Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Fodiator Bow—Unabridged.

The name Fodiator I unashamedly cribbed from a genus of flying fish.

I like the name.


We start with the basic cross bow mechanism made and the actual bow made.

The two fishy shapes are cut out.


They temporally soldered together while the internal organs are fitted.



Designing the self drawing mechanism.



Making the top and starting the wings.

With any project like this, things often get made and then discarded.

This was the case with the three front copper thingy's and a boat load of other stuff.

Lots of times the discarded stuff is used for other projects, so it’s not always lost.


The wings are put together with temporary rivets.

They will become 1mm screws later.

I pierce out the top ribs from a sheet of brass and then file everything half round.



The underside.

Lots of cleaning up to do still.


Then the rear wings are made.

I was unhappy with the tail.


So I modified it like this.

More Lion fish like, which along with a flying fish, were my two design parameters.

Check how I was still tinkering with the three copper thingy’s at the front.

They were still bothering me.



The I made the bottom fins with the intention of them supporting the whole bow, so I made them out of a ‘sandwich’ of brass,copper and brass on each side.

So that gives me about 6mm thick metal collectively.


When ever I tackle a project like this with many facets, I never complete one facet of the piece further than any other.

So here I started the jaw.

I carved a single tooth out of purple carving wax.


And then I cast it in the Delft casting sand out of silver.



I carved the smaller teeth out of silver and started messing around with the eyes.

Eyes are always the most difficult thing to balance.


First I experimented with a convex eye.

I discarded the front copper thingy’s and resolved the front ‘ribs’ by making them out of fused silver.



Then I finished the bow drawing arm and made the eye with a concave center instead of convex.

Still didn’t gell, though.


What did work eventually was a amethyst set in in a cone shaped silver tube.

The tube has been heavily engraved with a ball frazer and then the engraved part was blackened with liver of sulphur.


Dude—check out that look.

A concave look and the black engraving gives it that kind of impersonal fish look.

Kind of bulbous, bulging, but not really.



Big mission, stabilizing everything.

I use Incralac .

The big mission is not to mix up all the components.

Trust me, you never get all that shit together if they become mixed up.

So I’m seriously careful, ‘cause I been there, done that.



Then I finished off the cross bow front.

It’s got to have a thingy that holds the arrow down when it shoots, because otherwise the arrow will tumble and kill your cat.

And burying little Tiddles on a dreary Monday morning is never much fun.



How's this.

This is the first  second GIF I ever made.

Anyway, it shows how the bow gets tensioned up and then the bowstring puller raises out of the way so that a bolt ( arrow) can be slid in.

The trigger is the spiky thing at the back.




I carved two mirror image stand holders for casting in Delft sand.



All this was tidied up, of course.


Like this, with a peridot nut holding the Fodiator bow from escaping. ( it’s got wings, remember)



Making the stand.

I went to the local Bauhaus and purchased two pieces of heavy steel.

Naturally, in typical German style, the operator told us he was very busy and we had to come back in a couple of hours.

But Anne and I know this German shit, so we just stuck around and chatted with him and guess what?

He stuck our order in front of the other order.

We come from Africa—managing Germans is a piece of cake.



Doing the fitting thing.

The steel is heavy enough so that nothing moves around when you tension the bow.



Three months work.

Over three hundred separate pieces.

In this piece I concentrated on the three colours of metals, with a large emphasis on copper.

I love the colours of gold and copper together.


Top view.

Love those pink wings.

We’ll see how well the Incralac holds up as the anti tarnish barrier.


Mean Machine.


The bow, ready to shoot corrupt politicians.

Coming to a neighborhood near you.

Here is a link to my you tube showing the amazing power of the bow.

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