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'ankh' shaped Tardis door key

Started by markofrani, Dec 01, 2007, 05:13 pm

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galacticprobe

Jul 06, 2010, 05:18 am #45 Last Edit: Jul 06, 2010, 05:35 am by galacticprobe
Quote from: hb88banzai on Jul 06, 2010, 12:44 am
All the keys I've seen on eBay that claim to be "cast from the same molds," etc, as the Pertwee key I can pretty well say flat out, no, they weren't.

That's not a reflection of the improbabilities involved, but rather the simple result of just a passing glance at the details of the front side that is so well documented from screen caps.


Hence my use of the word "purported." I noticed those inaccuracies as well, which is why, at the time, I thought he was asking a bit too much for a starting bid. It didn't sell - twice - and I don't think I've seen it listed again since. (Watch it turn up at a Con one day.)

Sadly, still, that one is the ONLY image we have of the back of the Pertwee key to go by (until someone can sneak a photo of it from "Who Prop Guy"). I don't have a "Planet of the Spiders" DVD yet: reeeaaaallllllyyyyy bad arachnophobia, me, which is why I have trouble buying that one. (Good suffering Jehosaphat, you should have seen me when my wife took me to see that one "Harry Potter" movie where Harry and Ron had to follow the spiders and... let's just stop there!) And it's been so long since I've seen the "PotS" episode (1988, I think it was) I can't remember if we ever get even a glimpse of the back of Pertwee's key in that one.

Quote from: philipw on Jul 05, 2010, 07:11 pm
Quote from: galacticprobe on Jul 05, 2010, 06:39 pm

Since that day Philip Segal has held a special place on every sheet of bathroom tissue I've ever used.



Oh geez, I about spit out my Dr. Pepper when I read this.  :)


Sorry about that, but I seem to have a knack for doing that - totally unintentionally - with people and Dr. Pepper. A good friend I had on the last ship I was stationed on loved Dr. Pepper, and without fail, if he had just taken a drink, I said something that he found so funny that everyone hit the deck as he "redecorated" the Chiefs' Mess - and never was the word "mess" more appropriate at those times! I could mention a few of the times, but this is a "family" forum, and while the wording wouldn't be totally inappropriate, I'll play it safe.

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

hb88banzai

Jul 09, 2010, 10:12 am #46 Last Edit: Jul 09, 2010, 10:13 am by hb88banzai
It's been a long time, and I still haven't dug up my old screen pics, but from my recollection of the shots from Genesis the spacing and pattern of the dimples or pits on the Baker key is more like the Spirit of Light/1-800-Trekker key than the other replicas above. I wasn't as convinced of the line arrangement between the pits, despite this being consistent across all the replicas to date, but possibly the DVD would clear this up.

That said, I don't really know (or remember fully what I did know) the actual source of the Spirit of Light key pattern. I had heard various accounts of its authenticity, but IIRC the claims made back then were somewhat suspect due to the individuals involved. I don't remember the details, unfortunately. Regardless, compared to all the "replicas" that existed before it, the Spirit-of-Light (and the recast 1-800-Trekker versions) where a great step forward.

galacticprobe

Jul 10, 2010, 01:45 am #47 Last Edit: Jul 10, 2010, 01:55 am by galacticprobe
Just came across this image of the 1996 Movie key back while looking around for someplace to get some of those tall, clear pyramid-shaped bits on the 2005 console and thought I'd add it to the mix of the ankh/spade-shaped key. It's a still from the 1996 Movie when Chang Lee tries to figure out how the key might work. It gives a nice clear image of the back of the key, and anyone who owns one of the Spirit of Light replicas should recognize it.

MovieKey-lock.jpg        tardiskey(Pertwee).jpg
               1996 Movie Key                      Pertwee Key replica (purported to be cast from an original mould)

Even with this one the alignment of the "stars" in the constellation is different than on the Pertwee key replica (although it is very close if you look at them), and it also appears to be different (again with those two left most stars) from the version I posted earlier for the 4th and Movie 7th/8th Doctor key.

Is it possible that there is a difference between the back of the 4th Doctor's key and that on the Movie 7th/8th Doctor's key? If so we have yet another version of the key floating around out there. Since an actual Spirit of Light key was used in the Movie, their replica of the 4th Doctor's key is off where the constellation on the back is concerned.

Maybe this key is an actual prop key from the 4th Doctor era:
tardiskey.jpg
and not a prop replica, as an image of it also appeared at one time on a prop collector's site.
Tkey02.JPG
The image of the key displayed on the red background was said to have been of the actual Tom Baker era key prop, which at the time was in the hands of a private collector. I found that image on a web site back in 2004 (according to the date the image was created on my computer); that site now appears defunct as when I clicked on the Favorite Place I saved it as I received an 'Error 404: Site not Found'. So, if anyone here knows of a site now where this image is being posted, or who should be credited with it, please say so and post the link to that site.

That said... Notice the similarity (both front and back) between the keys in the grey and red background images, and their difference on the back to the key in the image from the Movie? So unless I'm wrong, we are dealing with three versions of this key: Pertwee, Tom Baker, and 1996 Movie McCoy/McGann versions.

And just when we thought we had this (mostly) figured out: except for the flippin' back of the original Pertwee key that we can't seem to get an accurate photo of!

