Bike cable rod puppets

Hello all!
i want to create the cable rod controllable puppets like from the movie Trolls and Ghoulies, i recall Savini used a technique like this for "Fluffy" and was curious if anyone can shed some light on the process and how to achieve those various movements. i believe John said he polyfoam a latex casting and i believe he then created either a plaster or resin undersell which he then used a variety of springs and rubber bands for resistance against the cable to create that movement. i know there is a lesson here about an animatronic head but would love to learn this method since it dose not require servos mechanisms and expensive software. i believe you can also use this methods to move eyes in teh creature head.
Thank you!


  • Hi Kevin,

    You are on the right track.   For cable-controlled features you want a rigid structure to anchor them to, so for a head a rigid resin or epoxy & fiberglass underskull is ideal.

    Most movements need a return, which is basically a way for them to self-center or return to their default position.  This is typically done with springs or elastic.  When you pull the cable you would pull against the spring/elastic, and when you release the cable the spring/elastic would provide the return movement.

    Cable control is a fantastic way to operate characters and is still widely used.

    This lesson includes a cable mech for the character's mouth movement.

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