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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by CDW View Post
    I've recently picked up a minor obsession with the technical side of the HM, and at the moment I'm trying to learn all I can about the blast-up ghosts, which I understand is a popular subject around here. Based on what I've found so far (for which these threads have been invaluable), I've got a couple of questions I wanted to run past the experts around here:

    1. It looks like there has been more than one design for the blast-up mechanism used in the parks. Particularly, compare this image from Daveland:

    a. Attachment 26373

    and this image posted at one point by HBG2:

    b. Attachment 26374

    to this image also posted by HBG2:

    c. Attachment 26375

    and the blast-up ghost blueprint, also posted by HBG2 (where is this from, by the way? I can't find it in any of the blueprints I've been able to get my hands on):

    d. Attachment 26376

    The latter two images show two clearly visible wire guides on the sides of the head, and the wig on the head of the prop shown in picture c seems like it's exactly covering where the blueprint shows a mounting strip running over the top of the head. The first two images, however, seem to show the wires going to guides mounted significantly farther back and inboard on the head, such that the guides aren't visible (red circles in the images below), as well as a lack of a visible mounting strip. Additionally, where the blueprints seem to suggest a simple cup underneath the head to receive the air jet nozzle, these heads seem to have some kind of post projecting from the bottom of the skull (blue circles in the images below). Although it's clearly not in use at the time, so it may have simply been removed, the green head in picture c doesn't seem to have such a post either. Though I can't find the picture now, I feel reasonably confident that I've seen a picture of a wig-headed blast-up in use in-ride (other than HBG2's photoshop recreation). That suggests that the blueprint-style mounting was used at some point. All the videos I've seen of the remaining blast-up in the DL graveyard look like the style in the first two pictures. Images with highlights for comparison:

    Attachment 26377

    Attachment 26378

    Was there more than one generation of blast-up technology? If so, why the change-over to the post? Making the wire guides less visible obviously improves the illusion, but adding the post seems to have the opposite effect. Or am I mistaken here, and it's all just a trick of the camera angles?


    2. In my travels, I came across this auction (not currently active, as far as I can tell) for prop heads that the seller suggests, but does not explicitly claim, came from the HM:

    DISNEYLAND HAUNTED MANSION VINTAGE 60's BLUE GHOST CREATURE FACE HEAD HORROR PROP
    DISNEYLAND HAUNTED MANSION VINTAGE 60's 70's DARK GREEN GHOST CREATURE FACE HEAD HORROR PROP
    DISNEYLAND HAUNTED MANSION VINTAGE LIGHT GREEN GHOST CREATURE FACE HEAD HORROR PROP

    Now, they're clearly not the organ banshee faces we know, but they are very similar in idea, and they seemed suggestive of the "wrinkled" faces GRD999 said were at one point used on the blast-up mounts (Long-forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect?, #167). Those threaded rods at the top could be mounting points for the wire guide assembly (though the blueprint above seems to indicate only one such point, not two). So: fakes, fan/competitor replicas, or real?
    Those heads raise more questions than they answer. I've been doing as detailed a study as I can between the blue head in the first link and the wrinkled-faced popup (don't ask me how I can do it; I can't tell you). One is more elongated than the other, but that could be camera angle or even material used in the mold. There are just too many fluky details that match. So I'm going to call it a genuine Disney head. How and where it came from is a mystery. This could be the first real evidence that one of the alternate varieties of blast-up heads was actually used (the other one is a devil's head). But the head doesn't look like it was fitted out for a blast-up assembly. It could be something as stupid as someone at Disney doing a head with an otherwise dis-used mold and giving it to a friend, with him in turn using it as is or even making new molds from it. (The heads in the other two links, one of fiberglass and one of foam rubber, are clearly the same head just painted differently.)

    So yeah, I'm going to say it's from a genuine Disney pop up head mold. Lots of unanswered questions.
    "My mental facilities are twice what yours are, pea brain!"

    The conversation continues at Long-Forgotten, the blog.

  2. #6362

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by HBG2 View Post
    But the head doesn't look like it was fitted out for a blast-up assembly.
    What makes you say that? Those threaded rods on the top seem like they'd be well-placed for attachment points between the head and that blast-up mounting strap shown in the blueprint. While the blueprint does only show one such point, it doesn't seem unlikely that there might be deviations in the final product of that sort - if I'm not crazy about the stuff in the first half of what I said above, they switched from a cup to a post on the bottom of the blast-ups between the blueprints and what eventually found its way into operation.

