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M247 Foamboard

Discussion in 'Halo Props' started by Dirtdives, Apr 28, 2016.

  1. Dirtdives


    Greetings my fellow 4045th-ers.....Seeing as I have competition.....Kusak3 is currently building the same weapon......I chose to use my all time favorite building material......FOAM-BOARD!!!! You guys must be sick of me w/ this stuff already..........But we press onward.....

    I have all the files printed out and have begun assembly of my test pieces first..........Why you ask? Well for one thing.......I don't know how large this thing is going to be. Second, using FB will require recalculations on each piece to ensure an accurate fit when all the individual pieces are assembled together. And lastly, I need to know if FB is a good material on certain pieces. It would be very hard to create a cylinder shape out of FB w/o messing up the circumference needed. So that being said.....let's look as some test pieces:

    IMG-20160428-01237.jpg IMG-20160428-01238.jpg IMG-20160428-01239.jpg IMG-20160428-01240.jpg IMG-20160428-01241.jpg

    There as still plenty of pieces left to build but so far so good. I'm using 90lb paper (The thickest my personal printer can handle, work one can take the 110lb) and just scotch taping everything. Don't want to waste my good 110lb on this and regular printer paper is way too thin so I found something in between. Since I haven't decided which pieces can and cannot be FB....I'm just assembling "Loosely" to start. The pieces that I feel can't be FBed I will most probably reprint w/ the 110lb and fiberglass it.

    Already I see which pieces can and cannot, so once I finish assembling each individual test piece, I'll start FBing it up.

    I was also thinking that because it will be so light in weight that I would fill it w/ expanding foam in the dead spaces to "Beef" it up a bit.

    That's all for now folks, I'll post next when I finish all my pieces and start in w/ the FB.





    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 2, 2017
    Benton188 likes this.
  2. Daphne

    Daphne New Member

    hmm haven't tried foam board yet! Couple questions, do you adhere the pattern to the foam board and peal off later? Do you do any hardening after the preliminary build step? If so what to you use to harden and do you have to deal with warping? Can't tell from photo is that 1/4 inch foam board?
    aka paper princess
  3. Dirtdives


    Everything here is 90lb cardstock. All test pieces. I'll be using 1/4 and 1/2 inch foamboard for the actual build. You don't really need to harden it as it already is semi-rigid. I will be using expandable foam on the inside to ensure the integrity of each piece. Wouldn't want to accadentaly bump into something/one and have it collapes on itself because its hollow. I will need to paint plasta dip it though before I spray a base coat. Spray paint will eat the edges if I don't. As for warping......I've used this stuff as signs and left it outside for months....very little warping. I have a 2nd set of templates printed on regular paper and will glue that right to the foam and then cut. I can leave the paper on or hit it lightly w/ a heat gun to take off. Just have to be carefull not to peel off the FB laminant.
  4. Chernobyl


    I'd assume that for certain sections you could substitute with wooden dowel (or plastic PVC pipe) - it shouldn't be too difficult to find the diameter you'd need, and if you're a few millimetres short I doubt people would notice too much. Mercifully, looking at the basic model, there aren't too many parts that require long cylindrical parts - the rest seem more to be caps and bolts, which you could happily substitute with real screws and bolts.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 2, 2017
  5. Dirtdives


    True enough about the PVC and Dowels.....and the notion of actual screws and bolts does appeal to me as those would only add to the structural integrity of the whole thing. Thanks. I just wish I had a better picture of it. I was only able to find these:

    download.jpg 208351-gta-sa-2014-08-23-14-47-43-97.jpg images (2).jpg images (4).jpg

    They are a bit on the small size for pics and when I zoom in......I loose detailing....Even screen shots from the game aren't working for me so well. I'm Down to the last 3 portions of the build which are some of the largest pieces of the build and once I have those done, I want to somewhat assemble the whole thing. I just have to make sure I'm putting everything in the correct place.
  6. Huntress217


