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Topic: Olympic Torch
Message: Posted by: Jacoby (Dec 12, 2009 02:40PM)
I need to make a free standing Olympic Torch for an Olympic Celebration coming up later this month. I have been experimenting with designs, but I need help with making it free standing. So far, here is what I know I will do:

For the flame, I have weaved 4 balloons together. I originally did 3 (red, orange and yellow), but decided it needed to be a bit thicker so I added another orangeish-yellow balloon to it.

Then for the base, my ORIGINAL idea was to make a flower vase type of thing. Than I decided to start it like you would a flower vase (or any other 'gimping' object), but after the first 'row', I was just going to let the balloons continue down strait, then twist them, together at the edge. And the remaining balloon on each that was left could be folded to make a base. It looked "okay", but the base didn't have that 'slim' look I wanted, and it didn't stand up on it's own. On a few occasions I could get it to stand up on it's own, and I thought it was okay, but I can't take that chance come 'game day'.

Can anyone help me design a base for the olympic torch, or give me suggestions on what I can do to help it stand on it's own?

P.S. I can post pictures of my current attempt, if you would like.
Message: Posted by: Pokie-Poke (Dec 12, 2009 04:11PM)
Photos will help, as it sound a bit like a milk shake/Sunday glass.
Could you make a separate stand out of clear balloons?
Message: Posted by: Kevinr (Dec 12, 2009 05:58PM)
DO a balloon braid in silver or white to make the base (like a cone)

There are several on balloonhq

Message: Posted by: Ryan Price (Dec 12, 2009 09:00PM)
The link didn't work, here is a more up to date one

Message: Posted by: Steve Yarosko (Dec 12, 2009 09:48PM)

If this was something I had to do, I would make a simple stand out of conduit, a flange, a square piece of wood, and duct tape. This is, to my knowledge the most sure way of success. I would wrap the wood in plastic material. Normally what I do is go to a party store and get a cheap plastic tablecloth of an appropriate color. In this instance use the "WWADD" (what would a decorator do) approach. The stand could be mostly hidden inside the torch.
Message: Posted by: Juliegel (Dec 14, 2009 09:25PM)
I would say weave a cone base out of silver. At the very least weave the top portion out of silver then finish it off with a nice spiral for the handle. At the bottom of the spiral have a few pinch twists and then attach an under inflated 5 inch round filled with water. This will add a nice bulb at the end of the torch and it should keep it upright while not really affecting the look.

For Fire I would keep it simple but nice using a red 12 inch super agate.

Go figure,
Message: Posted by: Jacoby (Dec 17, 2009 01:34PM)
Thanks for the reply guys. It has been helping quite a bit. I have decided not to post pictures of what I have now, because the replies have already helped me. But I will post a picture of my final 'good copy' of the torch, before I make one for the event (or if my 'good copy' is still in good condition, and not wilting, I may just use it at the event, because they asked me to make it before the audience arrives anyways). I will also be sure to post pictures of it at the event.

As for the picture on Balloon HQ. This is very neat, but I was making a big, freestanding sculptures. But this picture gave me a great idea to make small hand held torches for the kids to play with, if they didn't know what they wanted me to make for them.
Message: Posted by: Jacoby (Dec 18, 2009 07:06AM)
By the way. Just so everyone is aware, here is the approach I took:

1. Started with the sunburst technique (except instead of changing colours on the balloons you add in into the 'star' pattern, I kept it all white). I didn't do it very big, only the original 6 balloons that make the 'spokes', and then I only added two more balloons around.

That will act as the very base

2. Then the remainder of my 6 spokes (it was still a good 2 and a half-3 feet tall) I brought 4 of them upwards, to make the actual torch part. (I used the 4 opposite from each other, to keep it even). About 3-4 inches below the absolute top, I made a simple square, to keep the balloons together, and have a place to tie on my flame. With the remaining two 'spoke' balloons, since they are opposite from each other, I can just tape those to the ground. With the base I used, I actually got it to stand up by itself, but in the course of 4 hours, and with me not being around it all the time... Better safe than sorry. Although, I did let some air out, to make them shorter, and tied them off. Because people could trip over it, so they will only be like 6-8 inches long.

3. Then with the square at the top of the torch. I tied a red balloon on one corner, a yellow on the oppose corner. An orange balloon on another, and then the orangish-yellow balloon on the last corner. Then I weaved all four balloons together. I am not sure if there is an ACTUAL existing 4 balloon weave, so I just did my own, pretty much a 3 balloon weave but with an extra 'beat' on every other 'step'. If there is an actual 4 balloon weave, let me know.

So that is what I went with. So far it is looking pretty good. Pretty stable. Just for design purposes I tied balloons in a loop (Ones that were not yet inflated), and I added one for ever olympic ring colour (Red, blue, black, yellow, green) And I made a giant 'ring' out of all the loops to put around the shaft of the torch, just to add some character.

Lastly. If anyone wants to see what my original design looked like. I made some promo pictures of it, for my website, promoting the event. For some reason the torch part looks purple/blue, even though it was light blue (didn't have any whites at the time)