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

lespaceplie

I found a photo from "Terror of the Zygons" that shows the back of the key. Unfortunately this is merely a scan of a small area of a halftone print, but it does demonstrate that the Spirit of Light/recast keys are close in the star arrangement and overall shape. Also, here's a photo of both sides of my recast key. I got this before the Trekker key was made available so there must be all sorts of recasts out there. I think this is as good as it gets without making your own.

key.jpg tardiskeysm.jpg

galacticprobe

Jul 12, 2010, 04:29 am #49 Last Edit: Jul 12, 2010, 04:34 am by galacticprobe
OK, then. Maybe I was wrong about that supposed actual prop (in the red and grey background images) that was owned by a collector. (I really wish that site where I found it was still up.) Judging from that image from "Zygons" and the shape of the key from the 1996 Movie it looks like Spirit of Light might have gotten it spot on after all. (If they went through the trouble of getting the constellation alignment on the back right, and the shape of the key right, then it would be safe to surmise that they made the extra effort to get the front right as well.)

So that leaves the question of where did this other key (grey and red background images) come from? (Not that it really matters; it's obviously another inaccurate replica.) And again we're back to only two true versions of the key: the Pertwee, and the Tom Baker/1996 Movie versions. (I think that makes things a little easier, knowing that we have to deal with just two versions?)

Now the big problem still facing us is the back of Pertwee's key. Has anyone looked over their "Spider" DVD to see if it shows at all? If it doesn't, I've got a thought...

Forgetting the front of that badly cast Pertwee replica and concentrating on the back, since that constellation pattern is so close to that on the Tom Baker key, would it be safe to say that if someone were to try and make a better-quality replica, to use that Tom Baker pattern and just shift it to the center of the key (rather than have it hanging near the edge like on that bad replica)?

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

deck5

Quote from: galacticprobe on Jul 12, 2010, 04:29 am(I really wish that site where I found it was still up.)


What was the URL of the site?

galacticprobe

Jul 12, 2010, 05:16 am #51 Last Edit: Jul 12, 2010, 05:18 am by galacticprobe
Quote from: deck5 on Jul 12, 2010, 04:39 am

What was the URL of the site?


I can't remember, and I don't have the link anymore. Call me an idiot, but after trying several of my Doctor Who prop site favorites and having them give me that "Site not found on this server" error, I grew so frustrated that as I got that error I simply deleted each site with a "broken" link from my list. (It was several years ago when I bookmarked them, and it's been at least a year, maybe two thanks to work getting in the way, since I'd gone back to see if they'd picked up any more props.)

One thing I forgot to mention in my last post was, it's at times like this with props like this in question that I really miss having Purple chime in with his knowledge.

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

Borusa

"You have access to the greatest source of knowledge in the universe."

galacticprobe

Jul 15, 2010, 05:01 am #53 Last Edit: Jul 15, 2010, 05:03 am by galacticprobe
Quote from: Borusa on Jul 15, 2010, 03:27 am
Sounds good to me, Dino.


I've posted quite a bit on this topic. Like I said in one of my other posts: call me an idiot :P but which is the bit that sounds good? This way I'll know what I should work with.

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

Borusa

Sorry about that, Dino. My "sounds good" referred to you "Forgetting about that badly cast Pertwee key" paragraph. But I can see where the confusion can easily arise.

Matt
"You have access to the greatest source of knowledge in the universe."

galacticprobe

Jul 17, 2010, 06:15 pm #55 Last Edit: Jul 17, 2010, 06:18 pm by galacticprobe
Thanks for clearing that up, Matt: makes sense to me now.

So, to make a Pertwee version key replica, since we have a good image of the front, does anyone think it would be acceptable to use the pattern on the back of the Spirit of Light key for the back of the Pertwee key? Would the prop makers at the Beeb have changed the back of it that much when they made the Tom Baker version? I ask this because Spirit of Light did get it pretty much spot on for the Tom Baker/1996 Movie key, as shown in lespaceplie's post of the image from "Zygons" and the Spirit of Light replica.

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

Darksyde

It wouldn't be accurate but I think I'd go with the current replica version back with the extra outlining. I just think it looks nicer.

kiwidoc

Purple Blancmange makes a few comments about the key on his blog today: http://purpleblancmange.wordpress.com/2010/07/18/general-frustration-and-his-friend-major-annoyance/ to whit:
"Back in 1996, just 12 days before he died, I had the pleasure of spending a day with Jon Pertwee (not name dropping here, by the way) and guess what he had with him.  Yep, his original TARDIS door key - he even let me have a damned good look at it too, it's a very simple prop..."

galacticprobe

Jul 19, 2010, 05:13 am #58 Last Edit: Jul 19, 2010, 05:15 am by galacticprobe
Quote from: kiwidoc on Jul 19, 2010, 12:58 am
Purple Blancmange makes a few comments about the key on his blog today: http://purpleblancmange.wordpress.com/2010/07/18/general-frustration-and-his-friend-major-annoyance/ to whit:
"Back in 1996, just 12 days before he died, I had the pleasure of spending a day with Jon Pertwee (not name dropping here, by the way) and guess what he had with him.  Yep, his original TARDIS door key - he even let me have a damned good look at it too, it's a very simple prop..."


So, maybe the back of the Tom Baker key shown in lespaceplie's "Zygons" image really is the back of the Pertwee key, if Purple was correct in that the Beeb gave Tom Baker a copy of the same key to use. So with the front of the Pertwee key so well shown, and now a decent look at the back (thanks, lespaceplie!) we could safely(?) say that we're only dealing with two versions of this key, only this time it's categorized as the 3rd/4th Doctor version, and the 7th/8th Doctor 1996 Movie version (a la Spirit of Light).

I think the important point here is Purple is rarely (if ever) wrong about his info, and if he says that Pertwee and Tom Baker used the same key (that is, another key made from the same mould as Pertwee's), then we do have a good image of the back of said key and a replica should be easy to tool up (at least in a plastic pattern or form anyhow). Casting a metal one from that form is another story. I don't have the skills for that, so it may be just plastic and some silver-ish paint for me.

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

Darksyde

Actually if you can get a good master to make a mold from most of the silicone mold rubbers are rated for low melt temperature metals, ie lead, pewter and such.