Halo Reach Mark V Base with Mark VI Helmet

ravinousbunny

New Member
Hello everyone!!

I believe this post should hopefully serve as a possible introduction to my build and to me as well!! Hopefully this post will not be too much of a drag to read and hopefully will be the beginning of some more awesome experiences for me in costuming and especially costuming within the Halo universe.

I shall start with a little about me. My name is Austin. I am currently 23 years old and work in the IT field. As most here I am an avid gamer (not so much recently with my build taking up my time). My favorite among the Halo series would be Halo Reach and is what I decided to build my armor around. I would say I am a bit of a shy guy when it comes to being sociable sometimes though I do try my best to be an active part amongst communities! I do play on Xbox live on occasion and am on my PC a bunch, more gaming now since the bulk of my build is over and I essentially did nothing else except the build for two months haha. I am also current a 501st member with a Stormtrooper costume and will be working on the new ep7 armor shortly. I am absolutely in love with armor building and any armor related cosplays. I was accepted in to the 501st in January of 2014. I have always wanted to do a set of Halo Spartan armor but always nervously neglected pursuing that dream as I was not sure I would have the skills needed to get it done. After I was looking on etsy at helmets and bought one that essentially got this whole build off the ground.

I have "finished" my base build for my Mark V Reach armor and am already working on my plans for upgrades and additions. I was hugely stressed to get the armor finished in time for a convention so I figured the base armor with no real flash or flare would be a good idea. The only real accessories I have set on my armor now are a camera mount on the helmet for a Sony AS20 action camera to go and a set up on the forearm for my phone to attach to act as a bit of a tac pad/gps. After wearing the armor I have found a few things I can tweak to better the overall suit up and suit down. I thought about incorporation some magnets into the build to possibly get forearms pieces that will close around my arm instead of sliding on as well as doing that with the shins also. I also had a bit of an issue with the paint on the chest armor, not sure if my bad painting or a possible bad can of plastidip, but the chest armor has some roughness to it that is only really noticeable when you are about an inch from the armor and hardly noticeable even then. It is like little rubber bumps that just would not come off. I was only able to have one weapon ready for the con I went to which is essentially the boom co halo pistol painted up. I am working on a sniper rifle and that is on my to do list. I used pep files located on the archives here on the site and cannot express how thankful I am to those who made and modified the files as well as having access to such crucial information!

As a note my under suit include a set of fox dirt bike armor (logos are colored in black now as photos below showed white), a set of football pad pants, under armor padded elbow sleeves, airsoft gloves, and the normal compression undersuit. The boots are also wolverine work boots from one of my old jobs with the pieces glued on to it. All the padding helps bulk me up as I am 5' 8" and 135 lb.

------My upgrades/additions list------ (probably forgetting some things)
-Checking over seams from troop and reinforcing fractures with E-6000 (love this stuff)
-Recon Shoulder armor (left)
-Para Shoulder armor (right)
-Tactical case (left thigh)
-Magnet closure for forearms
-Magnet closure for shins
-Magnet closure for boot strap
-LEDs for chest, biceps, thighs, and helmet
-Build upgraded chest armor
-Build upgraded forearm armor
-Knife
-Grenadier knee pads (on the fence if I do or do not want these)
-Finishing my sniper build that does not have much progress

Now for my build. I sort of started the build in March with my Mark VI helmet which is a resin cast helmet and visor from BranfuhrStudios. The original build was going to be a normal banner red and was what I actually went ahead and painted the helmet up as. I was waiting until I got some armor built before I did any weathering or other mods to the paint and was quite happy with the way it turned out. I painted the helmet up roughly the way it shows in Halo Reach.

