Noble Six EVA Foam Build Thread

Tron Paul

New Member
So it seems placing a build thread up for everyone to see might be the motivation I need to get this project finished. Let's hope it actually maintains regular progress...

Long story short, I've finished a TK in the 501st before, but always wanted to have a Spartan suit. Given my dwarf stature compared to a regular Spartan II, I thought an ODST would be more realistic. After working on the SB ODST helmet, I hated the paint scheme and am starting over with that project.

While working on the ODST, I gave pepakura a shot and missed the mark continually. Although helmets seem to be one of the toughest to pep on the first attempt (Halo 3 Rogue), I gave it two shots and scaled incorrectly both times. Scrapped the project.

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Now decided to stick with a cannon character that isn't as "vertically demanding" as a Spartan II. Noble Six. Default armor scheme/colors.

Already purchased a bucket. Not attacking the helmet pep beast again.

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That's the physical progress I've made so far. Looking to purchase the EVA from the local Harbor Freight. Have the glue gun/sticks, knife/blades, and patterns. Going to double-check that the hot glue is compatible with the gun and hopefully are both high temp. Getting thinner foam when necessary.

So far so good?
 

Tron Paul

New Member
Progress Update:

Received the bucket in the mail and started to cut out the visor out. I usually work with ABS or HIPS, so when putting the dremel to it, the resin dust certainly makes things interesting.

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Also started to do a small study on the EVA foam. With pepakura builds, the material is thin attaching "2d material" to each other allows for crisp lines and simple assembly. I've found the EVA foam to be a different challenge in that the foam is more dimensional and needs to be cut and glued differently. The material allows for easy curves, but does not allow for easy creation of angles. The material needs to be "carved" in order to sculpt the proper finished dimensions.

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I'm also currently putting together a duct tape mannequin. I decided to use black duct tape to mimic a black undersuit. Planning on stuffing it with some rigid material and some extra expansive Great-Stuff being careful not to "over inflate."

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Slow, but steady progress. Building with EVA foam is a new experience so some proper research and hands-on training for technique is going to delay the inevitable finished product. I'm a bit of a perfectionist so it may be a bit before I am able to achieve something I'm happy with.
 

Termhn

Jr Member
The bucket looks great! I think you're discovering the struggles that everyone does when working with foam... cutting the beveled edges to put together while retaining straight lines is definitely the hardest part. Keep at it! :)
 

Agent Delaware

New Member
I decided to try and work on a Rogue helmet myself. The first one that's printed I can tell is going to be way too small. I also want to start working on a recon pep that was linked to me. But I'm all new to this so its going to take a long time before I can get it right.
 

Tron Paul

New Member
The hardest part for me when building things using the Pep method was taking the time to cut and glue. If you have patience, its a great method to use. Scaling is important and for me, I always had trouble doing things correctly.

The same could be said for my foam build. As I'm cutting out the pattern for the foam pieces, I'm putting them up to my body, looking at the pdo file, and saying to myself, "Is this around the right scale for me???" So far, things look close. I'll find out for sure eventually.

I've also noticed that to achieve crisp lines, cutting the foam at the corners and reattaching it with glue is the best method. I've tried to score the backside and fold a "mountain fold," but it still comes out as a rounded edge. Since some pattern pieces require folds to achieve the desired outcome, I'll have to tweak things as I go along.

It seems the benefit of using foam is having lightweight armor that doesn't require constant cutting, folding, and gluing. However, what is lost is having a complete "finished" pattern where the pieces are fine as-is and do not require added adjustments after being cut out of paper.

I must say that I do enjoy using foam as a medium over pepakura paper models. Having a "substantial" material to work with is much easier to handle for me than with paper that can only be worked by making one-dimensional cuts.
 

ErMaC

Well-Known Member
don't forget having paper built instead of foam you get strength and durability and you don't have to worry about bumping into a wall or something. with foam you have to be carful because it is fragile. but I love the cast you received. it looks perfect
 

Termhn

Jr Member
don't forget having paper built instead of foam you get strength and durability and you don't have to worry about bumping into a wall or something. with foam you have to be carful because it is fragile. but I love the cast you received. it looks perfect
I would say it's the opposite as far as how fragile foam vs. pep is! Just look at all the crazy **** Impact Props does in their suits.
 

BurningSky Joe

New Member
don't forget having paper built instead of foam you get strength and durability and you don't have to worry about bumping into a wall or something. with foam you have to be carful because it is fragile. but I love the cast you received. it looks perfect
It depends on how you use your hot glue to secure the pieces together. My marine armor is all EVA and just to test out how sturdy it is and since it was my MK1 I have a new model and did not care if the old chest armor got destroyed. So I wore it for a day of paintballing with the friends and after about 6 hours of woods ball it was dirty but otherwise fine.
 

Tron Paul

New Member
don't forget having paper built instead of foam you get strength and durability and you don't have to worry about bumping into a wall or something. with foam you have to be careful because it is fragile. but I love the cast you received. it looks perfect
I would have to agree with Termhn and Joe on this one. It certainly depends on how you assemble your armor. Paper traditionally doesn't perform well when wet. Adding the resin for the first time to a pepped out project can cause instability of the piece so supporting it while painting the resin coat is key. Although I'm not expert on Pep or EVA materials, it seems EVA has more resiliency and rigidity than standard cardstock. Regardless, I've seen some tutorials on applying Smooth-On to EVA with a PVA layer in between, so I'm keen on doing that to the finished product after foam completion.

