Very great Del !
Very great Del !
I think you did an excellent job of restoring this piece!
NOTE: Does it still work? Have you tried to fire it, yet?
Hi, everybody! It's been ages since i started this thread and my project to restore & accurize my TV version replica prop, but I think I'm finally finished!
Last time I posted pics, I'd done all I could using the reference I had and the tools I had available. My goal was to get it looking as close to a set-used prop a I could, and comparing my replica to the reference I had, I could tell I had some work left to do. The handgrips and the fin weren't right in many ways, and I wanted to really accurize the side panels and include some details like the color setting indicators that I had originally shied away from. Luckily, during my down-time, I was able to study loads of new high-rez photos of a set-used TV prop (inside and out), some provided by rpf member lb634 and others posted by alexis on his site. These pics were unbelievably useful! Unfortunately, the photos pointed out so many mistakes I had made and areas where I hadn't gone far enough with my alterations that it looked like it would take a major chunk of time to actually make the changes. It did, and after several months of slow work, it looks like I've gone as far as i can (for now--anybody out there able to cast aluminum or some other white metal?). I incorporated the original construction materials wherever possible (on all but two areas of the thing) and I'll detail it all in my future posts.
I'll post more pics later, but below is a quick pic of the finished piece. My thanks to rpf members delmustator for the new parts and to alexis and to lb634 for their fantastic photos.
I know it doesn't look much different at first glance, but it is--nearly every single part has been modified in some way or replaced. Like I said, more later...
Okay: one of the things I learned from those new photos of a set-used prop (I mentioned them in my last post) was that the fin under the muzzle and one of the side panels were fabricated from aluminum, remade for the TV version (the same parts on the movie versions were made from phenolic resin). The side panel with the belt clip is the one that was remade--they just retained the phenolic panel on the other side, but they drilled out screw holes to secure the internal parts (the movie versions look like they just had brass pins through the panel that were meant to hold the parts in place). One of my beefs with my replica was the placement of those screw holes on that side panel: they were too low, in line with the other two screw holes, when they needed to be placed higher, almost at the top edge of the panel. So, I decided my first step would be to fix one side panel and have the other panel and the fin cut out of aluminum. Board member delmustator came to my aid, fabricating perfect copies of both side panels out of aluminum and cutting a new more accurate aluminum fin for me. I asked him to do both side panels because I wasn't sure the phenolic panel would be sturdy enough after puttying in the incorrectly placed holes and drilling new ones so close to the old ones. Later I decided to use the phenolic one anyway since that's how it was done in the reference photos--so far it's held up perfectly. Here are some pics of the tear-down and reconstruction in progress:
The muzzle cap parts and the brass trigger, stripped of all paint
The new aluminum fin, with the groove I carved out by hand running along the top edge--the wire to the glow plug will go through this groove
Early parts test fitting with a wire running through the fin and one of the aluminum side plates in place; I later ended up taking off all of the paint and re-doing the blobby things on the fin, which lb364 informed me were weld points on the set-used gun
Here's the Alco switch unpainted and ready to be re-epoxied in place in the grip frame
More parts test-fitting: here I'm making sure the grips and side panels are tight and that there's plenty of room for the battery
Battery test-fit w/aluminum side panel
I'm still working on the grips at this point, but making sure they fit snugly in place
Test-fit of all parts; the belt clip has been moved forward to match the reference photos of one of the screen-used pieces--it wasn't like this on all of the props, but enough have the belt clip relocated that I decided to include this TV modification
The other side; I haven't finished the grips here--this one is meant to be held on by screws running from the other side of the grip frame out through this grip; the screw heads were never meant to be seen as they were covered up by the grip on the other side--complicated to explain, but check out the photos of the original on alexis' site and it'll make sense; the only visible sign of the screws holding this grip on will be the pilot holes for the screws drilled all the way through the grip
This shows the bolt the belt clip is attached to, and you can see where I've finally drilled the indentations on the body tube that will eventually be the settings indicators
Here's a parts test-fit with the phenolic resin side panel in place and the old screw holes puttied over; I've also done some cosmetic work on the internal components here (the silver rectangular part just above the screws and attached to the cylindrical brass part), trying to get them to look a little more accurate
This shows my final attempt at making JB Weld faux weld points
My weld points aren't sloppy enough to exactly match the originals, but I just couldn't figure out a better way to simulate the look or to actually weld aluminum parts together myself
...and finally, more photos of the finished prop:
The color settings indicator dots, something I hadn't attempted last time; you can also see the more screen-accurate large flat-edged rubber washer between the end cap and the gas mixing tank (the original rubber washer supplied with this replica was a small rounded washer that probably worked better but didn't match any of the original props)
A head-on look at the grips & the grip frame; the photos of a set-used prop that lb364 shared with me show the grip frame was slightly tapered at that front point and the Richard Coyle replica I own--cast from an original movie prop--also has this tapered look, which I tried to match; the original TV props had cast and/or machined aluminum grips which were perfectly flat on the inside edge and left the gap between grip and frame here in the lower front, at least in the reference photos I used.
