Space 1999 Comlock, can you hear me now???? - HobbyTalk
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post #1 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-23-2017, 11:30 AM Thread Starter
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Space 1999 Comlock, can you hear me now????

I always liked Space 1999, all the hardware looked like it could really work..... My favorite, aside from the Eagle, was the Comlock, how cool it would be to have a small Video Walkie-Talkie like that..... Well, one day, as I walked though the toy department of Target, I ran across the "Spy Gear Video Walkie-Talkies", and I just couldn't leave well enough alone..... Unfortunately this will not be a drop-in build, but I think it can be done, so I hope some of you might like the thread enough to stick with it and may want to give it a try......



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post #2 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-23-2017, 11:43 AM Thread Starter
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Here is part two, I used the kit made by "A.J. Catalano, the castings are nice and crisp, though the bag of buttons could have less air bubbles but nothing that can't be fixed......




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post #3 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-23-2017, 11:55 AM Thread Starter
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And now part three with more to come..... Most of my work has been figuring a way to get the circuit board and display to fit without too much alterations to the exterior..... I also wanted the "Spy Gear" splash changed to the Comlock logo when the unit is powered up, done.....






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post #4 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-23-2017, 01:31 PM
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There are people here that I can't tell if they're genius level makers or just plain insane.

What a beautiful, perfect project. It's just a spectacular idea and I can't wait to see how it works out.

Of course the screen, to be accurate, should be B&W but I'm sure they WOULD have been color had there been an available tiny color screen back then.

At least they didn't do a 'Supermarionation' cheat in reverse, taking a 13" color TV, building an oversized Comlock shell around it (with a hand!) and filmed it as a tight closeup...
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post #5 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 05:33 AM
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Got to admit, it's a great idea and can't wait to see the finished working model.
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post #6 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 08:33 PM Thread Starter
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There are people here that I can't tell if they're genius level makers or just plain insane.

Of course the screen, to be accurate, should be B&W but I'm sure they WOULD have been color had there been an available tiny color screen back then.
Thank you very much Steve, I think, for the very kind support and comments....

And the display on the Comlock was color in season two, at least in "The Rules of Luton", scroll down to "Continuity - Alpha Tech"

The Rules of Luton Episode Guide- Space: 1999 Catacombs


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post #7 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 08:36 PM Thread Starter
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Got to admit, it's a great idea and can't wait to see the finished working model.
Thank you, I hope you like the end product....

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post #8 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 10:13 PM
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Thank you very much Steve, I think, for the very kind support and comments....

And the display on the Comlock was color in season two, at least in "The Rules of Luton", scroll down to "Continuity - Alpha Tech"

The Rules of Luton Episode Guide- Space: 1999 Catacombs

(picture snipped for bandwidth)
It was meant to be a complement, by all means.

Lordy, Year 2. Every single episode is just...dire.

So looking at that episode guide, I see they could have used a little self-editing. I mean, "A planet of living plants" indeed! "Sentient plants" or a more simplistic "intelligent plants" would be less giggle inducing.

OK, I'm loath to consider ANYTHING from Year 2, but a one-off color screen on a Comlock (obviously a 35mm slide, you can see light leaking out of the shell on the hand holding the prop!), well, I just won't buy into that. But that doesn't mean I would in any way disapprove or give lesser marks for the epic work you're doing!

Honestly, I want one. I also wonder why nobody has done the current fad of making a Comlock a Bluetooth accessory to a cell phone. While not as sleek as a Star Trek Communicator, having a screen and a way to input data (it does have a numbers cluster and several buttons after all) could be a fun thing to have around.

OH GOD THE MUSIC IN THIS EPISODE WHAT IS WRONG?! I feel my intelligence level dropping! sorry, sorry, I know, it's just Year 2 and enduring is enjoyment.
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post #9 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 10:16 PM
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Space 1999 Comlock, can you hear me now????
Yes, yes I can! Very beautiful, I always like the crazies who do strange and wonderful things! If you are using a walkie talkie electronics for the screen and video camera, do you plan on using the the speaker and microphone as well? I always loved the Space: 1999 comlock. After looking at photos, etc of it, I wondered at certain aspects of the design. The main (number) keypad (3x3 buttons) is patterned after the telephone, yet the last row of buttons is missing - '*', '0' and '#'. It seems the 2 main functions are a video telephone and the door opener (and 3rd would be a tracking device to give the owner's current location). Apart from the on/off button, there should be the 3 volume control buttons (up/down/mute). Not sure what other buttons it would need.

I always wondered if someone was crazy enough to make an elaborate comlock that was say a tv remote control. Want to change the channel? Pull out the comlock and aim it at the tv and bbbeeeeepp, the channel changes. And anyone more crazy can tie in the comlock to their garage door opener remote. To open/close your garage, just pull out your comlock and point it at your garage door and bbbeeeeeppp, the door opens. Press the button again and bbbeeeeppp, the door closes. Just saying.

