Functional Pip-boy 3000 Mk IV from Fallout 4

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
The "Prop" version is the best version to buy. You can assemble it using just the 3D printed parts (or add some real screws). You can also add a battery, switch and LED to make it light up. I designed the spindle to snap together, instead of requiring a special metal pin.

The "Functional" version basically will become part of the Functional Pip-Boy design. Until I get the PCB for it designed, you can't assemble it properly, and the potentiometer has nothing to connect tor.

The "Solid" version is basically for someone who wants a hole bunch of tapes in a stack. The screws aren't as detailed, and you can't separate the parts to paint them individually.
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER


Today I had a near disaster...but trying to fix that disaster actually resulted in a pretty easy technique to color the parts.
You can paint SLS 3D printed parts, but as I mentioned earlier, the Nylon is actually very absorbent. The orange portion of the model is dyed, not painted. I hear you can dye SLS parts using RIT T-shirt dye.

Well I got impatient and wanted to apply color to my Holotape. You see my wife is a card maker and scrapbooker. Due to my parents also owning a ScrapBooks store for over a decade my wife has accumulated quite a collection of supplies. I due through her three boxes of markers and came up with three which I felt would match the Holotape colors.

The markers are: Sharpie Orange, BIC MarkIt Cloud Nine Grey, and Copic E53 Raw Silk.

Painting the Solid Model (lower part of the photo) turned into a disaster. You see drawing on SLS nylon with a marker is almost exactly like drawing on paper. The marker ink will spread out. At first this seemed helpful, it would seep into the nooks and crannies of the 3D print, but it soon resulted in muddy edges. The part also absorbed a LOT of ink, making applying it thin impossible. Do all the colors ended up far darker than I wanted. As you can see the orange turned almost red. (The orange part for the upper, functional model, was already dyed orange.)

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However, not all was lost! Remembering that you can remove Sharpie Markers with denatured alcohol...I headed to my garage.
I took the functional model apart and cleaned each piece with the alcohol. The alcohol removed 90% of the dye, leaving just the right amount behind. This worked perfectly on the functional model as I could separate the parts. The solid model however didn't clean up so well, and I had to remove almost all the dye. I have now removed the solid model from my store, as I don't think it is worth the headache to paint it.

I searched my bin of misc screws and came up with three tiny screws that fit the Holotape. I then cut up a shipping label and added the label to the front. I feel the colors are pretty darn close on the to the game model. And considering how small the tape it, the details are all still there.
 
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barry99705

New Member
Just for giggles. Photographing shiny black objects is a pain in the ass...
Printed in black petg at .1mm layer with a .4mm nozzle. I'm actually amazed you can tell it's a phillips screw! Didn't think that would come out. The label recess on the bottom didn't come out very well, but I was expecting that. Petg doesn't bridge worth a damn, but it prints as nice as pla, and is stronger than pla.
IMG_20160302_212902.jpg
IMG_20160303_073222.jpg
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I am amazed the screw detail came out. On my solid model the screw detail wasn't very well defined. For the Prop version I exaggerated the details on the screw so that it hopefully prints out better. But I still like to use real screws when possible.

The FDM version isn't that bad really, considering how tiny the model is. If you scaled it up by 1.5x or 2x it probably would be useable as a prop.
The SLS model may cost more, but the amount of post work is considerably less. I enjoy filing and sanding the small details. I loathe filling, sanding, filling, sanding, painting, re-sanding to get a smooth surface. I once designed a 3D printed mount for a car-computer tablet. It would have cost $140 to get SLS printed, so I chose to pay $80 to get it FDM printed. I used one of the hub 3D websites. The first model arrived with every single hole filled solid. I spend hours re-drilling and filing to get the mounting details back into the model. It was so bad they re-printed the model for free, but this time they printed it with paper thin (literally) walls, so any attempt to sand thing smooth resulted in blown out surfaces. I spent more hours filling and sanding the second model. Only to give up and use the first model since it was built solid. My work getting a 3D printer may change my mind, but I am sticking to my guns on the SLS print for the Pip-Boy.
 

GhostMinion

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Something I found kinda funny last night. The game holotapes are smaller than the other misc. holotapes. Not sure which one is "right", but it caught my eye and I got a giggle. Figured I'd share.


2016-03-02_00001.jpg
 

LoneWanderer

Active Member
Something I found kinda funny last night. The game holotapes are smaller than the other misc. holotapes. Not sure which one is "right", but it caught my eye and I got a giggle. Figured I'd share.


View attachment 599161
I also noticed this haha, not sure why they didn't scale then correctly to all the other ones but oh well. Going forward on my game tape replicas I think I'll just keep them all regular tapedeck size haha.
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER


The game ones are probably the correct scale for the Pip-Boy. But since people need to actually see the holotapes to pick them up, they scaled those up large enough to easily find.

