Posts Tagged ‘X-Men’

PhyreBlades’ Ultimate Wolverine Claw Reference Guide.

Sunday, July 29th, 2007

Ever since I started this blog, I’ve realized that, while blade fanatics are not exactly a majority, Wolverine fanatics, like myself, are legion! Some of the most popular posts on this blog have been related to the “who”s, “how”s and “where”s, of buying, (or making), a pair of wrist-mounted, retractable wolverine style claws. Yeah. It’s a mouthful.

Anyway, I though I’d put together a post with all of the pertinent Wolverine claw reference material I’ve come across during my web sojourns in search of the holy grail of all wolverine fanboi memorabilia: the ever elusive pair of wearable, fully automatic, remotely actuated, retractable Wolverine claws. Yes. I am indeed insane. But given the number of X-Men/Wolverine fans out there, I was sure that someone would have put one together.

Alas, No such luck. Apart from a plethora of replica, prop and designer “Wolverine Claws”, there are no commercially available retractable wolverine claws. None. Not One. At least that I have been able to find. Anyone who happens to know different should consider themselves morally, ethically and legally (by Dark Blade Law) obligated to share the juicy details. Or meet your end at the hands of a million ill-tempered gnats. With lasers attached to their freakin’ heads. Or worse. Death by LOLCat.

Anyhoo, until I find out otherwise, Wolverine purists have two options.

  1. Buy replicas of the actual movie prop.
  2. Make a pair on their own.

If you want one that is automatic/retractable, you are stuck with option 2. For those mechanically inclined, mature, dedicated (and brave) enough to attempt it, following is a list of noteworthy Wolverine Claw related links, to help you on your X-Mission, should you choose to accept it (at your own risk, of course). Good Luck!

First, the wannabes (the short list):

Anderson Cutlery Pantera Claw
A pair of brass knuckles with claws attached. Cool.

Anderson Cutlery “Special Edition” Pantera Claws
A Chromed pair of brass knuckles with claws attached. Shiny. Cool.

X-MEN “Wolverine” Claws (Style II)
The poor mans Wolverine claw. Primal. Dark. Mua ha ha… *cough*

Wolverine X-Men Claw (IMHO, perhaps the best wannabe so far…)
A somewhat more generic version of the wolverine claw movie prop design. Classy. Shiny. Cool.

Wolverine X-Men Battle Claw – In Black!
Yet another version of the Wolverine X-Men Claw, (the one described just above), This time in glorious black. OK, so Wolverines claws aren’t supposed to be black. But I happen to love black weapons, so authenticity be condemned to blazes, I like this one better!! Actually neither of them is particularly authentic, so don’t send any hate mail on account of my saying so, or I will pwn you w1t m4 l337 h4xxor sk1llz.

And now, on to the meat and potatoes:

Kris Abel’s Blog: Making Wolverine’s Claws -> Part1, Part2 – Kris Abel interviews the designer of the original Wolverine blades used in the movies. A very interesting read.

eBay -> Wolverine Claws – You can find almost anything on eBay… Almost…

YourProps.com -> Claws1, Claws2 – A great online prop museum with pictures of aluminum replicas of the original Wolverine Claw props used in the movies.

Gary Fixler -> Making Wolverine Claws For Fun And Profit – A site showing how a guy made cheap custom wolverine claw replicas. The materials he used (in particular his aluminum stock) were not the best, but the process is very sound. With some design modifications and better materials, you could use the same process to make some really high quality prop wolverine blade replicas. In fact the next guy did just that.

Nates Wolverine Halloween Costume -> AKA: How To Make Retractable Wolverine Claws – One of my favorite wolverine claw sites. This guy took the whole wolverine claw thing as close to the real thing as I have ever seen. If he would have written a step by step manual of the process with even more pictures, he could have made a killing on eBay…

If I weren’t such a lazy schlub, I might have given the eBay thing it a try. But then again I have the sneakiest of suspicions that, were it actually successful, peeps would start crawling out of the woodwork with “Cease and Desists”… So many haters… So little love…

Anyhoo that is about all I got at the moment. The only thing that I am waiting for (with baited breath I might add), is for someone to integrate some sort of automatic deployment mechanism, perhaps a spring and some sort of trigger, into a set of retractable wolverine claws… So close and yet soooo far….

Enjoy….!

