TheLavaMelon's budget build (WIP)

TheLavaMelon

New Hunter
Intro: (see General - Is it possible to build a costume in a month? (with a full time job))
Myself and a group of my friends going to a costume dance as Star Wars characters, and I chose Boba Fett. But, the dance is only about four weeks from today (2020-09-24).

I'm not looking for 501st approval, but I don't want overpriced garbage. If I end up with garbage, I don't want to spend any money on it.

Part status:
Main suit:
  • Flight Suit (acquired, fits great)
  • Flak vest (completed)
  • Helmet (completed)
  • Cape (acquired)
  • Girthbelt (completed)
  • Ammo Belt (completed)
  • Blaster (completed)
Armor:
  1. Knee (completed)
  2. Chest (completed)
  3. Shoulder (completed)
  4. Collar (completed)
  5. Cod (completed)
  6. Back (cut out)
  7. Kidney (completed)
  8. Armor - Chest LED's (ordered fettronics) (completed)
If I have time after the armor:
  1. Gloves
  2. Jetpack
  3. Boots
If I really have time:
  • Gauntlets
  • Gauntlet - Flamethrower Nozzles
  • Gauntlets - Darts
  • Gauntlets - Rocket
  • Gauntlets - Hose
Some other time:
  • Wookie Braids
  • Shin Tools
  • Voice Box

Day 0:
Ordered a helmet kit and flightsuit from a couple of forum members. I'll shout 'em out when their items come up in the build.

A failed attempt at knee armor:

Day 1:
I started on the knee armor. The rough plan for all of the armor pieces is as follows:
  1. Heat form a plastic base for the shape
  2. Cut out the piece
  3. Form a piece of leather to match
  4. Glue the leather to the plastic
  5. Trim the leather to the edge of the plastic (maybe I'll try to fold it over the edge?)
  6. Clearcoat?
  7. Paint/weather

I cut some plastic out of a sterilite container and formed it with a heat gun on a PVC pipe. Then I took it to the band saw to make the edges even-ish and split it in half-ish:
PXL_20200925_031909426.jpg

Then I looked at the 501st front and rear references and marked out how I wanted to cut one of them. (I messed up so I also scribed in the sharpie where I wanted to be):
PXL_20200925_032506323.jpg

Cutting time:
PXL_20200925_033713409.jpg

And then there were two:
PXL_20200925_034857432.jpg
(Yes, I know they aren't symmetrical. I don't think anybody will notice without seeming really awkward...)

I cut out a couple pieces of vegtan cowhide:
PXL_20200925_041029375.jpg

And then soaked them in hot water for five minutes (just hot from the tap, no boiling or else it will become extremely brittle).
Note that it will start to fizz when you first put it in. That is the air escaping and for some reason it becomes way more pliable and when it dries it will retain its shape.
PXL_20200925_041603364.jpg
(I had to hold it below the water level)

I then hung them to dry on the same pipe as before:
PXL_20200925_041932397.jpg

Now I need to wait overnight and then tomorrow morning I can glue the leather on. Once I get the knees to the point where I have a metallic base coat, I will start forming the plastic for the rest of the armor.

I'll take any advice and/or constructive criticism you throw at me!

For what I ended up with for the dance, see post #36 on page two

Best regards,
- TheLavaMelon
 
Last edited:

Frogfreak

Hunter
Intro: (see General - Is it possible to build a costume in a month? (with a full time job))
Myself and a group of my friends going to a costume dance as Star Wars characters, and I chose Boba Fett. But, the dance is only about four weeks from today (2020-09-24).

I'm not looking for 501st approval, but I don't want overpriced garbage. If I end up with garbage, I don't want to spend any money on it.

Part status:
Main suit:
  • Flight Suit (ordered)
  • Flak vest
  • Helmet (kit ordered, will need to assemble and paint)
  • Cape
  • Girthbelt
  • Ammo Belt
  • Blaster
Armor priority:
  1. Knee
  2. Chest
  3. Shoulder (I want to at least get here)
  4. Collar
  5. Cod
  6. Back
  7. Kidney
If I have time after the armor:
  1. Gloves
  2. Jetpack
  3. Boots
If I really have time:
  • Gauntlets (will likely 3d print, unless something comes up in the cargo hold)
  • Gauntlet - Flamethrower Nozzles
  • Gauntlets - Darts
  • Gauntlets - Rocket
  • Gauntlets - Hose
Some other time:
  • Wookie Braids
  • Armor - Chest LED's
  • Shin Tools
  • Voice Box

Day 0:
Ordered a helmet kit and flightsuit from a couple of forum members. I'll shout 'em out when their items come up in the build.

Day 1:
I started on the knee armor. The rough plan for all of the armor pieces is as follows:
  1. Heat form a plastic base for the shape
  2. Cut out the piece
  3. Form a piece of leather to match
  4. Glue the leather to the plastic
  5. Trim the leather to the edge of the plastic (maybe I'll try to fold it over the edge?)
  6. Clearcoat?
  7. Paint/weather

I cut some plastic out of a sterilite container and formed it with a heat gun on a PVC pipe. Then I took it to the band saw to make the edges even-ish and split it in half-ish:
View attachment 198822

Then I looked at the 501st front and rear references and marked out how I wanted to cut one of them. (I messed up so I also scribed in the sharpie where I wanted to be):
View attachment 198823

Cutting time:
View attachment 198824

And then there were two:
View attachment 198825
(Yes, I know they aren't symmetrical. I don't think anybody will notice without seeming really awkward...)

I cut out a couple pieces of vegtan cowhide:
View attachment 198826

And then soaked them in hot water for five minutes (just hot from the tap, no boiling or else it will become extremely brittle).
Note that it will start to fizz when you first put it in. That is the air escaping and for some reason it becomes way more pliable and when it dries it will retain its shape.
View attachment 198827
(I had to hold it below the water level)

I then hung them to dry on the same pipe as before:
View attachment 198828

Now I need to wait overnight and then tomorrow morning I can glue the leather on. Once I get the knees to the point where I have a metallic base coat, I will start forming the plastic for the rest of the armor.

I'll take any advice and/or constructive criticism you throw at me!

Best regards,
- TheLavaMelon
Can't wait to see how this goes!
 

Lazerjock

Active Hunter
Following this build! Very eager to see if you can meet your goal.
I'm a little confused why you are taking the time to add leather to the plastic just to paint over it later? Seems like an expensive way to make thicker armor if that is your goal.

If you running low on time you can skip the back armor. The jet pack and cape on the one side pretty much hide it.
 

ShortFuse

Active Hunter
Also, there are available templates here for the armor to get them the right shape. Makes this much easier. Also curious about the leather.

 

ShortFuse

Active Hunter
If you can get your hands on some 6mm Sintra, it makes much better DIY armor than the trash can plastic. It is more expensive, but you will like the results much better and you won’t have to build it up with leather. You shape it with a heat gun and when it cools, it keeps its shape.
 

TheLavaMelon

New Hunter
Thank you all for your interest and suggestions! I ended up sleeping in this morning so I didn't have time to glue the leather. I'll probably just use a 5 minutes epoxy.

I'm a little confused why you are taking the time to add leather to the plastic just to paint over it later? Seems like an expensive way to make thicker armor if that is your goal.

It's just what I have on hand. I could go the Sintra route as ShortFuse pointed out, but I would have to wait for shipping. I checked Home depot and they carry acrylic, but it seems like that is much harder to form.

Also, there are available templates here for the armor to get them the right shape. Makes this much easier. Also curious about the leather.

Thanks for the link! I was looking in RatalFett's 3d projects for these, I must've missed it.

Well, I'm going to get started gluing the leather and trimming it. I'll post with more pics later tonight.

Best regards,
- TheLavaMelon
 

SPY007

Active Hunter
You may have problems getting paint to stick to your sterilite knees. When I was making my Fett, I went to a local sign shop and was able buy scrap PVC sheet and some styrene. They often just gave me stuff. You can heat and form it. I takes paint well, you can sand it add bondo...
 

ShortFuse

Active Hunter
A sign shop is where I got my sintra back in the day when I made my scratch build. They sold me some small pieces for just a few bucks.
 

TheLavaMelon

New Hunter
You may have problems getting paint to stick to your sterilite knees.

PXL_20200925_235847353.jpg PXL_20200925_235852047.jpg

I didn't think to sand the plastic before trying to epoxy the leather on.

After that failure, I did some research on sintra and it seems that it isn't that different from normal foam core from a craft store so I grabbed a couple of sheets at hobby lobby.

I printed the wizardofflight templates for the armor and spliced/taped/mounted it all onto the foam core:

PXL_20200926_032538425.jpg PXL_20200926_032545552.jpg

It's getting late, so I'll pick this up tomorrow. I'll cut them out and start heat-forming them.
I only got two sheets so I don't have enough space to fit the knees. But that's okay though because I don't understand the templates yet.

Best regards,
- TheLavaMelon
 

Lazerjock

Active Hunter
After that failure, I did some research on sintra and it seems that it isn't that different from normal foam core from a craft store so I grabbed a couple of sheets at hobby lobby.

Foamboard has a paper exterior while Sintra board has a PVC exterior. You will not be able to form foam core, it will just crease.
 

TheLavaMelon

New Hunter
Foamboard has a paper exterior while Sintra board has a PVC exterior. You will not be able to form foam core, it will just crease.

Okay, that makes sense. I'll still give it a try because I can't call any sign shops until Monday at least, but if it doesn't work that would be why.

I have a zoom meeting until about 11:30, so I won't be working on this until then.

Best regards,
- TheLavaMelon
 

TheLavaMelon

New Hunter
Well, life happened so I was delayed further.

I'll still give it a try because I can't call any sign shops until Monday at least, but if it doesn't work that would be why.

And it didn't work. I could bend it with heat, but the thickness became extremely uneven.

I was hoping to work on the armor all day this Sunday, but I guess not. I'll try to make progress on the other pieces.

Best regards,
- TheLavaMelon
 

Lazerjock

Active Hunter
Lava,
You may want to check this thread out. It may be exactly what you are looking for.
 

TheLavaMelon

New Hunter
Hey everybody. I've been working on this all week, but haven't had time to sit down and write this post.

You may want to check this thread out. It may be exactly what you are looking for.

I appreciate you linking this, but I'm just not interested in buying anymore. I've been bit by the DIY bug.

We begin this update on Monday the 28th.

After two failures with the armor in a row, I started on the soft pieces. I drew out the template for the flak vest:
PXL_20200929_024253738.jpg

The next couple of days were spent cutting out the pieces and assembling it (flight suit purchased from joe, he thinks it's an old Bobamaker ROTJ suit):
PXL_20201001_021702427.jpg
This picture was taken Wednesday, and I was using some stretchy fabric so that I could put it on and take it off like a t-shirt. As you can see the collar was not looking good. I also didn't realize that I wasn't supposed to have a seam in the center. I'm hoping nobody else notices...

The next day (Thursday) I switched to a spiral lacing:
PXL_20201002_013652002.jpg PXL_20201002_013656865.jpg

Much better.


Then on Friday, I made the girth belt:

PXL_20201002_230029412.jpg PXL_20201003_023102232.jpg

I did dye the rope, but somehow forgot to take a picture.

Then on Saturday, I made the ammo belt and also completely forgot to take pictures.

Later that night I was getting excited and opened up the helmet I ordered from ToEleven:
PXL_20201004_035411487.jpg

This just made me more excited. At Midnight. :)

And now we come to today. While I was working on the soft parts I was working to get some Sintra and managed to get some from a local company (Curbell Plastics). Technically it isn't Sintra brand, but it is expanded PVC.

I re-did the armor templates and cut out the armor:
20201004_140345.jpg PXL_20201004_223823049.jpg PXL_20201004_223827611.jpg

Now to heat form it!

And now, I have some questions:

I have printed the knee templates, but have no idea how they are supposed to go together. Does anybody have instructions? Is wizardofflight still around?
is there a tutorial for helmets?
Lazerjock, do you still have the files for your 3d printed jetpack? I have access to a 3d printer and it would be nice to have those prints running in the background.

Best regards,
- TheLavaMelon
 

Lazerjock

Active Hunter
Lava,
Here is the link to Rafalfett's Shapeways page. There are several file you will need to get. Note he has 1/12 scale and full scale.

You will need to create a free account before you can download the .STL files. The you will need to split the files into parts small enough to fit the printer you have.

This is a big job!
Mine took 7 1/2 weeks from me downloading the files to assembled, painted and a wearable jet pack.
 

TheLavaMelon

New Hunter
Mine took 7 1/2 weeks from me downloading the files to assembled, painted and a wearable jet pack.

Yikes, I think I'll pass on that. I might try to do like this guy did (linked in my other thread):

Anyway, I have some updates. Yesterday (Monday) my Rubies gun came in:
PXL_20201006_014122819.jpg

It is super flimsy, so I filled it with caulk to stiffen it up. It actually worked pretty well, but I ran out. I'll get some on the way to work tomorrow.
PXL_20201006_014430383.jpg PXL_20201006_015453514.jpg
This evening, I went ahead and painted it. I used a Rustolium flat black enamel:
PXL_20201007_025139095.jpg

While the paint was drying, I started heat-forming the armor.
I read in a manual for working with Sintra that for sharp bends you want to put a notch in the backside:
PXL_20201007_002049488.jpg
I actually ended up with a deeper groove with a much sharper angle to get the right effect on the cod piece.

I was very pleased with the results and got almost all of the armor done in an hour:
PXL_20201007_024936407.jpg

For the helmet I used a hack saw to get most of the visor out, but my brother reminded me that he has a flex-shaft (basically a dremel on roids designed for jewelry work). I should get the rest of the prep work on the helmet done tomorrow and I can put a base coat on all of the armor.

I also ordered a MoW cape because I don't think I have time to make one.

A few more questions:
How long does fettronics take to ship the led set? It would be cool to have the lights working.
Is there a good voice changer for cheap? Has anybody tried this one? Amazon.com: BOBA FETT HELMET VOICE CHANGER COSPLAY HALLOWEEN COSTUME TOY KIT WITH MICROPHONE & SPEAKER - MAKES YOUR VOICE SOUND LIKE BOBA FETT: Clothing

Best regards,
- TheLavaMelon
 
Last edited:

Irongladiator

Active Hunter
How long does fettronics take to ship the led set? It would be cool to have the lights working.
TheLavaMelon
I can tell you that I ordered my Fettronics Light Kit on a Friday at like 11:00pm and THAT Monday morning it was in my hands. He's very fast. I can't recall where he's located, but I'm in the Seattle, WA area.

I can tell you that his stuff is amazing and I love that you can create a custom sequence too!

-Iron
 
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