Whilst working on my puppet I became reminded of the Iron Chicken featured in the Clangers.
I find the obvious use of nuts and bolts for its construction very appealing. I feel it creates a heavy-duty, industrial appearance and gives the puppet a lot of interest. I plan to incorporate elements of this into my own puppet to draw attention to specific areas and emphasize important features.
I decided to build the main structure of the body out of steel as this offers structural integrity and sufficient support for the mechanism. Also, I have sanded down and polished the surface of the steel to try to bring out its reflective qualities.
I decided to add additional manipulation to the bird by creating movement in the tail. These are the two mechanisms I have created to control the movement.
To attach/support the mechanisms I have used a bolt, as a pivot, for the movement of the tail and cut a small slit in the metal to guide the wing mechanism, making sure it is long enough to encompass its range of movement and I attached it in place by making two brackets out of aluminium, which I carefully shaped using a swage block, to hold the metal rod/pivot in place.
The longer the lever from the pivot, the shallower the movement of the tail; this was important as it required greater wing movement and lesser tail movement.
After building this structure I discovered a problem. The wire structure interfered with the mechanism for the wings allowing no room for movement and offered a lack of support for the pivot. These were the factors that lead to the decision to continue only with the alternate structural idea.