more GEL 10 and just a dab of color will be more than enough. But I used some clear silicon RTV instead. I just dabbed a few colors together to get what I wanted and mixed the RTV into it. THen finger painted it onto the NEW silicon Face. You don' need much, in fact you need less than you think.

Anyway, although this is not on the Halloween Animatronics Volume One, it will be on Halloween Animatronics Volume TWO when I get that out.

After Cutting away the eyes and mouth, it's ready for fitting to the animatronic eye mechanism. At this point I'm just trying to get everything lined up and working. The mask comes off several times during the procedure as I trim away the silicon.

Then after everything is fitted. I will punch hair for the eyebrows and finish adding ears or whatever else.

Now I will show you how the second design turned out.. Here is the Clay Maquette.

Add the Alginatet

Adding the Plaster

Alginate is set - Time for silicon

2 thin coats of GEL 10

Remove the Silicon
Wow, new animatronic face
add punched in eyebrows and hair for that 'Surprised' Look.
Voila' - Nearly Finished Ghost Girl

Remember, if you are going to be using servos, make the skin very thin. The Finished silicon face is very stong and pliable but a bit heavier and it will slow down your servo action if it's too thick.

That's why There is Halloween Animatronics VOLUME 2 Halloween Pneumatics, where You will learn to animate these slightly heavier faces using pneumatics!






Making Animatronic Skins

and FACES Yourself

BAG of Alginate

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