Step 2: Measure your leg

You will need to measure your leg in 6 key areas in order to get a proper comfortable fit. If the critical areas like the ankle and leg height are not correct then the entire brace will slide and chafe as you walk. Be sure to record these measurements as you will need them during the materials preparation stage.
Your thigh needs to be measured in 2 places; the first as about 4 inches above your knee and the second is approximately at the mid point.

Your lower leg needs to be measured at approximately 4 inches below your knee and again at about 6 inches below that. 

The first critical measurement is your lower leg height. This is measured along the side of your leg from the midpoint of your knee joint or where it bends to the midpoint of your ankle. 
The next is measured wearing the shoes that you intend to wear while wearing the stilts. With your shoes on you will need to measure the distance from the floor to the midpoint of your ankle.

These measurements will be used to make the custom fit parts of your stilts.
*This is to inform you that in publishing the attached details, you have violated US Patent no. 7946966-B1 - owned by: Pavel Amigud, Brandy Cannon, Jasmine Gilbert, Kimberly Graham/Beaton, and Ernie Leimkuhler - filed July 16 2008 under &quot;Leg Extentions&quot;. <br> <br>They are to be removed from this website, by yourself, within 14 days of the 8th day of April 2013, or further investigative proceedings and/or actions will be undertaken apon the poster.
<div> <iframe frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/CrtPkodh5Qw" width="420"></iframe>HERE IT IS! THE VIDEO YOU'VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR!!<br> <br> i made the stilts based almost exactly off these instructions (only i bought them) &nbsp;I made them for almost no money between the tools and materials i have, and scrap from work (sintra and some metal)</div>
That is amazing. You all make me wish I had this type of talent. When I try to do metal work it just falls apart in my hands. I tried to make stilts like this and ended up crying and going back to clunky frikkin wood
Fantastic work, but it kinda looks like trying to walk while drunk. =D Kidding, I know it's difficult to walk in them.
Yeah, i've gotten better and ill have a few more videos in the future, but this was my 2nd time on them. My first time was only a few steps before the &quot;crimp&quot; gave out. broke down and bought the correct tool for 20 bucks. <br>
excellent work!
oh, and i originally tried making the steel bars about 6&quot; longer to give me more height, DONT DO IT! it puts your center of gravity way off its almost impossible to get up into position with that, and if you get up, you wont be for long. the length in the tutorial is probably the longest your going to want to go.
<p>I am in the process of building a pair, but I have encountered a measurement problem. On the length of webbing and velcro required, is that per leg? I worked on 2 x 16 inch + 4 x 10 inch = 6 feet, and that is for one leg only. Am I misunderstanding something?</p>
It is possible that I made a mistake in the directions. It is best to check for fit using a cloth measuring tape the go from there, that way you will have less waste and a more custom fit.<br><br>Good luck with your build.
