Romana's Sonic Screwdriver

Discussion in 'Replica Props' started by NTBBCPD, Feb 12, 2012.

  1. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    I have known info about the source of this prop for years and now I have been able to confirm it.

    Background
    Back in 1986, I was at a convention with my props and caught the attention of one of the guests, John Nathan Turner. We had a few discussions that weekend about reusing props, bits and set pieces from one episode for others (no big surprise).
    ____________________________________________

    Lately, I have been following the threads on this forum about this prop so I bought the DVD of the episode the prop was in.
    When I watched the episode what I saw was different from what everyone was drawing. I recognised the piece for what it was but wasn’t sure where it came from.

    Then I remembered the talks with JNT!

    The prop "Romana's Sonic Screwdriver" is an antenna, most likely off of one of the old military radios use by U.N.I.T. (see my avatar) with a few pieces of tape added to it.

    I'd like to thank my source for confirming that it was indeed an antenna with a few pieces heat shrink tubing added to it.

    He also said that Lala Ward thinks she still has it, but hasn't seen it in years


    Edward.


    Here's my version of the Romana's Sonic Screwdriver compared to the screen cap.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 9, 2018
    Organic Mechanic likes this.
  2. Organic Mechanic

    Organic Mechanic Sr Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Wow! Nice reveal. Now we just need to determine the make and model of the radio. :cool

    (I can't see your pics BTW)
     
  3. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Weird,

    I've added a thumbnail version.


     
  4. Organic Mechanic

    Organic Mechanic Sr Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Thank you. So basically, any old 40+" telescoping walkie talkie antenna would do the job? VERY interesting!
     
  5. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Or a spare tail off a K-9 unit :lol
     
  6. NakedMoleRat

    NakedMoleRat Sr Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    [​IMG]
     
  7. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Back on 11-27-2011 RogueScout wrote:


    Yet since then all of the "Romana's Sonics" that I've seen on this site are just that.

    Even RS said that his design was the best he could come up with at the time from watching the scene on video.

    With DVDs and Hi-res TV's it is possible, As I have shown, to produce a repilca based on the screen-used prop and not somebody elses work.


    Come on people, the real prop is known. it is boring and bland. But it is what it is.

    Please, Stop making the Harry Potter Sonic Wands and get back to what this forum is about, recreating Screen used props as accurately as possible. (while having fun doing it.)

    ....
    ...

    OK, there is so much more to this forum than recreating Screen used props as accurately as possible, I'm just trying to make a point...
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012
  8. The Next Doctor

    The Next Doctor Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!


    Wow, and since I am the only one actively selling a "Harry Potter Sonic Wand" , I guess that is directed at me. I had a long post written up, but I think I need to step away from the pc, because I am hoping that I am reading too much into your post.
     
  9. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Please don't take it personally,

    It's actually a plea directed at anyone who is thinking of doing a Romana's Sonic from now on....

    Yours and the other three that are currently out there were based on screen caps and Influenced by the work of RS.

    Now that you know what the real prop was based on, if you were to design a Romana's sonic now it would look a lot different.

    Even you say in your post that your's is not a Romana's Sonic, but a Time Lady's sonic.

    There is no way in heck that I would try to tell anyone what not to make.

    I'd just hate to think of fans carrying around these items and others thinking they are screen accurate.

    And as to the HP reference, if you were to put them on ebay as wizard wands you would sell a ton of them.... nothing wrong with that.



    _______________________________________________________________
    I'm not an expert on Doctor Who props..... But I did stay at a Holiday Inn Last Night
     
  10. The Next Doctor

    The Next Doctor Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Ok, overreaction is done. That is the issue with reading the forum after getting your butt handed to you at work.

    I completely understand the sentiment of continuing selling something inaccurate as something other than a custom or giving full disclosure.

    I took your statements as a hit on my custom sonic, which again was made to be a cosplay/custom costume piece not an accurate replica and over-reacted.

    Sorry about that. :$
     
  11. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Please, no need to be sorry.

    It is I who is sorry if I insulted you in any way.

    I actually do like the design and variations of colour that you have on your Time Lady Sonics.

    If I didn't have a lathe of my own I probably be picking up one of yours.:)


    Edward
     
  12. Asp9mm

    Asp9mm Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Your close, but it's not a radio antennae. It is telescoping though. You need to 'reflect' a bit on your OP and the screencaps.
     
  13. Bootlegger137

    Bootlegger137 Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Looks like something out of this set...

    Telescoping Tool Set | Tools | Restoration Hardware
     
  14. MattMunson

    MattMunson Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    weird. A sonic screwdriver thread that is turning into a meltdown. I did NOT see that coming.
     
