Going To My First Foreign Convention - Dragoncon 2014

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phixix

Jr Member
Hello all you 405th lovelies,

So for the first time ever I'm stepping foot outside of the cold wet UK and going abroad, Dragoncon will be my first convention abroad and I'm pretty damn nervous.
Though I post infrequently I've been making armor and been on the 405th for a good few years now and I understand DC is one of the main conventions you guys do, and I'm more familiar with the community here than anywhere else.
So going knowing not much about the convention and knowing absolutely no one there, I'd love to be able to say hello to some of you, or if you have a 405th meet that people attend?
Also is there anything important to know about US conventions? Anything to avoid or specific to look out for or avoid if you are wearing armor over there? e.g heat, melting, dying etc..

Thanks very much everyone, I'm hoping to get the best experience possible from this trip ><

Clio
 

Verdan

New Member
I'm also from the UK and I recently went to MegaCon in Orlando as part of a USA holiday. My brother wasn't due to fly in for a few days and decided I could go on my own.

Things to look for - the Convention Centres are massive. Although I've been to the NEC in Birmingham a couple of times, this place was MASSIVE!
Also, if you've not already bought your ticket, you might have problems with using a UK card. MegaCon wasn't setup to deal with international payments so I had to pay cash on the day, which was a fun challenge since the guy who'd organised it for me hadn't told the staff.

Personally I only walked around the stalls and didn't meet anybody to talk with, so after about 4hrs of walking, purchasing and eating I left. I met a few people on the walk to the centre but they were more interested in their own costumes and plans for the day.
 

Demogorgon

Well-Known Member
I'm not sure about the regulations over in the UK, but if you plan on bringing a replica weapon, it needs to have an orange flash suppressor on it (just paint bright orange on the 1" tip of the barrel). This will also help when traveling, because TSA WILL search that bag that has your weapon in it haha.
 

Verdan

New Member
I'm not sure about the regulations over in the UK, but if you plan on bringing a replica weapon, it needs to have an orange flash suppressor on it (just paint bright orange on the 1" tip of the barrel). This will also help when traveling, because TSA WILL search that bag that has your weapon in it haha.
Bringing any "weapon like object" out of the UK will cause serious questions at the airport and international delivery companies dont seem to like delivery to hotels. Even the armour will cost a lot to ship.
 

Cadet

Executive Officer & RCO
Division Staff
405th Regiment Officer
Here is the current 405th Dragon Con planning thread:
http://www.405th.com/showthread.php/41191-Dragoncon-Parade-2014

Just some random, scattered Dragon Con thoughts for a first timer:

Dragon Con is unlike most of the other major conventions out there, in that it is not in a Convention Center proper, but actually spread out over three (4) main hotels that are all inter connected by skywalks with multiple "satellite" hotels within two to three blocks that also house activities and events.

You can get from the airport to the host hotels via the MARTA, Atlanta’s mass transit train system. Unless you have a lot of luggage, then it can be problematic.

This video is 40 minutes long, but it is gives you a good glimpse of the craziness that is Dragon Con:

The Aliens Colonial Marines costumers usually have a large contingent that comes over every year from the UK with their Marine props and weapons. They might be able to offer some good tips on getting your gear from the UK to the US.

I can tell you that when I fly domestically with my armor I fly with my armor packed into a Rubbermaid tub that fits with in the “Checked baggage” limits without going into the “over-sized category.” For most airlines this is a maximum size of 62 inches (length + width + height) per check piece of luggage. I drilled holes around the top of the tub and the sides to feed zip ties through to secure the armor. Zip ties are good because if TSA has to open the tub they just cut the zip tie and then replace it with their own zip ties. The best thing to secure you luggage with in general is Zip Ties or TSA approved locks. My armor is vacuum formed plastic, which means it is lightweight and therefore easily is under the 50 pound weight limit. Also, because it is vacuum form plastic the pieces nest inside of each very easily, and compact down into the tub easily. I also always place a document on top of the tub, so that if TSA opens it, it is right where they can see it right away. It lists my name, pone number, and what the costume is made out of, and shows pictures of the costume Front, Back, and Side.)
 
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Kaya Tetsu

Well-Known Member
Prepare for heat, my friend. Atlanta, Georgia is always hot, especially so in August. We'll be extremely lucky if its 80(F) and not real humid. That's my experience at least.
 
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