Monday, May 27, 2013

Clone Utility Helmet

A few months ago I bought this clone mask figuring that I would attempt to make a standard clone helmet out of it.

I eventually decided to simply fix up my clone helmet that I already had.  The mask hung around for a while until one day while shopping at lowes, I bought this hard helmet.

I decided it would be fun to make a helmet using both pieces.  

I feel I should mention that this is not a helmet seen anywhere else.  I'm not trying to base this off of anything I've already seen.  I simply feel like just having fun with it.

To start, I removed the visor to the mask.

Next I cut out the dome to the clone mask.

I sanded the edges and then taped the mask to the back rim of the hard hat.  The tape held it in place and I applied some epoxy to the insides to bind the 2 pieces together.

Next I cut 2 strips of styrene which will make up the bottom and back support for the helmet.

I glued the strips together.

And then connected them to the bottom of the face mask.

I then cut some thinner styrene to make up the back of the helmet.

And glued that to complete the back of the helmet.

Below are 3 clone helmets I am working on side by side.
Clone Utility helmet, The Clone Wars Clone Helmet and Ep. II - Attack of the Clones helmet.

Before I can do anything more to the helmet I needed to seriously strengthen and support the joints between all pieces.  So I took out my fiberglass and started cutting strips of it to line the inside of the helmet.

I applied small amounts of hot glue to keep the fiberglass in place.

Then I applied the resin and let it cure.

I often mention in my posts that I like to use alternative materials for fiberglass and resin.  I am not the biggest fan of F&R - it smells, and I am not that great with it.  I normally use plaster wrap, however since all the components of this helmet are so far made out of plastic, plaster wrap will not stick to it.  The fastest and easiest route is fiberglass and resin.

Once the F&R dried, I traced some shapes on thick crafting foam.

I then cut them out.

...and started gluing them onto the helmet to form the 'ear' area, and wrap around the back of the helmet.

Using more foam, I created the bottom/back of the helmet.

Then I used some various thicknesses of foam to add other elements to the helmet.

I glued on some coin capsules to the ear areas.

So far the helmet is looking good to me.

There's a lot of static coming off the plastic hard hat, so I cleaned up the helmet and then gave it a first coat of filler primer.

Here in NY we are having some weird weather.  It was sunny when I started painting this helmet.  Literally 2 minutes later it began to rain.  Those drops you might see on the helmet are raindrops - but any imperfections the rain might cause will easily be fixed once the primer dries.

When it did dry I added some wood filler to fix a few gaps.

When it dried I sanded the whole helmet and fixed those slight imperfections from the rain.

Next I started to add on some more details.  For the 3M logo which was on the brim of the helmet, I glued on a deodorant cap - which fit the 3M logo perfectly.

I had also recently bought 2 bamboo plants, and I kept the tubes they came in.

I glued the tubes to the sides of the helmet.  The ends are hollow, but I will eventually put some kind of flexible tubing coming out of each end.

Thin strips of foam were also added... well as a nerf foam disc and a coin capsule...

....and also the dial of some electronics (perhaps it was part of a toaster - I honestly don't remember where I found it).

Then it was time to go outside and paint on another layer of primer.

When the first coat dried, I applied a second.

The next day I did some minor cleaning of the helmet and then gave it a few coats of white spray paint.

I noticed a few imperfections such as a big crack on the side and a bump on the dome (which I forgot to sand off).  I decided to leave these be, and make it look like some wear-and-tear occurred.  After all, you never ever see a perfectly clean clone helmet.

Below the clone utility helmet and the AOTC Clone helmet dry outside.

When the paint dried I decided this helmet should have some yellow coloring for caution/utility.  So I added yellow elements with some acrylic paint.

Then I started adding some gray to the nose, mouth and back areas.

Next I used some black and gray paint to add some wear and tear.

I also used some red to add some symbols here and there.


Then it's time to go outside again for some glossy clear enamel.

When the clear coat dried I reattached the visor.

And then I used a piece of flex tubing to connect the 2 open ends of the bamboo tubes.

And I'm done!!!

This was a very fun project to work on, and believe it or not it only took about 5 days to make.

Thanks for reading!!!

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