Perspectives of a Writer and Musician

Issues related to writing, publishing and playing jazz music: One man's muse.
by Al Stevens

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Location: Florida, United States

Monday, June 19, 2006

Fitting the Jaw

Fitting a jaw to a face is a tedious task. You do the best you can when sculpting to ensure that the jaw fits and opens and closes cleanly and smoothly, but it's never right. The procedure starts after the axle is in place and involves cutting and filling on both the jaw and the jaw hole in the face until the jaw works properly. It's an interative process until everything is right. It's even more tedious when you want a perfect jaw fit.

Here's Uncle Sweeter's jaw during the procedure. You can see the MagicSculp that builds up the jaw at the bottom. This step takes a lot of time because everytime you add filler, you must wait for the filler to set up before you proceed.

While I'm waiting I can install the pulley that the jaw string goes through. The pulley is on an axle mounted in the back of the neck. It's slightly off center when aligned with the screw eye in the jaw because the string, being threaded through the screw eye, comes to the pulley from one side of the screw eye, and I use heavy duty nylon cord for control strings.

The string will angle down and forward to come out the front of the head stick. This configuration allows me to install the jaw lever on the front of the headstick or on either side. We'll get to that step much later. In the meantime, I'll be spending a lot of time getting the jaw to fit. Most of that time is spent waiting, so there are other tasks to undertake. The body, the hands, the arms and legs, the costume, and so on. There are always things to do.


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