I could spend hours poring over the mechanisms and electronics that lie beneath the animatronics of the film industry. I figured you might like them too, so I decided to start building one and appending instructions once complete.
This design takes the sneak peek at two-stage mechanisms from the Stan Winston tutorial and completely fleshes it out with my own design using a combination of laser-cut and off-the-shelf parts. (Ok, there were a couple 3D prints, too!)
To my fellow surgical-robot-and-animatronics enthusiasts, stay tuned!
With the second controller built, I connected it to the tentacle last night and gave it a whirl. It worked!
It looks like I'm going to need a rigid mounting fixture to prevent the base from twisting. I also had to be very particular with the arrangement of the cable housings (extension spring in this case) such that they don't cinch or rub against each other while the tentacle moves. With the proper base fixture, I can probably solve both of these issues to make mounting a snap.