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New Scratch Helmet

  1. #1
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    New Scratch Helmet

    Okay, I have started my new scratch build. I first used Alan's templates, printed them out on heavy stock paper and cut those templates out. And then the shopping began! Unfortunately, it is bed time here on the east coast, so tomorrow I will have actual specifics of what I am doing as well as some photos that I have started with. Hopefully the info that I have gathered from so amny sources can help others along who want to scratch build a bucket also!!

  2. #2
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Okay, here goes. I started with the templates from WoF and printed them on heavy stock paper. I purchased a lot of materials, Bondo, Fiberglass, X-Acto Knife, 1/4" foam board, Super Glue, etc. etc. I cut out the templates I needed to start the helmet first. Let me just say, I have heard it before on this site and it is true, building your own helmet is rewarding and a lot of fun!

    So, after I had my templates, I basically began with the dome pieces and trimmed those out with the X-Acto knife for precision pieces. I formed the dome and used tape to keep it together (which was quite a challenge). Now, to explore all avenues, I took my completed paper dome to multiple stores to try and find a helmet of some type to match the prototype as exact as I could find. I was able to find one for $20. at Toys R Us and have yet to take some pictures (sorry). I am only keeping this as a back-up in case I cannot duplicate or fabricate the dome using my paper template. If anyone has any suggestions on how to go from paper and tape to Bondo and Fiberglass, I would love to hear it. My thought was to take the dome as is and layer on some fiber resin on top and then underneath, maybe a little Bondo here and there and then sand it to perfection. Suggestions? Thoughts?

    Next, once I got back home, my kids had expressed disapointment in not purchasing the Hanna Montanna bike helmet (I explained to them what I was going to do with it, and they wanted me to purchase her helmet so that I could - or they could - DESTROY it, with pleasured faces!). Anyway, I took my paper templates and layed them out over my 12" x 48" piece of 2mm Sintra (purchased in two sheets of 4' x 4" each). I then took the X-Acto blade and cut-out, VERY CAREFULLY, the first outer layer of the helmet.

    That is where I am at for now, only the really fun stuff next!! Can't wait. Anyone with ideas or input on the Fiber/Bondo idea would be great. Plus, if anyone has taken their completed dome and made a silcone/rubber mold and cast a dome, I would love feedback as eventually, that is what I would like to do.

    Eric
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 9-3-2008-209-46-07-20pm_resize-jpg   9-3-2008-209-46-39-20pm_resize-jpg   9-3-2008-2010-52-57-20pm_resize-jpg  

    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 10:12 PM.

  3. #3
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Sorry, I guess I need to shrink the pictures a little!

  4. #4
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    I have been able to complete some more work. I have now taken general form templates from Alan's files, cut them out and then transferred them onto foam board. Then cut out the foam board and hot glued them together. I hot glued them onto the helmet base first matching up points in the center and side for correct alignment. Then, I glued the dome base using the same aligning method. As I was gluing, I had to move the pieces slightly to line up correctly, once they were hot glued into place, they set perfectly. Now I have a great frame to work off of to create the inner and outer lid surfaces. Has anyone ever used resin and fiber on the inside of a paper dome? If so, how did that work? I assume that I need to strenghten the inside first before using Bondo on the outside?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails picture2-003_resize-jpg   picture2-001_resize-jpg   picture2-002_resize-jpg  

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    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 10:01 PM.

  5. #5
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    This weekend, I went right into using the frame made using Alan's Templates, the results will be in the next entry....
    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 10:04 PM.

  6. #6
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Once I completed the frame, I took my Sintra sheet and applied it to the shell using duct tape at various points to make sure it molded to the TOP of the frame. I noticed that if you attach it to the top of the frame (the dome bottom), it keeps the flare and round shape at the bottom nicely. Once I finished taping, I heated the "mold" in the oven at 200 deg. for three minutes. Baked my nachos using the same temp, added some slight seasoning....sorry; once the nachos were done, I put the "mold" back in for another 3 minutes. Once it cooled off and my kids and I ate our nachos, I took the Sintra off the frame and had a very nicely shaped lid! I then took three pieces of Sintra and Super Glued them to the back of the lid to make it one piece. Of course this will be changed later on in the process for the key hole slots.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails picture2-008_resize-jpg   picture2-010_resize-jpg   picture2-012_resize-jpg  

    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 9:53 PM.

