Terminator Arm Diy Cardboard Sculpture





Introduction: Terminator Arm Diy Cardboard Sculpture

About: Living in Berlin Germany and working as a 2d/3d Illustrator and Animator for 20+ years. I am very happy when i can take my eyes of the Screen.I Love building stuff from material that would normaly be describ...

Hi, welcome to a new Instructable by me.

The Terminator 2 Arm from the Sequel to Terminator

This Sculpture only uses Cardboard, Wrapping Paper, Wood glue and Spray paint. No Blueprints where used. everything was eyeballed from reference Images.

The first Video is an Introduction to this Project. It is followed by four Timelapse videos that show the whole build process. They are quite long, but i did not want to Speed them up by more then 10 times.

The last video shows my Edge smoothing Technique.

I hope you enjoy.

-The main challenge with this model was the huge amount of Parts that i had to build. I think that just for one finger i needed something like 30 parts. And each of this parts took multiple steps to make.

- I tried to smooth every single edge on every little thing. Overall the smoothing of the edges took up more than half of the build time.

- This Sculpture is by far the most complex thing i ever build. The overall build time was close to sixty hours.

- The small pistons that would move each finger were the hardest to build. First i tried to cover a strip of cardboard with some brown paper. That was to Time consuming. Later on i just folded the Brown paper every 2mm always on top of each other to form a tube, It was flat when i was done. I than sculpted the thing to a cylindrical form using my fingers.

- The hydraulics tubes really help the model come to life. to build them i wrapped cardboard which i had softened around a a plastic hose. That ensured that the diameter would stay the same. I used a lot of glue, which softened the cardboard. this gave me the possibility to bend it into form once the hose was wrapped. after it dried i glued a small strip of cardboard in an upward spiral around the cylinder.

- The glossy spray paint really helps the model. Please be careful. I first used a Matt varnish to cover the whole model and only then i used the gloss one. If you use the Gloss Varnish first it is soaked into the sculpture and the whole thing becomes very dark. I will do a video on that subject.

The most Important Technique used in this Instructable is the Smoothing / Blending of edges. In the last Step you can see a Video just dedicated to this Technique.

I hope you liked it!!

Best wishes!!

Step 1: Time for Time Lapse

The whole Time Lapse is way too long but i did not want to speed it up to a point where nobody would be able to really see what I do.

Please just watch if you are REALLY interested ,)

Step 2: This Is My Main Technique for Dealing With Cardboard Edges

The title says it all!



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    17 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Hey would you mind completing this instructable? I really want to see it complete.

    8 replies

    hi, please help me out here, what else should be there?

    Have a nice weekend.


    How you made it. Like a step by step video at least or pictures with a description preferably. I do not know why I did not add that my original comment, sorry and haha. I would love to try and make this too.

    Hi, have you seen that there are four timelapse videos? You can witness the whole build.

    best wishes.


    At least for me on the mobile app. I did find it on youtube though. For anyone else having the same problem, here is the link: https://youtu.be/j8R25D_mfIk

    Oh. Ok! I just tried it with my android phone, same here: No Videos. But I found a Workaround. When you switch your mobile Browser to Desktopmode you can watch the embedded Videos.

    Have a nice Day,


    truely amazing. Did you have like a "blue print" or did you just make things "on the fly"?

    1 reply

    Thanks a lot. I just use refrence Images and "freestyle" it from there. But i draw some sketches to rough out the proportions.

    Have a nice day

    Wow. You're an artist. Very fine sculpture, I wonder how high this would be sold on ebay...

    1 reply