<p>The only issue I have, is finding the stuff in Europe. I'm in the UK now and though they do inches at times, they mostly use metric. I've discovered that 1/4' = M6 and 5/16 = M8. The others I'm still trying to figure out. Other than that, I can't wait to put this together!</p>
<p>I agree with the metric thing. Canada is essentially US junior when it comes to construction. Metric is awesome, Base 12 WTF is that. how many inches in a kilometer? Seriously don't get me started... My supplier is now selling sintra as 6 mm but at an astronomical markup fro before. almost $200 per sheet from $45. </p><p>Otherwise I am looking forward to seeing pics of your build!!!</p>
<p>It's called foamex here, and will take a look at it. But we may have other materials that are similar in strength. I'll ask in the workshop. And when it's done, I'll let you know. </p>
<p>You can use these stilts for an Alien costume ( alien as in Alien vs. Predator)</p>
<p>Awesome! Questions! So I noticed on the videos that the surfaces you walked on were grass and carpet (good surfaces for grip). How hard is it to walk on smooth surfaces (restaurant floors and cement). Did it make you super nervous? Are there any grip recommendations you have for the bottom of the stilt foot?</p><p>Also I'm still reading the instructions but I think I'm going to attempt making these. But before I spend hella money are there any obvious tools (outside a basic tool kit) I'll need that you haven't mentioned? Pretend I only have a general basic tool kit and know nothing of shop outside of the context of my (decades ago) fifth grade class. Also anyone have an e-mail (fb messenger, whatever) I can ask questions to in case I have a question that none of my strapping young lad friends can answer? </p><p>Thanks! </p><p>~T </p>
<p>This is really cool! What depth do the tee-nuts have to be? Also, do the turnbuckles absolutely HAVE to be over your weight? I just bought two that support up to 130, which is exactly how much I weigh without gear. I haven't been able to find anything stronger than that with those dimensions, so if I need to get stronger turnbuckles, do you know a site with those specifications? Thank you for posting this incredible tutorial!</p>
The T-nuts should go all the way into the aluminum for maximum shear strength. they should also be a friction fit to prevent a loose, weak joint. I usually go over the rated limit of any mechanical item just to be on the safe side. In practice most manufacturers over-design an item then set the failure limit to be much less than the average tested failure limit, this is to allow for manufacturing inaccuracies and a safe working load. Further, you can eliminate them altogether with a short piece of cable if you are not going to adjust the stilt height. Note that the cable may stretch over time but it shouldn't be too much. Just make sure to use cable strain relief eyelets to prevent a bend point which can greatly weaken the cable. In the time since I built these, prices have gone up astronomically and availability has dropped off to nothing in Calgary. So that may be the way to go. <br><br>Also I have noticed that Sintra has gone from $40 a sheet to $160 a sheet. With this in mind, standard ABS sheet in 3/16 inch thick will work, it is just a little more difficult to form but it is more rigid. <br><br>Thanks and good luck with your build.
<p>Thank you! I actually found some 12 x 24 sheets of Black 6mm Sintra on Amazon for only 5$, which is amazing compared to these extremely high modern prices. I'll try ordering one to check it out, and order more sheets as I need them. I also found some 800 lb stainless steel turnbuckles (Via McMaster Carr, they are over 16$ though). Expensive, but they seem like an easier way than the &quot;buckle-less cable&quot; option.</p><p>Using what you said, I've narrowed down the 1/4 20 t-nut depth to be either 7/16 or 9/16, which were the available depths in the store. Would one of those depths be enough?</p>
<p>Only improvements I can think of is maybe adjustable foot clip so people with bigger feet can use it (I'm like a 13 and a half) and maybe use some old tread from a tire to cover the footcups, as to not scratch floors and give more traction.</p><p>But otherwise, Looks awesome! I really want to build one!</p>
Thanks. The foot pad was left unfinished to allow for the placement of custom footprint grips.
<p>The price of Sinatra has skyrocked in the past couple of years. I am now looking at $180 per 4X8 sheet as compared to $15. The plastic leg brace pieces need to be rigid and easy to form. ABS will take a little longer but still remains reasonable in price. ABS and PVC plumbing pipe can be cut and heat formed into proper shape but it will require more time and a better insulation layer than just denim jeans.</p>
<p>Hey, I just finished mine today. Still gotta add all the faux fur and other details. Thanks so much for a great tutorial. I also designed and built a mechanism that takes rotational motion from my leg and transfers it into swinging motion for my tail. <br><br><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="281" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/UbDekWGjuzY" width="500"></iframe></p>
<p>You have done an awesome job. Keep up the great work and check your inbox!</p>
Thank you for the instructable on these! Made a satyr for a makeup demo using them! They turned out amazingly well!
<p>Superb! check your inbox!</p>
<p>instead of the Sintra, could I use thick leather? Sintra is difficult to find in my area.</p>
You need to use a rigid medium. This will prevent injury.<br><br>Sorry for the late reply!<br>
What is the price per set?