  7. #7
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Now, there is some failure in this project. I tried to experiment a little and used the outer piece on my frame and used the same heating process with very bad results. I think the strips are so thin in some spots that the Sintra just warped from the heat. Unfortunately, it was beyond repair (I did try re-heating the piece and sandwiching it between two cookie sheets to flatten it back out, however, I failed. Sorry to all Mando makers everywhere! That is all for now, I did do some mandible work, but I need to finesse it a little and take some more photos. I will post them tomorrow!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails picture2-014_resize-jpg  
    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 9:51 PM.

  8. #8
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Okay, moving on. I worked on the mandibles, which by the way, has to be the hardest thing I have worked on so far. They are tough to get into place. Ohld Vart from the Mercs web site has a tutorial on how to build a scratch built helmet where he makes his cheeks with the one piece of Sintra. I chose to use the four piece method. I had found that you can actually mold the Sintra in your hands just by rubbing it up enough from shaping it in your hands, whic was a nice bonus find. Once I had the shaping going, I used duct tape to hold the pieces into place then superglued in between the tape pieces and peeled them off once the glue hardened. Then I followed the seam with more Superglue to reinforce the bond. Now that I have completed this though, both sides, I have noticed my helemt shape is a little off. It is somewhat lopsided. I placed it back onto the frame, upsidedown and I am hoping that it will reshape once I install the helmet piece (that will follow)!

    Eric
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails picture2-015_resize-jpg   picture2-016resize-jpg   picture2-020resize-jpg  

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    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 9:49 PM.

  9. #9
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Okay, more progress....I was able to take my bike helmet purchased at Toys R Us, it is made by Bell and is actually a child size - 8 year olds. I sanded it down and removed the vinyl cover it had as well as remove the solid styrofoam lining (which I think I may be able to use as a mold later on for a new dome). I then glued it into place. Next up, Bondo and sanding!

    Eric
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails picture2-031_resize-jpg   picture2-032_resize-jpg   picture2-034_resize-jpg  

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    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 9:46 PM.

  10. #10
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Okay, some Bondo and sanding done. I basically applied one layer and then sanded it down using 60 grit paper. THen I found a few areas which needed filler, so I applied the second layer of bondo to the lid as well as the cheeks. By the time I got to the cheeks, the Bondo was beginning to harden (if you need a good indicator that you are running out of "work" time, it begins to clump together and is harder to spread). So, I had one cheek smoothed out and ready to sand, while the other is kind of a clumpy mess. Should be okay though, it will all be sanded away and Bondo'd again!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails picture2-037resize-jpg   picture2-038_resize-jpg   picture2-039_resize-jpg  

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    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 9:42 PM.

  11. #11
    I helped at SDCC '08 987654321a's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Starting to shape up great! Excellent job man!

  12. #12
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Thanks for the compliment! Really appreciated!

    Well, next step, I have not done that mouch, Bondo and sanding takes a WHILE...a great piece of advice to anyone who is making a scratch build, BE PATIENT! Another piece of advice, when you are working with Bondo, make sure you do not apply a lot, it goes on thick and it will be harder to sand it off later. So, be sure to remember that you do not have a lot of time to work with it, it will clump up and it goes on thick - so do not be liberal with it! SO, I have sanded down using 300 grit paper and then re-applied Bondo to trouble spots. Then sanded again. Another point to remember, the mandibles are much better off when you sand them by hand. I tried using the Dremmel to sand them and almost ruined my cheek pieces! Use the paper by hand and BE PATIENT! SO, next up will be more sanding and then application of the outer surface or spraying primer. Not sure which yet.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails dsc02931_resize-jpg  
    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 9:37 PM.

  13. #13
    I helped at SDCC '08 987654321a's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    I said it once, but I will say it again, this looks excellent!!!

    It is far better than my first scratchbuild

  14. #14
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Thanks again! Feedback is always good to hear, good or bad!

    Moving onto more work, I have decided that in order for me to progress on my lid, I need to focus on the ear pieces so that I can Bondo more spots on the helmet and sand for first primer application. My plan is to build-up the adge pieces for the angle and then sand it down to the correct look using my Roto-Zip with attachment for such work. Then, I can either cast them for a one piece look or try to perfect them with Bondo, filler etc. I super glued the outer layer of Sintra to my lid and found some imperfections that I will need top address, such as some spots do not line up correctly, I placed the tope layer above the T visor at a funny angle by accident (I am going to recover this issue by making the "wavy brow" look), the lid also de-shaped a little; so I went to a craft store and bought the 10" craft ring to re-shape the lid back to where it should be.

