How to Make a Man Statue From PVC Pipe

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You can make an imaginative statue of a human being from polyvinyl chlorate (PVC) piping. PVC pipes, fittings and connectors come in so many shapes and sizes the design possibilities are endless. A trip to the hardware or home improvement store to look over this array of available “body parts” can inspire many ideas. PVC sculptures disassemble for easy transportation or recycling into new art objects.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Permanent marker
  • PVC pipes
  • PVC connectors
  • Hand saw or reciprocal saw with 8-inch blade

Determine the height of your human figure. The length of the thigh bone usually sets the height of the figure and other limb proportions. You do not have to stick to standard human anatomy, however, especially if this is an art project open to expression. As you acquire individual PVC “body parts,” lay them out on the floor in skeletal form and make decisions about these proportions. Measure, mark and cut your pipes to length as you go.

Form your figure's thigh bones using rigid PVC pipes 6 inches in diameter. Indicate knee joints by interrupting the length of the leg with a PVC coupler connector. Consider stepping down from the wider 6-inch pipe for the upper leg to a narrower 4-inch pipe for the lower leg; use a PVC 6-to-4 reducer coupler for this connection. Anchor the leg pipes and create feet at the same time with two 6-inch or 4-inch diameter PVC floor flanges. These flanges feature screw holes for attaching the flange to a wooden base.

Select two 6-inch diameter elbow connectors to form hip sockets for the sculpture's legs. Elbow connectors come in different degrees of angle from 45 to a gentler 60 degrees. Choose the connector based on the stance you want.

Choose a three-way T coupler 6 inches in diameter on the left and right ends and 3 inches at the center opening of the T. Connect the 6-inch sides with short bits of 6-inch PVC coming off the hip sockets to form a pelvis. Connect the 3-inch part with corresponding size PVC pipe to form your statue's spinal cord. Use four-way couplers up the spine to create connections for ribs.

Connect a 3-inch four-way coupler to the top of the spinal cord. Connect 3-inch PVC pipes to this to form shoulder blades and attach 3-inch elbow connectors to create arm sockets.

Work down the arms with more 3-inch pipes and a connector for the elbows. Use a reducer to narrow the pipe from 3 inches to a narrower width at the wrists. Create hands to suit.

Insert a 3-inch pipe in the top of the four-way spinal cord connector to create a neck. Finish this pipe off with a 3-to-4 reducer to form a nice base for attaching the head of your choice to your figure.

Tips & Warnings

  • If the statue is to be permanent, use PVC pipe glue to weld all the pipes together. Make your statue more stable by increasing the weight and dimensions of the base or anchoring the base to the floor. Paint your piece with spray paint designed for use on plastic.
  • PVC pipe saw dust is hot and PVC glue is extremely flammable and creates noxious fumes. Use caution.

References

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