Level 1-6: Save Customization?

27 Aug

Shelac alley

It’s all in the details and boy do we have an eye for them; back-breaking, eye twitching detail. Daniel ran by Home Depot the next day, after our 6 hour rivet-fest, and picked up another set of cap nuts and we got back to work. This time we took a standing break with every section of rivets we finished and soon they were all in place and looking awesome! It was amazing what a little hardware will do to bulk something up!

Now on to the final details and then we could put on a final layer of Shellac and we’d be all set to paint!

First up: the weight hooks. If you’ll look at the reference photo, you’ll see that big grey ring near his belt. That’s no belt buckle; that’s a weight and it needs to be anchored to the helmet. I wasn’t sure what we were going to use for this but luckily Daniel is one sharp cookie. We needed a galvanized wire rope clip. We traced the shape of the rope clip onto the helmet and then guesstimated the placement of the screws.

weight hook hardware weight hook trace

Daniel drilled the holes and we were set to go! Looking hefty, right?

helmet hardwear

Next: the handles on the back of the helmet. Here’s another reference photo for you to take a gander at the back of Subject Delta’s helmet.  We took this particular detail as an opportunity to draw the eye lower on our the helmet; to detract from how tall and cylindrical it was. Rather than staying true to the reference, we opted to place the handles a touch lower on the helmet. We bought a couple of basic cabinet handles but the screws were a touch too big. Daniel had to purchase some shorter screws to compensate. Just look at that difference!

handle w screws

Next, it was finally time to commit to the placement of the push lights. And since Daniel did the bulk of the work on this step, I’ll hand it off to him! — Sara

Subject Delta’s helmet lights; Sara and I have discussed them at length. If you’ll notice, they don’t just stick straight out of the helmet, they come off the helmet at a downward-slanting-angle. Sara was convinced that we would have to somehow build a tube or extension on the helmet in which to set the lights. My concern with this  was that it would prevent access the battery pane on the back of the light. We want to be able to change out the batteries, you know?

working on lightsMy idea was that we could simply angle the lights themselves in the open sockets we had carved out so that the bottom of the push light was flush with the helmet and the top would stick out just enough so that we could hot glue it into place from behind along the lower half. This way we would get a slightly more subtle version of that downward-slanting-angle we were going for and still be able to reach the batteries. The shape of the push light casing would give us the look Sara was after. After the lights were glued into place I went along the outside of the push lights (along the upper edge) — first with super glue and then with hot glue — to first attach and then seal the edge of the light to the helmet. So that after painting it would look like it were one piece or at least slightly welded. Surprisingly, the Xacto knife came in handy here. I was able to use it as a miniature trowel to shovel and smooth the glue into place. I also used the tip of the hot glue gun to melt and smooth out any excess glue with the heated metal tip. — Daniel

Rivet PositioningWignut DrillThe last step: the wing nuts. Daniel insisted that we actually screw them through the foam along the harness. We took the wing nuts and spaced them appropriately along the harness of Subject Delta’s helmet. Luckily the rivets made our spacing a piece of cake. Daniel chose screws with a rounded head so that they wouldn’t dig into his shoulders as he’s trouncing around in costume.

We marked the center of each wingnut and then Daniel went back and drilled through the layers of foam. Then it was just a matter of fixing them in place with the screws and we were set to Shellac.

We had already sprayed a layer of Shellac before we applied the detail foam and cap nuts but now it was time to really set everything. We sealed the foam with Elmer’s glue and then took our helmet out into the dingy back alley of our apartment building where no one would be bothered by the fumes. Daniel concocted some caps to put over the push lights so they wouldn’t get gummed up by the Shellac. He’s so innovative! light caps

And then, with everything assembled and everything Shellacked it was time to take some pictures!

Daniel and his Helmet Helmet side view

And now, we will leave you with an action shot, complete with mood lighting!

action shot

The major construction on Subject Delta’s helmet has been completed and, I don’t know about you, but I could use a break from this particular piece of cosplay. Check in next week to see where we end up working next!

See you next week! — TCG

6 Responses to “Level 1-6: Save Customization?”

  1. crazyguycd August 27, 2013 at 7:08 PM #

    Looks awesome guys!!!!

    I love the mood lighting….just saying.

    • thosecrazygilberts August 27, 2013 at 7:33 PM #

      We worked really hard on it – took us a long time to get that dimmer switch at just the right level. Haha! Not really – but thanks! — Sara

      • crazyguycd August 29, 2013 at 8:22 AM #

        I can tell you’ve put a lot of work into it. Looks awesome! Ill shoot you a picture of me in my Green Lantern costume (with actual power battery (non functioning 😦 ) for a super hero school that I’m doing at a comic store in October.

  2. TinyTK August 27, 2013 at 9:50 PM #

    Absolutely incredible!!!!


  1. Player 2: Press Start to Join | Co-Op Campaign - September 10, 2013

    […] don’t know about you all, but I could use a break from Subject Delta’s helmet. This week, we began work on Eleanor Lamb‘s helmet. Daniel kept saying that this shape was […]

  2. Level 2-6: Regroup to Progress | Co-Op Campaign - November 5, 2013

    […] Next, we applied a second layer of the 2 mm craft foam to the edges of the harness, a bit of that magic weatherseal, a couple of those wire rope clips, seven wing nuts and the harness was all set! This was a very quick step since most of these materials and processes were used on Subject Delta’s helmet. […]

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