When I lent my services to a collegue who was working on a film about 12 years ago, I was introduced to the world of cnc. I remember watching this huge machining centre milling out a slab of mdf and turning it into a fantastic set of gears. I knew that it would have taken me hours to achieve the same thing with traditional power tools. I decided then that I would invest in a cnc router for my own business Oxenham Design. At that time I could turn on a computer, but even to check email seemed like a crazy set of operations. I persevered and learned every piece of relevant software I could get my hands on. I am now fortunate enough to be using Vectric's ASPIRE software, and Techno cnc routers, which has helped us to create some amazing projects, both in part, or in full. I thought that this blog would be a great place to share "behind the scenes" adventures with the software, materials and equipment we use, as well as the projects we build.

Friday, 24 May 2013

Back Woods Gas Can Banjo!

I got a call this afternoon from our awesome art direcor friend Alan Fellows, He's the guy who got us the Fisher Price miniature builds.
His next commercial needs a "Gas Can Banjo" A google image search turns up all kinds of neat examples. This is supposed to look like it's celebrating Hill Billy Ingenuity!
The best part is I had the perfect can in the shop, almost empty of lighter fluid!
I poured a little sulfuric acid onto the top and let it sit for a while. This was to strip off any tin coating that would be on there to stop the can from rusting. While it was doing it's thing, Jody and I headed down to the music store I used to pretty much live at in my rock and roll days. And thanks to John Bradley, the greatest guitar tech ever, we were able to scavenge some tuning pegs and an old guitar pickup. Score!
I threw the heads into some acid for an overnight bath. Not sure exactly what they'll look like in the morning, but it's got to be better than bright chrome! I also scuffed most of the gold plating off the pickup. This banjo need to look well used.
The reference image showed a gas can that was red with a white lightning bolt that had the word GASOLINE written in it. They don't want the can to actually say anything, so I didn't put any text on it.
I masked the can, and cut a quick lightning bolt out, then lightly sprayed it with a flat red color.
Once the red was dry, and the masking removed, I lightly hit it with some black and brown paint as well. This will get worn down tomorrow when it's good and dry.
With the tinning removed from the top and bottom, I sprayed it with a rust accelerator, for the instant rust. I also sprinkled some iron powder on the surface for some added texture-ish spots.
The guitar pick-up also got the same treatment. It's pretty heavy right now, but I'll take it back a bit tomorrow.

Luckily the banjo only has to LOOK like it might actually play, as the deadline is Monday at noon, pretend works well for me!

Jody and I will be in Indiana next week for Robert Jones' sign seminar. We were asked to teach again this year, but we had a schedule conflict, that actually turned out NOT to be a conflict after all. So we will be going down anyway, to see some friends, and make a few more! I'm pretty excited to get to go back down there, the hospitality from Robert and his wife Deb is top notch! It will be good to see them again.

1 comment:

  1. Fantastic!
    I will be heading there myself! Looking forward to seeing my buddy Dan S. there and meeting you as well.