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More is More
Doctor Mad Max shares some exciting details of a new playroom which is under construction, and the proper application of medical restraints to prevent 'submarining'.
Introduction by Mark, Story by Mad Max
06 Oct , 2004
any of us who enjoy bondage never think of ourselves as Houdini, but Doctor Mad Max, or simply 'Max' in this article, evaluates bondage gear with a keen eye towards it's inescapability.
This is because he sells his gear to magicians and escape artists - as well as bondage enthusiasts.
Dr. Mad Max (located in Ottawa, Canada) is the designer and manufacturer of some of the most exciting bondage gear and related toys available on the market today. Max spends a lot of time designing and manufacturing restraints, and testing them on an array willing subjects. He never has a shortage of test volunteers, which is probably due the enticing motto "Sanity is the playground for the un-imaginative".
Max has been working in the field of restraints since 1985 and during that time has developed a wide range of gear which can be seen on his web site www.maxcita.com. He's the proprietor of a well established, trust-worthy and reliable enterprise, and so you can be assured that you will receive exceptionally high-quality equipment, should you decide to make a purchase.
Max refers to bondage as 'restraint play' or 'escape challenge' on his web site, because he feels that the mainstream Canadian and North American viewers often associate the word 'bondage' with abusive and degrading acts. Naturally, members of the bondage community know this is not the case.
This willing patient will be timed during an escape test at the Dr. Mad Max Psycho Laboratory.
His gear has been featured in magazines, web sites, movies, as well as many articles on this web site. In this article, Max will share some photos of a new playroom (still under construction), and a unique stainless steel bondage platform or ‘Autopsy Table’. The new playroom is truly unique - which might be why it's referred to as the ‘Mad Max Psycho Laboratory’. I asked Max to describe some of his recent bondage projects, and the following text has been compiled from his comments.

The new playroom is multi-purpose; designed to serve as jail cell, autopsy room, and patient restraint area. The photos below show the double doors of one of the jail cells, this modeled after those installed in the Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site and the Ottawa - Carleton County Jail. The inside bared steel door incorporates an authentic 'Folger Adams' jail cell lock, assuring maximum security. The exterior steel door includes a patient monitoring window, small door for food pass-through, and a Schlage high security 6 pin tumbler lock which cannot be picked. When the two doors are closed, the opposing locks face each other to prevent attempts to pick either.

The playroom also features a 'Vertical Mortuary Fridge' which can be seen in the photos immediately below. This small 30" x 34" room is heavily padded with 2 inch thick, high density, mildew resistant foam,  covered by an impervious layer of blue reinforced vinyl used in prisons for bedding covers.
 
The padding allows the patient to be  confined with almost no possibility of injuring themselves. in addition, recessed D-rings and eye-bolts permit various configurations of standing or suspended restraint to be employed. Once the solid core hardwood door has been closed and bolted, the ‘patient’ is isolated from the outside world and may struggle and shout (uselessly!) until time forces submission to the confinement of his or her restraints, and that of the cell.

The stainless steel 'Autopsy Table' show below has been custom-designed to fit a standard, single size mattress; complete with continuous perimeter restraint rails both above and below the table’s surface. These may be used in a multiplicity of ways for assorted hold-down positions of any desired severity, and accept a wide variety of restraints; be they leather, rope, or chain. The stainless steel surface is custom made, laid over the base; a refurbished medical examination table.

The top metal surface is removable, and may be mounted against a wall to be used as a vertical restraint device.
A new base is on order which can be adjusted to various levels, making this entire device more versatile and devious.