How about you use this idea for prosthetics for the military
<p>Hey there, I'm 6'5&quot; and 300lbs. I am needing some digitigrade stilts for a costume I'm making, however due to my already large height, and a max target height for the entire costume of 6'9&quot;, I can not afford to have a foot of height added. My questions are, would it be conceivable for someone of my stature to wear a beefed up version of these, and would it be somewhat safe only having at the most 4 inches of rise?</p>
<p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="281" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/XVZL3MxF0tY" width="500"></iframe></p><p>Hi...i wrote to you a while back asking for some details on your design, which you answered....i finished the build and we started using them in shows...i wanted to thank you for your help and i made a video for you to see what happened...you said you wanted to give a membership for instructables if someone made a video of the design...if that is still possible i would love one....thanks again..Scott</p>
Fantastic work. It is great to see that this is still working for people. Be sure to check your inbox...
<p>by the way...this build cost a total of about 30 euro, since i didn't have money and used a lot of materials i found around....like tubes of aluminum with wood inside smashed flat with a hammer for the leg supports, garden buckets in layers for the sintra, the bottom of the foot is cut from an old car bumber(steel) with a piece of old motorcycle tire over it, the strap holders are cut from the abs plastic from a car bumper(lucky there are broken down cars around me) inside the leg holders is thrown away beach mattress....also the bottom rectangular structure is aluminum instead of steel, which helps to arrive at a 2kg per leg total weight...i just had to buy, bolts, straps, and the cable assembly...i never found nylon washers and just went with metal, it was ok like this....thanks again for the blueprints for this...it would have taken me so long with trial and error to arrive at a working construction...Scott</p>
<p>Hi, first off all let me thank you for this magnifient instruction.</p><p>But I also have some questions to you. </p><p>1. I live in Germany and i want to buy such Sintra plates but only found some for 400 dollar and more +shipping costs. Please can aomeone give me a link to a Sintra store in the EU?</p><p>2.I also found American stores for metall like this (you know its too expensive). And again please can someone give me a link to such a store in the EU, too?</p><p>I thank you for the Information...if there will be some...and wish you a nice day.</p>
<p>For sintra I used PVC tubes, with the righy circumference to make sure I can make the leg panels.</p><p>I used a gas heated barbecue to heat my panels (use welding gloves to hold the pvc) and carefully soften the pvc to a flat sheet, draw your plans on them and heat again to shape around your leg.<br><br>since I work at a blacksmith, I didnt have trouble to get steel (I made all the leg sides out of steel) and the foot base I used high quality tropical wood from a carpenter. (easier to fit my big feet on)</p>
<p>I am having a really hard time finding the nylon fender washers in Canada. I have searched all over the internet and every place I have found either doesnt ship to canada or requires that I buy a box of 100+. Anyone have any idea where I could't get some?</p>
Made these but couldn't get sintra so had to improvise the design. fantastic instructable. Used them for part of my Southern Devil costume at a rock Festival. Brilliant once you relearn to walk
Hi, do you sell the legs?
<p>Sorry for the delay in response. Unfortunately I do not sell but I have heard of others selling based on similar design.</p>
Awesome work. Thanks for the contribution. Check your inbox.
