There are sound mufflers and silencers available that
greatly reduce this noise, but sometimes this still doesn’t
silence them enough. One method I employ is to run an
airline from the exhaust port to a remote location far from
my guests. If this solution is not feasible, I will run the
airline into the base of the prop and cover it with towels.
This will help lower the sound to an acceptable level.
Choosing the proper compressor and attachments can
make a substantial impact on how loud your unit is. You
can further negate the noise level by placing your
compressor well away from your guests or in another room
or container all its own. If constructing a separate noise
cancelling enclosure, be careful to allow for adequate air
flow. We do not want it overheating!
Safety Above All Else
I am often asked for my
recommendations for plans to build
pneumatic components from PVC, bicycle
pumps, and washer or sprinkler solenoids.
There are a plethora of plans and videos on
the Internet showing how to do this, but my
response is always the same: Don’t do it!
It can be tempting to try to make your
own and save a few dollars, but the time,
effort, and cost savings are not sufficient to
warrant the risk. Invest in the proper
components and be assured that you are
using materials that are designed for the
Figure 16. Banshee controller.
Figure 18. Our Pirate Pete character with pneumatic arms.
Figure 17. Slider rig made out of wood — no welding required.
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words
I would like to take this opportunity to thank my son,
Bryan Koci — the owner of Red Tie Photography
( http://redtiephotography.net) — for his marvelous work
on the September 2015 project, Parkerbot. His photo was
chosen for the magazine cover and he was able to bring
my idea to life. It can be a time-consuming and difficult
task to showcase a character in photos and video, but
Bryan accomplished it in style! If you missed it, check out
a back issue of SERVOMagazine. You can also check out
his teaser video at http://tinyurl.com/qzcyuj7.
54 SERVO 11.2015