    As to the paint jobs, I buy that the first (blue) one could have been a Disney paint job, but the style used on the other two seems out of place with the other HM faces I've seen - they seem a bit more pretzel-ridey than what I'm used to from Disney. It's very cartoonish, and while a lot of the faces on HM are certainly broadly comic, they all seem to have a certain grounding that the green face lacks. Yet they are all clearly from the same mold. It really is odd.


    Quote Originally Posted by HBG2 View Post
    I've been doing as detailed a study as I can between the blue head in the first link and the wrinkled-faced popup (don't ask me how I can do it; I can't tell you).
    It's ok, HBG2 - everyone knows you've been living secretly in the Mansion since late '69. You don't have to pretend anymore .

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    I think I may have found something in the WDW Attic
    http://api.ning.com/files/Bf8xrVXbt2.../AtticHats.JPG
    Note the circular sorta-thing near the hatrack near the beam
    I have a hypothesis that that item is a straw contraption as seen near the center of this pre-07 Attic shot. I need the Experts to confirm however.

    Last edited by HMF; 01-14-2013 at 01:35 AM.

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by CDW View Post
    What makes you say that? Those threaded rods on the top seem like they'd be well-placed for attachment points between the head and that blast-up mounting strap shown in the blueprint. While the blueprint does only show one such point, it doesn't seem unlikely that there might be deviations in the final product of that sort - if I'm not crazy about the stuff in the first half of what I said above, they switched from a cup to a post on the bottom of the blast-ups between the blueprints and what eventually found its way into operation.

    As to the paint jobs, I buy that the first (blue) one could have been a Disney paint job, but the style used on the other two seems out of place with the other HM faces I've seen - they seem a bit more pretzel-ridey than what I'm used to from Disney. It's very cartoonish, and while a lot of the faces on HM are certainly broadly comic, they all seem to have a certain grounding that the green face lacks. Yet they are all clearly from the same mold. It really is odd.
    The bolts don't match either schematic that we have, and I'd expect to see other "fingerprints" if the head really was clamped inside a slide apparatus for years.

    Quote Originally Posted by HMF View Post
    I think I may have found something in the WDW Attic
    http://api.ning.com/files/Bf8xrVXbt2.../AtticHats.JPG
    Note the circular sorta-thing near the hatrack near the beam
    I have a hypothesis that that item is a straw contraption as seen near the center of this pre-07 Attic shot. I need the Experts to confirm however.

    The first is an upended rocking chair with a cane weave on the seat; the second is a small, round, wickerwork table.
    "My mental facilities are twice what yours are, pea brain!"

    The conversation continues at Long-Forgotten, the blog.

  5. #6365

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Hi everyone. I'm been reading this thread on and off for a while now and decided to join so I can actually post. Let me start by just saying I love the Haunted Mansion. I have only been on the WDW version and that was over ten years ago now (I'm from the UK, not easy to get to the Mansion from here, hopefully one day I can return). But its my dream to one day visit the original in DLR. I love learning about the Mansions and this thread has helped me quite a bit! (As has the Long Forgotten blog.) I hope I can join in with your conversations every now and again, I like to think that I know quite a bit about the ride even though I'm no where near it.

    I should probably mention I also have been on Phantom Manor a number of times (I consider both the Mansion and the Manor my favourite ride, I can't pick between the two of them, I like to research the Manor as much as the Mansion). Dunno if you guys are interested but I'm maybe going to DLRP again this year and want to take a lot of photos of the Manor and surrounding area.

    Oh annnnd I'm actually female, I just use the name Ezra because he's my favourite character in the Mansion, that and my favourite from the Manor is the character known as Ezra too so it works for both.

    Must admit I'm kinda shy about posting here... (if anyone here is also on the Haunted Mansion forums I'm Lady Dobbins on there). Oh and I'm very excited about the new movie that's being made! I do hope the Hatbox Ghost gets returned to the Mansion.
    Last edited by Ezra; 01-14-2013 at 11:52 AM.

  6. #6366

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Welcome aboard and there's always room for one more Mansion fan! Here's hoping you do get to experience the Anaheim original Mansion sometime not too far in the future

    And certainly, Phantom Manor detail photos are always welcome I daresay: never know what interesting aspects or such never been shared before just from seeing the odd photo now and again, and most of use here Stateside are in the same situation you are in terms of...academic studying of the distant attraction (Phantom Manor for us) without having experienced it firsthand.
    when the spooks have a midnight jamboree....

