Building a Life-Size R2-D2 – Part 2

Part 2: Bodybuilding

Continued from Building a Life-Size R2-D2 – Part 1.

Talk about a protracted project – still, if it were easy, it’d be boring. The intention remains to get this all-aluminium astromech finished before the Episode 3 opening – with a bit of luck he’ll be on display at the charity premiere. With a good few public holidays imminent, I have some time and motivation to make some prop project progress, so here’s a quick installment to chronicle the current state of affairs.

As you can see above, the dome is finished save for the electronics. There’ll be more pics of that achievement later. Artoo’s cylindrical chassis is really starting to take shape. What you see above is just an inner ‘skin’ layer – following a similar design to the dome, two layers of aluminium are used to give the panels their required depth. The body skins too are laser cut, but, being a 2-dimensional surface that is rolled into a tube, less sophisticated technology is required than the equipment that effected the dome. Hence, they were cut to design locally.

Flipping the little guy over, we can see all the mounting brackets put in place to attach the skirt. Because it is so low down on the robot, and consequently less visible, I have gone for a cheaper, but still very effective, construction method for this component. Vacuum-formed styrene (sourced through the Astromech Builders club – thanks John) – with a bit of trimming and filling, it fits into place just nicely.

Well, that about sums up the core progress to date. A couple of smaller detail pieces have been received or built in parallel – check out this great looking replica holoprojector, a near exact clone of the Vickers Viscount 700 aircraft reading lamp used on the original R2 (thanks Scott).

Almost there…

Coming soon.




Continue to Building a Life-Size R2-D2 – Conclusion.

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