That new guy looking for advice again

ArchangelMS05

New Member
Hello friends, my name is Morguhn, I wanted to try my hand at making some armor. This particular hobby seems interesting. I have some other crafty experiences, mostly custom model kits. My goal was to just make a Mark V(B) helmet to get my feet wet, and I wanted to make sure I had all my processes and equipment figured out.

Get templates from the armory, check. However I don't know how to access them after unzipping. my understanding is that a secondary program is needed.

Hobby knives, EVA foam, hot glue, and a heat gun for the basic materials. Am I missing anything?

Additionally: What paints/plasti-dips do you recommend? And is there anything else I should keep in mind, or any advice?

Thank you.
 

Harri51

RMO
405th Regiment Officer
I use a retractable Knife and have a sharpening stone because the foam dulls the blades quick. Also I have a rotatory tool (dremel) for rounding or breaking edges so they look smoother. That also help with battle damage. Warm up and spray cans in warm water so they spray more even. Hot Glue is an ok start but once it get to hot it will melt. Contact cement is great for long/permanent holds. But make sure you get a organic filter mask so that way any sanding or chems you use don't harm your body. but most importantly. PPE! Get those glasses, glove, and respirator. Or look up how other do their stuff and learn my friend.
 

PaiganBoi

Sr Member
To look at and print the files you can either download the program Pepakura Designer (free or paid version) or Armorsmith (paid).
For tools and materials along with a hobby knife you will need extra blades and a lot of us here recommend getting a blade sharpener. EVA foam dull blades very quickly.
Alternatives to using hot glue are Super glue or Contact Cement.
To seal the foam a diluted mixture of PVA glue or woodglue is a cheap option. You can also go with Plasti Dip or a new one that seems to be getting popular is Rustoleum Leak Seal.
As for paint. You can use what you can get your hands on. Spray paint, air brush paints or acrylic artists paints.
 

xXDashIVXx

Sr Member
These guy have covered it up pretty well. You will need plenty of extra blades or a sharpener, and hot glue is not the best adhesive to use. Is this is your first build, there may be gaps and seems that appear, so it may be a good Idea to invest in foam putty, but dont rely on it and try and make your firs go as best as it can be. As for paints, your regular spray paint should be just fine over plastidip and a heat sealed foam. Thank you for doing your research ahead of time. I know you got this!
Hello friends, my name is Morguhn, I wanted to try my hand at making some armor. This particular hobby seems interesting. I have some other crafty experiences, mostly custom model kits. My goal was to just make a Mark V(B) helmet to get my feet wet, and I wanted to make sure I had all my processes and equipment figured out.

Get templates from the armory, check. However I don't know how to access them after unzipping. my understanding is that a secondary program is needed.

Hobby knives, EVA foam, hot glue, and a heat gun for the basic materials. Am I missing anything?

Additionally: What paints/plasti-dips do you recommend? And is there anything else I should keep in mind, or any advice?

Thank you.
 

Sean Anwalt

RCO
405th Regiment Officer
/\ Ditto.

I would add:

Helmets are difficult, generally, so as a beginner in foam work, don't get frustrated if things go south on you. The way to think of this is like it's a crock pot, not a microwave. This is going to take a little bit of time, but you get WAY better results than any store can give you.

Be sure to use a metal ruler for your straight cuts, and use SHARP BLADES!!!!! because they don't stay sharp after a few cuts. You can tell the blade is dull if you feel much resistance as you cut. Use one long motion to cut, don't saw back and forth.

Take your time with the templates, be sure they are accurate. Each step in the process adds to any mistakes, so try to minimize that with each step.

Seams are going to be another thing that takes a while, but that's where your helmet is going to make it or break it. Be very careful to align your seams together perfectly before you contact cement them in place. One they're dry, go back in and reinforce them.

Oh, and be sure to use SHARP blades. You want to make sure they stay sharp. We can't over kill that point enough.

Feel like I just write a novel! Sheesh!

P.S. Keep your blades super razor sharp.
 

he4thbar

Well-Known Member
/\ Ditto.

I would add:

Helmets are difficult, generally, so as a beginner in foam work, don't get frustrated if things go south on you. The way to think of this is like it's a crock pot, not a microwave. This is going to take a little bit of time, but you get WAY better results than any store can give you.

Be sure to use a metal ruler for your straight cuts, and use SHARP BLADES!!!!! because they don't stay sharp after a few cuts. You can tell the blade is dull if you feel much resistance as you cut. Use one long motion to cut, don't saw back and forth.

Take your time with the templates, be sure they are accurate. Each step in the process adds to any mistakes, so try to minimize that with each step.

Seams are going to be another thing that takes a while, but that's where your helmet is going to make it or break it. Be very careful to align your seams together perfectly before you contact cement them in place. One they're dry, go back in and reinforce them.

Oh, and be sure to use SHARP blades. You want to make sure they stay sharp. We can't over kill that point enough.

Feel like I just write a novel! Sheesh!

P.S. Keep your blades super razor sharp.
What blades do you use to cut and for what(foam vs paper)? Box cutter with blade sharpener or x-acto with blade sharpener? I'm sure it's up to personal preference but what difference would sway you towards one or the other?
 

PaiganBoi

Sr Member
What blades do you use to cut and for what(foam vs paper)? Box cutter with blade sharpener or x-acto with blade sharpener? I'm sure it's up to personal preference but what difference would sway you towards one or the other?
It is really personal preference. I use both. Typically large cuts I use the box cutter and then a scalpel for tight small areas.
 

PerniciousDuke

RXO & BCO
405th Regiment Officer
Community Staff
Just to touch base on the program more... Pepakura Designer (download link) is what you want. The only difference for the paid version is that you can save the file. The free version has all the same features. And you can just keep a spread sheet (or rename the file) to keep track of what you scaled them to.

Since you're doing a helmet I would recommend this video to help you scale Watch both parts!

Remember that the model is paper thin. If you're doing foam them your will have to consider the thickness of the foam when sizing for your body.

If your file is not made for foam then you'll need to convert it
 
Top