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Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th db)

Discussion in 'Halo Costumes and Armor' started by EVAkura, Jun 20, 2014.

  1. EVAkura

    EVAkura RCO 405th Regiment Officer

    This is a continuation of the construction tutorials of files available for Foam Reach armor. The files are in dire need of detailed instructions, so I am going to attempt to do just that. Just like the previous build (forearm), I am going to break this down into several steps.

    FIRST AND FOREMOST, due credit must be given. Model by ForgedReclaimer and Foam Unfold by L3x Blu3r1v3r

    This bicep file can be found in the 405th 4Shared database in Foam Templates/Reach/Base/Male/Shoulder and is the "Foam Bicep L.PDO" file.

    Tools required:

    EVA foam - This build utilizes approx. 1 - 2'X2' sheet of EVA Foam for both left and right shoulders
    *Scalpel handle with #11 blades (I used just one blade and sharpened it between each piece at a minimum)
    Ball point pen
    Printed templates. I used the default size of H:180mm W:168mm D:134mm
    *Box Cutter blade - I use the small, rectangle, single edge ones (the kind you put in a cheap box-cutter)
    *Cutting mat (or other surface to protect your table or whatever is under your foam!)
    Hot glue gun
    *High temp glue sticks (I ONLY use hot temp and not low or multi-temp ones... they make a difference!)
    Heat gun
    *Dremel with barrel sander bit (120 grit) and a small cone shaped stone bit (for small detail holes)

    * indicates optional or personal preference. I have found that using these items generally yield superior builds if used correctly.

    Ok, now for the pep file template.


    And my cut-outs


    These pictures only show the LEFT SHOULDER, you will need to flip each piece over and duplicate a mirror image for the RIGHT SHOULDER.


    Pieces with a "X" are not used

    Duplicate numbers (2, 4, 9, & 12) have been combined with the other corresponding numbers to make a single piece. Keep in mind, when parts are combined, sometimes the template pieces do not line up perfectly. This is okay, and they will "come out in the wash" as the build progresses.

    Parts with a red "*" need to be mirrored.

    There are plenty of parts that need to be altered, so I suggest making those alterations on your printed cardstock before attempting to transfer to foam.

    1. This may look tricky, but try not to overthink it. Since I prefer not to make visible cuts whenever possible, I chose to eliminate these open seams and will rely on the EVA's incredible ability to heat form. Instead, save your altered template after you have transferred it to the foam because we will be using it later. To figure out where these new lines go, all I do is "shift" the same distance that the gap was. In the case with the top alteration, the start of the new line on the right is proportionate in distance from the gap below. The alteration below took a bit more figuring because there was a whole shape to move, but the diagram and end result should be fairly self-explanatory. DO NOT CUT THE INSIDE BOX OUT OF THE EVA. Leave the top line connected. This is because this "box" merely tips down at the bottom and requires a cut on the back-side of the EVA to do this. Now, flip this over and cut in your contour lines like this:


    2. This is one of the parts that I have combined with another. Also, with the curved piece, simply round out the curve. Then, after this piece has been cut out in EVA, flip it over and cut out a contour line using one of the two templates as a guide for your line.

    3. Simple trace and cut-out. Then, flip it over and cut out contour lines where indicated on the template piece.

    4. This is a combination of 3 pieces. On this one, go ahead and cut out the lone piece in the center of the combined pieces (the piece that looks like a small boat on its end). Again, flip this piece over and use your template pieces to draw and cut your contour lines. Since the two longer pieces' intersection is a valley, you only need cut a slit for the contour line as a pose to the traditional "V" cut.

    5. This piece is yet another tricky one. In order to eliminate these crazy corner seams, I am going to use the thickness of the EVA to my advantage and simply cut the angles in from the top. The only tricky part is to find out where the new edge is. The blue line I have drawn shows the approximate new line you will need to make. Once this is done, and the outline has been transferred from the template to the EVA, you will need to make cuts in your template to get all interior lines transferred. The pictures below demonstrate the point after the outline has been transferred and the template re-cut for the internal lines to be drawn.


