Adding Fiberglass to a Resin Helm

Darth Voorhees

Well-Known Hunter
Preferred Vendor
There could be a health risk.

Personally, I'm against having any sort of polyester resin (aka fiberglass resin) based products anywhere near my head. Even with the most perfect mixture imaginable, small percentages of resin still remain unpaired with a catalyst and can release trace amounts of dangerous fumes months and and even years after it's cured. In a very enclosed helmet that's likely to be subjected to a lot of movement and temperature changes, I'm just far to paranoid for my health to ever consider this. I'd much rather just slushcast a few more layers of urethene inside it to thicken it up instead.

If you decide to do it, and for anyone who has, I'd definitely give it a good few thick layers of paint to seal it in.

Strange because most good quality Fett helmets are fiberglass and in my over 8yrs doing this stuff, ive never heard of anyone having any heath issues from wearing a fully cured fiberglass helmet. What your saying, for the most part, is untrue to the best of my knowledge/experience. I even did some research and i could not find anything substantial on this being true.

From info i found, Im pretty certain that cured polyester resin is perfectly safe and benign once it is fully cured. They have made motorcycle helmets from it for years in the past, among many other things. Once its completely cured and aired out for a few days, im sure it is safe. Any trace amount of styrene that MAY ....and i say MAY be emitted from the resin, post cure, is so minuscule, it wouldn't effect anyone (unless they had a sensitivity to it for some reason). Also, the bottom of the helmet is open, so there is plenty of ventilation...and we dont live in the things.

Polyester resin is harmful when its uncured, or, if your cutting/grinding/sanding it and creating dust. The harmful chemicals evaporate once it is cured. i have NEVER heard of anyone having any kind of issue from wearing a fiberglass helmet or fiberglass reinforced helmet. Plenty of us have either reinforced helmets with fiberglass and polyester resin or have fiberglass helmets and ive never heard of anyone having an issue.

All the top quality Fett (and Vader) helmets are fiberglass and are perfectly safe to wear as far as i can tell. Licensed companies have even released fiberglass wearable helmets of both Vader and Fett. I doubt they would do that if there was any sort of significant risk. Ive known people trooping Vader in fiberglass helmets for over a decade with no issues, and that helmet is much more enclosed.

Again, Its not like we wear them all day every day. All this does is scare people for no reason. Its like saying if you go outside you may get shot so just stay inside.

Now all that said, if you personally are , as you said "far too paranoid" and would rather not have a fiberglass reinforced or fiberglass helmet, that is perfectly fine, but i think the amount of risk here is SO minuscule that your just causing fear based on your personal paranoia.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Grimstuff

Hunter
Strange because most good quality Fett helmets..
Although I agree I came on a little strong with my risk assessment, my intent with that post certainty wasn't to stir any fear mongering. I'm sorry if you thought it was damaging to the community in any way, I was just trying to share a possible concern about toxicity.

That being said though, I do believe that there is risk that people should take into account when doing this. Please keep in mind here that we are not talking about professionally manufactured fiberglass processing in painted and finished props (which I fully trust), this thread is about glassing the inside of your bucket with DIY storebought resin kits with the high-likelihood of inexact catalyzer mixtures and environmental situations that could inhibit curing. Fully cured resin is inert and safe, yes, but even with very exact mixtures in optimal conditions it can take up to a week or two for polyester resin to reach a fully cured degassed state, and in poorer mixtures with less optimal conditions I've read numerous threads of "why does my resin still smell after weeks??". I myself have had poorer cures that I definitely wouldn't have trusted as a wearable. The concern here is trace uncured resin.

I agree that I very likely over-stated the exposure risk in my previous posts, we are likely talking about very trace amounts here and I'm sure it takes quite a bit more exposure than wearing a mask for a few hours every few weeks to come even remotely close to risk levels. However, neither of us are experts, and yes, personally, it's something that I myself am still paranoid over considering what I've read of the long-term exposure effects of the material and how easy it is to completely mitigate the problem anyway.

Just make sure your resin is curing properly, then seal it over, it's really a non-issue considering how easy the solution is. Alternatively like I said, there's other solutions too like adding additional urethane coats.

Again, I'm not trying to create a ruckus here or disturb the established dogma. I just wanted people to be aware of the material they're using and recommend they seal over their DIY glassing. I'm not trying to make any bigger statements than that, sorry if I offended you.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Top