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  1. RPF Premium Member Volpin's Avatar
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    Jun 2009
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    Atlanta, Ga
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    Jun 24, 2009, 9:21 AM - Daft Punk Guy Helmet: Final p.16, TRON p.20 #1

    EDIT: Holy long thread, Batman!

    Go to P. 16 for final pics and video of my "Discovery" style Daft Punk Guy helmet.
    Go to P. 20 for the start of my TRON remake.

    ———

    I've got a thread going on about this as well over at the 405th, but figured I'd toss my progress out here for you guys to see as well.



    I started doing research for this project back in February, and the build started in late March. In my research, I did come across a thread on the RPF where people were discussing Guy's helmet. One member called it "deceptively complex." After having worked on the mold master for a few months, I can definitely say he was right.

    There is a pep file floating around for Guy's helmet, but the more I looked at it, the more it looked incorrect. I decided to do a full sculpt from scratch.

    I should preface this by saying I have never done a helmet sculpt before, and because of this my entire process has largely been invented on the spot. I've learned a LOT in the duration of this build, and I definitely know what to watch out for next time. In the end, this helmet will be a mix of the "Discovery" and "Human After All" helmets - having the shape of the latter and the illumination of the former.

    First thing was first, I needed to make accurate illustrations of the helmet and figure out the wiring I'm going to be tossing in there. Guy's helmet is the gold one, with the large black "fishbowl" visor, and large color bars left and right. After a lot of research, I built this in Illustrator:



    You'll notice the mention of shift registers in there. I'm going to be using an Arduino programmable logic board to power the LED banks. By using 4 shift registers, I can control 32 independent channels for all the LED effects. These will all be selectable from a controller connected to the helmet, which will be build into a wrist piece (this - the wrist controller - is the way Daft Punk controlled their V1 helmets)

    I won't be making the LEX matrix that covers the front part of the helmet for 2 reasons: #1 - you wouldn't be able to see anything out of it, and #2 - I plan on running the whole helmet off a small (pocket-sized) battery pack. An LED bank of that size would require a backpack system. While that is canon to the "Discovery" era helmets, I didn't want to have to build a backpack system for support.

    Next step was some PCB layout design. This is the "chin" LED banks, where you see the red, yellow, and green square LEDs in the picture above, as well as the 2 rows of white LEDs. There will be 2 of these boards, a left and right.



    This is the board that will house 4 white LEDs and illuminate all of the color banks on the left and right sides of the helmet. There will be 16 of these total.



    Enough drawings, onto the actual work!

    Strange as it sounds, I took the template I made above, and built a faux 3-D helmet out of it on illustration board. This gave me a rough idea of scale before actually sitting down and carving clay. I also took the excess material from the illustration board and kept it as templates to put over the working helmet to make sure I was getting all the curves right.



    This next part is a little weird. This is my first helmet sculpt, so I'm really winging it here process-wise. I started by covering my fake 3-D thing with a bunch of expanding foam:



    Which I then carved into a rough shape:



    ...really rough...



    Then I got started with some clay, which (after drying) got some apoxie sculpt in the lower places. I know this seems like I'm using every material in the book, and I think in the future I can cut down on this a lot... but its actually working out rather well so far.



    The ear puck areas were trimmed out



    And then I built up some of the areas in bondo to match the curvature of my diagrams



    Ear pucks were carved out of MDF screwed together to make sure I kept the same shape.



    and were shaved down on a router



    A couple of test fits





    And after anchoring the baseplates for the ear pucks (am I just making up words here?) and sanding down the first coat of bondo.





    [B]THE QUESTION I GET ASKED MOST OFTEN: How are you going to see out of it / How are you going to make the visor?

    The master is 1/8" deeper in the area where the visor will go. Once I pull a finished mold, I'll cut that part out and make a vacuum-form mold from the resin piece. This will be used to vac-form the visor out of tinted PETG or Acrylic.

    I have more progress, but need to run to a meeting, so I'll be updating this again later today.

    Edit: I know my pics are huge, so if they need to be taken down in size a bit, just let me know.
    Last edited by Volpin; Dec 29, 2010 at 9:50 AM.
  2. jackdoud's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 2006
    From
    Norristown, PA
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    1,068
    Jun 24, 2009, 9:41 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #2

    Excellent build blog! I always thought this would be an interesting electronics project but never wanted to go all the way and make the helmet to install them into. There are a few really good builds on youtube that have been linked from here before. I'm interested to see this one through to the finish.
  3. RPF Premium Member boodha's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 2006
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    NYC
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    340
    Jun 24, 2009, 10:12 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #3

    Whoa this looks cool! I eagerly await updates. Can't wait for the LEDs!
  4. Qui-Gonzalez's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jul 2002
    From
    Ohio
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    6,357
    Jun 24, 2009, 10:24 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #4

    That is flippin cool! I can't wait to see the electronics.
  5. Chronos's Avatar
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    Jun 2008
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    Chicagoland
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    Jun 24, 2009, 10:49 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #5

    Wow, very cool!
  6. defstartrooper's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 2007
    From
    Essex UK
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    4,067
    Jun 24, 2009, 11:32 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #6

    Astounding
  7. RPF Premium Member DaddyfromNaboo's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 2004
    From
    Germany
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    11,188
    Jun 24, 2009, 11:43 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #7

    Awesome !!!

