ABC Lifesize head from scratch...


Sr Member
This is copied from an original thread in the Robocop Archive forum.

But I guess it belongs here as well. I'm starting off using cardboard to see if it can be done. If I succeed I'll go for Triplex (plywood you call it?) and maybe balsa.


A little story:

I've been wanting a lifesize ABC head for a long time. I actually just found a kit taken from the moviemolds on Golden Armour. For a good price also. But... My collecting craze is slowly settleling again, pfew. It's not worth it to make huge debts ofcourse. I had to draw the line somewhere.
So my idea was to actually start building one from scratch. I was always planning on using wood as a start for the prototype. Dave's work on the Robosuit got me really enthousiastic again. I know I have a Lawgiver paperproject waiting, but dudes, I get bored easily and tent not to finish stuff (rather nasty habit). So I decided to really start creating, that just might keep me going. Also, if I make one myself I won't think twice about making molds for reproduction and even sales. I wouldn't recast somebody else's kit. I have plans for making cheap and easy casts, but that's TS (Top Secret) and xperimental.

Anyway, I started from paper and cardboard, beginning with the easy part:

The lower Jaw.

Cardboard? You said wood, you dumb @#$%. I know, but it's easier to adjust paper and carboard and it's only a head not a full robot. This way I can sticky tape parts and remove and adjust them again. The 3 foot rule actually works pretty good I think, but it is pretty tough this propmaking.

I have some good pictures of the kit and ofcourse alot of moviepics. Images from the movie however aren't that clear because the ABC was wisely kept in the dark for most of the time. The other thing I have to work from is very handy for the initial measurements: an original Tsukuda 1/9th scale ABC model kit. Although the kit is a bit exaggerated, especially the jaw. The good thing is however, that the adges are sharp and pretty symmetrical. That's not the case with the kit and maybe even the real movieprop. I'm trying to make one as if it was really factory assembled in large numbers. You can always dent and damage afterwards.

On to some pics:

The Tsukuda head. I started of with measuring this one. Because it's little there's more room for error. But to get an initial idea of the size (multiply by 9) it's quite handy.

You can see that the chin is a lot longer on the model than on the real thing. The whole model is not as 'bulky'.

But the Tsukuda is very detailed.

The first sketches. The modeljaw on paper in full size with adjustments using the 3 foot rule in the 2D domain.

I made two jawparts from paper because at first I thought of glueing these on the carboard but there was no need to, so one paperpart to many.

The side pieces and the chin + the first bottom attempt.
I had to make the bottom wider.

Now I can really compare the jaw to the kit images.


The ABC has a 'slant' in it's 'lips' to make it look more nasty.

Added the back for support and was happy with the chin so taped them on the outside also. Sorry for the bad focus.

Another angle.

Quite pleased. The backpart of the jaw is to long, a leftover from the modeljaw, I have to 3ft my way to a more accurate size and feel.

Now, the jaw is the easy part ofcourse. The round edges on the head and the eyecavities would be impossible to make from cardboard. The idea is to make the head as good as possible with cardboard and paper to see if the proportions are right. With wood and putty the final round edges shouldn't be a problem. Well I had fun so far, hope yall enjoy it too.


Sr Member
A bit hard to see but the back of the jaw already has some pencilmarks for it's proper size. Because of perspective the jaw looks too big for the head and it could be but...

I enlarged the photo this time for the head, instead of measuring and drawing a fresh one like I did with the jaw. I already corrected some minor parts from the model onto the the fullsize. The nose for instance.

The head itself will be a lot of work making out of wood. Ofcourse there's always putty and sanding so it should work out in the end.

I'm off now to make some cardboard 3D version creations from the upper pics.


Sr Member
Yesterday's little progress...

The back of the head is added. It's difficult to 'judge' if the size is right, looking @ just the 'skull'.
The whole time I felt like it was to long.
But I got used to it and I guess that it actually is longer than I can see from any pictures.
They all have an angle and the back of the head is rounded so that makes it harder.

Again with jaw. Still looks like the head is too small eh?

Cardboard cutting. Man, I used thick an tough cardboard for the center headpieces. It took me ages to get through.
I have to do one more of these.

So what ya think of the headsize now compadre? Doesn't look that small now it's held up against the side of the jaw.
Xqq me for the dangling camerastrap in the lower right...