Making Wolverines Claws – [Kris Abel’s Blog]
Wolverine Claw Auctions – [eBay]
Making Wolverine Claws For Fun And Profit – [Gary Fixler Site]
Aluminum Wolverine Claw Replicas – [YourProps.com]
Wolverine X-Men Claw – [SouthWest Blades]

Yet Another Wolverine Claw… Will It Ever End?

Saturday, July 21st, 2007

I recently ran across yet another Wolverine claw design, with perhaps a hint of promise as, unlike so many of the other Wolverine Claw pretenders out there, it is a fairly interesting variation of the prop blade design used in the movies:

Wolverine X-Men Claw

Wolverine X-Men Claw

Overall, it is a fairly convincing design. About the only major demerit I can see with this design is that, unlike the original prop, the aft end of the blade spine terminates abruptly. Rather too abruptly. In the original prop the spine (top) of each blade extended back far enough to rest on top of the hand, between the knuckles. Here however, the blade stops considerably short of the knuckles, probably in order to accommodate a wider range of hand sizes.

The problem is that, depending on your hand size, the metal nub that supposedly constitutes the rear of the blade could end up resting between your knuckles, instead of on the back if the hand, where they should be. And if you ever struck anything with it in this position, well… I’ll leave the rest up to your imagination.

Now, much to their credit, whoever designed this appears to have been thinking along the same basic lines of the original prop designer. Like the original prop, it incorporates three blades attached to a bar that is held in the palm. Now this bar is round, and considerably larger than the prop version, which makes it a little more conspicuous, but they have given it an attractive black and polished finish, which looks good and probably feels much better in the hand as well. And in the right hands… Well…

Snikt…! Come get some!…

Wolverine X-Men Claw – [SouthWest Blades]

How To Make Retractable Wolverine Claws

Thursday, July 19th, 2007

Nates Wolverine Halloween Costume (click any image to enlarge)

Claws In

Claws In

Nate used Photoshop to enlarge an image of Wolverine’s claws from the X-Men movie that he had downloaded. This allowed him to print out the image until it fit exactly onto the 1″ x 1/8″ Aluminum Flat Bar that he had purchased for creating the claws. Once the basic shape was on paper, Nate traced around it onto a piece of wood that he had cut to 1″ x 13″, which was the calculated maximum length of the claws.

This length was determined to be the longest length that could fit on the back of Nate’s forearm. Once the wood had been traced, Nate gathered up his aluminum and headed to his Grandfather’s barn, where he cut the wood out on a band saw, sanded it on a vertical standing belt sander, and used it to trace out the aluminum claws.

The aluminum claws were then cut out VERY CAREFULLY on the band saw and sanded lightly on the belt sander. The next step was to put each claw under the wire brush wheel to give them a “brushed aluminum” finish, which Nate determined would look closest to “adamantium”, which Wolverine’s claws are actually made out of.

Claws Out

Claws Out

The next step was to mount the claws to a ball-bearing track that could be hooked to the back of Nate’s forearm. The track was created from a sliding keyboard tray. The slider on the track was modified to be much shorter, and use only 8 ball bearings. Bolts were put through the slider on the track and then some galvanized metal was bent and hack-sawed to make the right shape for attaching the first claw. This required drilling holes through each galvanized metal pience and matching holes in the first claw. Once the first claw was fitted to the track, 2 other claws were then drilled to match the first, and 3″ and 3.5″ bolts were used with nuts, split washers, washers, and locking nuts to to space the claws apart and keep them tightly affixed to each other and subsequently to the track. Once this was complete, screws were added through the bottom of the track so that the slider could not slide out of the track (to avoid killing innocent bystanders). Pictured above the the fully extended claws on the track.

Claws on arms

Claws on arms

The next step was to create a way to attach the tracks to Nate’s arms. …and Nate thought growing facial hair was hard! The eventual solution was to cut fabric left over from creating the pads for the X-Men suit into harnesses for the claws. The piece under Nate’s wrist buttons into place so that the claw tracks can be held VERY tight, but still be possible to put on. The fabric was sewn to the tracks through holes that Nate drilled in key locations.

Showing Claws

Showing Claws

Who’s got claws? Oh yea, that’s right… NATE’S GOT CLAWS!

Nate Showing off Wolverine Claws

Nate Showing off Wolverine Claws

Yep, those are definitely claws! …on sliding tracks, nonetheless!