To try to see if I wanted to alter the scale before I made my prop version; I laid out the Holotape, Yardstick, Comic Book, Subway Token and Clipboard all together. If I used the yardstick as a measuring device, then the Holotape would be nearly 4" wide. (The entire Pip-Boy is 6.25" to 7" wide)
Standard Comic Books are 10.25x6.6". The comic book in-game is too small. And finally the clipboard is also too small.

Basically, almost nothing in the Fallout universe equates to real world dimensions. They scaled objects solely on what looked correct in the scene. It's really too bad since most of the objects are based on real-world designs. But games do this all the time, I have made several game modifications, all based on re-creating real-world locations inside the game engine. The Source Engine needs almost all objects scaled up by 25% in order to look correct in the game. In Unreal everything has to be about 10% larger than you would expect. The only game engine that used real-world units for everything was the CryEngine. In the CryEngine meters are the actual game units, and the equate to real-world units. The mass of an object is measured in grams. You could use real-world math to solve the in-game physics. This is probably why they has such good physic simulation in Crysis compared to the janky physics in so many other games.
 

GhostMinion

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
http://i.imgur.com/Xv2SpMQ.png

The game ones are probably the correct scale for the Pip-Boy. But since people need to actually see the holotapes to pick them up, they scaled those up large enough to easily find.

To try to see if I wanted to alter the scale before I made my prop version; I laid out the Holotape, Yardstick, Comic Book, Subway Token and Clipboard all together. If I used the yardstick as a measuring device, then the Holotape would be nearly 4" wide. (The entire Pip-Boy is 6.25" to 7" wide)
Standard Comic Books are 10.25x6.6". The comic book in-game is too small. And finally the clipboard is also too small.

Basically, almost nothing in the Fallout universe equates to real world dimensions. They scaled objects solely on what looked correct in the scene. It's really too bad since most of the objects are based on real-world designs. But games do this all the time, I have made several game modifications, all based on re-creating real-world locations inside the game engine. The Source Engine needs almost all objects scaled up by 25% in order to look correct in the game. In Unreal everything has to be about 10% larger than you would expect. The only game engine that used real-world units for everything was the CryEngine. In the CryEngine meters are the actual game units, and the equate to real-world units. The mass of an object is measured in grams. You could use real-world math to solve the in-game physics. This is probably why they has such good physic simulation in Crysis compared to the janky physics in so many other games.

I'm glad you mentioned the scale and dimensions of common objects. A lot of people I believe are confused by that very fact. Another good example (from Fallout 3, mind you) is the Vault Tec lunchboxes. They are not the same dimensions as a real lunchbox, being more square than rectangular. So, using these objects to "scale" other objects won't really work like some might hope it will.

Your picture makes it pretty clear. It's obvious, looking at it the way you layed it out, that the clip board is not the correct dimensions to a real clip board.

A good example that it's not always the scale that's the problem, and that the the game model's unrealistic dimensions can play tricks on an unwary maker.




Anyways, sorry. We were talking about holotapes..............:lol
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER


Today I designed the Vault Door Pip-Boy Remote Link interface. For those of you following along who haven't played the game; the Pip-Boy has a removable cable that the game character can connect to a control terminal. This terminal allows the player to open Vault Doors in the game.

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The remote link interface has a set of concentric rings which are back-lit. The panel is riveted to a larger control panel, which I am not modeling.

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The intent is to design something that can be made as a companion piece to the Pip-Boy, but also serve a real-world function.
I already designed the communications cable on the Pip-Boy to terminate with a USB connector. So the remote link terminal will have a mating USB connector.
You could use this same prop without the Pip-Boy as a Fallout themed USB extension.

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If you want to have it as a prop and keep it game accurate, I designed a insert without USB.

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The remote link uses a circuit board to hold the USB jack and LEDs. The exact number of LEDs is yet to be determined, so I will provide pads to add up to 12 LEDs.
The LED will be powered from the USB +5V. The only other addition may be a switch to turn the LEDs on and off.
Real metal screws and rivets will can be used to provide a more authentic look,

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Rubber feet can be attached if you want to use it on a desk. There are also two keyhole hangers. These can be used to mount it on a wall. If you want to get really fancy they are positioned to allow you to mount it to a low-voltage wall box. Perfect for that one guy on the planet with his own Vault-Tec vault door. Connect the USB cable to your own private security system and use a USB crypto-key for the ultimate in security...anything is possible with Vault-Tec.

Tomorrow I will make a 3D rendering to simulate how the LED will illuminate the plastic.
 

