After closely examining pictures of giraffes, I suddenly realized that once I put the giraffe head/neck on a body, the head would have been looking straight down. It looked nice sitting on the work bench but when added to a giraffe body in a standard giraffe pose, it wouldn't look good. At first I tried to adjust (not easy) the head/neck but after a short time, decided the entire neck had to be removed and completely remade. Better now than later.
I was able to fabricate a new neck with the head in the correct position. It actually worked out much better this way and the "mane" I made from steel solid tube seemed to flow nicely along the head and along the back of the new neck. The "mane" also adds strength although this beast is going to be one strong giraffe. He's starting to get heavy already. I can't imagine the final weight.
The neck now expands as it gets closer toward the main part of the body. The neck to head portion is complete so the next step will be to look into creating the legs or maybe the hump section which is between the neck and body. Whatever I do, I need to start thinking of a technique to allow me to dismantle the giraffe so I can move it without having to purchase a full size crane.
It's kind of weird blogging a giraffe project. Much different than robots. Not sure it's going to be that interesting of a build so I may not be posting as much. Another thing about this project is it's moving along quicker than my robot builds. The robots took at least a year for each one .... usually 1-2 years. This giraffe is about 20% complete already so it's coming together quicker.
A final noteworthy item I need to post is a BIG thank you to the very cool person who inspired me to start doing this metal working. And that's the original artist who made the giraffe I saw while on vacation last summer. I recently contacted him and he couldn't have been nicer. He gave me some great tips that changed the way I'm looking at this project. And I'm confident the giraffe will be a success because of those tips.