Scratch building Ralph McQuarrie concept helmet.

OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
Hi all, my name is Onno

I’m new to the forum and discovered it a couple of weeks ago while surfing to look for reference material on Fett’s helmet, in particular the Ralph McQuarrie concept of Boba Fett.
I’m a big fan of McQuarrie’s work and always liked the first concepts of the white helmet, suggesting Boba Fett was some sort of super trooper.

Even though I’m a model builder (also scratch build) I actually never attempted to scratch build a 1:1 Star Wars helmet. Here on the site I found the 2D helmet plans posted by wizardofflight, (great stuff!)
I studied them and they gave me the confidence that the model project would be a success If I used them as a template.
I Try to be as true to the concept as possible, so I slightly altered the line drawings to look less like the film version of Boba Fett and more like the concept helmet.

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OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
I made the basic shape of the helmet out of Polystyrol plates

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I made a reinforcement ring at the base of the helmet for better handling and maintaining the overall shape, later the forward part will be removed again.

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cut out the parts for the "cheekbones"

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OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
adding details to the backside of the helmet

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Filler and fiberglass arrived, now I can start on building the dome of the helmet.

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OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
after applying fiberglass to the dome (inside and outside) it's waiting for it to harden, then sand it roughly and apply a first coat of filler.

First layer of filler applied to the dome this morning, this stuff hardens within 5 minutes so next time I will apply thinner layers.

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...coming along nicely. Did a lot of sanding, re-plastering and more sanding! The result is a smooth dome, still some little puts left to fill.

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OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
I wasn't satisfied with the shape of the visor, so I studied the concept a bit more and re-drawn the shape, now it's going to be a bit larger.

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...cut out the part for the visor, the plaster is making the top of the helmet heavy, so I smoothened the inside to make it less thick and heavy.

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OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
The basic shape is finished, now the fun begins…detailing the helmet! Studying the McQuarrie concept drawings and figuring out what the shapes are.
It’s easy to see McQuarrie had an industrial illustrator/design background. His sketches are made to explain the shapes…so improvising what can’t be seen is relatively easy.

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scratch build the targeting rangefinder.

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dry fitted the targeting rangefinder to see if it's level. I'll keep the parts loose until after painting.

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spacebob

Hunter
that is just amazing.
loving the plastic sheet way of doing this, keeps it all very straight and concept like.
when you cut the visor out did it want to spring out at all?
 

OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
The basic “bucket” shape are 3 sandwich layers of 0.75 mm sheets wrapped around and glued together. Like this the sheets won’t spring back into their original flat surface when I cut out the visor.
 

OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
Yesterday I created the black visor. Made a template out of cardboard, then cut it out of a transparent/flexible piece Copolyester.
I used black car window film on the sheet to get the black transparent look. Inside the helmet the visor is bolted down in four places.

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OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
Thanks for the kind words, keeps me motivated!

Today I finished the helmet for spray painting, also added a bit of reinforcement on the inside of the cheeks, before they were a bit too flexible and wobbly. Tomorrow I will spray the helmet and loose parts all white. I choose glossy white, normally I paint with matt because it doesn’t show the imperfections clearly, but in this case the helmet is pretty smooth. (and I can always give it a matt varnish if necessary.) the inside I will paint black.
I know that Boba Fett’s helmet was initially going to be white, but I’m not sure about the characteristic cheekbone pattern. Some of the early sketches show them, some not. I’m going for the above rendition, but I’m not sure if the dark parts on the cheeks are painted patterns or just hard shadows. The do match the shadow/light angle seen in the rest of the rendition, but the color is pretty dark and could suggest painted on patterns.

Any suggestions or thoughts?
 

OnnoHeesbeen

New Hunter
Today I gave the helmet its first all-white coat of paint…good to see it in one color, but also for detecting little cracks and bumps that need to be filled. Not sure yet about the glossy finish though, a matt surface would be more conceptual like in the rendition. Maybe when finished I give it a matt coat.


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