For my final project, I wanted to do something that was creative, functional, good looking, and challenge me to work with my hands. After hearing that the final project had to be dynamic, I immediately started to think of a half-baked project that I have been thinking about for the past year.
Inspirations/What it will do
After seeing the movie, The Illusionist, I really was impressed with the woodworking the main character does. I was especially enticed by the locket shown in the seen below. In the movie, it is a secret pennant that the main character gives his childhood sweetheart. I won’t spoil more than that, but you should all go see it!
However, after doing some cursory research, it was revealed that there are actually two lockets used in the movie; one that twists and one that swings open. So much for magic but I guess that’s show biz for ya. Looking up this locket online, there are quite a few videos showing how to make it and even a company that will charge you an arm and a leg for one ($250). However, in almost all of these, the axes of rotation are different, rotating about the center and one of the lobes of the heart. I will be attempting to make a dynamic version that hinges in the same places as the movie (rotate about the center and the bottom of the heart). The three states (oval, heart-closed, heart-open) can be seen in the images below.
The hope for this project is that people will look at it and ask “Wow what a cool locket. Where did you buy that?” In other words, I want it to both look and feel professional, complete, and clean. I also don’t really have a need to keep the pictures secret from an evil prince (I wasn’t joking, go watch the movie) so I would like the design to promote people who are reasonably intelligent to be able to figure out how to open it.
I hope to made something that really looks good. Beyond that, I am
hoping to incorporate a bit of The Aesthetic of Really Small Things as well as aspects of the fine woodworking/woodcarving aesthetic and the aesthetic of fine wooden jewelry.
The Hardest Part
I think there will be two parts of the project that will be very challenging, the hinges and the design on the outside. The hard part about the hinges will be making them so that there is very little play (or wiggle) in the hinge and still have the rotation feel smooth. I really want a professional feel and this is the majority of where this will come from. I am especially concerned with the double-half pin in the bottom of the heart. I will have to make two stepped dowels and cut them in half so that they are as similar as possible.
The second hard part will be the design on the outside of the locket. The movie’s design (the “butterfly” or “smile-with-weird-eyebrows”
What it will Cost
Time. The biggest cost of this project will be time by far. I have spent some hours here and there on it in the past and really haven’t gotten anywhere. I have a feeling that in order to make the holes for the rotation pins in the right place, it will take lots of jigging and very careful work. Apart from that, I have listed what I think the major cost will be for the final product.
- Walnut – 1/16″ = $4.75
- Walnut – 1/4″ = $4.75
- Hard Maple or Cherry – 1/16″ = $4.00
- Jewelry Chain = $25.00
- Random Hardware and Shipping= $15.00
Total = $53.50
If you have been following my posts, many of you knowthat I am a very big skier. As such, I will have limited time to get in a wood shop and make prototypes until the ski racing season calms down. Because of this, I have front-loaded my schedule with tons of design work and planning. Hopefully this will make the manufacturing much easier.