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by Ezra View Post
    Hi everyone. I'm been reading this thread on and off for a while now and decided to join so I can actually post. Let me start by just saying I love the Haunted Mansion. I have only been on the WDW version and that was over ten years ago now (I'm from the UK, not easy to get to the Mansion from here, hopefully one day I can return). But its my dream to one day visit the original in DLR. I love learning about the Mansions and this thread has helped me quite a bit! (As has the Long Forgotten blog.) I hope I can join in with your conversations every now and again, I like to think that I know quite a bit about the ride even though I'm no where near it.

    I should probably mention I also have been on Phantom Manor a number of times (I consider both the Mansion and the Manor my favourite ride, I can't pick between the two of them, I like to research the Manor as much as the Mansion). Dunno if you guys are interested but I'm maybe going to DLRP again this year and want to take a lot of photos of the Manor and surrounding area.

    Oh annnnd I'm actually female, I just use the name Ezra because he's my favourite character in the Mansion, that and my favourite from the Manor is the character known as Ezra too so it works for both.

    Must admit I'm kinda shy about posting here... (if anyone here is also on the Haunted Mansion forums I'm Lady Dobbins on there). Oh and I'm very excited about the new movie that's being made! I do hope the Hatbox Ghost gets returned to the Mansion.
    welcome to the tread!

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by HBG2 View Post
    The bolts don't match either schematic that we have, and I'd expect to see other "fingerprints" if the head really was clamped inside a slide apparatus for years.
    Either schematic? What's the second? I've only seen the one I posted above and the Yale Gracey sketch (both courtesy of you - thanks, btw). I agree that it was probably never actually used, due to the lack of any marks from a mount, but that doesn't mean it wasn't intended for such a use.


    Quote Originally Posted by HBG2 View Post
    The first is an upended rocking chair with a cane weave on the seat; the second is a small, round, wickerwork table.
    I'm no attic decorations expert, but I'm pretty sure HMF's right - in the second picture, if you look between the hatrack and the post in the center of the picture, it looks like it's the same round wicker thing. It's kind of blurry, and partially blocked by cobwebs, but the shape and size looks very similar. Apparently the previous inhabitants got tired of their outdoor entertaining set.

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by HBG2 View Post
    The first is an upended rocking chair with a cane weave on the seat; the second is a small, round, wickerwork table.
    Quote Originally Posted by CDW View Post
    I'm no attic decorations expert, but I'm pretty sure HMF's right - in the second picture, if you look between the hatrack and the post in the center of the picture, it looks like it's the same round wicker thing. It's kind of blurry, and partially blocked by cobwebs, but the shape and size looks very similar. Apparently the previous inhabitants got tired of their outdoor entertaining set.
    I believe HBG2 is correct. They are two different materials woven in two totally different patterns. The first is an upended rocker with an open weave cane seat. The other appears to be a tightly woven wicker table top - or perhaps a basket lid.

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by CDW View Post
    Either schematic? What's the second? I've only seen the one I posted above and the Yale Gracey sketch (both courtesy of you - thanks, btw). I agree that it was probably never actually used, due to the lack of any marks from a mount, but that doesn't mean it wasn't intended for such a use.


    No evidence this style was ever used. Anyway, the blue head is made of "old school foam rubber." The blastup heads, including the droopy style we're looking at, were dura flex, a hard plastic. The head is explicitly described as "dura flex" in the documentary evidence.

    I'm no attic decorations expert, but I'm pretty sure HMF's right - in the second picture, if you look between the hatrack and the post in the center of the picture, it looks like it's the same round wicker thing. It's kind of blurry, and partially blocked by cobwebs, but the shape and size looks very similar. Apparently the previous inhabitants got tired of their outdoor entertaining set.
    Look again. Upended rocking chair. See the rockers? And the cane weave looks to me nothing like the weave in the wickerwork table.
    "My mental facilities are twice what yours are, pea brain!"

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by HBG2 View Post
    No evidence this style was ever used. Anyway, the blue head is made of "old school foam rubber." The blastup heads, including the droopy style we're looking at, were dura flex, a hard plastic. The head is explicitly described as "dura flex" in the documentary evidence.
    Interesting! That schematic is actually quite suggestive for my first question; it shows the wires much closer to the positions shown in the pictures in the first group I mentioned, as well as containing a cup that hangs down in the same position as the "post" in those pictures, though obviously it's much larger. Regarding the auction heads, I'll cede the point based on the materials - that sounds pretty conclusive - but I do have to say, don't the two mounting points I've circled in red below look to be in exactly the positions of the threaded rods on the auction heads?