    And this is what it should look like after all the lines have been drawn. All the little lines represent that this will be an angled cut, and the squiggly line is the section that gets cut out. (This is where you will add 6mm craft foam later... alternately, you can use an accurately cut piece of EVA to fill this in as well)


    6. A fairly straightforward piece. Mirror this one. Refer to my EVA photo for reference on which side is your base if needed.

    7. This also is another straightforward piece. You will need to cut this as a non-joined mirrored piece. Refer to my EVA cut-out photo for reference if needed.

    8. Similar to part #1, follow the blue line on the diagram that I drew in, and then flip over to make the contour cuts where shown on the template. (On the template, the "V" shaped cut out is not joined. Simply use a ruler to continue them until they intersect. This will now be your cut for your contour line on the back of the EVA)

    9. Another three part combination. Refer to my EVA cut-out photo for assembly reference if needed. Also, this is a non-connected mirror piece as well. Flip and duplicate.

    10. This is another tricky part. Since I deleted the tiny angled detail pieces at the top, I need to compensate. The blue lines I drew in the template photo show approximately where the new line will go. After this piece is cut out, the 45 degree outward angle can be cut, thus eliminating those finicky small pieces. Also, the "box" area only gets the sides and bottom cut all the way through. After the piece main piece has been cut out, and the three sides cut through, cut out the box on the template piece and flip the EVA piece over. Using the three sides you cut as reference, draw a line where the top of the box is, and also another line parallel to that about 1/4" down. If you look carefully at the template piece, you can see where the line angles... that is about 1/4" down. Now that those two lines are drawn on the back of your EVA cut out piece, cut a "V" contour line on the top line, and a slit contour line on the lower line. It should look like this when you are done:


    11. Simple cut! YAY!

    12. Combine the two pieces to make one. There will be a slight miss-alignment, but that is okay. Also, there will be a small "V" at the bottom; this will need to be cut out. Flip over and use one of the two templates to draw your line for your contour cut. This one too will be a single slit as a pose to the "V" contour cut. Then, using either the 3D model, or the picture below, make the three contour cuts where indicated. The top and bottom will be slits, and the middle a "V" cut.


    13. Even though it is not shown in the template photo, and a bit hard to make out in the EVA cut out photo, the bottom of this piece has 1/4" added to it for a detail angle that will be cut in later. Other than that, it is a straight forward cut out.

    14. Cut this one out just as it is, then follow the examples in the photo below. First, cut the 45 degree angle on the two sides, then cut the "V" contour lines as shown.


    15. Fairly simple on this one too. Not shown in the template and barely visible on the EVA cut-out photo, but I added 1/8" to the sides of this piece to have an angle cut in later.

    16. Final piece! Referencing the template photo, this piece will need to be mirrored... BUT, the base of the mirror needs to be where I drew the blue line. The photo below was taken before the pieces were cut out, but show what the template will look like. NOTE: Only one per piece of armor needed. The other one in this photo is for the right bicep.


    The next update will be heat shaping, cutting angled pieces, and assembling.

    Attached Files:

  2. EVAkura

    EVAkura RCO 405th Regiment Officer

    Now that we have all of the pieces cut out, it is time to heat-shape, cut in the seam angles if needed, and assemble.

    As I stated in my previous build for the forearms, I try to start on flat pieces, and especially ones that are seen the most. This way, if parts need to be stretched a bit to connect at the end, they are less likely to be either visible, or mess with the parts that are most visible.

    With that in mind, I started with the outer most side, or what I would consider the front.

    I will try to use the same numbers I used in the cut-outs to make this a little easier to work along with.