The above text and images were reproduced from Nates Wolverine Halloween Costume page at http://www.muc.muohio.edu/~natedogg/main.htm. Unfortunately the site is no longer accessible, so I have reproduced some of the more salient information from the site here. All of the reproduced images and text still remain the property of it’s owner, presumably, Nate. Enjoy!

More Wolverine Claw Wannabes…

Sunday, June 10th, 2007

Ok, so in spite of my reservations about knife makers trying to cash in on the popularity of one of my favorite X-Men, (Who? Well Wolverine of course! Duuuuh!), I went looking to see if anything new was out there. Stupid idea. I should have known better. I ran into yet another set of wannabe “Wolverine” claws.

X-Men Wolverine Claws Style 2 - Wood Grip

X-Men Wolverine Claws Style 2 - Wood Grip

“Type II”, as it shall be known for the remainder of this post, is more or less a simple bear-like (imho) claw design. A set of curved blades pinned to a simple hardwood handle. No attempt at style, and unfortunately, no originality either. Wolverine fans need not apply. How, in the name of all that is sacred in this world, is this supposed to look like “X-Men Wolverine” claws? After ingesting a controlled substance? If so, I’ll need some of whatever the designer was smokin’, ’cause whatever it is, it’s pretty freakin’ good… Gonna need a little help understanding this one…

While this design doesn’t get any points for aesthetics, the design is reasonably functional, though I’m not so sure how well that wooden handle would handle any real abuse. So far as marketing, they should have left Wolvie alone and stuck to the tried and true “Ninja weapon” marketing ploy. It would have been more plausible.

Almost as if to mock me, I found yet another variation of a set of “wolverine” claws that I had blogged about previously. Specifically, the “Special Edition” version of the Pantera Claw.

Anderson Cultery "Special Edition" Pantera Claws

Anderson Cultery "Special Edition" Pantera Claws

Funny thing though, as far as I can tell, they are exactly the same as the old ones, except for the grip material being better, gold plated grip screws and either polished or plated blades. I’ll give props on the improved grip material. It would certainly improve the functionality of the weapon. But as for everything else, as you already know, I’m not particularly into the shiny stuff. I suppose most people don’t mind paying big money for a little bling. But I don’t get it… Gold plated screws? What? Why!?

<RANT>

OK Wolverine blade designers. Come on. This is not difficult. Wolverines claws, while unique, are not entirely impossible to replicate. And nobody is asking you to design an enclosed mechanism housing a set of retractable steel claws for surgical implantation, though I am sure there would be *many* takers if you did. Here, let me help you out:

1. Wolverines claws come out of the back of his hands, between his knuckles. NO “Wolverine” claw replica may have blades that emerge between the fingers.

2. For the sake of simplicity, replicas do not even need to have the ability to automatically extend or retract the claws (though this would be a rather large humongous plus). You may optionally make the blades removable.

3. A correctly designed replica must use a bracket with blades attached to a plate that could be strapped to the back of the hand with a handle underneath. Optionally, X-Men gloves/gauntlets can be provided to conceal the attachment mechanism.

4. The claws must be fairly long. At the very least 10″, and relatively thick for it’s width, with one mild continuous curve. Alternatively they may be completely straight with a fairly sharp downturn for the last fourth of the blades length. Either design is acceptable. No funky divots, no high-angle curves, no short, wide, cat/bear-like claws. Please.

5. points 1-4 MUST be met in order to gain Phyreblades seal of approval.

That’s it Bub. How difficult is that? Lets see you give it the old “college try”…

</RANT>

Update!:
I have put together a guide that lists some of the common wolverine claw replicas and memorabilia in this post. Should save some of you a few clicks on teh intarwebs…

“Wolverine” Claws (Type II) – [True Swords]
Pantera Claws (Special Edition) – [True Swords]

PhyreBlades Ultimate Wolverine Claw Reference Guide – [Realm of The Dark Blade]

Want Wolverine Claws?

Saturday, May 19th, 2007

OK Bub! Who wants some! No, really, ya want some Wolverine claws? Too bad. Ya can’t have ’em. But I can get you a cool set of hand claws that are almost as intimidating.

