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Compass Part 2

Page history last edited by Shylaah 11 years, 12 months ago

Written exclusively for Confessions of a Jackaholic.  Do not copy and paste elsewhere.



Continued from

Compass Part 1


I have read in quite a few places that the compass was made extra small in order to make Depp's already small hands look larger.  I can't think of any possible reason why?  This just seems silly to me.  Regular and Oridnary compasses are small things--have you ever seen a LARGE compass? I'd say 2.5 to 3.5 inches would be about the standard range for any regular and ordinary compass as they are made to fit in the palm of your hand. Why wouldn't Jack's compass naturally be of a comparable size to that? Of course, Jack's compass is *special", but that doesn't mean it's got to be big and clunky. I think some of the toy replica makers got it a little too large, but hey, they were designing for the chucky little lunch-grabbers of children. Just my O.....


This thing is taking longer than I thought it would.  Got the bottom and top all assembled. Def decided to do mine CotBP. It looks a little deep to me, I may shave some off the depth. Got a spinner and a degree dial drawn and printed out and have a snippet of leather for the inside lid--I'm using black because I don't know what really is in there, and the little piece I have is something sentimental so SA or not, in it goes.

I am going to experiment on some finishes next. I dread that and really dread doing all that inlay work, all that tedious gluing!


Progress Pic:

Making the dome

The finished dome on the unfinished lid piece

Inside the dome n the unfinished lid piece

The assembled outside of the compass, the spinner, degree dial and leather


Put together a ring assembly for the back.  Top and bottom construction finished.  Ready to start putting on the "ebony and ivory"!


Progress Pic: All assembled, ready to put on the finish.


I found and bought some of this graphic art tape at Hobby Lobby. It comes in 1/16th, 1/8th and 1/4th inches wide. I got some of the 1/8th to use as 'masking tape' on the compass where the 'inlays' go, cause glues/adhesives

will stick better to the bare wood than to a finish on the wood.......I got some of it masked already....it is just too cute looking.....


I've been worried about doing the inlays, but if it's not much worse than doing the masking off with the tiny tape, I don't think it's gonna be too bad.....hardest part was that inner band on the top. I didn't do the insides yet, the part around the spinner. Don't know with what or how I'm going to do that perfect circle around the spinner opening......


Progress pic--masked off with tiny red tape and ready to start the finish on it.

I just love miniature things!!!



....a little photo manip magic to see kinda how it will look black with white...

looks so different now, huh??



I have started putting on the finish.  I used a semi opaque Burnt Sienna and a watered down black, the watering down makes it semi opaque.  I sanded and cleaned the wood then put on alternate coats of the paints, smoothing them out with #0000 steel wool between coats.  I put on about six coats.  Then I put on a couple coats of varnish, stripped off the masking tape and am ready to start the tedious gluing on of the 'inlays'........but first I got to paint the inlay stuff.


Progress pic. Yeah, it looks rather an ugly mess right now!!! Temp star field crammed in the dome. Ring and hinge temp stuck back on for a look see. Leather insert in lid not yet trimmed to the exact size. Really beginning to wish I was DONE with this!!!


Yep, this is one of those little projects I was thinking a week, maybe two if I just piddle around.....a lot more thinkin', improvisin' and parts huntin' than I was counting on!!


Started work on the spinner. I cleaned up, brightened and freshened this spinner pic.

<<<from this......to this>>>


I'm doing my compass build as the CotBP, like on the left below--though that's a terribly awful pic of it and I don't wish mine to be quite that washed out!?



Then I printed it and pasted a piece of pattern tissue paper over it to lighten and degrade it. 

I thought it was too light and degraded, so I did another printing and just lightened it up with some watered down off white acrylic paint.  The spinner is free floating. I stuck a pin through a block of balsa wood and measured and cut to the height I needed, punched a whole in the center of the spinner and put it over the pin. The balsa block is glued to the bottom of the spinner chamber, and the top end of the pin goes into the clay ball under the 'brass' dial assembly and keeps the spinner from falling out/off.  I didn't do anything to actually make it spin with magnets or whatevers, but you can turn it with a pin or toothpick or other similar small object to move the pointer to a different position, or move it by flicking your wrist when you open it.


Rummaging through my Jack stuff after I already had my compass built,  I came across the book pictured below, The Journey to World's End that I bought last year at Borders. I think it was only 3 or 4 $.

I don't know why I'd stored it away and forgot about it, it's really cute.  But, brought that up just to say--the disk viewer emulates the compass and the size of it is 3x3x1.25 inches not counting the mechanism on the back where you put the disks in--pretty much the exact size of the Disney store compass and what I've concluded is the SA size.