    How many hours of work went into this ´til now ?
  8. altername's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2005
    From
    Vancouver, BC
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    498
    Jun 24, 2009, 12:36 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #8

    Very cool bucket! I've always wanted to go as daft punk for halloween.
  9. Grundy's Avatar
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    Jun 2009
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    84
    Jun 24, 2009, 2:25 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #9

    Awesome start on the helmet. I really like seeing it through all it's stages
  10. RPF Premium Member BlindSquirrel's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jul 2005
    From
    Phoenix, AZ
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    1,556
    Jun 24, 2009, 3:55 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #10

    Volpin said: View Post
    Strange as it sounds, I took the template I made above, and built a faux 3-D helmet out of it on illustration board. This gave me a rough idea of scale before actually sitting down and carving clay. I also took the excess material from the illustration board and kept it as templates to put over the working helmet to make sure I was getting all the curves right.

    Hey Volpin! Glad you finally made it!

    Thanks for posting these WIP shots, I didn't know how you started this one. I take it the inner board is the actual wearable part of the helmet…Can you explain how you figured that part out?
  11. Agent RayBans's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2008
    From
    Vermont, USA
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    540
    Jun 24, 2009, 3:58 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #11

    About time you post a thread about this on here! I got tired having to go to flickr every day and check for updates
  12. Trap Joe's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 2007
    From
    Stuttgart, Germany, Germany
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    1,616
    Jun 24, 2009, 4:00 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #12

    looking cool!!!
  13. darthgoat's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 1999
    From
    Chicago, IL
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    6,505
    Jun 24, 2009, 4:24 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #13

    I'm watching the hell out of this thread.

    I can assume there will be video when it is done?

    Great stuff so far!
  14. RPF Premium Member Volpin's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2009
    From
    Atlanta, Ga
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    722
    Jun 24, 2009, 5:04 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #14

    ManfromNaboo said: View Post
    Awesome !!!

    How many hours of work went into this ´til now ?
    At the point above, about 10 hours. By the time I get to the bottom of this post, probably closer to 40. At where I am right now, I'm at 60+

    BlindSquirrel said: View Post
    Hey Volpin! Glad you finally made it!

    Thanks for posting these WIP shots, I didn't know how you started this one. I take it the inner board is the actual wearable part of the helmet…Can you explain how you figured that part out?
    There's a tutorial floating around out there by a guy named "Featherweight" on how to make a cardboard helmet. It involves cutting strips of board to fit around your head like a circlet, then making arches that go front to back and left to right to construct the "dome." I did this, then cut corresponding shapes out of the illustration board and mounted the profiles on the rig.

    Unfortunately (since it looked so god-awful ridiculous) I don't have any process shots of this part of the build. To be honest, I was pretty doubtful it would work at all, so I didn't document it. It would probably work again for another helmet of this complexity, but something with a lot of undercuts to it wouldn't work as well.

    So, from the status above, I sanded down the and put on a coat of Krylon primer. At this point I thought I only had a little more to go before the final curve was set... but later on I found out I was way off.





    The rough areas you're seeing around the steps in the helmet will be covered eventually by the upper and back "hoops." I was only getting the main curvature down at this point.

    After taking some of my templates out and checking the curvature of the surface, I determined that there were some major low & flat spots. Some as deep as .25" from where they needed to be. Since this is a mold and I'm not worried about weight, these got some bondo build-up. You can't really tell but there about 4 different "build up, sand down" rotations in here.

    In case anyone is wondering, I alternate colors of primer coats to know how far down I've sanded.

    This was after the lowest spots had been filled in:





    After another light skim coat of bondo, sanding, and more primer, I was satisfied with the curve of the helm. I built up several layers of primer and buffed them down with steel wool to clean the surface up a bit and show any low spots in the reflections



    It had the texture of an old bowling ball. Kind of neat. After this, I marked out what areas needed to be raised and filled in the lowest spots with florist's foam



    these areas were then built up with Apoxie Sculpt and sanded down to a rough shape





    More incoming soon. The guys at the 405th have seen my most recent progress, but I don't want to make a post that's three miles long, so I'll space these out a bit.
    Last edited by Volpin; Jun 24, 2009 at 5:09 PM.
  15. Chiok's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 2009
    From
    London, UK
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    250
    Jun 24, 2009, 5:25 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #15

    Loving it all, I'm really excited about your planning process and how smooth it looks.
  16. Getoninja's Avatar
    Member Since
    Aug 2007
    From
    The Deadzone aka Los Banos, CA
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    435
    Jun 24, 2009, 8:08 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #16

    wow, amazing job s far!
  17. Qui-Gonzalez's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jul 2002
    From
    Ohio
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    6,357
    Jun 24, 2009, 8:47 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #17

    I kinda wish you had not posted pics of the finished mold you have. Wow.
  18. EVO3's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 2003
    From
    Orange Park, FL.
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    339
    Jun 24, 2009, 9:24 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #18

    This build thread is AWESOME!!