LoneWanderer

Active Member
Hey hey man not too shabby! I always thought those concentric rings on the panel for the pipboy uplink were just illuminated by light glare but I like the LED idea! It'll give a nice uniform clean look unless you wanna weather it. As always great job mate.
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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Duncanator

Sr Member
I'm not a gamer, and had no idea what a Pip-Boy was; but after reading through this research and design thread, I am totally blown away by the top notch work you have put into this replica. The functionality looks like it will be amazing. I can't wait to see it all come together - even without being fan of the game!
 

Sluis Van Shipyards

Master Member
Very cool progress so far!

I never thought of using the yard stick in the game! I'm guessing it's in scale with the other items so I wonder if you can get accurate measurements that way?
 

Gixxerfool

Well-Known Member
Since you're using a 5 volt circuit for the rings LEDs maybe have it light with the USB when plugged in?
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Duncanator: I always try to make my projects into learning exercises. I also like to take things a step further than most. It has worked out well for me over the years, providing skills which led to different jobs. This project is more about what if I approached a game prop the same as a actual consumer product design. It's an engineering exercise to try to solve each in-game design feature using real world mechanics and electronics. (Without breaking the game accuracy when possible)

Sluis Van Shipyards: Read the text of the yardstick post. Effectively nothing in Fallout 4 is at a set scale. Objects get scaled to what an artist likes, and don't compare to each other well.

Sluis Van Shipyards: Well I can make them light up any time the Remote Link is connected to the USB of a computer. If i wanted it to light up only when a Pip-Boy or other USB is connected to it's jack, then I would have to add some more complex detection circuit.
 
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ApophisV

Active Member
Foto 08.03.16, 10 45 23.jpg

Oooh, look what came in the mail today! :love

I really love it, if only I could leave work early today to get home and assemble this!

Thanks for your awesome work! :)
 

zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Cool! I keep mine on my desk at work next to my Nuka Cola caps.

Since you won't have the PCB inside, you can just hot-glue the spindle in place. The prop version I published later doesn't have this same issue. However they are taking their sweet time with my own order of that version.


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Short text update on the overall project in general:

I have finally decided once and for all to switch back to the BeagleBone black. The Udoo Neo simply isn't going to work out of a whole host of reasons I have covered previously.
With that decision made I can more forward with more of the project. Now I am working to get the 640x480 LCD screen wired up to the BeagleBone and Ubuntu, if for some reason that doesn't work out I will use the 320x240 screen.

This means that the in-game functionality will have to be something programmed after the actual build. Instead I will focus the project more on creating the real-world functions of the Pip-Boy. This is actually harder than just in-game functions. I am trying to come up with a list of "Must-have" real-world sensors to include in the Pip-Boy. However, each sensor requires some software development, requires a circuit to be designed and adds cost.

Lore friendly list:
-PIN Diode Gamma Ray Detector, in other words a Geiger counter.
-FM Radio, Real radio, require adding a audio mixer circuit
-Compass sensor-Heart Rate sensor, This could detect user's health. However, this has to be attached directly to the skin to work.
-GPS
-Battery charger with meter-WiFi, Easier said than done, but required to allow for GPS maps to load.

Sensors or features I really want to put into the design:
-Bluetooth, This is easier said than done, but could allow for connection to a phone or external sensors.
-Weather sensor , Temperature, Humidity and Pressure.
-Real-time clock, Saves the time when the unit is off.

Reach for the moon Maybe sensors:
-10 DOF sensor, (Orientation, Acceleration, Magnetic and Pressure)
-Ambient light sensor (Has to be physically exposed to outside light)
-Non-contact temperature sensor. This has to be physically exposed, and with the pod being USB now, there isn't a good place for it.

I can order a prototype boards with almost any sensor you can imagine from: http://www.mikroe.com/click/sensors

I am really split on how much to design into the Pip-Boy. My geek side wants everything possible no matter how long it takes, my practical side wants to just make it do exactly what it does in the game and nothing more. And while some of you will say "Make that stuff optional or modular", that is far easier said than done. To make anything an optional or modular feature actually requires that you design some compatibility in the first place.
 

LoneWanderer

Active Member
At this point I gotta ask why not just get an android and cannibalize it for your "brains" and the LCD screen? It has most of the functions you want and you could easily fit everything you wanted via rooting and reprogramming the android device like lore friendly colors, themes, layout etc. The gps will be included, the radio will digitally function, you can add button functionality with the dial simply enough with the Arduino like my build, and of course you can add and interface things like the Geiger counter to work with the android I'm sure. It just seems like a lot of this would be quite easily solved by using some existing builds like the android PCB and then going to town on modifying it, then of course you have super easy in-game functionality with the official app too.

Just my .02 at this juncture! You've done some spectacular planning and engineering for the Pip-Boy thus far, but it almost seems like it's getting overengineered in areas ya know? I agree with GhostMinion go practical and get the features you want without all the extra cost and hassle if there's a better option.
 
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