Fallout, Stimpak built from real parts

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zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
First off: This thread is just to get this project started, and these initial ideas put out for discussion. It may be a while before I complete this project.

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The stimpak is a iconic Fallout prop. Its basic design hasn't changed much since the original release of Fallout.
I have been wanting to build this prop, but since I like things to be more real, I didn't want to just 3D print it.

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While on a recent road-trip, I stopped at every antique store I could find. I scored the above syringe in an amazing store in Brady, TX.
I am not sure it was ever used as a needle injector. It is for sure a measured dispensing syringe. It has an adjustable stop for setting the amount of liquid that is pushed out.

Thanks to @EmmaInCandyland, the gauge on top was identified as a Drager branded vintage tire pressure gauge. I found a broken, and pre-aged one on eBay.

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It is almost criminal how well these two parts fit together. All I have done here was to remove the top handle, and the base of the tire gauge and push the parts together. Obviously the original designer of the 3D model used parts like this as reference for the design, but it doesn't mean they had to keep the same relative scale of the two parts.

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There is probably some vintage Porsche owner screaming at this image of the gauge taken apart.

Taking it apart was very tricky. The front glass (curved plastic), is held in using a retaining spring jammed into a channel on the silver ring. Getting the needle off was straight forward, but took way more pressure than I expected.

Removing the silver face was very tricky. It is held in place using a clever technique, where a wire was pushed into a channel in-between the ring and the black housing. I removed it by first oiling the channel, and then shoving another steel wire into the hole, and pushing it out the other side.

Educational aside:
Analog air pressure gauges work by pushing air into one or more flattened copper tubes. The pressure causes the tubes to unroll, and pull up on a lever arm. The lever arm is connected to gear teeth that turn the center needle. This gauge has a "set and hold" feature, which was nothing more than a spring pushed up against the needle spindle. Pressing the button on the side released the spring, and the lack of pressure forces the copper tubes to return to their original position.

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At the right is another pressure gauge I got at the same store in Brady. It doesn't read out from 0-300. I don't know if I could even find a 300psi pressure gauge in this size anyways. I may just try to transpose the gauge face directly over, or just it it as reference for making my own new face.

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I am working on identifying the other components of the Stimpak. For the metal bar across the middle, I will probably just cut down some metal to size, and use a drill to add the divots, then age it. But for the two "arms" that connect to the electrical wires, they remind me of metal medical bandage clips. They can also be easily fabricated from scratch if ii comes to it.

The two protrusions on the side are a bit of an unknown. They sort of look like a small vent or adjustment screw. Its not super important, after all the 3D prop maker didn't even fully align the texture in this area. I guess I don't want to just shove a screw there, but a thumb-screw would be almost perfect.


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Now I have to decide how functional I want to make this thing. I guess it is my own curse that I can't just smash the parts together and call it done.

I want the needle to be animated at least. Activated by a retracting needle at the bottom. I am still working through how to do this. Push-rods, magnets, full electronics?
If I can make it look like the liquid is being dispensed that would be even cooler I have an idea or two on this, but it probably wouldn't be worth it.
 

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Strikerkc

Sr Member
first off, what you're doing is magical.

I want the needle to be animated at least. Activated by a retracting needle at the bottom. I am still working through how to do this. Push-rods, magnets, full electronics?
If I can make it look like the liquid is being dispensed that would be even cooler I have an idea or two on this, but it probably wouldn't be worth it.

Meaning, you want to be able to "jab" your thigh with the needle, have the needle pushed up into the body of the syringe (as opposed to stabbing yourself) and have that action cause the measurement on the dial to decrease by a set amount?

You could also make it button activated, so that the moving "pokey" needle just moves in and out on a spring, and the button press is what makes the gauge needle drop in measurement. You could use the two "mystery" protrusions on the back/side as the buttons, one to make it drain, the other to "fill it up"?

Also, looking at the metal cross bar and the wrap around metal pieces, they look like they'd be spaced right to loop around a thick woven cloth military style belt, or around a "suspender" strap hooked to a military belt. meaning you'd carry one handy on your belt or back pack strap, in the same way that modern soldiers might carry a tourniquet or an individual first aid kit in an easy to reach spot. They also look like they may be meant to complete an electric circuit, since they each have a wire running to the gauge. Perhaps they're part of a "quick fill" system, or an "auto injection system? Certain military canteens have special nozzles on the top that allow you to fill it from a special dispenser without removing the lid, and without spilling any water. Maybe the medical refill stations would complete that circuit created by the metal "latches" on the side, and cause the syringe to fill itself? Vice versa, the same clips could be hooked to an internal compartment of power armor, and perhaps an electrical current run the opposite way through the clips (as compared to the filler) makes the syringe dispense the medicine into the wearer of the power armor?

