truly is an artist and is developing processes I’ve never seen
done before (Figure 9).
This thread is a bit of a bonus for those of you reading
this article. It provides the comprehensive progression of
the newest addition to our pirate bar scene. If you read it
from start to finish, you’ll see how I started in one direction
and then mid build, totally abandoned all the work I’d done
and went in an entirely different direction. I’ve already got
an idea on how to repurpose the original mechanism so it
wasn’t a total loss, but you’ll get an inside look at how
some builds end up completely different than the original
idea. I plan on doing an article on this build once it is
completed with some added surprises, but enjoy the sneak
peek for now.
I Want My Mask to be Moving
and Talking Too!
The original instructions for this project came from
Halloween2Go. (They are included in the first of his three
how-to videos.) All are excellent and I recommend that you
consider purchasing them.
I really like the concept for this design and have built
several that are still in use in my display. However, I was
interested in trying to simplify the build process as it does
take a significant amount of fabrication to complete.
Once I discovered the Actobotics components from
ServoCity, I knew there had to be a way that I could utilize
them to make this an easier build. I spent some time on the
site and came up with my original concept. I then called
and talked to Kyle, one of ServoCity's technical
representatives, and refined it until we came up with a
workable plan. In no time, the parts arrived on my doorstep
and the assembly began (Figure 10).
The primary design incorporates two servo blocks
which greatly increases the mechanical load the servos are
able to handle. They also greatly enhance the available
mounting options which allow you to combine them in a
number of different configurations. The rotate servo was
installed in a cutout in the wood shoulder base to lower the
profile (Figure 11). I used the Hitec HS-485HB for the
rotate and nod servos, but went with the Hitec HS-645MG
servo for the tilt. This servo load is considerably more than
the other two as it has to lift the entire head back up after
it looks down. The HS-645MG has over 50% more torque
than the HS-485HBs and is able to handle the additional
strain (Figure 12). Depending on your mask, you may be
able to get by with the less expensive HS-485HB by adding
a spring to the back of the assembly (Figure 13).
I ended up adding one just to make it easier for the tilt
servo and it really made a big difference! This is a great
trick that often allows you to get by with a lower torque
SERVO 08.2015 41
Figure 14. Tilt mechanism detail.
Figure 13. Spring to assist the tilt servo connection.