The Lost World: Jurassic Park - Marksmann GPS

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Rymo

Sr Member
"MARKSMANN GPS" LABEL (PART 1)

To create the "Marksmann GPS" label on the original prop, Todd Marks used a Brother PT-PC label maker with gold on black label tape.My original plan was to purchase a modern Brother label maker, and some modern gold on black label tape because the print quality on the newer label makers is better than the print resolution of their older label makers.

But, because this is the RPF, where there's no such thing as being too accurate, I decided to first buy a vintage Brother PT-PC label maker from eBay, along with an un-opened roll of vintage gold on black label tape (part # TX-3541), just to see what kind of results I could get. I figured I could always resort to using a modern label maker if need be.

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Since the PT-PC is a mid-90's peripheral, it lacks USB support. The only way to connect it is via an RS-232 (serial) cable. It's also worth noting that Windows XP was the last operating system that was compatible with this label maker. Luckily, I had access to an old PC that still had an RS-232 port, so I installed a fresh copy of Windows XP on it. I also installed the necessary Brother PT-PC printer drivers.

The size of the label on the original prop is 1/2" x 2-7/8" (12.7mm x 73.025mm). Using the photo that Todd Marks posted earlier in this thread as reference, I designed my own "Marksmann GPS" label in Photoshop, trying to make it look as accurate as possible.

Even though the PT-PC label maker produces fairly low-resolution prints (by today's standards), I still designed my label as a 300dpi image, just in case I decided to make some labels using a newer label maker that supports higher resolution printing.

I printed my 1/2" tall design on 1" tall label tape to make sure that my image stayed within the printable margins of the label maker. I then used an X-Acto blade to cut out the final label.

Here's what my first draft label looks like. I think it looks pretty close to the original. In person, the label definitely has more of a gold hue to it. The photo makes it look more yellow/ orange than it actually is. Conpared to the screen-used prop, the border line around my label is a little too thick, so I think I'll print a new one with a thinner stroke around the border.
Label1stDraft.jpg


I have also ordered a modern Brother P-Touch series label maker and a modern roll of gold on black label tape. I'm curious so see how labels from the new label maker compare to the one I printed with the vintage label maker.
 
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Rymo

Sr Member
One thing I noticed about the PT-PC label maker is that it doesn't seem to print rounded or diagonal edges of the image very accurately. The rounded and diagonal portions of my letters printed with fairly jagged "stepped" edges. I think this is simply a resolution limitation of the PT-PC label maker. My guess is that the newer label maker will be able to more accurately print higher dpi images.

EDIT: There is an application made by Brother called "Editor" that came with my PT-PC label maker. It allows you to design your own labels without the need of a third-party graphic design app. I made a few simple label designs using that app, and the resulting labels seemed to print a little cleaner compared to the design I imported from Photoshop. Perhaps designing and printing the label using the Brother application will yield better results.
 
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Rymo

Sr Member
LCD SUN HOOD UPDATE

I was fortunate enough to get in contact with a Jurassic Park fan in France who has agreed to help me acquire the JVC GR-SV7 camcorder that is for sell there. He should be shipping it to me within a few days.
 
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Rymo

Sr Member
Well, today marks the 2 year anniversary of the start of this build. So, here's a look at where it's at so far.

I think the most difficult parts of the build are completed. My Marksmann GPS replica is a completely self-contained functioning device. When powered on, it automatically plays the original GPS animation that was created for The Lost World. All of the necessary labels are in place and an antenna has been installed. I also have an original screen-accurate Lowepro bag to carry it in. At this point, the last part waiting to be installed is the LCD sun hood. I'm pretty sure I've identified the correct type of sun hood, and I hope to have one in my possession within a few weeks. This has been a really fun replica to build, but I'll be happy when I'm able to finally call it finished.