    Well, that is all for now, got a lot of work to get to!

    Eric
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails dsc02935_resize-jpg   dsc02937_resize-jpg   dsc02938_resize-jpg  

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    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 9:35 PM.

  15. #15
    I helped at SDCC '08 987654321a's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Wow! Nobody else wants to comment on this? Great job on the ears, they are starting to shape up.

  16. #16
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Thanks again for the compliment, the ears have ben a little of a pain, but I am trying to manage. I took this next photo so that I could show how they are shaping up. I will call them ears.1, in anticipation of possibly redoing them. I had sanded a little and found it to be a daunting task to align the pieces of sintra. I basically cut out 8 pieces of the "u" shape of the lower ear cap below the range finder, then glued them together for a nice stack to be sanded down to the correct size. But when the sanding was not working as I wanted, I used the X Acto blade to trim the pieces that were sticking out in the wrong places. Unfortunately, I widdled away a little too much and will now have to somehow use some Bondo or Epoxy Putty to build it back up for the correct shape. So, here is the photo of where I am at, I want them to be as close to perfect as I can get so that I can do a mold and cast of them for others who might want them, etc.

    Eric
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails dsc02940_resize-jpg  
    Last edited by kebh020727; Sep 19, 2008 at 9:30 PM.

  17. #17
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Just in case anyone has trouble viewing this thread because I have been an idiot when loading pictures, I have now figured out how to shrink the photos correctly to fit in the page. I can re-do this thread I suppose if people want so that it may be easier to view?

    Eric

  18. #18

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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    This is great! I found some 2mm Sintra from a friend who works at a sign shop and I want to make mine out of it! Havn't started with the Sintra but I have put together a cardstock version. I am looking forward to seeing the end result of this one! Is it pretty sturdy at the moment? I was hoping Sintra would be the best. Also, do u just use a hot glue gun to stick the pieces together?

    Awesome work!

  19. #19
    madmanmoe64's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    I've heard people talk about Sintra a lot. Until now I wasn't sure why everyone liked it so much. Dunno if we have it in the UK. Looking very good atm.

  20. #20
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Thanks! I have had some issues, minor that they may be, of the helmet losing some shape occasionally. Fortunately, I had the "frame" that I made to help regain the shape. I did purchase a craft ring that I plan on sticking into the base of the helmet. The trick will be placing it in a spot to maintain sturdiness as well as staying clear of the key slots of the rear of the helmet. I have mostly used the Super Glue as opposed to the hot glue. It bonds really, really well and does not "goop up" in spots. There are spots where hot glue does come in handy though. You would have to look back the the tutorial I made to see where I used it. I think when I attached the helmet was one spot.

    Eric

  21. #21
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Okay, since it is Friday, I was able to do some more work. Now, I can't wait until tomorrow!! I was able to widdle down more of the lower ear cap piece that goes under the range finder. I marked off the angle of the lower piece with a Sharpie and then went to work! Then I sanded it down as best I could and the result is what you see in the picture. Next, I will complete the top rangefinder piece as well as fix some of the imperfections on the lower ear cap piece. Hopefully, I can finish the other ear cap over the weekend!

    Eric
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails dsc02941_resize-jpg   dsc02942_resize-jpg   dsc02943_resize-jpg  


  22. #22
    Wildabeast's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Looking good

  23. #23

    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    looks really good!

  24. #24

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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    Is that 11 layers of 2mm sintra to make the earpiece?

  25. #25
    kebh020727's Avatar
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    Re: New Scratch Helmet

    I continued with the easr pieces. I cut out parts of the range finder cap using foam board to "build" it up. I cut the same shapes out of the Sintra for a stiff base. Next will be piecing them together and using some Bondo to strengthen them into a solid looking piece. I also started the other ear cap piece. I used all Sintra pieces and found that when I bent the "U" shaped piece into place, it bowed out in the middle and looked a little awkward. So, I cut to strips and Super Glued them into place in the edge of the "U". Now it has good strength to hold the proper form. I did make them a little too wide though so I will trim them down; you can see in one of the photos that it causes the edges of the "U" to go beyond the base piece. SO, a little sanding and trimming and it should be good to go!

    More to come later!
    Eric
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails dsc02946_resize-jpg   dsc02947_resize-jpg   dsc02949_resize-jpg  


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