Jump to content


Custom Search

Photo

looking for people to bend some metal.


  • Please log in to reply
7 replies to this topic

#1 bullmark

bullmark

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 09 August 2012 - 07:24 AM

Hi,

First post !
I found this place looking for Armand, I didn't see him in years ( since I moved to Japan 10 years ago ).
But main the reason of my post is that I am looking for people who can work metal to make an original tin toys based on the robots I already make as model kits .
I want to make some unique pieces , I don't plan to sell them, I need them as display and for a book project .
Here is the robots I have already made :

http://futuristicmod...category-8.html
http://futuristicmod...-entry-193.html
the blog in english :

http://futuristicrobots.blog.fc2.com

cheers,

Walter

#2 Action Robot

Action Robot

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 271 posts

Posted 15 August 2012 - 04:43 PM

Hi Walter, Those are some awesome looking robots! I'm surprised that no one has responded yet. I imagine that it's because your robot designs would be very difficult to reproduce in tin...the complex shapes and deeply curved surfaces would really be pushing the bounds of what is possible to fabricate by hand, in my opinion. The professional production of tin robots involves some heavy machinery, and the setup involved in making the dies for a new design would be prohibitively expensive for anything other than a very large run. There is at least one thread here detailing the process (can anyone post a link to it?). My first thought on producing a metal version of your robot (that would probably be the least expensive way to do it) is with 3D printing. Somewhere a while back I ran across a sculptor who was printing their 3D designs from autocad files like yours. The printing medium was a metal powder with some type of heat activated binder. The finished pieces were baked in a kiln, and the results looked just like cast metal. Now this idea is just sheer speculation, but it might also be possible to have your design 3D printed in casting wax, and then do an actual metal casting of the piece. If you just need the piece to look like a tin toy, you could tweak your design to have the folding tabs,seams,etc. that a tin toy would have. There may actually be someone here who can help you with your tin sculpt request...you'll find our artists and magicians in the "customised robots" section of the forum, with some stunning examples of their work. Good luck, and please keep us posted on your project! It might also be appropriate to put links to your robots in the "customized robots" section for people to see...Cheers,Dave

#3 bullmark

bullmark

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 17 August 2012 - 08:05 PM

Hi Dave,

Thanks for the answer , my plan was to create some new robots designed to be more tin looking than the ones I already produce in model kits still I am not looking for to make a tin toys ,the loss will be too high for me and I am pretty sure I will not sell enough to even cover the production cost ,I don't even break even on the model kits right now but like i said it's more a hobby than a business.
I will dig in the customised robots section , I am looking for an artist or artisan who can work metal fold, bend fin sheet of metal/ aluminum using wood pattern (that I will make from 3D models ) the idea came when I visited an expo last month about the studio who made the special effects for almost all the japanese monsters/sf movies since the 50's, I saw they did many spaceships / planes / cars using wood pattern and metal sheet, I am looking for someone who master this technic to make some robots ( only one ex ) to use for some expo and photos for a book.
I have some plans to produce some die cast style robots using the similar technics than the 1/43 cars (white metal casting ) with some display boxes in the dinky style.
The few robots I already made are the tip of the iceberg I have plenty more coming the modeling/sculpting take time that I must to share with my jobs.
well if people is interested enough I can create a post with the next robots to come.

Cheers,

Walter

#4 Robotopia

Robotopia

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 230 posts

Posted 24 August 2012 - 04:11 AM

Hi Walter,

Love the models and robot designs... super cool!
Since no one else has responded I will give you my thoughts. If you look in the archives you might find some threads about the toy factories in Japan. I believe most no longer exist, except for Metal House and Osaka Tin Toy (Maybe you can contact one of them.) Some of these threads will give you an idea of the process. The process involves heavy expensive presses, since bending sheet metal precisely is not easy. Your idea of just bending the metal around a form would not work, since you need male and female molds and use a heavy press to shape the metal. Even with the molds the metal tends to want to crinkle, especially with curves. You will see the crinkling even in the old robots. In any event I did find one thread about a guy in Japan making robots without presses, you'll find the link below. There's also a link about a visit to a toy factory. In that thread there is video of a stamping/cutting machine. I also know there's another really good video of a toy factory somewhere in the archives, but couldn't find it. I think it was of the Horikawa/Metal House factory. Horikawa and Metal House are the same company, with Metal House being the newer incarnation. Anyway, best of luck.

