Minutefett ESB Restored paint up

Just received my MinuteFett ESB helmet. Lovely kit, I went for the metal ears too. this’ll be my second paint job and will form part of my ESB build so will be looking for 501 clearance.

My first one was on a 3D printed helmet in prep for this one and you can see that HERE.



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I tend to skirt a line somewhere between screen accuracy, realism, and practicality.


To that end, I’m not fussed about the interior. That Ord Mantell build looks amazing though, thanks for bringing it to my attention!
 
Just so there's no confusion, the image posted by spicy fett is of the ESB Hero/ROTJ SE helmet, but here's Ord Mantell's helmet for comparison:
View attachment 221961

He sure did an excellent job so far!
Gotcha

Base grey is down, coffee at the ready!

I debated whether or not to lay down another coat but I like the faint patches of grey primer showing through, I don’t want that base colour to be too ‘clean’ and uniform so I think I’ll leave it.

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Silver damage is done with grey layer. I’m going to do the fine detail within the grey areas before moving on to the next layer. I waited until the very end before going back and doing the detail on each area and it was overwhelming, I got lost very quickly! So this time I’ll do it in each area before moving on.

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Little bit of an issue with paint peeling off with the masking fluid in a couple of areas. It’s easily fixed with a touch up but I didn’t have this issue at all with my 3D printed one. Is it common with fibreglass helmets and is there any ways to guard against it?
 

BudaFett

Hi I’m Bobert!
TDH PREMIUM MEMBER
Little bit of an issue with paint peeling off with the masking fluid in a couple of areas. It’s easily fixed with a touch up but I didn’t have this issue at all with my 3D printed one. Is it common with fibreglass helmets and is there any ways to guard against it?

I've seen a few MF helmets have this issue. Sometimes the helmet isn't fully cured which is why the paint peels. I've heard of clear coating between layers of masking and paint could help.
 
I've seen a few MF helmets have this issue. Sometimes the helmet isn't fully cured which is why the paint peels. I've heard of clear coating between layers of masking and paint could help.
Oh really? Between every layer?! Damn.

Do you see any potential issues in me sanding what I’ve done so far off and starting again? I think that could help to be honest as it’ll scuff the surface a little and hopefully give the paint something to grab to more. Nothing too crazy, I have a lot of 400 grit
 

BudaFett

Hi I’m Bobert!
TDH PREMIUM MEMBER
Oh really? Between every layer?! Damn.

Do you see any potential issues in me sanding what I’ve done so far off and starting again? I think that could help to be honest as it’ll scuff the surface a little and hopefully give the paint something to grab to more. Nothing too crazy, I have a lot of 400 grit

It really depends. If the helmet's top coat isn't 100% cure it doesn't matter how much you sand it. I would reach out to MF and discuss.
 
It really depends. If the helmet's top coat isn't 100% cure it doesn't matter how much you sand it. I would reach out to MF and discuss.
I have a WIP going on bobafettbuilders and he’s chimed in on that one. This was his advice:

I suggest sanding the entire helmet with 500 grit. The sandpaper will either sand the paint, or it willl easily take off any of the primer in areas that would eventually "lift" from tape peel. Should you have this in enough areas, then I suggest you to acetone the helmet to strip it. After stripping it, a good acetone wash should remove any and all trace of mold release/residue. After this, you should be ready to lay down primer again.
 

BudaFett

Hi I’m Bobert!
TDH PREMIUM MEMBER
That advice is pretty sound only assuming the helmet is fully cured. I would follow that advice and see if it happens again. If it does you'll have your answer.
 
So, MF advised it is most likely residue of releasing agent causing the issue. Even though I gave it a wash with warm soapy water before starting, I suspect I didn’t go hard enough. I only used wire wool which is 0000 and therefore probably not ideal to scrub anything off.

So, now I removed all paint and primer from the helmet using acetone so it’s had a good scrub all over with that as well as another scrub with warm soapy water and we’re back to square one. I can’t see how any releasing agent would be left after that so I hope that has solved it.

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I will say, after hearing that the issue could be releasing agent, I remembered how the masking tape wouldn’t really stick to the fibreglass when I was masking it up for painting the rear panels. If I had know a bit more about working on fibreglass, that would’ve been a red flag but hey-ho! Live and learn. We’re now re-primed and ready to go.

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I think this may have been a bit of a blessing in disguise as, since I started painting this up, I found a thread by MF over on Boba builders which detailed the prep needed before painting which included sanding off excess fibreglass from the bottom of the cheeks and the bottom of the rear panels which I had not seen. This gave me a chance to do that and the cheeks now have that 'warp.'

If you look at the bottom edge of the cheek in the above photos, you can see what I mean.
 

Eythor20

Hunter
So, MF advised it is most likely residue of releasing agent causing the issue. Even though I gave it a wash with warm soapy water before starting, I suspect I didn’t go hard enough. I only used wire wool which is 0000 and therefore probably not ideal to scrub anything off.

So, now I removed all paint and primer from the helmet using acetone so it’s had a good scrub all over with that as well as another scrub with warm soapy water and we’re back to square one. I can’t see how any releasing agent would be left after that so I hope that has solved it.

View attachment 222021

I will say, after hearing that the issue could be releasing agent, I remembered how the masking tape wouldn’t really stick to the fibreglass when I was masking it up for painting the rear panels. If I had know a bit more about working on fibreglass, that would’ve been a red flag but hey-ho! Live and learn. We’re now re-primed and ready to go.

View attachment 222022

I think this may have been a bit of a blessing in disguise as, since I started painting this up, I found a thread by MF over on Boba builders which detailed the prep needed before painting which included sanding off excess fibreglass from the bottom of the cheeks and the bottom of the rear panels which I had not seen. This gave me a chance to do that and the cheeks now have that 'warp.'

If you look at the bottom edge of the cheek in the above photos, you can see what I mean.
Also i would thin the thickness of the visor area aswell! you can see a line there which is about the thickness you'd want the visor area to be :)
 
Also i would thin the thickness of the visor area aswell! you can see a line there which is about the thickness you'd want the visor area to be :)
Oh really? So I want to remove everything where the red line is:

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At what stage would you say is best to do this? I’m afraid of making the helmet too flimsy and won’t be putting the visor in until the end
 

Eythor20

Hunter
Oh really? So I want to remove everything where the red line is:

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At what stage would you say is best to do this? I’m afraid of making the helmet too flimsy and won’t be putting the visor in until the end
I have a minutefett cast that I'm currently painting up and i finished all the clean up and trimming before painting :) But it's entirely up to you if you want to do it. Here is a pic of the original helmet you can see that the visor area matches up roughly with the thickness of that line.


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Ok, good to know. I can still to do it now as I've barely started painting - the helmet has a base coat of Humbrol 147 all over but I can't see that being disrupted too much by sorting this visor issue out.
 
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