The grips were actually the most problematic part of this entire project for me, as they're the only parts I couldn't replicate out of the same materials as the original (if you don't count the fake weld points) and they were a beast and a half to do! My grips are the original resin grips that came with the replica, HEAVILY modified, since they were way too small as they were and not quite shaped right. I augmented the grips with bondo and filed/sanded them into the correct shape, matching the outline of the grip frame exactly. I made a couple of lame attempts at finishing the grips before I saw the photos of the set-used piece on alexis' website and figured out exactly how they were attached to the grip frame and where the screw holes had to be drilled. They look pretty good now, accurate as I could get 'em, but they seem flimsy and a little weak when attached to the nearly all metal prop. I hope they stand up over time, but I'm afraid they may crack at some point. maybe one day I'll figure out how to have them inexpensively done in metal, but for now, they'll have to do.
Last edited by maxspr1; May 3, 2012 at 6:21 PM.
Have you fired it yet?
You've made a beautiful prop, there!
Very impressive working ! I'm very happy that my little website help you !
I hope that I will have the authorization to use yours news pictures for put on my website...
A very great DS Gun tv version you have now !
Little question, when we will see the gun in action with the flame ?
Very nice work.
I could not spot any link to my article on these guns, so if your interested here it is:
RacProps Issue 4 - Logan's Run: The D.S. Pistol - Page 1
Thanks for the compliments, everyone!
While i think it would be very cool to fire this prop one day, my main aim with this was to own an extremely set-accurate-looking/constructed replica. Incidentally, I think I got close, but with the gun's innards being very innacurate, the handgrips made of resin instead of aluminum, and me not being able to weld aluminum parts together, my replica is about 75-80% set/screen accurate at best (and that's not including the fact that I'm not really sure exactly what kind of glow plug was used--it looks weird in the photos on alexis' site, and it looks like different ones were used on different props). I just couldn't easily and affordably on my own make new internal components to exactly match the original props. I was stuck with the guts the replica came with, and while the Aussie replica was a really excellent match to the reference photos in most external ways, the internal components were not very close at all. I didn't alter the insides in any way other than a tiny bit cosmetically, so they work up to a point (everything moves correctly and fits together perfectly), and my wiring works (see my work-in-progress glow plug test photo below), so i don't see why this prop wouldn't still fire when loaded up...
So, one day I'll probably fire this thing, but like I said, I just wanted to own a really good replica. I really want to own an original--I collect mostly screen-used/production-made props and am only interested in seriously set-accurate replicas, but I know that original Logan's Run gun props are so rare and so expensive when they do turn up that it would be impossible for me to get one. I know I'm in the minority about this, but firing it just wasn't as important as getting it to look right. Additionally, I have some concerns over whether some of my parts would hold up under high heat, specifically the JB Weld I used on the fin. Anybody out there know if JB Weld withstands repeated direct contact with open flame? I may test some before I get serious about shooting the prop...I'd hate to have my entire year's worth of work on this thing go down the tubes the first time I fire it.
Anyway, for Richard: I have owned one of your DS gun props since the early/mid '90s, and I used it extensively for reference when researching my replica. One of the reasons I was so happy with the Aussie replica I started with was that it's dimensions and angles exactly matched your cast-from-an-original replica and the photos of the movie guns on your site. Speaking of which, your site was an invaluable reference tool as well, and I'm sorry I didn't include you or it when I was thanking rpf members--I posted links to your articles in my first few posts, but they are easy to miss when I write so much. If I ever get an Aussie replica of the movie version of the DS gun, I'll definitely be studying those pics on your site again. My only real question about the movie props is how did the bondo grips look when seen from above--did the propmakers just bondo up and over the entire top of the battery (leaving the battery terminal exposed) or did they just bondo up to the edge of the black plastic top of the battery? If I knew the answer to that and had another Aussie replica, I'd be ready to go!
Some last pics for now: here's a replica of the TV version of the Sandman belt holster/belt clip which came with an old non-functional metal replica I bought on eBay years ago. It looks really accurate when compared to the reference photos (unlike the replica it came with), but i have no idea who made it. I kept it long after I sold that particular prop, and now I'm glad I did--it goes well with my TV DS Gun replica. It's just cut and folded aluminum sheet painted in Krylon semi-flat black (like the gun)--a very simple and easy-to-make replica, I'd imagine:
And here are some scans of stills I used when researching the TV prop that show off the holster/clip as well as the DS Guns: