WIP: ESB build after a decade 'on hold'


Ord Mantell

Hunter
Thank you. Glad to hear that. Just so you know, I am a complete novice at fiberglass helmets, so if I can do it just about anybody can. I look forward to seeing how yours turns out. I wouldn't be surprised if it was as good as my job, if not better.
 

Ord Mantell

Hunter
I just realized a year has passed since I started this thread on 3/25/20 with the conversion of my pulce 40. So it's appropriate that I put the final touch on that part of the costume this week. Although its always great to have a found part, my original Nemrod holster was looking pretty rough. It was maybe 20-30 years old or so when I bought it and it obviously saw many years of use. Which showed. Lots of scuffs and scratches all over. The screen-used holster looks pretty clean and spiffy from the few photos we have of it. The Nemrod holster might be one of those found parts where you're probably better off with an excellent replica that looks new and not so roughed up unless you're lucky to get a real one in excellent condition. I felt mine needed a make-over. The best solution I could come up with was to polish and buff with black shoe polish.

Before (a year ago):
nemrod holster scuffed.jpg


And now:
IMG_0636 copy.jpg
 

Ord Mantell

Hunter
I finally got around to painting the "67" on the EE3 stock. Which is not a big deal, except the task list on this costume just seems never ending. o_O

I imagine most everybody knows about the '67' (or '69') little detail by now, if not this is a most excellent reference. I know this detail was first discussed many years ago, but I have no memory of who first pointed it out. I can't find any of the old discussions about it.

stock 67 close up.jpg


Anyway, as I was looking over this pic, I finally realized something ... and it hit me like a bolt of lightning. I know this is not news to many folks but I'll act as Captain Obvious for those like me who always thought the weathering on the aerial plugs on the EE3 stock was silver paint (unless, of course, I'm the only one!). It's not silver paint. In fact, it's not paint at all. Somehow I got it in my head a long time ago that it was silver dry brushing and never gave it a second thought. What I finally realized looking at a hi-res close-up, the weathering is just simply where the paint has rubbed off the plugs. It's just the color of the raw plastic. As soon as I realized that, I was like... "DUHHH." The orange/red on the unimax switch box is the same situation and I already knew that. Oh boy. What a genius. My only excuse is that the hi-res picture I was looking at wasn't available when I first formed my impressions of the EE3. :unsure:

aerial plugs.jpg


Unfortunately I sold my real aerial plugs (above) last year at the same time I sold my webley. But I had them for ten years and remember how they looked. They're made of a generic off-white plastic. So I would have to replicate that color with paint. Not as good as scraping off the paint on a real one but perhaps someday I'll get some real plugs again and be able to do that. For now I just mixed up some Archive X Depot Buff with a little white and that looked good to me.

Screen Shot 2021-04-02 at 1.11.37 PM.png


So I wanted to capture what the stock greeblies looked like during scene 371, and thankfully there is at least one decent photo showing them, albeit b&w. You can even see the '67' pretty clear, too. The weathering is a lot more than the early promo photos, which makes plenty of sense given that it's actual real weathering, not painted-on weathering.

I used Floquil TTX Yellow for the '67' marks.

IMG_0750 copy.jpg



IMG_0751 copy.jpg


stock revised paint.jpg
 

mandomigs

Hunter
I finally got around to painting the "67" on the EE3 stock. Which is not a big deal, except the task list on this costume just seems never ending. o_O

I imagine most everybody knows about the '67' (or '69') little detail by now, if not this is a most excellent reference. I know this detail was first discussed many years ago, but I have no memory of who first pointed it out. I can't find any of the old discussions about it.

View attachment 209541

Anyway, as I was looking over this pic, I finally realized something ... and it hit me like a bolt of lightning. I know this is not news to many folks but I'll act as Captain Obvious for those like me who always thought the weathering on the aerial plugs on the EE3 stock was silver paint (unless, of course, I'm the only one!). It's not silver paint. In fact, it's not paint at all. Somehow I got it in my head a long time ago that it was silver dry brushing and never gave it a second thought. What I finally realized looking at a hi-res close-up, the weathering is just simply where the paint has rubbed off the plugs. It's just the color of the raw plastic. As soon as I realized that, I was like... "DUHHH." The orange/red on the unimax switch box is the same situation and I already knew that. Oh boy. What a genius. My only excuse is that the hi-res picture I was looking at wasn't available when I first formed my impressions of the EE3. :unsure:

View attachment 209542

Unfortunately I sold my real aerial plugs (above) last year at the same time I sold my webley. But I had them for ten years and remember how they looked. They're made of a generic off-white plastic. So I would have to replicate that color with paint. Not as good as scraping off the paint on a real one but perhaps someday I'll get some real plugs again and be able to do that. For now I just mixed up some Archive X Depot Buff with a little white and that looked good to me.

View attachment 209543

So I wanted to capture what the stock greeblies looked like during scene 371, and thankfully there is at least one decent photo showing them, albeit b&w. You can even see the '67' pretty clear, too. The weathering is a lot more than the early promo photos, which makes plenty of sense given that it's actual real weathering, not painted-on weathering.

I used Floquil TTX Yellow for the '67' marks.

View attachment 209544


View attachment 209545

View attachment 209546



cool! will use this info for my sidewinder kit!
 

