Humaverse – Armature for Stop Motion
This article relates some of the things to watch out for when building your first Armature for Stop Motion animation. In this instance we are using Armaverse armature for stop motion available online to purchase. However most armature for stop motion animation is very similar so what is true for Armaverse armature will be true for most other brands of armature. Armaverse Phase 3 in this case, the 6 inch “Humaverse” kit comes in a handy steel tin. This tin will prove very useful for storing the bits and bolts if you decide to disassemble your armature some time down the line. Besides it looks cool so keep it safe.
Out of the box
When you open the tin for the first time the number of parts may be a bit daunting but don’t be put off. The kit includes an instruction manual with step by step photographs something like the
ones we have taken here for this armature tutorial. It might be worth initially taking a look through the various pieces and checking them against the inventory of parts but also just to familiarise yourself with them.
For each step as detailed in the manual lay out the parts you will need like the picture here shows. Believe me trying to put them together one by one while routing the the tin of parts is not a good idea!
You will notice that the rounded rectangular flat plates with the holes in them are different on each side. The side that has the concave hole is where you should be placing the ball bearings and dumbell-like parts as shown here in the picture to the right.
Lay them out as shown. By the way the LEGO plug board is very useful for making these parts as the lugs hold them in place while you get the next parts together.
Step by Step
Then carefully place the correct plates down on top of the other plates and screw them together. This is the armatures first arm.
Follow the same procedure as above for the second arm and you should end up with the two arms as shown here.
Now we move on to the legs. Again lay them out as shown here keeping the various parts grouped together.
As before with the arms make sure that the concave side of the plates receive the ball bearings, closing on them as shown here.
Don’t tighten the nuts and bolts to tightly for now. We will talk about how tight they should be later. Stop Motion animation is a delicate art and over tightening the armature will end up causing problems down the line.
Make sure that you put the threaded balls on the feet as shown as you will use them to tie down your character for animation.
Now the spine of the torso..which seems small with only a three hole plate but will become evident it is the correct size when you have completed the armature.
Screw the plates together as shown again making sure the cupped side of the plates point inward.
Now we move on to the upper body. Its relatively easy at this point to see how the character is beginning to take shape. Now add the lower body. Finally the legs are added and bingo..you’re done.