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Rowing Machine Prop for Heaven can Wait.

Discussion in 'Scenery, Props, and Rigging' started by ship, May 7, 2008.

  1. ship

    ship Senior Team Emeritus Premium Member

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    Was tasked with one for the local community theater production. Found out today that a gargage sale local community to us over the weekend was selling an old wood one for like $10.00 over the weekend while I was cursing and finishing up what I had for such a thing in prototype that became final production.

    Very interesting project in engineering and a challenge. Hope I never see one again in while I could do it better as a 1938 goal, I would not wish to. Very difficult to make from scratch and didn't work with me in its rigging.

    Hopefully what is shown will be useful at least in the gearing and engineering of it. Not a fun project... the arms should have been more central to the seat, the springs needed more tension, the lumber needed to even if double sided plate to be more hardwood especially in the upper arms where the once caster piviots now spring operated ones once drilled thru needed better universal joints and support to the lumber.

    Overall, thing works well in all as long as one doesn't consider the swing arms being a bit more down stage than efficient or a bit more weak in tension than efficient. Still it works and works well. Returns to its position without a problem, the seat is a bit noisy but who is to say that such a seat in riding on its rails shouldn't be such. Functions thus overall does its job. Better next time sure but for now did its job an looks antique even if totally built from scratch in my garage and without any real sense of how it should look like beyond two photos one from "antiques roadshow - Louisville" to work with.

    Photos are of free use if anyone wants to see how to do it at the very least if not in how now to have to wind up doing it. Good project, learned a lot from me but given another week or two plus a budget for more than found materials I will have done it again and differently.

    Still if I might say so myself... other than the knot in one lower arm that stands out... looks like a fighter, looks curious like a spider or some inscect. Looks in my opinion really cool even if dissatisfied in its overall result by way of how I ended up having to do with it... next time...

    That sunday morning a week and an hour later after completing staining it I decideded I was done. Hooked up the pneumatic sprayer (set up for latex paint mode) to the tank and put about 1/2 Qt worth of polyeurathane spray onto the thing - it peeing when I relieced the trigger and over thick coat and all. I was done with it and was done in just spraying away until done with the tank. This much easier than attempting to paint layer upon layer even if some layers were thicker than others or some not as nice. Figure a thick coat of varnish will have been the same on a 1930's era model in thick spraying and I'm done with it. Believe me I was in spending an entire week on it - this given off time but no less than 40 hours.
     

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    Last edited: May 7, 2008
  2. derekleffew

    derekleffew Resident Curmudgeon Senior Team Premium Member

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    Nice work, [user]ship[/user]. Sure looks authentic to me.

    How did you tie those knots in the grain?:)
     
  3. ship

    ship Senior Team Emeritus Premium Member

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    Curse them knots - anyone that accepts knotty pine as authentic is an iditot as knots in wood was never an acceptable type thing. Much less unless design feature not something random. Still I only grabbed a few pieces of lumber from the theater and for especially the lower arm assemblies only three pieces. One by mistake fir, two pine. Of them, two without knots the other with. The two without knots even if one was fir I miscut and had to leave behind thus the knots on one of the handles. Other than that, not many knots other than in what is less noticable such as the base plank.

    Good project and in hearing back from the theater they in hearing back about the real early wooden type rowing machine, they passed on it in entire cast and crew while thinking it big, still liking this one I did for them. Still yet to see the show in seeing what a role it played in it if any. Hope it don't over power but at least I'm glad it worked out for them.

    Knots in wood. at times its necessary to deal with them such as this at other times and mostly I don't accept them being in use in any part of what I build.
     

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