In the recent trades I did with the lawgiver project, I tried to grab several nice props replica. Talking with a coworker about the PDP-10 (or 11) that is in the IT office, we're thinking about reviving it with leds, lights etc.
Then I started thinking about that computer era, I stumbled upon some HAL 9000 replica from space odyssey and I thought it would be cool to add one on the PDP panel. Then I thought it would be awesome to have one at the entrance of the movie room in the basement, to eventually control the access (for real or fake).
Then I managed to score 2 cheap HAL kits from a RPF member (gordon gekko). They aren't bad, but I think they aren't 1:1 scaled. Laser cut parts, I had to drill all the speaker grid (which is flat).
The goal is to put a sound board in there and some more goodies to make it functional.
For $60-ish the kit is ok for a decorative item.
The lenses are made out of acrylics globes (michael's) and they really suck. I need to find some magnifiers with the right diameter. The big lens is also what will be missing in my SD studios HAL panel, and I don't have a grand or 2 to spare with to purchase a vintage nikkor fish eye.
One panel went to the bin as I couldn't fix the cracks on the clear coat, tried everything. Wrong product. Art supplies are for people doing art. I don't. I should stick to fool proof products, like my daughter water colors and colored pencils...
The second one, now that I've figured out with the airbrush, nozzle diameter, paint, paint quantities, thinning and cleaning, it's going better. Still, the black background I did with the 0.2mm and the texture wasn't flat, so I just fixed it with the airbrush clear coat (aquarethane) then 2 thick coats of spray can clear coat, no cracks with this one.
The sounds : I'm very pleased of the audio extraction and cleaning process I did. Most of them sound nice and the speaker is super loud, the panel acting as a resonant chamber.
The lens : hard time getting something out of that piece of junk. Idea is nice : a cut section from a Michael's acrylic sphere. Cut by the seller with cutting pliers, micro cracks and milky marks everywhere. What about using a hot wire to do that ? no ? really ?
I had to sand the lens down with 200 grit on the 2 sides then polish it to something close to optical grade. Still, with all the marks, it was not possible to get it perfect. The inner lens I had something of the right size, so it's a real lens and it looks so much better.
RDIF cards. I made them after the one fault card print I got from SD studio (a companion gift for the HAL panel I got from him). It's not punched as I have no idea how to make a custom puncher, especially one that will go thru that thickness.
I made 2 others with regular RDIF cards, a custom sticker et voila. When I'll end having the electric latch done for the movie room, I just use one of my smaller tags inserted in a keychain. I'll make sure I also put a backup switch behind the panel just in case HAL goes crazy and doesn't want me to enter
"I'm sorry Erv, I don't think I can do that"
there 's a serial port accessible in the back as the board can export the read RFID number to the computer, this way, I don't need an extra reader just to get the number of a tag I want to add to the system. I currently have 4 "users" accepted by the unit. One specific triggers the dialog, another the "positive" quote. I'll probably add one with a custom quote when granting access to the movie room :021:
Any non recognized tag / card gives one of the "negative" quotes.