Friday, 4 February 2011

Puppet Hands

In this post I will show how I am Making the hands for the Mail Man Puppet. This year we have decided to upgrade from latex hands to silicone.
Above is the start of a hand armature. The palm has a nut in the center to allow props to rigged into the hand.
Each finger is a twist of two wires and the wrist is a twist of eight.
The palm is build out a strengthened using Milliput and the fingers are shortened to the correct length. Each finger tip has a blob of epoxy resin at the tip to stop the sharp wire damaging the silicon. The brass K&S will slot into the forearm allowing the hands to be replaced if they are damaged or need to be repaired.

Next clay is applied onto the armature and the hands are sculpted.
Above are the final clay hand sculpts ready to be moulded.


  1. Hi Nathan,
    thank you for sharing your skills!

    I have a question: which clay (which product) did you use?

    Congratulations for your wonderful movies!


    1. Thanks Unknown.
      I'm glad this blog is useful.

      The clay is called 'Plastiline'. I'm not 100% sure what brand I used but I believe it was the same as the one in this link -
      Another good plastiline brand is Chavant NSP.
      I hope that helps :)

  2. Hi! this posts are being so helpful! how thick is the wire you used for the fingers?

    1. Thanks Catrina,

      I believe the wire was around 1mm diameter, but it’s important to remember that the thickness of the wire will be different depending on the size and shape of a puppets hands. Larger hands with thick fingers may need stronger wire and slender fingers will require delicate, thin wire. I’d recommend experimenting with different wires and seeing what works best for you.
      Hope that helps.