Pantera Claw by Tom Anderson

Pantera Claw by Tom Anderson

Now any true Wolverine fan should, at this juncture, be aghast. For many, many reasons. First of all, this set of claws bears only a passing resemblance to what they are supposed to be modeled after, and should not, in any form, have been made representative of the glorious splendor that are Wolverines retractable adamantium claws. Really. I mean seriously. About the only thing loosely linking the two are that they are claws of some sort. Aarrrgh!

And then look at the design. These are simple hand claws. Essentially a pair of fancy brass knuckles with claws attached. Not, by any stretch of the imagination, Wolverine claws. They would not exactly provide the most secure grip for any serious “clawing” action, probably tending to rotate out of the hand in that particular application, though they would make for a great stabbing weapon, much like how a set of brass knuckles make for a great punch enhancer.

Now being that I’m not *entirely* insane, I’ll readily admit that designing, fabricating and surgically installing an accurate, working set of Wolverine claws would pose some serious mechanical and physiological problems, since the average human lacks the kind of space in their forearms to house a set of blades internally like that without looking like a freak. Or Popeye.

There is also the issue of the appropriate physiological voids and guides (or lack thereof) required to allow for repeated deployment without the wholesale destruction of the various tissues of your forearm in the process. And I won’t even get into the strength, ligament structure or musculature that would be required to effectively deploy, use and retract the blades. But there are better solutions.

The closest and most accurate reproduction to a set of real wolverine claws I can think of would be a forearm mounted contraption, similar to the Tekko-Kagi hand claw employed by the Japanese Ninja:

The Japanese Tekko-Kagi

The Japanese Tekko-Kagi

Much like the Tekko-Kagi pictured above, the hand claw design I would employ would be secured at both the wrist and around the hand/over the palm. In addition it would have a platform mounted rail that would be secured at the elbow. The blades would be mounted to a hinged sliding base attached to the rail. When retracted, the blades would be stored over the forearm, and when extended would be anchored at a hinge point just above the wrist, with the base of the blades above the hinge strapped to the back of the hand. Now here’s another interesting design:

Nate Showing off Wolverine Claws

Nate Showing off Wolverine Claws

The joker in the pic above had the right idea. I ran into his site (**see note below) about 4 years ago, (long before this blog was a gleam in my eye) and was suitably impressed. It doesn’t seem to have been built with longevity/durability under practical use in mind, but it is about as close to an authentic pair of wolverine claws as I think you could ever get. At least not without surgery anyway.

And yes. You read correctly. I said “durability under practical use.” in reference to a set of forearm mounted, retractable steel claws. No. You are incorrect. I did not, at any point, claim to be sane. I merely stated that I wasn’t *entirely* insane. There is a big difference. Get it straight. I am demented. But enough about me.

OK, my intention is not to totally dis these Pantera Claws the entire post. There are other examples of replica wolverine claws, like some of the cast replicas that are practically useless for anything other than trying to look cool. The fact of the matter is that the Pantera claws wouldn’t be in this blog if they didn’t have any intrinsically redeeming value.

Which, in this case, is that they are a set of real sharp steel claws of a very intimidating variety. My only real beef is that the really shouldn’t have tried to ride the X-Men/Wolverine gravy train, but on their own merits they are actually works of art. The simulated wood grain composite grips on these blades are beautiful. Even without the blades they would have made for a very attractive set of brass knuckles.

With the blades they are actually quite the intimidating piece. The blades have the right amount of menacing curve to them, and the recesses on the spine and below the blade just ahead of the grip add to the sinister stance of the brushed finished 440 Stainless steel claws as they rise from the grip. Altogether a very impressive and menacing design. Would almost certainly give your average opponent the heeby-jeebies to have to face something like that on the street.

Though I can’t think of many scenarios where one might be carrying something like this around when such an altercation might occur. Unless you decided to pick a fight for the sole purpose of testing out this bad boy. You did didn’t you. You Hooligan… Instigator.. Hoodlum. You better watch yourself there, bub… I’ve got an eye on you and and a very itchy claw…

**Update!:
Nates Wolverine Claw construction site is currently inaccessible. Fortunately, I have put together a guide listing some of the common wolverine claw replicas and memorabilia, as well as a link to a page with the relevant construction information in this post. Thought it might save a few Wolverine fanatics a trip across the entire intarwebs… Happy Hunting!!

Anderson Cutlery’s Pantera Claw – [True Swords]

PhyreBlades Ultimate Wolverine Claw Reference Guide – [Realm of The Dark Blade]

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