    Name:  1schematic2_highlight.jpg
Views: 347
Size:  28.1 KB

    What are the dates on those schematics? Is it possible that both were just design iterations, and we don't have the schematics for the blast-ups as they were actually installed?


    Quote Originally Posted by Grinning Ghost View Post
    I believe HBG2 is correct. They are two different materials woven in two totally different patterns. The first is an upended rocker with an open weave cane seat. The other appears to be a tightly woven wicker table top - or perhaps a basket lid.
    Quote Originally Posted by HBG2 View Post
    Look again. Upended rocking chair. See the rockers? And the cane weave looks to me nothing like the weave in the wickerwork table.
    I'm talking about the thing circled in red below, between the hatrack and the post in the center of the picture, not the chair circled in blue. That's obviously a chair.
    Name:  AtticHats.JPG
Views: 348
Size:  234.8 KB

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by CDW View Post




    I'm talking about the thing circled in red below, between the hatrack and the post in the center of the picture, not the chair circled in blue. That's obviously a chair.
    Name:  AtticHats.JPG
Views: 348
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    The one circled in red is indeed what I am referring to.

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by CDW View Post
    I'm talking about the thing circled in red below, between the hatrack and the post in the center of the picture, not the chair circled in blue. That's obviously a chair.
    Name:  AtticHats.JPG
Views: 348
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    Ah, ok - that item does appear to be the same thing in both photos.

  14. #6374

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by RegionsBeyond View Post
    Welcome aboard and there's always room for one more Mansion fan! Here's hoping you do get to experience the Anaheim original Mansion sometime not too far in the future

    And certainly, Phantom Manor detail photos are always welcome I daresay: never know what interesting aspects or such never been shared before just from seeing the odd photo now and again, and most of use here Stateside are in the same situation you are in terms of...academic studying of the distant attraction (Phantom Manor for us) without having experienced it firsthand.
    Thanks! I do hope to one day ride it, it would be very special for me to do so.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hatbox999 View Post
    welcome to the tread!
    Thank you.


    Anyhow I have a very random question for anyone here who might know; exactly when did Ezra get hair? I've heard it was after the first HMH overlay but I dunno... also was his ghosty-go-round version changed to have hair at the same time or not? I think it used to look like the one at WDW for a while right? (The version that was replaced by the CGI ghosts). And did he really just get hair to match the merchandise?

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    Re: The Long-Forgotten Haunted Mansion Effect Thread 7: Further Realms of Fright

    Quote Originally Posted by CDW View Post
    Interesting! That schematic is actually quite suggestive for my first question; it shows the wires much closer to the positions shown in the pictures in the first group I mentioned, as well as containing a cup that hangs down in the same position as the "post" in those pictures, though obviously it's much larger. Regarding the auction heads, I'll cede the point based on the materials - that sounds pretty conclusive - but I do have to say, don't the two mounting points I've circled in red below look to be in exactly the positions of the threaded rods on the auction heads?

    Name:  1schematic2_highlight.jpg
Views: 347
Size:  28.1 KB

    What are the dates on those schematics? Is it possible that both were just design iterations, and we don't have the schematics for the blast-ups as they were actually installed?
    I have no dates on those schematics. Notice that the bolts are holding down a plate that actually covers a hole going all the way through the head. The air blast pushes up that plate in this design. So I would expect a hole in the head there if this were the design.

    Here's another thought. Pre-opening, they make the molds and do a bunch of heads with different materials, experimenting. They're also experimenting with painting styles, what kind of face they want. They finally settle on the dura flex banshee skulls we're familiar with. Meanwhile, there's a box of soon-to-be-forgotten experimental prototypes sitting around in a corner at MAPO, gathering dust. Finally, someone gives the unwanted box to an outside friend.

    Also, the back of that blue head looks like it has a handle or something that seems similar to the one on the back of Yale Gracey's mysterious golden skull.



    Quote Originally Posted by Ezra View Post
    Anyhow I have a very random question for anyone here who might know; exactly when did Ezra get hair? I've heard it was after the first HMH overlay but I dunno... also was his ghosty-go-round version changed to have hair at the same time or not? I think it used to look like the one at WDW for a while right? (The version that was replaced by the CGI ghosts). And did he really just get hair to match the merchandise?
    Nice to see you over here, LD. Ezra had hair by 1990 at the latest, and I assume that the mirror figs got hair to match at the same time. Later in the 90's he got a lot more hair. That's all I know.
    "My mental facilities are twice what yours are, pea brain!"

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