Sr Member
Well, starting to use glue... All this waiting for it to dry makes me post some more pics. :mrgreen:

Presse papier... Needed some weight.

What's he doing now?

SANDWICH... Found my clamps.

Get the idea now?
I decided to start of with the nose size and built my way to the sides.

And this should make it even clearer. Upper jaw.

Upper jaw slanted...

MJ eat ur heart out, this is some whiteass nosejob right here.

It's a one piece nose. I'm getting the hang of it.

Well, the nose should be dry enough to put on now.
And then... Wait for it to dry again.


Sr Member
Every good nosejob needs bandage...

Did someone say 'Easter Island'?

Time for dinner, in the left corner... Healing from surgery...

Upper jaw works...

Oh yeah...

Time to cut op the old template. I now think in 2D slices.

Here ya go.

Compared the upper jaw size and width of the head to the upper jaw on my creation.
Did the math and came up with another stunning construction... ;)

Need spacers again.

Glueing them and on top a not so light bottle of Coke Light.



Sr Member

What this room needs is...

Symmetry. :mrgreen:

Look @ the size of that thing.

Wow, did a lot t'day. Get a big rush from it now. Njoying little me very much.


Sr Member
A wedgie...

See where this is going? Oh man I love sheetmaterial.

Bracing for 'rounding' the back head as good as possible with cardboard.

One in place.

Again: see where this is going? ;)

This wil give you a good sense I think.

Look @ them rounded cheeckbones.

Glad I'm having the spirit again. Yesterday I had creator's block.



Sr Member
Some more progress...

But it'not that much fun with the two kids around killing eachother.
I get distracted too much. :mrgreen:

The easy parts, more braces...

Overnight dry. The picture doesn't look that great.
That's because of the flash. It's better in real life.

And please keep in mind that when it's wood you can sand and putty all you want to get it right.
I didn't make any details for the temples. Those won't be a problem and don't really add to the overall idea I wanna get from the proto.

An eyebrow template. Since the eyes are the difficult part, I'm gonna use lot's of templates in pieces and then hope to join them together.
That way you'll get the 'solid' feel a little more.

Doesn't he look happy now? ;)

Cheekbone template...

Now it's starting to look like something. :D

3ft distance ;) A tad outta focus, but man...
Looks nice already if I do say so myself.

Hopefully t'night I'll do more.
MiL is comming over so you never know.



Sr Member
Wow, I'm going to be watching this thread with great anticipation. Great Job. I'd love one of these some day, along with the rest of the robot too.


Sr Member
WOW.. Makes me want to ask a question i know the answer to already.... "IS THIS FOR REAL" Seriously that is amazing to se how you build it up. Keep on with the progress i am very impressed.


Master Member
cool job, i have one of the heads in your pictures and yours looks pretty close

well done


New Member
Originally posted by zorg@Jan 20 2006, 05:37 PM
cool job, i have one of the heads in your pictures and yours looks pretty close

well done
I was lucky enough to be one of three people to re build the original ABC robot from yhe movie, for a private collector, It was a lovely job to do and he now has the full animatronic head too.



Sr Member
armourerdoug, do yo uhave any pics of the rebuild? I'd love to see them. As I'm sure we all would


Well-Known Member
Great scratch build job. Keep us updated. give me some ideas on how to do some projects I'm working on.


Sr Member
And here I was thinking nobody cared...


Must be something wrong with my notifies...


give me some ideas on how to do some projects I'm working on.
That's an honour comming from you, judging ur site. :eek

Thanks for all the praise. I think I found a new hobby in making props.

Wow a whole robot... And the original animatronic? The guy must be loaded...

A fullsize wouldn't fit in my Home Cinema, but I will someday have a fullsize Robocop.



Sr Member
You're proving something that I've long suspected could be done, and intended to try out.
Mind if I save YOUR pics for reference? ;)


Well-Known Member
i have some reference photos i scanned from the art of book, some of which show the robot under construction... you can snag em here



Sr Member
Originally posted by darcjedi@Jan 21 2006, 10:26 AM
i have some reference photos i scanned from the art of book, some of which show the robot under construction... you can snag em here


Thanks very much. Although I do have the book, I didn't scan the pics yet.

This way I can safely glue all over the place. ;)

@ Scapegoat.

Well, let's see... I started my thread in two seperate public forums.

You can safely assume you can save the images. I'd feel honoured.