The gargoyle prop was a multi-year project, which started in 2007 and ending in 2010. The notion was to create an animatronic prop of a gargoyle on top of a pedestal of some sort. The eyes would light up. The head would turn to follow you as you walked past. And (to my mind) the coolest thing would be that wings would furl and unfurl.
The build was ambitious, especially since it started on October 13th, 2007. The wings would be controlled by two PVC barrels with slots cut down the side. As the central shaft of the wing would rotate, the direction of the wings would be forced to follow the curvature of the slot.
The gargoyle would be crouching. I could picture it in my head, but my wife had a hard time picturing it, so I made the following mockup.
As the big night approached, it was clear the gargoyle wasn’t going to make prime-time. But not to be denied, I dragged him out into the near-porch spot, crouched on top of my table-saw stand, with a cloak draped over the mechanical frame, and a styrofoam skull as a placeholder, and a rough approximation of what the wings would look like…