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  15. Bootlegger137

    Bootlegger137 Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    :lol
     
  16. The Next Doctor

    The Next Doctor Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Yes, you did. You're Matt Munson, legendary seering of the future and wooer of wild women. :lol

    What you didn't expect was....

    [​IMG]

    THE SPANISH INQUISITION!!!!

    ....nobody expects that.
     
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  17. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Hey, when the Producer of the show and a props person from the show both say it was one of those telescopic Arial things with some tape on it.. I believe them.

    If someone has other information they could have chimed in and helped out.

    It seems a lot of the people here follow a certain Twitter account.

    As I don't have a Twitter account, Please pass this on..


    __________________________________________
    And here I was going to order one of your fine looking Sonic replicas.....

    until you called me a f-ing idiot called Edward who thinks he knows it all.

    You don't know me, sir. I have never said anything bad about you.

    Why couldn't you be helpful instead of mean.. you could have said Sorry NTBBCPD, you were close....but the real prop was made from....

    I know you feel you have been treated unfairly by the MODs on the RPF, but please don't take it out on everyone.

    Have a nice day.
    ________________________________________________________
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2012
  18. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    And if anyone really cares.

    Here's what it would look like if you made the sonic with and antenna compared to a telescopic mirror(with the mirror taken off and a piece of tube added to the bigger end)
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2014
  19. MattMunson

    MattMunson Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Plus one on that. I certainly did not expect that. :lol
     
  20. Kerr Avon

    Kerr Avon Master Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    I'm sorry, but I have to ask.

    Why should we believe YOU? Seriously. You can say whatever you want was told to you, but unless you get an video recording of him saying that, how are we supposed to know you're just not full of it?

    I think it's an interesting idea, but until someone comes up with a real world copy of the supposed antenna, it's still just a rumor as far as I'm concerned.
     
  21. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!




    Ah, and there it is.....

    Let me hop into my TARDIS and go back to 1986 so I can ask JNT for a recording of our talks.

    The problem with the internet is that it has spread so much disinformation that people like you have lost all trust in anything.

    I don't have to prove it to you or anyone else.

    I had the information, and I passed it on so others could make their own prop, for their enjoyment.

    There is no profit in it for me, I not selling these things, and I have to face people calling me nasty names....

    It's all a mute point as the King of all Doctor Who props has stated that the original prop was made with a Telescopic tool with a screw joint at the small end.

    He even suggests that you can make one with pieces from a small antenna and parts of a telescopic tool.

    Based on the lack in interest in this thread and this prop, is all this really worth it?
     
  22. Asp9mm

    Asp9mm Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    Just because a certain person knows that it originally had a mirror on the end, doesn't mean that people agreeing with him are doing that without prior knowledge. I knew Lalla Ward a good 28 years before I'd even heard of that Twitter account. I thought it was an antennae too until the mirror fitting was pointed out. It is spot on for that fitting. So for anyone looking for accuracy and THE prop used piece. They should source an old telescopic inspection mirror as it has the correct end piece and collapses exactly to the same spec and way seen on screen. For those that want 100% accuracy by finding that old source rod, they won't get it by buying an old aerial as these traits will be missing.

    JNT can be forgiven for thinking it was an antennae, anyone then and now would think the same on seeing it, it's only when you look at the finer details like the lack of connection piece at the base (which was capped and solid), and weird attachment holes on the other end that you would see it as something else.

    No drama, it's a pretty disapointing piece anyway compared to the solid replicas available.
     
  23. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!


    Thank you,

    The conversation with JNT took place while I was showing him the inside working of my K-9 he remarked that everything(controls, Radio transmitters, etc) had gotten so small and that the show prop was packed. As I was putting the case back on K-9 he tapped the tail and remarked that the Romana's sonic was made of one of these things. Maybe he thought my K-9 tail was a telescopic tool, or that the sonic was an antenna.

    At least we now know Thanks to CT what the real prop was made from.
    I just wish he could have be nicer about it.

    I agree that the real thing does look boring, but it is a very cheap replica that everyone could make.

    Can we go back to having fun now?
     
  24. Asp9mm

    Asp9mm Well-Known Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    To a small degree, you've been exposed to the abuse you can receive when posting 'knowledge' about certain props in the DW world.
    That person you mention has insider knowledge to a huge degree and has been bashed in every way when it has been published. I've had the same abuse hurled in my direction when I 've shared facts about DW props here, and that's why I've not done so since. I'm certainly not going to make public why I know Lalla Ward or other people in the film/TV industry and to ask is just plain rude. You go by truths, and everything I've posted about a prop or production has proven true in the past The same goes for other people. But it is unfortunate that it seems to be the trend nowadays to hound those with a proven track record, and to praise those who have continually been proven to give false information.