TheBobaFett

Active Hunter
100% with you on the Ariel Earth Plug weathering...Those 'scratches' I always thought were the white plastic too...
Its too bright to be Silver which is...debatable...because a lot of people have done it that way..never looks 'right' to me though.
There's also lot of debate as to what the 'silver' collar studs actually are too but they are clearly white if you look closely. They are believed to be the Super Trooper's raw white.
I too think it may have just been normal paint wear over filming, maybe not entirely but id say the majority.
I reckon that's simply from how Jeremy held the rifle. He usually covered the right gauntlet over the stock which would obviously cause a bit of friction. Doesn't seem to be any Primer applied either, looks to be the same jet black paint used for the gauntlets and laser.
Loving the progress so far, one of the most fun ESB builds I've ever had the joy of watching come together.
 
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Ord Mantell

Hunter
There's also lot of debate as to what the 'silver' collar studs actually are too but they are clearly white if you look closely.
Agreed.
one of the most fun ESB builds I've ever had the joy of watching come together.
Excellent. Thanks. I've really enjoyed having this project during the pandemic. I probably should've been doing other things but I needed to do something with my hands for a change. The suit from Clothears is arriving soon, and I have some other new stuff to share soon that I think will be interesting.
 

Ord Mantell

Hunter
Is this V1 or V2?
I don't know about the official version numbers. All I know is I spent several months going over changes and improvements I wanted before I gave the go ahead to proceed with the commission. They were wonderful to work with and accomodated me on pretty much everything. So this suit has a number of changes which has not been previously available. I'll post about the discussions we had and the changes that were made as soon as I get a chance.
 
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Ord Mantell

Hunter
So one last thing for the helmet exterior before I send it out for paint. And that's to get the visor exactly the same shape and size as the real helmet. Or as much as possible. The purpose of this is to maintain the helmet's proper width, especially the 'flare', and to have light reflect off the visor as it would the real thing.

The ESB visor has a peculiar shape with a concavity near the top at eye level. This causes an up/down mirror image reflection in that area.

Screen Shot 2020-09-13 at 10.34.58 PM copy.jpg
Screen Shot 2021-04-10 at 9.42.58 PM.png


To copy this exactly required making a mold of the visor from my untouched MCR-ESB. My first ever mold, in fact. It was simple to be sure, and I had fun learning. I tried two different approaches. The first was extremely simple. Just take an impression with self-hardening clay. The second, was to build a silicone and fiberglass impression. The first one actually resulted in a better mold for this particular purpose.

IMG_0529 copy.jpg
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It didn't have to be perfect or record fine surface detail. It just had to capture the surface shape.

The next thing is to make it the right size. In the past I have used t-visor.com's FP Deluxe visor. It's a great visor. I like how well they reshape with heat, and it has nice clean edges. However, for a G2 ESB helmet, the FP Deluxe is too narrow. They actually don't have any visors that will work. I reached out to them to suggest an upgrade to the FP deluxe and gave them my measurements for what it should be for the G2, but that was a couple months ago and I have never heard back. If any of you guys know the people running that business, maybe let them know we want a new size visor for our new size helmets. The FP Deluxe is about 2 1/4" wide at the bottom. If we look at the real helmet, we can figure out an approximate width for the real visor, which is about **2 5/8"** as measured across the curve at the bottom. (**I'm going to correct this after having a discussion with RafalFett about this measurement. He makes a compelling case the proper measurement is more like 2.44". He has a more precise way of measuring than I employed. Thanks Raf).

extrapolating length values in green-correction.jpg


The G2 has a straight-across measurement of 2" from mandible to mandible at the bottom (measuring the top edge, though, which is slightly wider than measuring where it meets the visor), which slopes along the vertical axis to 1 15/16" at the top of the vertical section. That's the width you should have after you install a visor on a G2 for ESB. At 2 1/4", the t-visor will only have an extra 1/8" on each side to hold the mandibles apart. That's probably not going to work well for a G2. On mine it was leaving a 1.75" wide front facing visor. Which looked really wierd. Since it also depends on exactly how you cut your inside mandibles, each helmet will be a little different in what width visor it will need, if you want it to fit and install like the original. I ended up with a measurement of about 2 9/16" for mine. I made a template and bought some sheet acrylic. Lots of different brands to see if there was any differences. There were. The best color for our purpose is smoke gray #2074.

visorcut.jpg


Since I still can't find 2mm smoked perspex/plexiglass I chose both 1/8" and 1/16" thickness of different brands to see which works best. **Both those sizes are wrong, too thick and too thin so I'd really like to find the 2mm stuff.** (**Another correction thanks to RafalFett. He has compelling evidence the visor is actually 1/8" or 3mm, but beveled at the bottom to be more like 2.5mm. So a 3mm or 1/8" visor should be close to accurate thickness afterall. Thanks again, Raf)

the mold needed the inside edge for it to work. I tried taking impressions of the inside of the helmet but what ended up working better was just sculpting the shape by hand.

visormold.jpg



visor recipe: bake at 375º for 5-10 minutes. Remove from heat. Using some hand protection, press down and rub the acrylic into the mold for a few minutes to make sure it's taking the shape. Gravity alone won't do an optimal job. Let it cool in the mold until it's rigid again.

visorbake.jpg


visortests.jpg


Lots of tests. All of these got heated and molded multiple times. The 1/16" did best with taking the shape. (That's the silicone mold on the left)

A long while back I re-primered my modified MCR-ESB, and it's been waiting for its new visor.

IMG_0414.JPG


New visor installed. This has the 1/16" in for now until I can find 2mm. Here is what I call my MCR-ESB'79 next to my raw MCR-ESB for comparison. The '79 is wider at the base by 3/16" but the visible visor width is the same top to bottom.

IMG_0901 copy.jpg


IMG_0919 copy copy.jpg


IMG_0912 copy.jpg


Concavity causing mirror imaging of light source:
convergence1.jpg
 
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