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Feliform Labs

Research Area: Tails

  • Status: Prototyping

Real feline tails are functional and expressive. With animatronics, we can bring these properties to fursuits.

Previous work

In-tail sells an animatronic canine-type tail.

Vertabral column concept

Tail conceptual design
An early tail conceptual design rendering

Our first design idea is inspired by real vertebral columns. It includes many 3D-printed plastic vertebrae connected by rubber intervertebral discs. This design should allow the tail to bend in any direction, like a real tail. Three control cables run through each vertebra near the outer rim and attach to the vertebra at the end of the tail. The tail can be moved by pulling on the cables.

With two sets of cables, two sections of the tail can be controlled separately. The first set of cables attach to the vertebra halfway along the tail, and control the near half. The second set of cables extends all the way to the end, to control the far half of the tail.

Unresolved questions

Soft concept

The current prototype (2021-11-07) uses a section of tubular foam pipe insulation for the tail structure. Two cables along the upper left and upper right areas move the tail. This video shows a test of the tail movement.