Robotic Sculpting Takes Props to New Heights

Thanks to an eight-axis Kuka robot—the same type used to build the fuselage of the SpaceX rocket—Kern Studios (Booth #878) can now create larger-than-life props, each replicated with an amazing degree of detail, in just four weeks.
The robot, designed for manufacturing, has been taught to sculpt. It’s also positioned on a rail that allows it to work on objects up to 68 feet long and 12 feet in diameter.
In addition to halving production time, robotic sculpting ensures 3-D designs are duplicated with precision on a larger scale. Props like Louis Armstrong and court jesters are cast with aliphatic urethanes, a material that is only just now being applied to themed products.
“If you maintain these props that we’re building, they will last indefinitely,” said Barry Kern, the company’s president and CEO. “As long as you clean them every five years, and put on a fresh paint and clear coat, these things will be around forever.”