They could honestly be all 3. some fun ideas to work with while deciding what parts to use, and how to build it all?
 
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GilliGen

Active Member
You think it might be possible do to it like he described, adding the sound just like from the game?

Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Strikerkc, Yes, a dull needle on a spring that moves into the body of the syringe. GilliGen. Playing a audio file isn't a bad idea. I could put a small speaker behind the hole in the gauge (where the silver release button is now) But there will be very little room inside for electronics.
 
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Djblingbling1

Sr Member
Following, and also just bid on a syringe, lol.

Looks like they are 10cc vintage veterinarian syringes from my luck looking on ebay Those pressure gauges are spendy though!

I found the same face that the modeler had to have used for the gauge, will post more info one th auction is over!
 
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Djblingbling1

Sr Member
The gauge looks to be a Marsh type 28 300 psi pressure gauge with a re-calibration slotted screw.

The syringe is easy to find, I searched for 10cc vintage syringe and found a ton, but it looks like this is a vet syringe.

The gauge housing is the hardest thing I have found, The drager is very spendy.....there are other car manufacturers that make very similar shaped gauges, bidding on one right now to see how it compares.
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
PhoenixVader: That looks great. Any tips on what you made the Med-X out of? Also, did you make that advertisement, or does it exist somewhere?
Djblingbling1: I haven't found a gauge of the correct size yet. The Drager gauge face is 44mm in diameter. (actual printed disk). Let alone finding a vintage one with calibration. I probably will just alter what I have now since it is aged just right.

Now that I know what it is, I have found a few syringes on eBay. I never actually set out to find these parts, I just hit up Antique shops until I saw what I recognized as good props from the game.

I bought my Drager gauge in non-working condition for $30, about half the going rate.
 
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zapwizard

Sr Member
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A while back I made a detailed 3D model of every real-world component, and selected some additional components to eventually go into a physical build. This weekend I decided to use the 3D model to improve my skills using Keyshot. I applied multiple layers of materials to each and every part. Click for the 4K copy.

All the parts in the render are modeled off real-world items, eventually I will do a physical build of the whole thing. For now, enjoy the wallpaper.
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
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I have been working on the CAD model for this thing on and off for a while now. If you know me, then you know I cannot leave well enough alone.
Even if I can make the most cool looking StimPak prop from real components, I am not satisfied unless it has some real function from the in-game prop.

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To that end, this thing is crammed with over 60 individual components. Most of the parts will be made from real metal, glass and rubber. The gauge needle will be the only 3D printed part, made from sintered nylon. The gears, and a few holding parts will be made from laser-cut Delrin.
The current estimate is that this will weigh 3/4 of a pound.

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Gears? Yes, gears! It would be a shame to go through all this work to not have the gauge actually move.
The dial will be directly actuated by the needle moving in and out of the StimPak.

(Sorry, I could not figure out a way to make it inject nanobots which can heal your broken limbs in mere seconds. Please wait for version 2.0)

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While it looks simple, it took a lot of experimentation to find this elegant solution. A rack and pinion, drives a gear, which then causes the gauge arm to rotate.

The exact ratios had to be worked out so that the 20mm limit I have to move the needle, works out to move the gauge from 300 down the zero. Finally, a spring that can compress from 1" down to 1/4" returns the needle and gauge back to the max setting.

The needle will be made from strong 316 stainless steel rod, and sharpened to a point good enough for cosplay, but without actually breaking skin.

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The glass tube also will hold liquid inside. So the needle passes through a second smaller glass tube in the middle. Red rubber gaskets on each side seal the inner/out tube to keep the liquid inside.

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I need to order all the new items related to the movement. And I want to make this my first start-to-finish video build. Plus I am still working on the workshop. So it may be awhile before I actually physically build this thing.
 

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zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I have all the parts on hand (I have for a few months now). I have been altering or making the parts one bit at a time and recording it on video. As with all my projects these days, I seem to only find an hour or two here and there weeks apart to work.
 

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