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After the Helmet build in March I put the whole armor build on hold to get ready for another con and for school and work. I picked everything back up at the end up May and began my long and what seemed to never end foam cutting, gluing, and assembly. The armor build I decided to go with EVA foam for the build. This is my first EVA foam armor build with a few hiccups, but overall everything in my opinion turned out pretty good! The paint color modified after the chest paint hit a bit of a snag and it kind of accidentally turned into this darker rust kind of red color which I absolutely love so I modified the helmet color to match. These are a few of the finished photos, only had one troop in armor and waiting for some awesome photos to come in so these will have to suffice for now. I have a decent number of build photos but I do not want to clog this post up to much with a million photos.

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hacxor

New Member
Thats awesome! Looks like you've been working with foam for years!


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ravinousbunny

New Member
Haha thanks hacxor!! Def not years, just a few months. Glad I'm getting some positive opinions!

SirRayn0r thanks as well! It was a bit of an accident that turned out well. I got some tips below and more detail on my paint method. I am by no means an expert so take these for what they are worth. Best thing to do is play around and find what works for you!

---Amateur paint tips---
I am a paint amateur so take this for what it's worth but my general philosophy and routine was this.

My general paint rule is light coats as I can always add more paint and it doesn't pool/run or cause awful cracking when dry from my experience. Spray paint blends pretty well and ALWAYS test paint on a scrap piece before you paint final armor, lesson learned on my chest armor. Test color combos with different paints to get a color you like and most importantly experiment and be creative!! It is your armor and you can do whatever you want!! I strictly used plastidip and spray paint on my armor for this go round. No real weathered detailing yet until I get better at painting haha. My weathering was all done with black and metallic spray paint. Always maintain proper distance while painting as well and try and paint in low humidity and warmer conditions as the paint sets better. Read the paint instructions as these do matter also and list a bunch of the dos and don'ts for you.


---MY PANT METHOD---
This is what I did and what worked for me, probably not the best method and your results may vary.

I took all the foam pieces and heated them with a heat gun prior to painting. Not much heat just enough to make the foam turn shiny. The helmet was resin so the painting was slightly different, I sanded the surface before paint and stuck with light coats as well. Mostly the same process though.

The way I did the body armor paint is essentially the base coat was a light coat of plastidip. I did it different ways throughout the armor from a single light coat where you could still see the foam color all the way to a complete coat to test as it was my first go. I think a couple light coats here are good. Just do not apply to much in one go or spray to close to the armor. Also use nice consistant swiping movements across the armor. The plastidip acts as a great base and the parts flex real well without cracking. See how the Nozel sprays, if vertical move the can horizontal and vice versa. Some cracks are hard to get so be patient and don't get in a rush or just put the can up to them and spray, the results could be pretty bad.

The next coat was a matte black krylon primer/paint combo. I did several light coats until the color was solid black. I find that sticking with lighter coats instead of painting heavy works better as I don't get that awful cracking if I did a light coating and waiting the 15 minutes between coats. If you apply it real thick you essentially you get a thick layer that cracks pretty bad with any movement. My hand guards are this way as I had to rush finishing those the day before the con I went to.

The next coat was a single light coating of a krylon metallic paint (will have to look at exact kind later). I dusted this over the piece to give this darker silverish dirty look that you can see on the boots, shins, biceps, and forearms. This was the easiest to paint and if you get more metallic than you like just go back over with a dusting of black to get your favorite blend. I was really excited on stumbling on this as I absolutely love how it looks.

My next coat was kind of the final coat for the red parts. I originally started where I painted the red in whole like the first helmet pictures you see but I messed up the plastidip on the chest and did not like how the color turned out. That is when I sprayed over some black onto the red to darken it up. The effect was unexpected and looked amazing so I decided to go ahead and do that for all the red.

After the initial red mess up the following red coats proceeded as being lighter coats similar to the metallic. I would let the red dry for 15 minutes and then spray on some black to get the paint looking the way I wanted. If it was to much black iadd some red and if too much red add some black. Just do not spray to much paint at a time and let a good dry between coats. This ended up giving me this kind of darker rusty red color that I am super in love with and happy to make the mistake I did to find it.
 

