2001: Memory Deactivation Key (HAL 9000 / Space Odyssey)

Discussion in 'Replica Props' started by AP 333, Dec 30, 2011.

  1. AP 333

    AP 333 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    18

    2001: Memory Deactivation Key


    The Story behind my finding isn’t THAT spectacular~.
    Actually I was searching for a new prop project, so I took a closer look at the memory deactivation key from the scene where Bowman shuts HAL down bit by bit.

    [​IMG]

    One day I showed some reference screenshots to the owner of the second HAL panel I’ve made and to my surprise he recognized the particular shape of the key and he told me that he actually owns a pair of these, but never noticed it in the movie before. -> pure luck :D

    Here is my spare key:
    [​IMG]

    The Key belongs to a lock, which was produced by a company, which is an expert on lock systems since the 18th century and still is today.

    Lock comparison

    [​IMG]

    The characteristic triangular keyholes in the movie are pretty similar to the one I’ve got.
    So I would say, regarding the shape of the key itself and the shape and function of the lock, I’m pretty sure that this type of key from the late 60s is the basis for the memory deactivation key used in 2001.


    The original key handle has probably been tailored and the knurled area has been stuck into the custom aluminum key handle. The length from the knurled area to the key tip is equal to the dimensions of the screen used key shaft.
    That could also be a hint that this key is the right one.

    [​IMG]

    With the key dimension as a reference, I could easily determinate the key handles dimensions from screenshots that show the key from different sides.
    What followed were some hours on a milling machine and a lot of polishing work^^

    Here’s the result:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    AP-333~

    _________________________
    [old post] My next project:

    Memory Deactivation Key from 2001: A Space Odyssey.
    I already own the original key as used in the movie...
    (found it by accident :))
    - Aluminum key handle to be done~
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 9, 2018
    Hippie Dude and jflowers like this.
  2. rkpetersen

    rkpetersen Well-Known Member

    Trophy Points:
    866
    Re: 2001: Memory Deactivation Key (HAL 9000 / Space Odyssey) - Coming Soon~

    found * it * by * accident ?

    There's gotta be a good story behind that!

    (Oh, and if you're going to be offering replicas for sale - Yes, right here please!)
     
  3. wannab

    wannab Sr Member

    Trophy Points:
    1,486
    Re: 2001: Memory Deactivation Key (HAL 9000 / Space Odyssey) - Coming Soon~

    Go man go! :thumbsup

    What other 2001 gems do have in the pipeline?



    Doug
     
  4. MrSinistar

    MrSinistar Well-Known Member

    Trophy Points:
    867
    Re: 2001: Memory Deactivation Key (HAL 9000 / Space Odyssey) - Coming Soon~

    Oooh!! Can't wait to see it finished! :D
     
  5. TheDuc

    TheDuc New Member

    Trophy Points:
    17
    Re: 2001: Memory Deactivation Key (HAL 9000 / Space Odyssey) - Coming Soon~

    Will you also be doing a key for HAL's Outside door key?
     
  6. Guardian Devil

    Guardian Devil Sr Member

    Trophy Points:
    1,486
    Re: 2001: Memory Deactivation Key (HAL 9000 / Space Odyssey) - Coming Soon~

    Also very interested to hear more about that - how did you come by it?
     
  7. AP 333

    AP 333 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    18
    Re: 2001: Memory Deactivation Key (HAL 9000 / Space Odyssey) - Coming Soon~

    Sneak preview traditionally in my first post :D

    Going to post pictures of my finished key by the end of next week.

    AP~
     
  8. Spence

    Spence Member

    Trophy Points:
    191
    Re: 2001: Memory Deactivation Key (HAL 9000 / Space Odyssey) - Coming Soon~

    Very interested. Can't wait to see the final product.
     
  9. AP 333

    AP 333 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    18
    I'm finally done with actually three deactivation keys with milled,
    100% aluminum key handles and original vintage key shafts -> see first post
    One key will appear in the Junkyard soon~


    Hope you like it :)

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Mr Webber

    Mr Webber Sr Member

    Trophy Points:
    2,465
    Incredible work. I can feel a backlit clear acrylic panel coming on.
     
  11. dcarty

    dcarty Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    1,980
    That looks excellent! I'm going to need one of those to go with SD's HAL panel :)

    I think when you said you have the "original key as used in the film" we kind of thought you meant that you owned the actual screen-used piece handled by Keir Dullea (at least that's how I interpreted it) rather than having discovered the same type of found object they sourced to make the original prop.