    Start with parts #10 and #16. #10 will need to have the top angle cut and smoothed. I rough cut it with a razor (this time I used my scalpel since the distances of the cuts were too short for my box cutter blade) and then used my Dremel's barrel sander to smooth out the cuts. Referencing the photo below, I also cut in a 45 degree angle cut where part #16 will connect. I then hit #10 and #16 with the heat gun to shape them a bit, and to close the cells. Then I hot glued together. I started in the center, then did each of the sides in increments of two lengths at a time. I do this so that I am not trying to glue too much at a time and have to fight getting a seam nice and clean before the glue cools down too much. In other words, take your time :)


    Now take both halves of #9. Cut detail lines in the location of where the center template piece of the three that made it goes. Then glue that piece to the previous assembly we just made. Then, flip the whole thing over and cut the excess off flush (where the purple arrows indicate). This will allow the next piece, #6, to be glued into position. Now it is time to prep both halves of #7. First, make adjustments to the tabs that are indicated with a blue arrow if needed. If they are too wide to fit in the notched area where they go, then cut off that excess from the top. DON'T GLUE YET... proceed to next step...


    Where the arrows are is where you will need to cut an angle into both halves of part #7 so that it looks like this when done. Go ahead and glue them on now :)


    Now, we set that down for a few minutes and pick up parts #2, #3, #4, and #5. Starting with part #3, cut an angle on the edge that will be connecting to all of these pieces (purple arrow). Then heat shape #2, #3, and #4. For part #5, you will need to cut a piece of scrap that has the same "footprint" as it, and use that as a backer piece (blue arrow). This will give you something to glue to after you have cut down and smoothed the angles for it. After all that is done, go ahead and assemble these pieces.


    Referring to the picture below, cut an angle into part #4 that is just above the purple arrow and where it will connect to the prior assembly. Then, glue in the recessed piece where the purple arrow is (you may need to put in a piece of scrap to secure it better on the side that has the contour line cut as that will separate when it is heat formed). Next, cut angles on the edges indicated with the blue arrows. This is the point where these two assemblies will be joined.


    Now take parts #1, #8 and #12 and cut angles on both of the sides of each that connect with other parts (the long sides). Heat form if where required and connect together. Also, glue the small tab in part #1 into position (blue arrow on the 2nd picture). Now, glue this assembly to the other. The next two photos is what this should look like:



    This just leaves the one side with parts #11, #13, #14, and #15. Cut and smooth the outside angles in #13 (bottom) and #15 (sides), heat shape #14, and assemble all four parts together (#11, #13, #14, and #15). Then, connect this assembly to the rest to complete the armor. Here is what that side should look like when completed:


    This completes the tutorial. I hope you have found this helpful, and as always, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to post them!

    Attached Files:

  3. EVAkura

    EVAkura RCO 405th Regiment Officer

    Just a quick shot showing both the forearm and the shoulder being worn :)


    Attached Files:

    WandererTJ likes this.
  4. mkshane81


    Another great tutorial....thanks very much for sharing this Phil!!

  5. Mstruvmgc


    Thumbs up from me :)
  6. WandererTJ


    Sooo after staring at player models for a while, I came to the realization that the thing that you see sticking out at the top of the bicep armor is actually a piece that fastens to the undersuit.

    I realize that you didn't include it in the tutorial, but I would be curious as to how you would incorporate a functioning strap like that so that it doesn't tear as you move around. Adding that undersuit connection piece and actually using it as the mounting point for the bicep to the undersuit would definitely add to a Reach build.
  7. Solanius

    Solanius New Member

    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    Thanks for the tut, I've found it extremely helpful in getting the basics down for my own build. Hope to see more in the future! :)
  8. EVAkura

    EVAkura RCO 405th Regiment Officer

    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    It is my pleasure! I really like that fact that people are using my tutorials :) If you didn't already know, there is also one for the Reach forearm, and Halo 4 bicep and shoulder armor.

    I will not be doing more tutorials until after the Nov. release of the MC Collection due to a massive project I have taken on. After that, I will revisit tutorials again.
  9. WandererTJ


    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    I am pretty heartbroken, just so you know.