    This looks awesome! What do you use for cutting the foam? Is it just an X-acto knife or do you have any favorite Dremel attachments for this kind of work? Either way, it looks fabulous and very clean.
  7. Dirtdives


    Thanks. For this type of foam I use a heavy handle utility knife along a straight edge for all the long cuts and an X-acto for the precision cuts. I can only use a dremmel very sparingly as it will tear this stuff up like a hot knife through melted butter. I would only use it to round off small edges or circular parts on it's slowest speed. Any long areas that need rounding off or smoothing out, I would use sand paper....had only.
  8. IshidaRyusei


    I have a habit of paper mache-ing the piece first then sanding and painting. Makes for a nice finish after everything is painted up and sealed.
  9. IshidaRyusei


    I have a habit of paper mache-ing the piece first then sanding and painting. Makes for a nice finish after everything is painted up and sealed.
    Dirtdives likes this.
  10. Sierra 165

    Sierra 165

    Looks nice
    Dirtdives likes this.
  11. Dirtdives


    Small progress......I have very little time these days due to work....terrible 4 letter word.......And as such little time allotted to me for myself.....I tend to not get enough sleep and make mistakes..... IMG-20160506-01245.jpg IMG-20160506-01244.jpg

    I finished the magazine, another grip handle, a 2 button box piece I can't remember the name of, and 1/2 of the upper barrel.......the magazine looks terrible I know but it is still just a test piece but it bothers me that I didn't assemble it correctly. That little "Button" on the upper left hand corner right by the rounded edge is so posed to be on the inside....not outside, and there is another one on the other side. And because I assembled it in group pieces rather than 1 at a time, I couldn't get to the inside to properly secure the whole upper left hand corner piece.

    I still have 1/2 the upper barrel and 3 other sections to finish but they have some of the most template pieces and/or smallest pieces........which is a pain in of it self. Good news is the more I build the more ideas come to me on how each piece should be assembled and have begun writing it down........until I lost my notepad.......I think I will write my notes on the individual pieces so I can't loose them again.

    That's it for the moment... I should be done w/ my test pieces in a few more days (God willing) and can begin FB fabrication.
  12. Spartan201128

    Spartan201128 New Member

    Looking good so far. It seems like it would be hard to build a machine gun out of foam
  13. Dirtdives


    Oh ye of little faith.......Foam Board is the quintessential building material....I pity those that don't or can't utilize this magical material...........sorry....don't know where that came from.......No seriously, you can build props out of just about anything......If you put your mind to it........
    mblackwell1002 likes this.
  14. Dirtdives


    Well I don't have any pics to post but I did manage to finish another part of the build.....I'm in the middle of building the Data Connection that attaches to the "Drum". Once that is done I will have the final 2 sections to build. Those and the one I'm currently doing, the Data Connection, are the most detailed sections I have yet to do. FB fabrication is going to be pushing my ability to the limit but It will be done. It is taking a bit longer than I expected only because of RL and I'm getting about 1, maybe 2 hours on a good day to work on it. Yesterday I cut out, folded and attached 1 piece to the Data piece........huge progress!!!! :rolleyes.......I've also started to attach the completed sections together (Those that are simple enough to know where they go w/o computer reference) and so far it's looking good and very FB do-able. I have to keep reminding myself that this is a marathon not a sprint. Taking my time on building something isn't some new concept for me, but just finding the time is very frustrating lately.

    Once I have the Data Connection piece done I'll post a pic and any other pieces including the somewhat assembled sections. As always comments, questions and constructive criticisms are always welcome.
  15. Dirtdives


    Update: I got in some exercise this weekend due to unexpected good weather but even more important......I am down to the last section of the test build!!!! I was just wondering how large this was going to be since you really don't get the scope of it when its all over the place individually. So after about an hour, I had all my individual assembled pieces.....assembled.....This thing is sexy as hell!!!! And it will be a massively large piece of hardware to be totting around at a Con.