    Knowledge isn't power in this hobby, it's a millstone. I used to get really eager and excited when the opportunity came to answer a question not widely known and to share with people who were equally as interested. But then, when you do, it's shot down in flames by someone who knows nothing about the subject but has a bigger ego that needs massaging for some reason I still cannot comprehend. Maybe it's the post count syndrome. Whatever, it is, it's killed my enthusiasm for sharing and now my posts seem only to be to defend what I know is true, despite flying in the face of other peoples misinformed opinion. I apologise for some of my family being in the film and TV industry, and that I'm friends with some high profile people that I am unwilling to offer proof for. But I wish to keep them as friends and I'm old fashioned and my private life is just that. Private.
     
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  25. Organic Mechanic

    Organic Mechanic Sr Member

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    OK, so I slapped one of these together...

    [​IMG]

    And here it is amongst it's brethren (I don't really keep them in the chest, I just did that for Waz's benefit XD)

    [​IMG]


    Now, maybe I used the wrong type of collapsible tool, but this just doesn't look right to me.
     
  26. LeAngeSolitaire

    LeAngeSolitaire Well-Known Member

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    That looks fantastic. It's definitely in line with what is seen. The lower handle is probably thicker and this could be solved by adding one more tube. The irony is that it's probably pretty accurate.
     
  27. Organic Mechanic

    Organic Mechanic Sr Member

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    Thanks. I'm thinking that to get it right I'll need to grind out some of the interior stops, and add some exterior tubes like you said. The plain look of the handle was driving me nuts, so I added another ring of tape and an end cap.

    It'd be nice to get it perfect, but for the negligible amount of time spent, and a total cost of $0.00, I'm pretty happy with it. :cool
     
  28. LeAngeSolitaire

    LeAngeSolitaire Well-Known Member

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    Correct me if I'm wrong but I don't think the handle is ever really seen so it could well be a plain tube and probably was. That's the danger of seeing inaccurate made up versions with fancy ridges and stripes all these years when, as NTBBCPD has said, the truth can be a bit boring.
     
  29. Organic Mechanic

    Organic Mechanic Sr Member

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    Oh, you're absolutely correct, and yeah, as I was applying the extra band of green I knew I was over decorating due to seeing previous attempts. The beauty of this prop is though, when I pick up more tubes and start revising the design, I can just pull the electrical tape off. But for now, it gives it a more balanced look on the wall, y'know?
     
  30. NTBBCPD

    NTBBCPD Well-Known Member

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    I'm not correcting you... just adding info.

    I put the green band and incuts on my drawing because of these screen caps I took from the DVD.

    I could see that there was something causing several dark areas: one that looked the same as the bands at the oher end and two small lines/cuts (or it could be the edges of one wider cut).

    As we may never see the original, this prop will always be open to personalization. At least we're now closer.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2014
  31. LeAngeSolitaire

    LeAngeSolitaire Well-Known Member

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    That looks to me like they put a larger diameter tube on the handle end which wasn't quite long enough to cover the inner tube so what you could be seeing is possibly the last inch or so of the inner narrower diameter tube poking out. Just a theory.
     
  32. greatwazoo42

    greatwazoo42 Sr Member

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    :lol Thanks. :thumbsup

    There's also this which may or may not have had something to do with it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CcohxqDwPCU

    The Beeb was known for keeping a junkpile of recyclable props and bits. Maybe the hypno-mirror lighted thingy was used as parts for the Romana or maybe it wasn't. The one does remind me of the other a bit though.
     
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2012
  33. Kerr Avon

    Kerr Avon Master Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    So JNT was wrong about what it was. Do you see now why I wanted evidence of this claim? JNT wasn't even right about it, and he passed on bad information to you if your story is accurate, and then you passed on that same bad information. Actors, directors, writers, they frequently don't know much about the props they work with. Until verification of the original object found and shown, don't believe what they say.
     
  34. Siebigteroth3

    Siebigteroth3 New Member

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    Sorry to see all the drama over Romana's sonic, but since we are doing a Romana costume for our little girl its nice to have a starting point for making on for her.
     
  35. juno

    juno Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Here's the Romana sonic Fyberdyne made me for Christmas! :love

    [​IMG]
     
  36. Contec

    Contec Master Member

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    Re: Romana's Sonic Screwdriver Revealed at last!

    A long time ago David Prowse ,the actor who played the body of darth vader in starwars was 100% sure that the Vader helmet was only painted black........which we all know now was totally wrong.
     

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