    I will definitely be hoping for more Reach tutorials when you come back.
  10. EVAkura

    EVAkura RCO 405th Regiment Officer

    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    It is a personal goal (and promise) to finish these tutorials. That, and to hold the contest at the end.... but details on that will be revealed later.
  11. WandererTJ


    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    Fyi, doing one for the ab wrap / stomach undersuit would be really awesome!
    I think it would be awesome to have details in that tutorial on how to score/burn some of the detailed lines into the foam.

    I wonder if there are some ways to make it so that it doesn't keep you so rigid so that you can move and bend around easily... :confused

    Maybe.... and I have to emphasize the MAYBE... it would be possible to attach the pieces to elastic straps rather than the adjacent foam pieces. If you were to bend over, the foam would probably bunch up in the front, but the backside would expand, which could definitely add increased mobility.
    Getting the foam to stay attached to the straps would be the hard part.

    I know there is a new model for the stomach in the works btw. I will also be trying to figure out how to model one up nicely.
  12. EVAkura

    EVAkura RCO 405th Regiment Officer

    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    Wanderer, have you seen the part of my build thread where I cover the construction of my Exo-suit? If not, on page one, it shows which pages cover the build. I have nearly full mobility in it, and used woven elastic straps to interconnect all of the pieces together. Each strap not only holds them together, but allows for movement in all directions. The trick is to strategically place each one, and to not only hot glue them to the EVA, but to double seal them by adding the glue over the top of the strapping. I have yet to have one break loose. :)
  13. Tom117

    Tom117 New Member

    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    Bookmarked! I hope to use this once my foam arrives! though you make it look so easy haha end result is superb
  14. BuckeeW


    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    So, are the measurements, (Printed templates. I used the default size of H:180mm W:168mm D:134mm) a customized size for your arm or did you just print out something and hoped it worked? and how would I size this to my arm, if that is what you did?
  15. EVAkura

    EVAkura RCO 405th Regiment Officer

    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    I printed the default size. To give you an idea, my arm measures 13" around the bicep... yes, I be skinny :) That should give you something to go on.
  16. Masterchief0624


    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    This also includes the H4 MC tutorials too right? :cool ::crosses fingers:: Currently working on the forearm and its a pain lol
  17. EVAkura

    EVAkura RCO 405th Regiment Officer

    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    As far as the H4 MC parts I did, the Bicep was default, and the shoulder is my own template and will need to be sized appropriately.. but it is not a .pdo, it is a .jpg, so that may be a bit trickier since you will need to do it with either printer settings or scaling the image in a image editing program. I have not made a tutorial for H4 MC forearms yet, so I am not sure if the sizing is close.
  18. Masterchief0624


    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    How i sized the shoulders was scaling it about 10% bigger of the .jpg image and it worked out beautifully. Thank you again for those tutorials.

    Hopefully when you get a chance you can post up a tutorial of the forearms and rest of the suit. :cool we all know you have that important task with MG. which will come out epic.
  19. jseraph

    jseraph New Member

    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    Thanks so much for taking the time to do this! I'm in the planning phase of starting a Reach suit, and honestly, this tutorial combined with your forearm one makes working with foam for the first time so much less daunting for a complete noob (aka *points at self* this guy). Thanks for sharing your knowledge, and I look forward to the upcoming tutorials!
  20. Uscstaylor

    Uscstaylor New Member

    Re: Detailed construction tutorial: Reach Foam Biceps [Shoulder] (file in the 405th d

    Outstanding dude...Keep it up!
  21. harry56

    harry56 New Member

    i will on the last tutorial I'll do to completing a helmet which leaves i dunno 4 more tutorials

    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 2, 2017
  22. NZSpartanz

    NZSpartanz New Member

    Nice foam work, very inspiring!
  23. ErMaC


    looking good EVA. I know its from 2014 but still gotta give you props

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