13 November 2019: Two Major Components
Electric Chair #1

I’m at an interesting stage in the creation of Electric Chair #1.  I am adding the components that will move.

Prior to doing this I took a look at Electric Chair #1 and I realized that it was both big and complicated (relative to other things I’ve made).  I realized that it would be both difficult to create and to service if it was one major component.  I debated with myself and in the end I won the debate…the Electric Chair series will be two major components:

  1. The Top Plate: The top plate includes the large elliptical plate that you see and all of the things above it.  The top plate will present the automata.  Items on the top plate will be painted in the color pallette that I choose.
  2. The Drive Frame:  The drive frame is everything below the top plate.  The drive frame will contain the components that make the automata components move.  Components in the drive frame will be painted camouflage colors…so that they sort of disappear unless you want to see them.

The Top Plate will be mounted on the Drive Frame with just 6 screws.  I will be able to lift the top plate off of the drive frame using no tools (except to remove the initial 6 screws).  The interface will be a 3/4″ space between the two components.  This ‘feature’ will take extra time to create, but it will also permit me to easily develop and then maintain all of the automata.

This automata will have 7 cams in it’s campak.

When I next update this project sheet it will be to show you some of the motion components on the Top Plate.

Electric Chair progress continues.  Here you can see the Top Plate and the Drive Frame.  The Drive Frame is empty at this moment, and the Top Plate will have more detail added.

27 October 2019: The Chair
Electric Chair #1

The actual Electric Chair is taking shape.  It’s fun, building this little automata.  It’s fun envisioning how it will work…it’s fun seeing the look of people’s faces when I explain this project.

The shaking mechanism is taking the most effort right now…but I think I’ve got it.  I believe that it will be very sturdy…with an interesting range of motion for the poor little dude.

The Electric Chair Takes Shape.

19 October 2019: The two Bipeds
Electric Chair #1

One of these fine gentlemen will be electrocuted.  And the other will be the executioner.  Certainly have a way to go with both of them.  

Next step is to install appropriate joints.  Once that is done I’ll be able to begin creating the electric chair.  

The fine gentleman that is being electrocuted with be jerking around quite a bit in the chair.  The jerking motion driver will be built into (and hidden) in the chair.

I’m also thinking that I want both of these guys dressed, not copper leafed.  Which means I need to learn how to ‘sew’ doll clothes.  We’ll see about that!

These two bipeds are getting ready for the electric chair.

11 October 2019: The Idea
Electric Chair #1

Sometimes I’ll get an idea that just sort of tickles me…makes me smile.  This Electric Chair automata is one of them.  Does that mean that I’m not mentally healthy?  Who knows.  I do know that it makes me smile.  And as I conceive the small details…I continue to chuckle to myself.

My normal state is that I build “one at a time”.  However, this Electric Chair automata is nagging at me pretty hard to be built…so I’m going to run parallel with two automata projects for a bit.

What do I envision:

  • I’ll be using two of my normal 1:6 scale bipeds (11″ tall).
  • The convict will be strapped in the chair. The executioner will be on the other side of a wall, wearing a black hood over his head.
  • The sequence will start with the executioner pulling a great big electric switch.
  • The convict will then jerk violently initially…with the jerking lessening until the convict is ‘dead’.
  • And then after a while the executioner will push the great big switch to off.
  • It is interesting envisioning the ‘shaking’ mechanism.  It needs to be random, initially violent, and quiet.  I believe that I’ll be using magnets.
  • Another little detail will be the sound of ‘electric arcing’.  How to do that?  Hum.  I’ll figure it out.
  • That’s it.  In about three months we’ll see how this turns out.  

The image is the model that I’ll be loosely following.  Note that it is Copyright 1908 by the Hamilton Drug Store, Auburn, NY.  I wonder how an image like this gets copy written by a drug store?

The Electric Chair series of automata will be based on this 1908 photograph.

Electric Chair #1