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post #10 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-24-2017, 10:58 PM
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The Comlock is a case of 'style over substance', that is, it's visually interesting, it helps propel the story along, it gives an actor something to do with their hand, some 'business' (actors LOVE having props because they use that to add to the performance) but other than being a door opener and videophone (because FUTURE!) I don't think much time or effort was put into defining the operations or limitations. It was 'blank clay' that writers, directors and actors could mold as they saw fit. I can't recall a single instance where someone used the number buttons.

Same with the Stun Gun/Laser. It's got the 4 emitters, they're color coded, there's matching buttons on the hand grip that one would logically assume had something to do with the emitters (one could guess it was maybe stun, heavy stun, heat, kill or something akin to that) but again, never used in that way, and they had to add that giant "stun/kill" switch on top to make such things clear.

I make the assumption that part of the issue with the Comlock was a carryover from the supposed UFO Year 2, where such strict identification and access control would make some sense. Not that it's THAT secure as it was quite common to klonk someone over their head and swipe their Comlock to get past security blocking.
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post #11 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-26-2017, 05:42 PM
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In Breakaway, the pilot of Space: 1999, the one thing that I always felt strange was that (when Collins went mad and cracked the window with his helmet, Koenig and Bergman dragged the man out of the room} Koenig had to reach for his commlock to close the door....rather than just hit the damn button on the panel. Window blows out, explosive decompression ensues. And just a moment before, Koenig is fiddling with his commlock.... Too close to call and somewhat irrational.
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post #12 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-26-2017, 09:41 PM
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In Breakaway, the pilot of Space: 1999, the one thing that I always felt strange was that (when Collins went mad and cracked the window with his helmet, Koenig and Bergman dragged the man out of the room} Koenig had to reach for his commlock to close the door....rather than just hit the damn button on the panel. Window blows out, explosive decompression ensues. And just a moment before, Koenig is fiddling with his commlock.... Too close to call and somewhat irrational.
Valid and truth.

Of course I'd be more concerned about single-pane windows that can be cracked by a couple of smacks from a space helmet...

It's bad from an insulation and heat transfer POV, not to mention that we generally see the indication of two-layer glass in most all windows except that time the Moon was given an atmosphere and maintenance went around installing OPENING WINDOWS in Main Mission. Yikes.

Hm. Then there was the time Alpha was under attack and I think Main Medical had a window that was about to go and the wacky tan shaving foam crack sealer was ALMOST working when BAM WOOOOOOOSSSSSHHHH bye bye other doctor...WHEW good thing that was just a dream!
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post #13 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-29-2017, 09:23 PM
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Steve H: ROFLMAO!!! Yeah, I just saw the episode where they lost the doctor. Oh, well! Yes, single pane windows... what a pain! (Sorry!). Every now and then, I rewatch some of the shows while working on something. Keeps me honest when I think about how I would have done things if I controlled the show.
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post #14 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 12:23 AM
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Steve H: ROFLMAO!!! Yeah, I just saw the episode where they lost the doctor. Oh, well! Yes, single pane windows... what a pain! (Sorry!). Every now and then, I rewatch some of the shows while working on something. Keeps me honest when I think about how I would have done things if I controlled the show.
There was a lot of weird stuff going on in England and their film/TV industry, and with Sir (later Lord) Lew Grade and ITC (and I blame the New York office for most of the major nonsense), and the personal problems between Gerry and Silvia Anderson that just seemed to combine into a huge mess. I wonder if the finished product, especially Year 2, would have been better if all that wasn't going on.

I've been on an interesting journey in watching shows from the time of my youth, looking at things with more aware eyes, a broader background, more knowledge. Some shows I have a much greater respect for, even if only the technical aspects. Other shows are a complete slog to watch and some, I just give up. I LOVED Space:1999 when it came out. My friends and I had viewing parties (as this was pre-home video recording) but Year 2 didn't air in full on my local stations, so I had no idea of the overall quality. Now in the age of DVD, I'm sad to say this is one of the Anderson shows I just can't re-watch. Year 1 is fine, I see so much potential in the stories they told, there's even hints of a 'thru-line', the potential of an actual story arc in play. Year 2, it just all went to crap. The budget cuts are obvious, the stories often made no sense (let's face it, most of the time Maya should have been able to solve the problem of the day in the first or second act, so they had to find reasons why she didn't.)

Another Anderson show that is just so dire in my eyes is Supercar. Even turning things over to my 'inner 8 year old' it was just...arrgggh. The third? 'The Secret Service'. I have no idea why they thought the concept was any good at all. I had a struggle with Joe 90 because man, that show was FLAT. I mean crazy low energy. I've come to think that Joe wasn't actually a boy at all but an android. It would explain the whole thing with the 'Big Rat' and the memory engram transference except there were a few episodes where his father used the machine to gain some specific skill as well.

So I talk some trash about Space:1999 Year 2. I won't dismiss the effects however, that was solid work.
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post #15 of 35 (permalink) Old 04-30-2017, 01:50 AM
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There would've been a third season, except the Grade wanted to make "Raise The Titanic" and didn't have the money to do both, so...
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