After examining many old photos of psychiatric restraints used in the 1920-40's, it was noted that the most common construction materials were cotton or hemp webbing, combined with leather hold-down straps. The bed restraints in the photo below were manufactured in December 1982, for the US Armed Forces. Max was able to purchase them as surplus, and although new and still in
their original box, they required a substantial amount of refurbishing of both the leather and the locking mechanisms. During the process, nylon straps (which are used as heavy lifting belts) were installed within the webbing, but at the same time care was taken to maintain the image of the old-style restraints.
In the photos below and to the right, the black leather restraint harness was not a copy of an older style, but derived from ideas pilfered from the evil designer Mark at seriousbondage.com and this just goes to prove that there’s nothing truly new under the sun. Without a doubt, we share the same philosophy that  "More is More". (Sorry Mies van der Rohe)
The concept behind this bed restraint system is to offer an alternative to rope and the more traditional medical restraint systems currently in use. Heetkamp restraints are secure for most applications, but they have some drawbacks. The Heetkamp system, if
simply applied, allows the escape artist to get free in a jiffy. The way around this is to add more and more restraints, until eventually, the escape artist stays put. However, the cost of straps, cuffs, and harness soon exceeds a couple of thousand dollars. This, together with the number of pieces that must be kept track of, became too much and so we devised a new approach which can be seen in the pictures. The leather restraint system is exceedingly versatile and has the added benefits of being able to be securely locked on the patient as well as being employed as a stand-alone set of restraints - with or without the bed.
In the photo above it can be seen that the thigh cuffs are equipped with sleeve loops to keep the leather thigh belts together. These wide belts usually twist and open up because there is no way to keep the straps aligned around the limb. The sleeve loop design thwarts this typical escape technique.
In the photo below, an additional 3 inch wide black leather upper chest strap has been employed. This strap includes loops to lock into the bed restraint system by using the standard tan-color locking belts on each side. Similarly, the black waist band is 5" in width, with 2" adjustable locking crotch and "X" shoulder straps. These are generally left slightly loose to allow minimal movement. The hands of the patient were also enclosed in locking metal "Helpless Mitts", preventing the use of hands and fingers in any manner.
In preliminary tests, escape was not possible, even though none of the straps were locked. D-rings positioned at the top of the "X" shoulder straps had been anchored to the head of the bed with the tan-color Humane Restraint straps. These anchor points, combined with the chest strap, prevented the patient from arising.
Note that the wrist and biceps cuffs are also connected to the waist and chest harness with additional Humane Restraint straps. These straps are passed through the bed restraint loops, the D-rings of the wrist and biceps cuffs, and chest and waist harnesses. When cinched tight, these straps limit arm movement from loose to complete immobility, depending on their tightness.
Each of the refurbished Armed Forces bed restraints consist of a 5 inch wide by 36 inch long webbing strap with locking leather belts at the ends. These are not secured to the rails on the sides of the mattress as you might imagine, but instead are actually connected end-to-end by utilizing additional straps that pass all the way under the mattress and bed, then cinch and lock at each end of the 5 inch bed restraint belts.
The most critical part of preventing escape is to restrict the head to toe movement of the patient. Typically, ‘submarining’ out of restraints is the fastest exit from the typical locked-on, Humane Restraint Bed Restraints. As a side note, I’d like to thank the patients in "F Main: Psychiatric Ward" (a real place in a real hospital) who demonstrated their prowess and speed (15 seconds was the best time) while supposedly medically strait-jacketed.
In the photo, you can see that the black ankle cuffs are attached to the 5 inch wide bed restraint; itself being fastened to the foot of the bed. Upon a review of the photos, this design seemed incomplete - the ankle straps could have been routed differently, but next time things will ‘improve’.
So, what was purpose of this bondage experiment?
A willing ‘patient’ normally requests a secure, no escape, yet comfortable bondage session that can be enjoyed for short or long terms. We concluded that this equipment, used as shown, provides such an experience. Further, this system allows for some limited but strictly controlled body adjustment (sitting up, laying on one’s side) without entirely releasing the patient.
However, simple short tests of 3 hours or less indicated that there would be discomfort beyond that time frame. Also, excessive movement resulted in some pinching of the skin in the crotch, suggesting to the patient that he or she should remain calm if they wish to avoid these sensations. Ideally, no matter how the patient is dressed, the restraint system as illustrated offers an endurable, 24 hour length scene, in a single position, with relative comfort.

Max can be contacted via his web site at: www.maxcita.com

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