    Nevertheless, it's an excellent find and I'm certainly grateful that you're sharing what you found with us :)

    Cheers,

    Dave
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 9, 2018
  12. AP 333

    AP 333 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    18
    I wish I had found it... :eek

    Sorry for the misunderstanding! :facepalm

     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2012
  13. phase pistol

    phase pistol Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    2,940
    Spectacular! :D
     
  14. TheDuc

    TheDuc New Member

    Trophy Points:
    17
    They are beauties, How many are you thinking of making and about how long before your ready to go to the junkyard.. I really would like to know more, so I don't miss out, if they are in the budget :)
     
  15. zyote

    zyote Active Member

    Trophy Points:
    211
    So fantastic. I always wondered about this particular item. Your replica unbelievably awesome. Any chance you might make another run of these? I didn’t see any post on the Junkyard.

    Regardless, just wanted to say how impressed i was with this prop. It looks incredible.
     
  16. Sean

    Sean Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    2,286
    check thread dates. don't think he went to the junk yard with these...
     
  17. zyote

    zyote Active Member

    Trophy Points:
    211
    Yeah, i realize this was a long time ago now. Not to worry though, just super impressed with such a cool item.
     
  18. macropod80

    macropod80 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Hello.
    For anyone else wanting to make one of these themselves - a quick look on Ebay Germany reveals these keys are still readily available. The German for key is Schlüssel; look in the Heimwerker section (there are other places but this is the easiest) and the maker's name is Burg Wächter. There are a number of variations with different knurling (some of which have longer shafts than the example AP333 has found). Here's what I just got:
    key1.JPG
    Note this set includes the distinctively-shaped lock part. Price was Euro16 plus postage. I just went straight to Germany because I saw AP333 was German so assumed that would be the best place to look - thinking the keys might be old and rare. This particular key is a type E7/3, so perhaps if you try your local locksmith first you might save on postage from Germany.
    And remember, if you don't have access to a mill, there are some very good buffable metallic paints these days, so you don't have to use aluminium for the handle.
     
  19. MrSinistar

    MrSinistar Well-Known Member

    Trophy Points:
    867
    Awesome, thanks so much!! :D I'm gonna 3D print that key handle.
     
  20. Treeman

    Treeman Active Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    461
    The screen cap looks like the key was a molded opaque red plastic. If you do a 3D model, do it for the whole key and print it in red. I bet others would buy it off Shapeways.
     
  21. macropod80

    macropod80 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Whipped up a quick prototype at work today (I'm learning Solidworks - might as well learn on something sensible!):
    test 1.JPG
    Not sure about the dimensions yet, will try a few variations before I commit to milling a chunk of aluminium. I've got it half inch thick by 7/8" at widest and 2 1/4" long. I'm assuming as it was made in the UK in the 1960s it's not metric. Looks a bit short, perhaps.
    What's the etiquette here - am I hijacking someone else's thread?
     
  22. MrSinistar

    MrSinistar Well-Known Member

    Trophy Points:
    867
    Awesome, keep it up! I got some keys coming my way as well. How difficult was it to trim the key itself?

    In terms of etiquette, I think you should be good. I mean, it's definitely on-topic.
     
  23. macropod80

    macropod80 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    The key comes apart really easily - the shaft is hollow and the head has a tongue that slots inside, and is just crimped on (in the photo above you can see it lying in the background). I just clamped the key shaft in a (soft-jawed) vice and gave the head a wiggle with a pair of pliers.
     
  24. MrSinistar

    MrSinistar Well-Known Member

    Trophy Points:
    867
    Oh very cool!!
     
  25. MrSinistar

    MrSinistar Well-Known Member

    Trophy Points:
    867
    So I got a bunch of keys from an eBay auction and aesthetically, they look perfect for turning into deactivation keys. Functionality-wise, they're a bit different from the movie prop. The locks that came with my keys actually hold the key in the chamber while it's in the unlocked position, unlike the movie locks where the key comes out after it's unlocked. Does your keys do the same thing, macropod?
     
  26. macropod80

    macropod80 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    My lock does the same thing. You have to modify the bit that sticks out underneath - on the front half of the cylinder, not the bit that rotates. If you look really closely at it's ground surface, you might see signs of the plugging of four tiny holes inside that hold the springy bits of the lock mechanism (two of these holes are exposed to the rear where they don't actually do anything.) You have to grind/file/cut to get the inner parts out. I haven't gotten around to it yet (got distracted working on the pod door explosive release..) Will have a go and post a photo of the result.
     
