Long-time Lurker, A Couple Questions Before I Start


New Member
Hey Everyone!

I've been lurking on these forums for quite a long time, since 2015ish, and joined the discord back in 2021 to continue to lurk. After Game Con Calgary and meeting some off the amazing people here at the 405th in person, I figured it was time I finally complete my goal of building my own armor. Currently I am waiting until payday (Friday) so I can get the required licenses for Pepakura Designer and Armorsmith, and figured I can do my research this week. I just had a couple questions that I wanted to throw out and see what people thought of as far as where to start, best practices, etc.

I've currently decided to roll with Pepakura/Fiberglass route with a vaccum table visor most likely as I don't have readily available access to any kind of 3D printing capabilities and though foam could be faster/simpler, I don't trust my carving skills and I like the idea of a more rigid armor.

Assuming you know the armor you are going to build, where is generally the best place to start?
Am I insane and should I use a different technique?
Are there options for people to have someone 3D print parts for me?
Maybe smaller details, weapons, etc. More than willing to pay for time/material/shipping, or if you're local to Calgary, I would easily drive as well.

I still have a lot more reading to do on the forums as there is a wealth of knowledge here. If anyone has any specific build threads recently that leveraged Pepakura that I can read though I would be much appreciated! This is my first step into cosplay as a whole and it's always seemed a bit overbearing to me, but my love of Halo and the people at GCC gave me that push I needed.

Thank you for reading and I look forward to any help or guidance!

Pepakura is still an incredibly viable method for constructing your armor. While not as popular these days, it was the sort of default method for many years and is the method that this group was built on. There is no one right way to make a costume, never let anyone tell you that you "have" to use a certain method. They all have pros and cons and amazing results can be achieved with all of them.

As for where to start, I always say with research. Read as many of the tutorial and Work and Progress threads pertaining to your chosen method as you can.

If you mean where to start, physically, on your armor, we'll, there are two Camps. One is helmet first, so if you don't follow through on the whole thing, you at least have a cool collectible and Display piece. The other is from the bottom up, boots to start and helmet last. This method allows you to learn and work out the techniques on parts of the costume that are often the most weathered, the boots and shins, and as such construction mistakes can be more easily masked with weathering and by the time you get to your helmet, arguably the focal point of most costumes, you have learned a lot and can do the best job on it.
This is exactly the kind of information I was looking for, I like the idea of the bottom up approach as my confidence definitely needs to be bolstered before I attempt some of the larger or more prominent pieces.

Thank you very much Cadet for the insight! Once I get my stuff sorted out this week I should be able to start building this weekend and will have to start my very own build thread. Much appreciated!
Cadet covered most of the important bits, so I'll cover some of the smaller questions. Outsourcing 3D printing is a valid option, and there are lots of people that'll be willing to help, but it tends to cost a bit more, and you'll typically still have all the hard parts of 3D printing to do yourself (sanding and smoothing are typically the worst bits). Once you hit 50 post, you'll be able to join a Regiment, Canadian in your case, and unlock their specific channels, which includes the Snowburner Battalion, giving you quite a few locals to interact with.

PerniciousDuke has put together a tutorial list, giving you a nice easy spot to look for specific tutorials, which you can find here.
This includes SIX tutorials covering the entire Pepakura process, and will be an absolute wealth of information for you.

We look forward to seeing your build Fenix, and I hope to meet you at OtaFest next year!
Awesome info Lukavago!
and you'll typically still have all the hard parts of 3D printing to do yourself (sanding and smoothing are typically the worst bits)
Is it bad that this is the part that I look forward to? I'm a very detail oriented person so using multiple types of sand paper just to get that right feeling of smoothness just sends endorphins through my brain haha.

Good to know about the localized channels! I remember reading about them in the beginner FAQ, very excited for that as well!

Yes! I did see the tutorial index, I just noticed it was from 2017 so I wasn't sure how up to date it was. Of course I am bad at forums and missed the ol' edited message at the bottom. Those are what I'll be running through the rest of the week so that I'll have a good idea of what kind of supplies I'll need once the paper models are done.

We look forward to seeing your build Fenix, and I hope to meet you at OtaFest next year!
Me too! It'll probably be a longer process since I work your typical 9-5 with varying amounts of overtime but I will update you all every step of the way! I've lived in Calgary for over 10 years now and never actually been to OtaFest, would be pretty cool if my first time that would be as a Spartan for the 405th!

Thanks again!
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