GPS1.jpg


GPS2.jpg
 
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Rymo

Sr Member
"MARKSMANN GPS" LABEL (PART 2)

Today I received my Brother PT-D600 label maker and gold on black label tape (part # TZe354). This label maker is a modern unit that is capable of printing at a resolution higher than what was possible with the vintage label maker I used back in post #62. It connects via USB, and is compatible with my MacBook Pro, which is much more convenient for me.
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After printing a label with it, I immediately I noticed the difference in print quality. The text prints much more cleanly, with much less jagged "stepping" on the rounded and diagonal edges.

I also noticed that the hue of the gold lettering is a bit more accurate on the new label tape. The gold printing on the vintage label tape has a little more of an orange hue to it by comparison. It’s possible the vintage label tape may have taken on more of an orange hue as it has aged over the past 20 years.

label comparison.jpg

Here's a comparison of my labels versus the one seen in the movie.

screenshot comparison.jpg


I think I'm going to replace my vintage label with one printed using the newer label maker. I like the sharper text on the new label, and the gold color seems to more accurately match the prop as it appears in the film.
 
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Rymo

Sr Member
The sun hood arrived today! Here is the sun hood from the film compared to my hood. Taking into account the slightly different camera angles, they look like the same part to me.
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The sun hood has some plastic tabs on the back of it which were used to attach it to the original camcorder it was taken from. I will need to remove those tabs in order for it to sit flush with the front of my prop replica.

hood tabs.jpg
 
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Rymo

Sr Member
Today I did some tweaking to my Raspberry Pi configuration in order to speed up the boot time a bit. The previous boot time was about 52 seconds from the time the device was powered on to when the GPS animation started playing. After removing some unnecessary processes and services from the Raspbian OS, I have the boot time down to about 19 seconds. That's much more tolerable, but I'd still like to get it down to 10 seconds or less if at all possible.

I think I'm going to try using a different class of microSD card, one with a faster data transfer rate.
 
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Rymo

Sr Member
LCD SUN HOOD FIT

While trying to figure out the best method for attaching the sun hood to the Tektronix device, I noticed that the sun hood does not sit totally flush with the front of the device. The face of the device is slightly rounded, but the sun hood frame is flat. This discrepancy creates a small gap at the corners of the hood.
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Using a heat gun set to low, and some gentle pressure, I was able to heat the sun hood frame up just enough to bend it into a rounded shape that fits much better against the contours of the Tektronix device.

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The sun hood frame is fairly thin, so I think when I finally do adhere it to the device, the adhesive will be strong enough to close any of the minor gaps that still remain.
 
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Rymo

Sr Member
ONE LAST MYSTERY PART

There is one remaining part to this prop that I need some help identifying. On the original prop, there was a small metallic part protruding from the bottom of the device. It is only visible in a few quick shots.

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On the Tektronix device that the prop was built from, there is nothing on the bottom. The bottom of the device is just flat plastic.

I asked Todd Marks about this, and he said that he thinks he had added a PCMCIA card to the bottom of the original prop, although he doesn't recall what specific type of card he had added. He still has the plastic shell from the original prop, and the bottom of his shell does indeed have a rectangular hole cut into it. The hole is roughly the size that would accommodate a PCMCIA card.

To me, the part looks most similar to an old PCMCIA Compact Flash card reader.

closeupcard.jpg


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I haven't been able to find an old PCMCIA CF card that exactly matches the part seen in the film. The one in the film seems to have slightly angled bottom edges, and it looks like the bottom edges are made of metal instead of black plastic.

I know there isn't much reference material to go on, but if any of you thinks you know what type of part it is, I'd love to know.
 
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Rymo

Sr Member
Todd Marks shared with me a short behind-the-scenes video clip he had taken of his Marksmann GPS prop on the set of TLW back in 1996. Here are a few still video frames of his prop showing the bottom of the device where the "mystery" part is located.

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Screen Shot 2019-02-16 at 12.40.47 PM.png


After seeing the part from this angle, it looks similar to an old PCMCIA token ring card. The angled raised portion looks kind of similar, but I'm not sure it's a 100% match.
comp2.jpg


Also, I should note that the video camera was moving (panning up) while the video was taken. So, the still images might contain some scan line smearing. Perhaps that is what makes the part look like it has the angled raised portion?
 

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