This guy is incredible, but I'm sure he won't be cheap.
http://danefield.com...f-mr-shibahara/

Toy factory tour
http://shanghaitoys....y-14-sept-2007/

Edited by Robotopia, 24 August 2012 - 04:11 AM.

Thomas Wood
Atlanta, GA

#5 ANZinSpace

ANZinSpace

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 617 posts

Posted 24 August 2012 - 06:27 AM

The only thing I could add is check around for re-enactment armourers. Some of them are turning out very intricate pieces of armour and they might relish trying something different in metalwork. Some of the best armourers are in the US and the old Soviet Bloc countries.

I'd recommend trying the Armour Archive forum as they have discussions about who's a good armourer and who isn't. Also look for armourers who make armour for the "Battle of the Nations" they tend to be very good pieces of arnmour because of the rigours they go through in that competition.

#6 bullmark

bullmark

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 6 posts

Posted 24 August 2012 - 07:26 AM

Thanks guys for the links and advices !
I will be back in Japan from next week and I will start to check what I can or can't do , I will try to make a tin robot with a display stand/ advertising piece for the next Wonder Festival (Japan) this winter.
It's new territory for me (in term of making) and I feel it will be pretty fun to make,I will update with the progress.

Thanks,

Walter.

#7 Robotopia

Robotopia

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 230 posts

Posted 24 August 2012 - 12:14 PM

I just wanted to add that John Rigg's is sort of the resident genius and has made many robots. I know he's really good at mechanics and electronics. I'm not sure about his tin metal fabrication skills, but I'm sure he's done some.
Here's his link. He also does a lot of posting, so he would be an easy search. He might also know someone who can help with the tin fabrication.

Here's the link to his website.
http://www.robothut.robotnut.com/
Thomas Wood
Atlanta, GA

#8 Action Robot

Action Robot

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 271 posts

Posted 28 August 2012 - 05:37 AM

At first I was thinking the same as robotopia...that you had to have the heavy equipment to work the tin, and that it would be difficult to get complex shapes. But your post aroused my curiosity, and as I've been thinking for a while now about trying to sculpt some tin robots myself, I decided to do a bit more research. I found out that you can do a lot with sheet metal and some pretty basic tools if you have the skills...my searches for tinwork, tinsmith, and metalwork yielded some interesting results. I saw that tinsmiths and metalworkers (such as auto body customizers) used very similar tools and techniques to shape the metals they worked with. I didn't see tinsmiths or coppersmiths making shapes with curves as complex as the body workers, but I don't know if it's because you can't achieve those shapes with a thin sheet of metal,due to possible breaking or tearing, or if no one had occasion to try pushing it a little further, or if I just didn't run across the person who did such a thing. Robotopia's link to Mr. Shibahara's robots shows that it is certainly possible to make tin robots by hand, and my research showed me that the tools and techniques are not terribly complex (of course doing it well is another matter entirely...). Your idea of using wooden forms seems entirely plausible to me, based on what I saw. I would add hot rod customizers to the list of folks who might be able to help you, though they'd be working at an entirely different scale then they're used to. I, for one, would be very interested to hear how this adventure plays out, and would love to see more of your robot designs, especially the "more tin looking " ones. I am playing around now with some aluminum sheet ( ductwork flashing) and galvanized steel...if you want to hear about anything that I figure out about working with it, let me know.Cheers, Dave