I went ahead and changed the neck mount platform, upper frame and added the AR7000 receiver (I had plenty hanging around) to handle the head and neck servos for the pan and tilt action. I also modified Dans’ power board to output 3.3v so it will power my C-3PO’s eyes. At the build off I will learn how to program the Roboduino board to automate the head and hand movements movements when I am not manually controlling him…
With that said, The first thing I worked on was the eyes. I tried to find some lighted eyes from Moncal but he wasn’t making any when I needed them so I decided to give it a go. I got a piece of round stock acrylic and drilled out a center hole that happened to fit some extra 1/4″ brass tubing I had from my B9 finger light build. The cross cuts to the acrylic stock eye pieces were done with a d
remel tool with a cut off wheel. I found some rice lights on eBay and then I hot glued them to the brass outer ring and
acrylic tube. I had to superglue them first so they would stay in place. Once that was done I put hot glue over the super glued lights. They should stay secure. The only thing I needed to get is some gold foil from Hobby Lobby to get that yellow gold light look. After I applied the foil the lights looked good. Look at the photo to the right. If you also look at the head closely you could see that I have opened up the mouth. I plan inserting the speaker behind that opening. Others have inserted speakers in the back torso vent area or in the front torso section.
If you will recall I also said that the head would move remotely. In order to accomplish this you first have to have a neck bracket made that can be affixed to a pan and tilt servo mechanism. I went to Home Depot in the fencing section and obtained a small piece of aluminum. The 2 main outer hol
es happen to fit the neck bolts perfectly after b
ending. I couldn’t of asked for an easier/cheaper solution.
The pan and tilt mechanism was obtained from ServoCity.com A very simple unit to put together. The servos I used were the standard robotic heavy duty robot servos from Hitec. They are the HSR-5995TG Ultra Torque
servos. The head weighs a little over 2 lbs before plating and electronic placement which is the reason I decided to go with a heavy duty servo so it should work just fine. The trick will be to fashion a neck piece that will allow a free enough movement that can be “chromed”. Many have suggested getting a thick mylar “for sale” sign that can be obtained from Home Depot. I will have to experiment with that.
Once that aluminum bar is affixed to the pan and tilt support, the only thing that would need to occur next would be to build a neck support platform that would fit inside the torso. The easiest way I have seen is what Mardon did for his C3PO. He basically built a 2×4 box inside the torso that allowed to serve as the connecting points for the legs, arms and neck. Inside the head I will install (1) 2″ speaker that will affix behind the mouth opening so when C-3PO talks his voice will come out of his mouth instead of his back like some others have set up. However, I will put a speaker back there as well so when he “yells” I can really crank the volume up so he can be heard in a noisy environment like a convention.