I used Elmer's wood glue for all the balsa wood and paper gluing. I glued the hinge and the ring in with something called "power poxy". It's not an epoxy, but kind of a fortified super glue gel, but one that has about a minute working time and won't glue your fingers together!!


That dial was hard to do. I'm not real crazy about it.  It is kind of rough and crude, but it will have to do. It is made out of a metal washer, with a plastic washer laid on top of that and the dial numbers are a print out on a transparency. I used a lump of Sculpey clay to make that center ball shape that comes up through that hole in the center of the washer. I left a wad of the clay underneath into which I crammed the 'brass arms' that are made from square balsa wood sticks turned with a corner upwards. Then the whole thing painted faux brass. Oh, and the gnomon I cut out of clay and painted faux brass also.


For the wall wherein the spinner sits, I cut a piece of poster board weight card stock to fit the depth and circumference. I glued several layers of paper around the bottom half of it in stages drying between times so as to make a "footing" for a bigger gluing surface.  I marked on the wall where the "brass arms" would go and pierced the 'wall' in those locations and fitted the brass arms in there and glued it all in at the same time.

For the "ivory" inlays I used quilling papers.  They come already cut to width.  I used 1/8 inch ivory colored papers.  I taped one end of several strips to a larger piece of paper and painted the strips with a couple of coats of ivory colored acrylic paint to thicken them up just a tad and add some strength.  I only painted one side to leave the other side more accepting of the glue. When they were dry, I sprayed the painted side with a clear satin sealer.


I didn't take any pictures of the inlay gluing.  It was too tedious to cut the pieces to size and get the angles cut correctly, so I didn't even try to do that.  I roughly cut to length and glued on all the short vertical pieces on the top and bottom.  When they were dry I trimmed them flush with a sharp new Xacto blade.  I roughly cut to length the pieces for the outside top and the inside top of the bottom piece. I did the squared pieces first that back into the circle. Then when those were dry, I gluded the pieces along the edges and let the glue set for a few minutes just to tack up a little, then eye-balled and cut the angle across the two over-lapping pieces and pulled away the waste. 

The distance between the two rows on the top of the compass looks to me to be about the width of the inlay.  I still had some of the tiny graphic tape, so I glued on the inlay around the edges then used the tape to mark the width of the distance between the rows and glued the second row along the tape edge.  That made it easy to keep everything straight and tidy.



The circle around the spinner was the hard part.  I just kept cutting out circles until I got one I was happy with. I used a  piece of white construction paper, painted and sealed same as the strips were.

As a side note, the inlays on the CotBP compass the cuts are made on angle straight across from inside corner to outside corner, but on the POTC2 &3 compass they inlays are overlapped and the ends of the short pieces are cut to match the long side of the long strips of inlay.




Last thing--weathering. After I got all the inlay glued on, I let the whole thing dry for a couple of days.  I sprayed it with a coat of the satin sealer and let that dry another day.  Then I glued on the latch and ring assembly that I had already weathered, and started weathering the rest of the compass.  Going by reference pics of Jack's compass, I cut away the inlay in areas where it's missing on his then painted and sealed the bear spots this made. 


I poured out a little of the black and a little of the burnt sienna I'd used in putting on the ebony finish and just tapped my fingers in it and then tapped most of the paint off and sort of just "played" with the compass, "handled" it like it would be in use, with my dirty fingers.  This sorta splotched up the ivory and some of the satin finish on the ebony.  I later added more "dirt" where I thought it needed it and cleaned off some spots that were too "dirty". 

The gnomon was the last piece to be glued on.  No--wait, it was the little knob that holds the latch closed that was the last piece on!  I hack-sawed and filed the bump out of the bottom part of the original latch then epoxied it to the top of one of the little screws that held the hinge onto the box from which the latch came. Drilled a tiny hole in the front of the compass, dipped the screw in a wee bit of epoxy and screwed it in.  FINISHED!!!!  Yay!!!!!


Finished Compass


I'm proud of myself for just getting it finished! Not extremely fond of the compass dial and gnomon but kinda like it, since it is CotBP, not suppose to be as refined looking as the DMC/AWE version/s---I keep telling myself!


.....and it seems to me that the camera is not very kind to the compass. Mine looks 10 times better in person than in the pics, and I am assuming this is true of the compass pics of others, so major kudos to all ye compass makers and mod-ers! As stellar as some of them are looking at 10%, I'm bettin' your 100% is really sumpin'!!!
























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