Epic failure with Fett armor...

  1. #1

    Epic failure with Fett armor...

    Hey gang. After reading some tutorials on how to make back armor. I attempted to bend a piece of styrene using WOF's back armor template, but I royally screwed it up. In fact I wish I didn't even try to do it, because I wasted a good piece of styrene.

    Does anyone out there have a a full-proof way to build this part (besides buying a set of armor from the cargo hold)?

    Thanks.

  2. #2

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    I guess it would help to know how you failed? It's somewhat complicated stuff, so short of trial and error I don't really know of a way to make the process any easier than "heat it up and bend it"

  3. #3

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    scoreing the flod lines helps a ton, i did the same thing. Just barely cut into the lines where it should bend and when you heat it up it will go right along those lines

  4. #4
    fettwho's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 2008
    From
    Christchurch,New Zealand
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    276

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    When I original start to build my armor I used "Sintra" ( can be obtained form plastic suppliers usually) rather than polystyrene sheets, as its not as brittle and bends well when heated. I also find poly-sheets to not be very resistant to knocks or wear and tear of trooping, as it cracks easily ( Now I have F.P armor, though a lot more expensive than making my own, it's well worth the price!)

    In regards to heating the back armor, you can either do it in an oven at a low temp, or with a heat-gun, which is great for the bends as it allow you to concentrate on certain areas ( remember to wear protective gloves ). And you will need another person to help, they can help mold it to your back shape.

    A good way to heat just a small area, i.e you need to bend along a line, is to block the area off that you don't want to heat with thick board; 10mm mdf is good, or something similar. Scoring the line you want lightly (this cant be expressed enough!), put the Sintra or poly-board on a flat surface (table with straight edge ) with the line hanging on the edge of the surface, place one blocking board above the line and clamp to the flat surface so the piece you want to bend wont move. Place the other blocking board on the on the other side of the line, leaving approximately 10mm of the board you want to bend showing. Using the heat gun and protective wear evenly heat the board along the line exposed by the blocking board. The Sintra or Poly-boad should start to sag a little, when it does it is now ready to bend. Because of the tables edge and the fact that the board is clamped to it, you should now has a nice straight crisp bend.
    I find using the Blocking boards not only helps protect the Sintra/polystyrene form excess heating, it works as good surface to help in bending the piece as a whole, rather than in parts when using a gloved hand.

    I don't really know if this will help you, as you didn't state how you messed up, but I hope it does in the future.

    Good luck.

  5. #5

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    Thanks for the advice everyone. I had to trash my efforts. I'm really reluctant to try again.

    I used the heat gun, wood block and hand bending method, but had a few waves and wows in the plastic. However I did manage to get the overall shape to fit pretty close. Then I had to pick at it, making it crack and tear in places (I guess from over working the styrene). I thinking I might just break down and see if anyone sells an affordable kit for the armor.

    I have a couple sheets of Sintra in my workroom but I don't want to waste it on another possible failure.

  6. #6

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    A great way to shape it in boiling water, drop it in and wait about a minute. Carefully take it out and it should be very soft and easy to shape.

    DAZ

  7. #7
    fettwho's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 2008
    From
    Christchurch,New Zealand
    Posts
    276

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    Yes, I forgot about boiling water, if you have a pot large enough... It is a good method,but like the rest requires practice...
    It sound to me like you over heated your board. You should be heating it just enough to bend it, if it starts to buckle then its too much. It droops slightly when ready
    I have to apologise, I realised I forgot to say that you shouldn't hold the heat gun too close, or over heat the poly-board as its not a fan of excess heating. You should heat the board anywhere from 100mm to 2000+mm away, and be patient.
    Its always best to do practice runs before you do your larger piece as different thicknesses require different heating times and sometimes methods. That way you hopefully wont have any unwanted accidents.
    Also I find Sintra is more forgiving than polystyrene sheets.

    Don't give though, through error learn and as I've often found myself, after a few stuff ups the final result is ofter the better of them all... if they had all survived that is...

  8. #8
    High Speed Low Drag Fett 4 Real's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 2010
    From
    USAF Utah
    Posts
    5,382

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    have you considered making a cast of yourself with duct tape? You should use the internet bud to learn how to do this stuff not just reading about it here, you tube has LOADS of videos on how to make molds and such, you can make a cast of your torso, for cheap, fill it up with sand or whatever, use it to shape the plastic when its hot

  9. #9
    redkraytdragon's Avatar
    Member Since
    Apr 2010
    From
    Albuquerque
    Posts
    1,066

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    Hand forming any kind of plastic whether it be sintra, styrene, ABS or whatever is pretty difficult to do in order to get smooth and even with no waves (you'll need a nice forming surface or even a mold) and even more so if you're trying to do compound curves (nigh on impossible to handform I'd wager)....compound curves are typically achieved through vac forming and/or fiberglassing.

    If you have any pictures to post up please do... it would be extremely helpful for us to steer you in the right direction

  10. #10

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    redkraytdragon, there's nothing to see. The only satisfaction I got out of the whole exercise (after crying ) was kicking the "car wreck" around my workshop.

    However I have checked out your products and they look nice and the prices are fair. I'm just wrestling with idea of giving it one more attempt or sourcing the parts???

  11. #11
    redkraytdragon's Avatar
    Member Since
    Apr 2010
    From
    Albuquerque
    Posts
    1,066

    Re: Epic failure with Fett armor...

    Fettenstein01 said: View Post
    redkraytdragon, there's nothing to see. The only satisfaction I got out of the whole exercise (after crying ) was kicking the "car wreck" around my workshop.

    However I have checked out your products and they look nice and the prices are fair. I'm just wrestling with idea of giving it one more attempt or sourcing the parts???
    That's totally up to you brother (and thanks for the kind words ). It really is a matter of how confident you feel with your skills and whether or not you think it's worth your time.
    Obviously I'd love to just sell you a set of armor but I'm not about just that...it's also about a love for the hobby and I also understand the satisfaction of doing it yourself. I have spent well over a year sculpting the molds (with much screaming and kicking, much like yourself lol..I know exactly where you're coming from on that front) and some pieces I even sculpted TWICE to get them done right (with some constructive criticism and help along the way from the brothers here) but the satisfaction I got afterwards was totally worth it. Granted not everyone has that kind of patience and that's another question you have to ask yourself, if you're willing to go down that long road cause it is going to take some time, but it's worth it

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