    IMG-20160515-01273.jpg IMG-20160515-01274.jpg

    Now, after reviewing some of my print outs, I noticed that I made some mistakes on some of the detailing. Nothing structurally damaging or glaringly noticeable unless very familiar w/ the piece but as I said this is a test piece and will be corrected during foam board manufacture. After "playing" w/ the front end of the build, my son upped the ante and said how cool it would be if the magazine was removable/changeable. HUUUUMMMMMMM? Could that be done? I don't see why not but I'll have to figure that out as I go. I think that for most of the "circular" parts thick cardboard tubing will work and either dreml out details or just use craft foam and layer it on top.

    I should have the last section done this week and all my notes redone as well since I have yet to locate my note pad.......Then I can begin on FB manufacture.....After that will be painting which I'm nervous about. If this piece come out as good as I hope it will.......I don't want to mess it up w/ a poor paint job. I might even go as far as ask for outside help on it...........That's it for now.
  16. AtomicDeadlock


    Epic! Gonna look amazing when you're done!
  17. Dirtdives


    Thanks, AtomicDeadlock. I'm down to the last few pieces to figure out how to translate it to Foam Board....hopefully this weekend I'll have something to post about. The trick will be to build it as it was tested. Individual pieces all assembled together after. This way, if there is a mistake, only a small portion of the overall project would need to be fixed.
  18. Koenator2284

    Koenator2284 New Member

    This is coming along well! I love the details, and foam board is a tricky medium so i'm glad so it's working out for you!
  19. Dirtdives


    Thanks, it takes a bit of getting used to but the end result should be a very sturdy piece.

    I have been remiss though and I feel bad for not doing it sooner, Credit for this piece goes to TYDropProps and L3X BLU3RIV3R for modeling and Carpathiavh99 for the unfolding. Its in the archives here.
  20. Kusak3


    Looking good Dirtdives. Mine is sitting on the back burner till I get my armor repairs/part replacements out of the way.
  21. Dirtdives


    Thanks Kusak3, Yours is coming out sweet as well. Definitely going to be able to put down some suppressing fire w/ these bad boys. Speaking of which, I have a quick update:

    Test piece has been completed......in as much as I needed it that is. FB fabrication has begun and 2 pieces done:

    Iron sight and the upper barrel:

    Test pieces:

    Now the Foam board pieces:


    Rock solid, and the sight lines up w/ the top of the barrel piece perfectly. I dropped it a few times to test and no problems. I checked at my local hardware store for PVC tubing and their selection was pretty crummy so I scrounged what I could find in the house. The barrel is actually the inner tube of a glue stick

    61TjcfHdprL._SL1500_.jpg The cap comes off and there is a 2nd tube holding the glue in place. Perfect circumference. A little foam matting for detail and there ya go. Very lucky to find this thing.

    I did have to bevel all the inside edges in order to keep the correct dimensions but figuring out what to cut off and where to cut off from to keep it the correct size would have been more difficult.

    More to come soon.



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


    Wow. What?! You made it out of pep and now you're transferring it to foam?! O_O
    It looked stunning!
  23. Dirtdives


    Thank Mara. I know it doesn't look like much now but once I have some more of the pieces.......Captain Obvious here.....of course it will look different and better.
  24. Meatwad

    Meatwad Jr Member

    I can't wait to see how it turns out. I was working on a custom Grenadier variant last year and wanted to build this gun, but i never finished. This is going to be one killer prop! Your pep version looks great.
    Dirtdives likes this.
  25. Dirtdives


    Thanks Meatwad. The pep was done as fast as I could just so I could get the dimensions and sizing down along w/ any mistakes I make before true fabrication. I can't get that from a computer as I'm a very tactile builder. Now that the test pieces is done......Capt. Obvious stepping in to the room again......I can get the true build completed.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 2, 2017

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