Tanker Mech 16

Jr Member
Hey man, great build! thats awesome! everything looks really well put together, only question I have is, are the shins on backwards in in the pics? I'm not totally sure of it, but it looks a little off. Other than that man i am jealous of your foam work... Mine sucked
 

ravinousbunny

New Member
Hey man, great build! thats awesome! everything looks really well put together, only question I have is, are the shins on backwards in in the pics? I'm not totally sure of it, but it looks a little off. Other than that man i am jealous of your foam work... Mine sucked
Thanks dude! I'm sure yours was great man! Just keep at it!! As for the shins I asked the same question when I first started and never noticed in the game myself because I always had the big grenadier knee pads on, but yes the shins are on correct. The weirdness if from lack of knee pad armor, did not have enough time to finish. Below are a couple of photos depicting this, these are not my photos just a couple quick pulls from a google search just to show the shins area.

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Tanker Mech 16

Jr Member
Haha, yup, you got me, that was it the knee pad, totally through me off... looks great tho man, real top notch stuff.
 

ravinousbunny

New Member
Thanks a bunch Tanker mech 16! I'm super excited on the compliments!

Thanks grimholt! Im getting good comments on the paint which is awesome to hear! Sometimes the mistakes make the greatest outcomes haha.
 

ravinousbunny

New Member
A few quick updates. I finished my grenadier knee pads for NC Comicon back in November, turned out really good for a quick rush job. After that this project took back burner as I worked on Force Awakens armor with a friend of mine for a potential costume I was doing and helping him finish his Force Awakens Stormtrooper in time for the premier. After that I basically hung everything up until warmer weather arrived. So after Moving, getting unpacked, and the weather starting to get better I dusted off the sniper and continued work on it.

The sniper is a modified nerf centurion blaster. The internals were gutted out, old magazine housing was removed and a new one was carved as they needed to be swapped from what the original gun had on it. I created the foam parts to mimic how the reach sniper looks and also created a foam magazine that is removable using magnets. The barrel is .75" PVC pushed inside a very small portion of 1" PVC that fits perfectly in the end of the barrel with a little persuasion. I took another random nerf barrel piece to make the smaller piece below the barrel and created my own connecting piece. I also added supports between the two pieces to level them out and create some strength. The muzzle brake was taken from a model of the Halo 4 one as I sort of like how that one looks. I just need to finish the scope modifications, maybe a few more small modifications, and then it is ready for paint!! I also have some dummy .50 cal rounds I am using for the scout shoulder armor I am building to add to my existing bare shoulder along with another undetermined shoulder piece for the other side.

I am still in need of building another chest armor, forearms, cod, and modifying the boot covers. Though I may hold off on the main armor pieces for a whole different set I am wanting to do with a different paint scheme. Hoping to have all my modifications done for Animazement at the end of May. Otherwise I will at least have the sniper done for sure and maybe have pieces being built for the new armor. I also was trying out using scalpel blades instead of x-acto and I do like how it cuts, seems like the blades dull a little faster so you are switching between blades more, but the cost is low enough that it doesn't seem to matter that much. I am also going to dry using contact cement on new pieces I am making. My cousin and I did some Halo 3 Mark VI building and he was using the contact cement and it really closed the seams well so I figure I would give it a shot.

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ravinousbunny

New Member
Alright another update round. Pictures are WIP and also from AZ 2016. I noticed after looking at pictures I had my biceps on wrong one of the days, having too much fun to remember doing that though, haha. Here is my finished sniper and some pics at the con! Next steps are to rebuild a second more detailed suit with more attachments and build my halo 4/5 mark 6. I will also add lights to the next suit, lights give such a cool effect and bring everything to life even more!

Notes about the sniper rifle. I was rushing hard core to finish this in time, the paint job will def be redone, I essentially did all the painting in one afternoon and did not enjoy it. The sight was a nerf scope that I cut out foam pieces to form around for that haloish sniper scope feel, still want something on the end to give it more that appearance of being a halo sniper. First weapon that I built.

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MelPool

New Member
Hey, I talked to you at animazement. Great work on the armor and the rifle!


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