  27. macropod80

    macropod80 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Easy. You'll need a magnifier and a delicate touch to avoid making a mess, but it just took a few minutes with a Dremel:
    lock1.JPG
    Drill into the surface until you expose the hole inside. Then if the bits don't just pop out, use a poking thingo of some kind to push the plunger out from inside the keyhole.
    lock2.JPG
    Just like the real thing!
     
  28. jflowers

    jflowers New Member

    Trophy Points:
    2
    Hey there - just wondering if you would consider opening this up to the community. I'm really interested in one and I'm sure there are others. Perhaps this would bring down the cost (more than one) of getting these milled and such? Thanks.
     
  29. macropod80

    macropod80 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Well, I'm waiting for a suitable chunk of aluminium to turn up in the scrap bin at work, then I'll be milling one out myself. Eventually. When I can find the time.. Afraid I can't offer to produce extras.
    If anyone's interested, I'm happy to make available the stl file I used to 3D-print the plastic prototype - on Thingiverse or some place similar?
     
  30. Ledwo

    Ledwo New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    I'm interested. Would be really nice if you could upload the stl to Thingiverse.
     
  31. macropod80

    macropod80 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Sorry for being a bit slow: search for HALkey on thingiverse.
     
  32. AP 333

    AP 333 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    18
    It's been a long time since I visited this thread.
    Nice to see some action!

    I guess you would be interested in following attachments:
     

    Attached Files:

    carbonitekid likes this.
  33. danbking

    danbking New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Yes, very much so. Thank you!
    Do you mind, if I try to replicate your drawings, into a paper model, for my collection of 2001 paper model hardware?
     
  34. HC68

    HC68 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Hi, I'm new on this forum, and I really astonished because the data and pro works that I can find from 2001's fans like me. Congratulations and thanks!

    I have a mid-term project, just for a hobby: to build the a kind of Hal Deactivation Panel. In this 'oddissey' I tried to find out in many ways (blu-ray frame by frame, research, etc) the exact text in the right of crystal memory modules. pict1 - 4THX.jpg

    Apparently the complete text has 5 lines, and each line starts with:

    Memory System…
    Instructions…
    Modification…
    Must be…
    Computer…

    Thanks in advance for any clue about this! Kind Regards!
     
  35. Mike J.

    Mike J. Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    3,355
    Well, I did a few Google Image Searches and worked over the 'best' pic in PS, and this is all I got. Your information as to the text seems plausible, certainly possibly correct.
     

    Attached Files:

    • lmc1.jpg
      lmc1.jpg
      File size:
      372.5 KB
      Views:
      81
    HC68 likes this.
  36. Mike J.

    Mike J. Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    3,355
    A couple of retouched HD screencaps I took just now. The black and white one gives us the first two letters of each line for certain.
     

    Attached Files:

    HC68 likes this.
  37. Dondragmer

    Dondragmer New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Yeah, I've been working on that one myself. Every time the film plays in 70mm, I manage to add another word or two. (Can't make out much even on the 4K DCP, it's gotta be a 70mm print.) Here's what I have so far:

    MEMORY BRAIN SEQUENCE (FOR/PER?)
    INSTRUCTIONS
    MODIFICATION
    MUST BE FOLLOWED
    COMPUTER OPERATIONS MANUAL

    Hope that helps, and good luck!
     
    HC68 likes this.
  38. HC68

    HC68 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Mike J / Dondragmer, thanks for your research and prompt response!!

    Excelent work, and yes, you're right, probably on 4K we can get a clear picture for that part.

    I'm still working on it as a puzzle, thanks again!!
     
  39. Mike J.

    Mike J. Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    3,355
    Another retouched, cropped screencap. Still pretty crappy, but it does seem to confirm Dondragmer's guess at at least the first word of each line.
     

    Attached Files:

    HC68 likes this.
  40. HC68

    HC68 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Thanks Mike J. I feel we are very close to unlock the complete text!
     
  41. Mike J.

    Mike J. Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

    Trophy Points:
    3,355
    I've been trying to count the number of letters and choose my words accordingly, which has yielded this incomplete result:

    MEMORY BRAIN SEQUENCING
    INSTRUCTIONS AND 123456
    MODIFICATION BY ANY CREW
    MUST BE FOLLOWED PER
    COMPUTER INTERFACE RULES


    "123456" above indicates the number of letters necessary to fill the space correctly, according to my best guess. I don't know what that word is. Most of the 2nd, 3rd, 4th words I'm guessing at. Kubrick / his set decorators / artists were not above using acronyms and numerals in the labeling, as can be seen on the door to the HAL room.


