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    Star Wars TIE Bomber Cross Section Model

    We catch up with modelmaker Jonathan Faber at the Replica Prop Forum party to get an update on his Star Wars TIE Bomber projects, including his recently completed cutaway model. Jonathan explains how he designed the imagined interiors of the ship and points out some of its great detail.

    Brian Mix's "Lost in Space" Analog Computer Replica

    Replica prop builder Brian Mix is obsessed with the 60s sci-fi show Lost in Space, and has built a working analog replica of the computer on board the Jupiter 2 spaceship. He explains how the prop was sourced from a real Burroughs B205 computer, which was also the same one used in the Adam west Batman show!

    In Brief: The Making of Slimer for the New Ghostbusters

    I saw the new Ghostbusters over the weekend and really enjoyed it. Especially the designs of the ghosts--which almost had a Disney Haunted Mansion feel to them (a good thing in my book). The nods to the original were a bit wearing at times, but I'm glad they brought back Slimer as a not-purely malevolent spectral entity. In the film, Slimer was all CG, but it turns out that the production hired Rick Lazzarini's The Character Shop to build an animatronic Slimer to use as a stand-in for filming. The build of that mech (along with a few spoilers) detailed here. It's a fitting tribute to the puppet Steve Johnson made for the original.

    My Love Letter to Cosplay at 2016's TED Conference

    I was privileged to be a speaker at 2016's TED conference, which was held in Vancouver. You can watch my talk, which was about cosplay, here or scroll below.

    I had a totally different talk prepared for TED this year, and I threw it out completely two days before I left for Vancouver.

    Adam Savage speaks at TED2016 - Dream, February 15-19, 2016, Vancouver Convention Center, Vancouver, Canada. Photo: Bret Hartman / TED

    Originally my talk was going to be about art and science, which is a talk I want to give someday, but it felt like a lecture. And I'm not a university lecturer. A week before TED I realized this talk didn't have the resonance that I wanted it to.

    Art and science -- STEAM -- is a topic near and dear to me, but I wanted something more personal. More genuine.

    Then my wife suggested I talk about costuming. She furiously workshopped the talk with me even after I left for Vancouver, spending dozens of hours with me on the phone. In the end, I wrote most of this at the TED conference itself.

    Adam Savage Visits the Stanley Kubrick Exhibition!

    After making its way around the world, the incredible exhibition of Stanley Kubrick's work has arrived in San Francisco. Adam Savage tours the exhibit to show you some of his favorite items. From rare camera equipment to pre-production artwork and film props, these objects connect us to one of cinema's greatest minds.

    How to Build a Foam Cosplay Helmet

    For his E3 costume builds, Frank worked with foam fabricator Evil Ted Smith to make three awesome cosplay helmets. Ted joins us this week to show how he turns sheets of cheap floor foam into shapely sci-fi and fantasy helms. It's not too difficult!

    Punished Props' Foam Viking Axe Build

    Tested contributor Bill Doran (Punished Props) worked with Frank Ippolito to build this giant viking axe for Ubisoft's For Honor E3 booth. In this video, Bill, shows how he made the axe using the techniques he teaches in his great Foamsmith book. Check it out!

    Testing the Mantis Drone Claw Accessory

    We introduce Simone to a Tested tradition--opening mystery mailbags from viewers! This week's package contains an accessory for our quadcopter: a beautiful drone claw manufactured via a Kickstarter campaign. We have fun testing it in the the office though a series of challenges--what could go wrong?

    Hands-On with BattleBots RC Toys!

    Something we were surprised to encounter at this season's filming of BattleBots were RC toy versions of fan-favorite robots. Hexbug was on site in the builder's pit to show off their upcoming BattleBot toys, based off of four competitors. We chat with Jason from Hexbug to learn how these toys were designed from the originals, and see what we can do in the tabletop battlebox.

    Frank Langely: Puppeteer - Episode 44 - 7/8/16
    On this episode, Frank and I welcome special effects guru Frank Langley. Frank is a puppeteer whose work includes the infamous Team America: World Police. Frank shares plenty of great stories and talks about some of his new projects, including Yamasong. If you're digging this show, please head over to and support us with a few bucks. Thanks for listening!
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    Adam Savage's One Day Builds: Kylo Ren's Costume Gorget!

    Sewing is the focus of this week's One Day Build, as Adam works on a piece of his in-progress Kylo Ren cosplay by making the costume's gorget. Adam talks about finding the reference and design for this neck piece, demonstrates patterning, and gets to work at his sewing station!

    Making Historical Fantasy Cosplay Armor for E3

    For this year's E3, our very own Frank Ippolito was charged with fabricating three cosplay costumes for Ubisoft's upcoming game For Honor. The three costumes of wildly different historically inspired characters with varying armor, helmets, and weapons, which require a wide range of materials and build processes. We stop by Frank's shop ahead of E3 to learn about these builds!

    What Can Design Learn from Science Fiction?

    Chris Noessel: Gorgeous + Catastrophic from Reaktor on Vimeo.

    We've linked to Chris Noessel's brilliant Sci-Fi interfaces blog before, but a good introduction to the research and analysis done by Chris and his associates is this presentation he gave at last year's Reaktor Breakpoint conference. His three most recent blog posts are also worth digesting--an examination of science fiction's interpretation of and solutions to the Fermi paradox and the implications of those stories to society.

    Making the Mad Max R/C Car Part 2: Fabricating the Accessories

    When we last left my little obsession, I had just finished making a vacuum formed plastic shell body for my LaTrax Teton R/C car. So far, my experiment had been going smoothly, but something was missing. While the stock car body was baby skin smooth, I wanted my new scale model to have all the bells and whistles of a full sized vehicle! So, I set about building all of the accessory pieces.

    In recent months, I've been diving into 3D printing with both feet. Thus, it made sense for me to make many of these tiny parts with a 3D printer. Since I had 3D modeled the master part for the car body shell, I could model the rear rack, custom rims, headlamps, jerry cans, and other accoutrement perfectly to scale.

    All of the parts were modeled in Fusion 360 and prepared in Simplify 3D. Then they were printed on my Dremel Idea Builder and it performed magnificently! I used a standard PLA filament and printed the parts at the highest possible resolution. I was actually really impressed with the parts that this champ of a machine pooped out!

    Since some of these parts were very small, thin, and weirdly shaped, many of them required quite a bit of support material. While this did triple the filament used, and take quite a bit longer, the resulting parts came off the support material quite easily and required very little clean up.

    Any hideously offending printing artifacts were filled in with a little bit of red spot putty and then I got to sanding. Most of the sanding was done to remove as much of the horizontal printing lines as possible. For this task I employed 220 grit sandpaper and sanding twigs.

    Mad Dash Around the World - Still Untitled: The Adam Savage Project - 7/5/16
    Adam makes his way back to the cave after recent trips from Australia to New York, and we recap a few of our adventures abroad. We also talk about Adam's latest project: a live build of his own Strandbeest while in residence at San Francisco's Exploratorium museum. It's a big project with a design that's still percolating in his head! (Thanks to TunnelBear for supporting Still Untitled this week!)
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    The Rick Baker Show - Episode 43 - 7/1/16
    On this episode, the first of July (on the first of July) Frank and I welcome special effects legend THE Rick Baker. If you're not aware of Rick Baker, you should be! He's worked on so many iconic shows including Star Wars, Harry and The Hendersons, Men in Black, American Werewolf in London and many, many more. Frank and I are honored to have him on the show. Enjoy it! If you're digging this show, please head over to and support us with a few bucks. Thanks for listening!
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