<p>Awesome work Random_Canadian! Your directions and blue prints were easy to follow. Got most of my materials from a local fastener shop, a local sign making shop (for a Sintra like board called Komatex(most likely the same stuff)) and a local hardware store for some other small odds and ends needed. Other parts like metals, fur, Velcro, and Nylon webbing were all ordered online with ease. Had a friend use his 3D printer to print some claws for the paws. The paw was created from a shoe cut in half, it slips over the stilt foot easily and adds some extra grip. I then used expansion foam on the outside of shoes to fill and shape out the paws. Then used some construction grade glue to bond the paw to the stilt foot. Same method of using expansion foam for the lower leg parts to fill it out. It was much fun building these and walking in them takes a lot patience and practice. Thanks for your awesome Instructable!</p>
<p>i was wondering, since sintra here in europe is that bloody expensive / impossible to get; wouldn't it be better to use leather instead of that expensive impossible to find material?<br>Leather is way cheaper compared to sintra (over 300$ for a square yard for sintra)<br>and it takes the shape of your leg.</p>
I buy sintra 4 x 8 in $15
<p>please do share where i can buy this (I live in europe)<br>Me and some friends would be happy to find it ^.^</p>
<p>FYI: 4' x 8' Sintra sheets for $60 at regionalsupply.com</p>
<p>First off, let me thank you for posting such detailed, high quality instructions for us all. This is the first posting I've seen that makes me feel I can successfully build the quality level I want.</p><p>I do have a question, though. I want to make legs for a warg costume. The photos and videos of your stilts only show bipedal movement, and I'm wondering if this design will work on all fours as well. I know I'll need at least a short arm stilt as well, but assuming I have that, will these work ok? </p><p>Are there any modifications you'd recommend for walking on all fours?</p><p>Thanks!</p><p>Elijah</p>
How long can you stand in these before it starts to hurt?
Random_Canadian, this design and the accompanying instructions are remarkably detailed, complete, and well-documented. Bravo and thank you very much. <br> <br>I am about to build a set of these, and I have a couple of questions: <br> <br>(1) With my size and gear, I will be at ~280 lbs. Would it be advisable for me to &quot;beef up&quot; the design in one or more ways? If so, what modifications should I consider? Should I use thicker and/or wider and/or higher-grade aluminum stock? Would there be any concerns around the joints that I might handle with the appropriate changes? <br> <br>(2) Should I have any concerns in using PVC foam board that is not Sintra brand? Calsak Plastics sells 6mm PVC foam boards in a 4'x8' sheet, but it is NOT Sintra. The helpful gentleman on the phone advised that PVC foam boards of various makes should have very similar characteristics independent of the manufacturer -- cutting, forming, performance, etc. For the purposes of building these stilts, does that sound right? <br> <br>Thanks to RC and/or anyone else who might have insights on these questions. <br> <br> - LA
What do you mean by &quot;learning to walk again?&quot; Walking with or without the stilts? Oh and I wanted to verify that the aluminum bars used are all flat right? Really new to this kind of stuff so the help would be very much appreciated, please bear with me.
What do you mean by &quot;learning to walk again?&quot; Walking again with or without the stilts? Oh and I wanted to know what kind of aluminum bars you used because on the site there are square, flat, round and hexagon. Does the grade matter?
A friend and I are each building a pair of these and I have some questions about the hardware that I'm hoping you can clear up for me.<br> <br> First, the parts list specifies 36 1/4&quot; by 1&quot; bolts and 8 1/4&quot; by .5&quot; bolts, all Grade 8. I only see 28 places for 1/4&quot; bolts in the drawings and another 4 for the toe caps; am I coming up short, or do the instructions specify more bolts than are needed.<br> <br> Second, all the 1/4&quot; bolts are specified to be grade 8...I'm having the devil of a time finding grade 8 bolts that size (I've only found them through McMaster-Carr so far) and I'm not sure why most of those need to be so strong, anyway...the bolts at the knees and ankles are load bearing under a shearing load, so I understand those, but the rest of them are all holding the sintra against aluminum struts and I can't imagine that even a grade 5 or 2 bolt would fail before the sintra (or nylon strap) does.<br> <br> Third, the 5.5&quot; and 3&quot; by 5/16&quot; bolts are specified at grade 8, and that makes sense, but why aren't the 1.25&quot; by 5/16&quot; bolts grade 8 as well? Surely they are similarly critical?<br> <br> Lastly, what sort of places should I be looking at for turnbuckles? They're very expensive ($13 each for 440# work load limit) on McMaster and I haven't found anything remotely strong enough at big-box hardware stores.<br> <br> Despite my questions you've done a phenomenal job designing these stilts and have very thorough instructions for such a complex project. Great job!

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Bio: I reverse engineer, design and build things that interest me. Sometimes I take commissions... feel free to contact me with a legitimate request.
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