    -MJ
     

    Attached Files:

    HC68 likes this.
  42. HC68

    HC68 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    yes, sounds good... may be we should fill empty spaces with specific words, in order to build a phrase with sense for this place... A friend of mine is helping to me too, and we are looking your b&w picture, thanks...

    I don't have the movie in blu-ray, may be there is extra material (kind of 'behind the scene') but is very strange the complete phrase can be located at Internet.

    Thanks Mike J!
     
  43. Dondragmer

    Dondragmer New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    I am close to 100% certain of the following:

    MEMORY BRAIN SEQUENCE
    INSTRUCTIONS
    M
    MUST BE FOLLOWED
    COMPUTER OPERATIONS MANUAL

    And I'm reasonably sure that the "M" on the third line stands for "MODIFICATION". Also, at least one of the lines includes an alphanumeric part number of some kind, as Mike J. proposes. (I don't remember what line it's on, or what the letters and numbers are, however.)

    The sign is actually quite legible on a 70mm print, but unfortunately 70mm screenings of 2001: A Space Odyssey are rare these days. The new 4K DCP is quite muddy by comparison, so I think we're stumped until another 70mm screening pops up.
     
    HC68 likes this.
  44. HC68

    HC68 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Great Work Dondragmer! I agree with you, M in 3rd line, in my opinion, is MODIFICATION, the word can be read clearly in the Mike J.'s screencap.

    Hope we can get another 70mm print, or other kind of source, like 'behind the scene' or 'making of' section.

    Thanks again Dond!
     
  45. Dondragmer

    Dondragmer New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Okay, I’ve squeezed about as much picture detail from the Blu Ray as I can:


    Memory.jpg


    And here’s what I know for sure, with missing characters replaced by X’s:

    MEMORY BRAIN SEQUENCE XXX
    INSTRUCTIONS X-X XXXX XXX
    MODIFICATION XX XXX XXXX XX
    MUST BE FOLLOWED XXXXX
    COMPUTER OPERATIONS MANUAL

    The number of characters per word is my best guess – I may be off by a character or two. I believe at least one of the characters is a dash, but that’s about the only new piece of information I’ve been able to spot.
     
    HC68 likes this.
  46. HC68

    HC68 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Great job, thanks for your help Dondragmer!
     
  47. carbonitekid

    carbonitekid Well-Known Member

    Trophy Points:
    521
    After building my HAL I figured I had best take precautions, just in case he needs his upper brain functions removing:

    Made from aircraft grade aluminium, not machined but chain drilled from a solid block then filled and polished to shape.
    Key part is genuine 1960's key identical to original.

    Not perfect, but a first attempt.
    Thanks to all who shared the info enabling me to make it.

    image.jpeg
    image.jpeg
    image.jpeg
    image.jpeg
     
    Pro Mod likes this.
  48. HC68

    HC68 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Hi, I'm waiting 4K release (I read in many forums it will be expected for the film 50th anniversary) to check if this part (description at HAL deactivation module) is more visible. I placed this fact at the project kickstart, to have the complete 5 rows at HAL module. Thanks for your help guys!!
     
  49. HC68

    HC68 New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    Hi guys, about the 4K release, there is an update from 2018 Apr 2nd:

    Amazon has removed its previously available pre-order for May 8 and Warner Bros. has now confirmed a fall 2018 release for the Ultra HD Blu-ray. The 4K HDR home video release is being produced in collaboration with Christopher Nolan (The Dark Knight, Dunkirk)


    Likewise, Nolan is also involved in prepping a new "unrestored" 70mm print of the film for the 71st annual Cannes Film Festival on May 12. Per Warner, "The 70mm print was struck from new printing elements made from the original camera negative. This is a true photochemical film recreation. There are no digital tricks, remastered effects, or revisionist edits."


    Following the festival screening, 2001: A Space Odyssey will then return to select US theatres in 70mm beginning May 18, 2018.
     
  50. Dondragmer

    Dondragmer New Member

    Trophy Points:
    3
    That 70mm print is currently playing at the Arclight in Hollywood, and will be touring the United States in the coming weeks. Coming directly from the original negative without any scanning or digital enhancement, it should offer the best look at that small text that anyone is likely to have. I'm seeing it this Tuesday and will report anything new I learn. For anyone who loves this film, I recommend keeping any eye out for a theatrical booking near you -- there's nothing quite like experiencing a real 70mm print.
     
    Mike J. likes this.

Share This Page