Day 2 of the restoration of the life size Sulley replica saw a lot of progress. Before fitting the torso and back Styrofoam sections onto the frame, I wanted to ensure the pipes where the arms hang would be able to connect and support the weight. Inspection of the arms showed the pipes on the arms were not where they needed to be in order to connect to the frame. One arm had the pipes so deeply recessed the fur had to be rolled back and the Styrofoam cut open to fix them. After re-positioning the pipes in that arm, they were taped in place and the Styrofoam replaced around them. Tape was also used to hold the Styrofoam together to prevent it from moving once the fur is rolled back in place.
The original pipes had mechanisms that would lock the arms in place when they were inserted (as evidenced by the holes in the sides of the pipes). Those locking mechanisms had long since disappeared. This Sulley is gonna be a display only piece and shouldn’t have people pulling/tugging on his arms so those shouldn’t be needed. The arm pipes slide snugly into the frame supports. They fit so snugly in fact, I was concerned about them becoming stuck in the shoulder area of the frame if I needed to remove the arms in the future. I had to use some pliers and a metal hook to pull a couple of them out while disassembling. For this reason I decided to glue some pipes into the arm sockets. This should keep the arm pipes from recessing out of reach into the arms again, and also keep them connected to the arms if/when I disassemble Sulley at a later time. I will have to adjust the length of these pipes so they hang flush to the body once I start re-assemble of Sulley.
After a couple of test fits of the arms to make sure the shoulder struts of the frame were good enough to support Sulley’s weight, I put the front torso and back sections onto the frame. Once I put those pieces on I could tell he was already standing about a foot taller than before. All the missing, broken, cracked frame pieces and the Styrofoam body parts being shifted out of place had really done a number on the poor guy. I got those two pieces in place and taped the shoulder struts and head harness pieces in place to the Styrofoam. I want Sulley to be as stable as possible. Once I completed that, I positioned the shoulder and neck pieces on top. I taped every Styrofoam seam to keep the pieces from shifting too much when I put his fur back on and move him out front. Sulley’s spine fins were zip tied to the Styrofoam body pieces. The zip ties had worn the Styrofoam away a little over time. As a result the fins were kinda loose. Nobody should be grabbing his fins, but I didn’t like the idea of them being able to move around and wear away the Styrofoam any more so I taped those in place too ( I bought a big roll of heavy duty industrial tape). I performed a wiggle test on the body and it is much more stable than before.
I cleaned up the back fins, the hands, and the head. It was nothing terribly bad, just normal dust and grime from sitting around for twenty years and being neglected. The next step is gonna be to trim the arm pipes to the appropriate length so they will hang flush to the body. Then the final touch will be reattaching the fur. As I mentioned previously, the fur was originally connected by Velcro. That Velcro had long since worn out and a previous owner used safety pins to keep the fur together. That method didn’t work too well as most of the safety pins had stretched open or just broken. I have decided I am gonna sew the seams together onto the frame. If I need to disassemble him again I can just cut the stitches.
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