    Fantastic work so far. I cant wait to see its completion.
  19. RPF Premium Member RacerMachX's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 2006
    From
    Virginia
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    464
    Jun 24, 2009, 10:01 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #19

    Very cool work!! !
  20. RPF Premium Member boodha's Avatar
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    Nov 2006
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    NYC
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    Jun 25, 2009, 9:21 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #20

    Looking good so far. Smooooth
  21. RPF Premium Member Volpin's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2009
    From
    Atlanta, Ga
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    722
    Jun 25, 2009, 10:22 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #21

    Qui-Gonzalez said: View Post
    I kinda wish you had not posted pics of the finished mold you have. Wow.
    Heh, well thats been that way for about a week now, and its also WAY far from finished. I just figured I'd go ahead and post all my progress up until that point so people can see where I'm coming from. I think next time I might try oil-clay sculpt, but I wasn't really sure I could get all the angles and radii right with just hand carving. I work better when I can sand something, for some reason.

    The next thing on my mind was the "circuit board" diagrams in the earpieced of Guy's helmet. I called up a local trophy shop and asked if they did laser etching for plaques, and if they could etch custom artwork. The guy seemed a little curious as to why I needed the shapes I asked for, but its not the first time I've confused someone with my hobbies. I sent him an illustrator file I made, and a couple of days later, I got this in the mail:



    You can compare my design to a shot of the real helmet here:



    I ran the lines up further because I need to make the "ear cone" piece to go over top of the whole thing. The edges of the "D" shaped outer ear piece will also contour into the circuit board pattern, like the shot above. Yes, I took some small liberties with the design. Normally I'd be very anal-retentive about this, but there were some lines which just didn't make sense to me design-wise as I was plotting them out, and I decided to change them.

    I needed to make my hand-sculpt a bit more uniform around the tops of the ears so the MDF ear pucks would fit in better, so I invented my very own hobo circle router:



    Then, I forgot to take pictures for a few days, because I got way into the build, so pardon the continuity leap.

    The MDF ear "D" shapes were glued into place and blended into the form with apoxy sculpt, then the "seam" line around the ears was carved with a dremel:







    I started work on an "ear cone" carved out of insulation foam, but after trying to sand and paint it for molding, I decided on a lathed piece of MDF instead. The foam one:



    the MDF replacement:



    I made a mold of this and made 2 duplicates in resin, which will be affixed to the sides once I'm done shaping the rest of that area.

    The mold doesn't sit terribly well when you wear it, but it IS wearable! I can't resist taking some process shots now and then while wearing a leather jacket, just to see how its looking.



    In that pic, I noticed a lot of issues. The chin area needs to be perpendicular to the ground when worn, and the ear "D" shapes taper upwards as they go back. I fixed the ears but the chin still needs to be reworked.

    I also rounded all the intersecting edges and finished the base so it sits flatter. There's a bunch of small detail work here (like smoothing the insides of the circuit pattern in the ears) thats hard to photograph. This is where I'm at as of now:



    Unfortunately progress has been on a halt since that point last week, since I'm moving into a new house and all my tools and materials are packed away. Hopefully I'll be able to get some more work on this by next weekend though.

    Glad you guys like the direction so far!
  22. darthgoat's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 1999
    From
    Chicago, IL
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    6,505
    Jun 25, 2009, 10:32 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #22

    Holy crap! You are not messing around!

    Very cool so far!
  23. RPF Premium Member Volpin's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2009
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    Atlanta, Ga
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    722
    Jun 25, 2009, 10:59 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #23

    darthgoat said: View Post
    Holy crap! You are not messing around!
    heh, I should note that my posts up until now are a summary of 2 months of work. I actually work very very slowly, so I apologize in advance if my updates take on a far less rapid pace than what I've established.
  24. Agent RayBans's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2008
    From
    Vermont, USA
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    540
    Jun 25, 2009, 11:12 AM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #24

    I still think you should take on Thomas Bangalter, too. Can't have one without the other!
  25. Propazoid's Avatar
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    Mar 2000
    From
    New York
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    4,083
    Jun 25, 2009, 2:49 PM - Re: Daft Punk Helmet Build #25

    Jeeeez that is smooooth!

    Sick work!

    -Zoid

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