Adam Savage’s Very First Vacuuming Forming Project!


Adam Savage from tested here in my cave
with a show-and-tell there’s a lot of different reasons I store things or keep
things in this cave I keep materials for using I keep objects that are important
to me from a sentimental standpoint and occasionally not often but occasionally
I store things just because I think they’re magnificently designed this
actually satisfies all three of those categories interestingly this was the
helmet I coveted for more than a year in 1985
this was bells but I remember the time was as bells first aerodynamic bicycle
helmet it was over a hundred bucks it took me months to save up for it and
when I bought it I used to crap out of that thing this is not the one I had in
New York in the 80s but I had an identical one that I painted and wore on
the streets of New York riding ten to twelve miles a day for
years and I loved this helmet it felt good to wear but also it’s gorgeous look
at that line that is that’s a great piece of industrial design but the thing
that I find most fascinating about it is that I can tell it was designed in the
80s how I’m actually really curious about that I think that’s a genuinely
interesting industrial design question what about this tells me it’s from the
80s I mean there’s all sorts of things that could be manufacturing artifacts of
the radius of some of the pieces the kind of tooling that they would have
used then as opposed to now the fact that this is a thin piece of injection
molded plastic there are such a confluence of small details that I think
communicates when this was built there’s a lot of design education in unpacking
why it’s really clear that this was built in the 80s now I carried that
helmet around with me for years and ended up using it as a basis for some
industrial design that I did in 1992 or 93 I was working as an assistant for
Chico McMurtry of a morphic robot works down in the Bayview building robots and
animatronics pneumatics hydraulics and at the same time I was doing freelance
art design art direction production design and I
is doing the sets and costumes for a dance production at the College of Marin
called who’s afraid of the dark actually did that production two years in a row
and one of the years we needed 10 reptilian style helmets for dancers and
we had zero money we had no money at all for budget so I had to figure out a way
to make 10 lightweight helmets the dancers could wear had to be lightweight
because I got to move a lot and I can’t wear have a lot of torque on their necks
and I chose this as the basis for that chica McMurtry of amorphic robot works I
had built a functioning vacuform machine that was the first vacuum or machine I
ever operated and utilize it was 2 by 2 feet and I decided to make the dancers
helmets using the bell helmet as the basis this is an unpainted version of
one of those dancers helmets and I’ll explain how I got this from this what
chica was really interested in was vacuform as a way of adding dimension to
his robots and in as a way of adding lots of variegation in the vacuform as
he was using he was utilizing a lot of wet water-based clay on top of the
bucket that’s probably not very important he was using water-based clay
on top of the bucks he was forming over so this is my buck and I was adding this
spine like a char Geiger’s alien or David Warner’s helmet from Time Bandits
I was adding these details on top of each helmet vacu forming over it would
flatten some of the clay I would start heating up the plastic and mold another
one and form it and I made all 10 helmets on this on one of these original
Bell helmets this one I saved for myself and I did not paint it because I love
how it looks clear to make the inside I simply filled the void of the helmet
with clay and a shape that fit my head and this is what the dancers wore it
weighs almost nothing I think it’s like three and a half ounces perfect for
dancers and the first vacuform project I ever did that’s my show-and-tell
and I’m sticking to it Oh

87 thoughts on “Adam Savage’s Very First Vacuuming Forming Project!

  1. The aerodynamics may be one of the things that scream 1980's . . . They're good enough to be effective, but fairly basic when compared to aerodynamics today, rather like an F1 car of the period, compared to a current F1 car.

  2. I would really love Adam to go over certain objects and explain how he sees from the artifacts and all, how something was made, and when.

  3. Im almost certain there have been people "Dredding" not being able to find that helmet for some specific cosplay project.

  4. Adam, and all other people in the comments , whats your way to track all the projects that you have and want to do? i find my self jumping from one project to another not finishing eather of them, and thats annoys the hell out of me ><

  5. I can tell this Bell helmet is 80s design (I was around then), because its fugly. Look at how they do these today: ugly minus the F – its an improvement, but still bad. 😜

  6. More "show and tell" videos in our playlist! https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLJtitKU0CAeibKjWRsIIGQ8m_aeVXoDUA

  7. Thank you for sharing your history, Adam! Very interesting how you started your projects and your intro in Chico. Hopefully I'll aspire to be good at some things you are good at. Industrial Light and Magic sounds like a fun job! Best of wishes in your future projects and have a great day, Adam!

  8. If you want a real challenge.. try duplication the bubble on the b9 robot from the Lost In Space original series.

  9. Was REALLY hoping that you where going to show us "Shade-Tree Fabricators" how to make an Affordable but good Vacuum Form Press/Table…

    That would be SWEET to utilize with some type of Fiberglass/Vinyl Forms!

    If you read this Adam, or Random Staff Member, please respond with a LINK.😿

    Take care,
    🤓 -Thomas
    Western Washington State

  10. The conversations you must have with yourself Adam, id love to be a fly on the wall when you have some alone time just to hear what you talk to yourself about

  11. Anything Ferrari red, high gloss, stupidly for-show-aerodynamic, with "Cool" rating 10 times more important than practical screams 80s. Especially with a visor. It looks awesome!

  12. It's not really hard to figure out a house when it was built or a toy. But I think it's about experience and knowledge that you can spot when that thing was designed. UNLESS you have one of those crazy artistic people that are thinking form over function.

  13. I had that helmet too. Lost it at the end of a long ride in the mid 90s 🙁 set it down & thought it was in my travel bag, etc… very cool though.

  14. In the background on the right I recognized the two "birds" that are on the top of the ark of the covenant in "raiders of the lost ark" 🙂

  15. Man , your hair almost deserted you , there's barely enough for two showers
    Maybe some science project on this could be your salvation;)

  16. To me 80's and 70's stype is if youd see someone wear it in a maybe a but cheap space movie or in a grest space movie but you wouldnt recognize it lol

  17. For me and many people you are a clown, ridiculous, since the episode in which you tried to demonstrate the sphericity of the earth.

  18. To me it screams “Klingon” which is unsurprising given that the inspiration for both the helmet and the Klingon cranial ridges was a spinal column.

  19. That man is not even part of our species…. WOW I am a maker but he's like a can of ether in a diesel engine.. Just a friggin catalyst..

  20. Lack of computer flow dynamics and designers from those times, borrowing, from one another as they always have and always will.

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