Movie Set Building: Some Tricks of the Trade

March 6, 2000

Mark worked as a carpenter on the set of the upcoming movie "Unshackled". It is part of the story of Harold Morris, who has published the story in the book "Twice Pardoned" and told his story on audio and video tape and through lecture tours throughout the country.

Up on the blueprint wall are the plans for the collection of prison sets. A lot of the details don't show up on those prints - there are a lot of "tricks of the trade".

The prison doors which appear to be heavy gauge steel are actually made of luan. The frame of the sliding panel is made from medium density fiber and the heavy steel rivet heads are actually wooden buttons painted to look like steel. Note the heavy door hinge. It is made from MDF and wooden buttons.

At left above is an intermediate stage of finishing one of the sliding panel structures. It receives layers of gray paint to look like painted metal and then is aged. At right is a heavy weld around one of the steel door hinges - only the hinge is made of MDF and the weld is made of caulk.

At left above is a finished door handle assembly. It looks like heavy metal, but is formed onsite by molding a resin. The finishing of the caulked hinge at right makes it look old and heavy steel.

Continue to show the making of steel doors.

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