Working on a Mando costume based loosely on and inspired by the 1313 Fett and am only going to have one gauntlet for now. Was going to buy some ESB gauntlets, but only need one and decided I wanted to build myself and have some fun with it.
To start, I grabbed WOF's gauntlet templates (thanks WOF!) I'm using the right-arm gauntlet only and am basing my design off of it, not doing a full build.
- 3mm Sintra for gauntlet shells (2 layers according to templates)
- 5mm foam board (for attachments)
- DAP spackle (to fill in creases and joints)
- Rustoleum Epoxyshield Concrete Patch and Repair (Home Depot)
- Evercoat Glaze and Spot Putty (red - O'Reilly's Auto Parts)
- Various grits sand paper/blocks, wet and dry
First thing was to print the templates. On my printer they were very small, so I had to print them at 310% for them to fill the page correctly. This size was reached after some trial and error
I cut out the shell templates for the top and bottom shells and traced them onto 3mm white Sintra. I formed them using near-boiling hot water and first wrapping them around a 2-liter soda bottle for initial shaping and then several steps of reheating and placing around my arm for final shaping. If found that if I used a heating gun there was a tendency for them to get too hot and they would warp a little.
I used the templates to create the attachment pieces with foam board, adjusting to allow for the 5mm thickness of the board. As you can see from the pics I altered the final shapes a little as I am not building them exactly like the templates.
Once I had the foam board pieces the way I liked them, I glued the top attachments on with hot glue (being careful not to melt the foam) and once that was dry I used the DAP spackle to fill in the joints and seams. It goes on pink and dries white. I then sanded these areas smooth.
My plan for the side attachment is to use it as a means to hide the hinges on the outside of the gauntlet. Since starting the build and attaching the hinges I realized I could have inverted the hinges and mounted them flush, but in any case I do not want them showing. My plan is to use rare-earth magnets to attach the side attachment cover at the end of the build.
I coated the shells using Rustoleum Epoxyshield Concrete Patch and Repair. I found it in the paint department at Home Depot. It goes on kind of thick and dries quickly so you have to use small amounts and work fast, but it is very solid and created a really sturdy shape that I then sanded using a Dremel at first and then finished up using 80, 120, 220 and then 400 grit sandpaper. It takes some elbow grease, but it makes for a pretty durable shell.
Next I used the Evercoat Glaze and Spot Putty to fill in valleys and gaps, etc. I picked it up at my local O'Reilly's Auto store for around 9 bucks for a 1lb tube. Again, this dries very quickly so I typically fed it onto a popsicle stick or spackling knife and put it in place. You don't want to put a lot on at once, so if you have a deep area to fill it's best to put it on in layers. It dries to a sandable consistency within 20 minutes or so. I used an 80 grit sanding block to do initial shaping (you do not need to put a lot of force into it) and finished up with 220 and 400 grit wet sand paper to smooth it out and feather it.
Next I began painting the shells. I started with a couple coats of gray primer, followed by two coats of black primer. Then I added two coats of metallic silver. (Note, for a really cool metal effect, spray the black and before it dries spray on the silver. The result is a steel-look with really cool shadows, which I discovered by accident but then painted over later since I'm not leaving them that way.)
This next step I should have done before putting on the epoxy as it would have been much easier, then the epoxy coat would have been sufficient cover. Anyway, I routed out spaces for the hinges and glued them in with hot glue, then covered them with the spot putty. Again this took several layers and some sanding and feathering to have it blend smoothly. I then had to primer and repaint the area using the process above. It would have been easier to do this part before coating with epoxy
I did not fill in ALL of the spots and nicks, etc. as I decided they would make for some good battle damage. After all, we're going for the used and beat up look I coated them with a watercolor painting mask I picked up as Michael's in the watercolor paints. It goes on kind of like a rubber coating and after painting your top coat you can peel it off and the silver underneath with be preserved. I think overall it came out with a kind of hammered metal look
I realized I wanted to put the little indentations from the templates in the gauntlet, and again I should have done this before the epoxy step. Oh well I used the template to mark them off but then decided I wanted them smaller (shorter) in order to fit a little better. I traced them onto the shell and then taped them off and will route them out then sand, primer and paint AGAIN lol.
Next up I will start my final top coat colors and apply battle damage, then install the electronics.