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Black Guardian Crystal

Started by warmcanofcoke, Jul 11, 2017, 12:46 am

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warmcanofcoke

http://www.thepropgallery.com/vislor-turlough-mark-strickson-communication-crystal-the-black-guardian-trilogy
QuoteDoctor Who

Vislor Turlough (Mark Strickson) communication crystal - The Black Guardian trilogy



An original prop used in the production of the long running BBC television series Doctor Who.

This is an original communications crystal as used by Mark Strickson as Vislor Turlough throughout The Black Guardian trilogy comprising of the 1983 serials Mawdryn Undead, Terminus and Enlightenment. Such crystals are seen used at various points throughout these serials and represent a central plot device as the Black Guardian (Valentine Dyall) conspires to kill The Doctor (Peter Davison).

This crystal is an original used in the production of the trilogy and is one of a number built by the BBC Visual Effects Department. Constructed from moulded resin the prop features a small hollow to the underside where a light could be rigged for the shots where the crystal was required to glow, this was achieved by Strickson holding a bulb inside this hollow with the wire running down his arm. The crystal stands approximately 2.5" high and remains in good production used condition with some discolouration to the resin and chipping to the top which does not detract from the piece as there are various instances of chipped crystals on screen.

A highly significant and displayable artefact from this long running science fiction series.

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why doesn't the Guide mention them? - Oh, it's not very accurate.
Oh? - I'm researching the new edition.

galacticprobe

Jul 11, 2017, 04:50 am #1 Last Edit: Jul 11, 2017, 04:50 am by galacticprobe
Another great set of images and prop history, Nate! Thank you! What's always fascinated me about this prop is the way they were able to get that almost perfect spherical "bubble" inside the crystal (with that little cylindrical part at the sphere's base, which I never noticed before seeing these images). I've never casted anything larger than a small dome (for my little TARDIS model) so I have no idea how one would go about this. Drill into the casting (to get that cylindrical part) and then bore out the sphere part of the opening? Insert some sort of inflatable balloony-type thingy when casting the prop and then deflate it to remove it once the resin had set?

Such intricacy for such a small prop.

Dino.
"What's wrong with being childish?! I like being childish." -3rd Doctor, "Terror of the Autons"

Davros Skaro

That "bubble" looks like they used a glass globe (probable a blown one e.g. not working) inserted that into the resin, then broke it out when set. But then again, there could be other ways to do it! Just a thought.

Chris.
Chris.

warmcanofcoke

So we could get a tiny glass bottle that is sphere-like and then set resin around it.

Or one of those rubber balls with a flashing light inside it that lights up when it bounces or is shaken.
why doesn't the Guide mention them? - Oh, it's not very accurate.
Oh? - I'm researching the new edition.

Davros Skaro

Jul 11, 2017, 09:58 am #4 Last Edit: Jul 11, 2017, 10:00 am by Davros Skaro
Quote from: warmcanofcoke on Jul 11, 2017, 07:35 am
So we could get a tiny glass bottle that is sphere-like and then set resin around it.


Yep! Also the type of light globe I was referring to is something like these:
ge-25w-small-bayonet-classic-fancy-round-globe-clear.jpg
golf-ball-lamp-clear-15w-es-240-volt-light-bulb.jpg
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Also car brake or head lights that are similar in shape.

Chris.
Chris.

galacticprobe

Jul 12, 2017, 04:21 am #5 Last Edit: Jul 12, 2017, 04:24 am by galacticprobe
No offense intended, Chris, but I like Nate's idea of the rubber ball a little better. Having to break glass out of a resin casting could be dangerous, both to the builder and the casting. (All that broken glass? Nasty.)

Cutting a rubber ball apart to pull out should be easier because the rubber is less likely to stick to the resin than the glass, even with mould release. One could even tape the ball to a wooden dowel to get that cylindrical part just below that hollow, and the dowel could keep the ball in place until the resin set. Then (thanks to some mould release on the taped dowel) a little twist of the dowel would either break the dowel loose, or tear the tape. In either case the dowel would pop out and then the ball could be cut loose and removed. (Incidentally, for those that haven't heard yet, I've spoken to some professional model-builders and they say that Pam cooking spray works just as well as mould release, and is a fraction of the cost!)

Then a small torch/flashlight bulb or jumbo-high-brightness LED would have plenty of room to move in and out of the crystal to light it up as needed.

Dino.
"What's wrong with being childish?! I like being childish." -3rd Doctor, "Terror of the Autons"

Davros Skaro

Quote from: galacticprobe on Jul 12, 2017, 04:21 am
No offense intended, Chris, but I like Nate's idea of the rubber ball a little better. Having to break glass out of a resin casting could be dangerous, both to the builder and the casting. (All that broken glass? Nasty.)

Dino.

No Offense taken, as I said there could be other ways, & a rubber ball wouldn't work as when curing, the resin creates lots of heat & would melt the rubber, the other way would possibly be a ball of plaster that could be drilled out after, I only said glass because it was the right shape.
So still no offense taken, takes a lot more than that to up set or insult me!
So all's good!  :)

Chris.
Chris.

galacticprobe

Jul 12, 2017, 06:45 am #7 Last Edit: Jul 12, 2017, 06:45 am by galacticprobe
Quote from: Davros Skaro on Jul 12, 2017, 06:15 am
So still no offense taken, takes a lot more than that to up set or insult me!


Now then... this almost sounds like a challenge! (Don't worry. Even if it was I wouldn't take it up. ;))

So how about that "Chode Eraser"? ;D ;D ;D (Good? Bad? Deranged? All of the above?)

Dino.
"What's wrong with being childish?! I like being childish." -3rd Doctor, "Terror of the Autons"