I've been doing plenty of research and Ravakian's method of using the 1/2" foam as a base and building out with thinner foam for details and finished layers seems like a strategy I'd like to imitate.
 

ErMaC

Well-Known Member
Everybody prefers there own ways and materials. which id fine :) I have no problem applying resin to my 200lbs weight paper. But everyway is good path. its not like we are going into war with these :)
 

Tron Paul

New Member
So its been a week or so. Might as well give an update...

I've been having trouble being able to sit down and get to work on the build during the week given work getting busier as the year progresses. However, noticeable work has been achieved on all fronts: the visor area on the helmet is fully trimmed, portions of the chest armor are progressing nicely, and the duct tape mannequin is fully taped up and ready for a PVC structure.

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I felt like I was back in my college internship with all the filing I did this past weekend...

The helmet still needs a bit of spot putty and finish detailing in some areas, but for the most part it looks great. I'm surprised that the seam from the casting process was unusually faint. Perhaps I'm accustomed to a heavy seam down the center of the helmet or the casting material has been different than the resin in this Noble Six helmet, but I enjoyed working with this helmet. Normally, I work with ABS, but the "soft" nature of this resin was easy to work with.

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Still working on the chestplate. I've noticed when working with EVA and pepakura that working on different segments in the piece can help prevent amplified mistakes that I would normally run into with putting an armor piece together at a single time (cumulative mistakes can screw up things and make the overall piece lopsided).

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So there goes...
 

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Tron Paul

New Member
Helmet is from some guy I found over facebook. I have no knowledge about who he is or about his work, but things worked out. The helmet looks good. I agree. Jim from Icon Props.

I have yet to experiment and test this method out yet, but I'd ideally like finish the pep file layout using the 1/2" EVA and add depth and raised details using thinner foam (as seen in Ravarkian did with his Noble Six armour). Since my background is in asic pep, I've been essentially pepping out with foam and the chestpiece is very angular. Yes, it looks terrible, but the finished product is far from sight. I'm hoping to smooth out the edges with thinner foam and eventually add a layer of PVA and Smooth-on for a good paint surface and added rigidity. Any thoughts/advice?
 

ErMaC

Well-Known Member
Good job bro, I feel you on working a lot. Responsibility sucks. Lol but we all have to do it. Double thumbs up :)
 

Tron Paul

New Member
Here's an update:

The last night I worked on my build, I used up one of my twelve 2x2 sheets of EVA. Today, I mindlessly tore off the end strips and was about to throw them away, but paused. I feel this is a waste of probably $0.20 worth of material. After HOURS of deliberation and careful thought, I have developed a use for them. I've spent a bit of time putting things together, but I feel I have been able to create an (almost) exact replica on a cannon prop of a well-known character. When I am able, I will put the finishing touches on the prop and provide insight on how I was able to create it. Photo following after I can put together the ensemble.

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Tron Paul

New Member
Since its been around a week or so without a real update on things, I should probably provide one sometime. Why not now?

Progress has been on pause for the most part. Last week, it was announced that the party I was attending during the weekend was going to be an "America" theme party. Naturally, I spent the 46 hours (minus time spent sleeping, going to work, commuting, driving to Baltimore for the party in a snowstorm, and eating) working on an original "Captain 'Merca" costume. Results were not terrible given the timeframe, but without the shield I could have been someone from the Village People or a sexual felon.

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So that was an interesting weekend.

Seeing as my deadline is FAST approaching for the completion of my revised TK and my ODST (early May), I figured I would shift focus to those builds and take care of the Noble Six build in the gaps. I also am looking to finish getting my mannequin in order as to facilitate the ODST building process. Pictures of that and progress on my Noble Six follow:

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So that's that.

I also need to focus more on shaping the stuff underneath the undersuit for those projects given the rapidly-approaching completion date and my lack of "cannon" physical build. I'll be fine in a month. I just have to get back into the swing of things.

Updates to come, but far and few between.
 

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MarcusDude

New Member
So it seems placing a build thread up for everyone to see might be the motivation I need to get this project finished. Let's hope it actually maintains regular progress...

Long story short, I've finished a TK in the 501st before, but always wanted to have a Spartan suit. Given my dwarf stature compared to a regular Spartan II, I thought an ODST would be more realistic. After working on the SB ODST helmet, I hated the paint scheme and am starting over with that project.

While working on the ODST, I gave pepakura a shot and missed the mark continually. Although helmets seem to be one of the toughest to pep on the first attempt (Halo 3 Rogue), I gave it two shots and scaled incorrectly both times. Scrapped the project.

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Now decided to stick with a cannon character that isn't as "vertically demanding" as a Spartan II. Noble Six. Default armor scheme/colors.

Already purchased a bucket. Not attacking the helmet pep beast again.

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That's the physical progress I've made so far. Looking to purchase the EVA from the local Harbor Freight. Have the glue gun/sticks, knife/blades, and patterns. Going to double-check that the hot glue is compatible with the gun and hopefully are both high temp. Getting thinner foam when necessary.

So far so good?
Where did you buy the helmet cast?
 
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