[DONE] Shriek - Villain from Batman Beyond

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Vox

Sr Member
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Shriek_Model_Sheet_I_by_Nes44Nes.jpg

This project has been a long time coming. I've loved the look of this character since I was a kid watching the show. I originally set out to make it when I first joined the RPF. Then, after researching, I realized just how far beyond my skills it would be to create a costume of which I would be proud. So it got pushed to the back burner. Now I'm tackling it.

I'm starting from the top: the helmet. First and foremost, I owe a debt of gratitude to @laellee for the 3D model of the helmet, not to mention the invaluable advice he has provided on how to tackle each individual aspect. Here is the render:
3D_Render.jpg

It is actually 5 separate pieces. The body of the helmet, a visor buck (from which I will vacuum form a tinted visor), the "iris," the "pupil" and a backer plate unseen in the render which will live behind the "pupil" and act as housing for the LED that will illuminate in blue.

The pieces have slowly been 3D printed as time and money have allowed, but I finally have some progress to show on the helmet construction. I had it printed via Shapeways (expensive... but I think it was worth it). I sanded down the raw print with 150 grit, then it was time to tape it up and hit it with the primer.
IMG_20150720_221106_675-1.jpg

I went through 4 coats of primer, wet sanding between each one with gradually finer grits, as necessary (320 to 600 to 1000). I alternated between gray and white, so that I would know how far I was sanding through the freshest layer.
IMG_20150723_185044_499-1.jpg

Currently, it has received two coats of white. All that is left to do is seal it with a crystal clear enamel.
IMG_20150726_201229_458-1.jpg

The visor buck is being printed by Shapeways right now. I also ordered the pupil from them in their Frosted material, so as to diffuse the blue LED (also in transit to my location). More progress to be posted as it is made!
 
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laellee

Master Member
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Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

AWESOME. And you've probably got the only one in the world right now. :)
 
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Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

I loved this character. And I love seeing people give some much needed love to less mainstream characters. Looks great so far!
 
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Vox

Sr Member
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Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Thanks for the kind words, guys! I have some more progress to show.

The visor buck arrived in a black printed material, so first I sanded the lines down on that.
IMG_20150802_104036_806.jpg

Then hit it with 2 separate coats of primer, wet sanding after each to make it nice and smooth.
IMG_20150806_224212_095.jpg

Finally, I put a coat of black gloss paint on it because... well, why not? I had the paint handy and it will be fun to have it look like the visor.
IMG_20150808_161942_082.jpg

Finally, here's a teaser for what's planned for the helmet's blue "eye"...
IMG_20150810_192320_362.jpg


Progress has slowed because my purchasing power has slowed. I had a couple large, unexpected expenses in the past couple weeks. They were manageable, but I definitely want to recover from those before purchasing the smoked acrylic for the visor and the foam for the rest of the armor.
 

djd585

New Member
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

This looks great so far. Really looking forward to seeing your progress on this.
 

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Vox

Sr Member
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Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

A test of the sound and speaker system I will be using in the costume. Bear in mind this was shot on a cell phone, with the speaker face down away from the camera, so the quality is crap, but hopefully you get the idea :)

 
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Jawafive

Sr Member
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Absolutely love this. Love it! Wanted to do one for years. If you offer helmet casts please let me know.
 

Vox

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Absolutely love this. Love it! Wanted to do one for years. If you offer helmet casts please let me know.
I had an interest thread up in the Project Runs forum, but received nothing but crickets (not surprising really, considering it is a "deep cut" character out of the mainstream media). If this project gets enough people interested and wanting one, I may try again, but for now I do not plan on offering casts.

UPDATE TIME!

The acrylic came in, and my initial plan was to build myself an 18"x18" vacuum form box (plenty of tutorials online). Then I had the epiphany that the visor shape wasn't incredibly detailed, meaning I might be able to simply cut out a flat visor then use a heat gun to form it. So I used a costuming tape measure to measure the curved lengths of the buck, then transferred those measurements to the acrylic. That took about 1.5 hours since I wanted to be as detailed as possible. Then I went to the shop and, after getting covered in tiny acrylic shards (immediate shower following!) I had a flat visor form.

IMG_20150823_175750_977.jpg

I went home and started forming it over the buck. As I went along, I used paper clamps to secure the acrylic to the buck once formed. (Note: things like this should be done on a safe surface. I did mine on a tile floor, as opposed to a carpeted floor or wooden table, both of which are hazardous with a heat gun.)

IMG_20150823_202421_198.jpg

It was a slow process. I couldn't heat up the acrylic too much at any one time because it would pick up the texture of the towel I was using to handle it (too hot for bare hands). The whole buck was formed in about 2 hours, and fits pretty damn well!

IMG_20150823_225842_045.jpg

Due to a cutting error, you can see the bottom of the visor is a bit slanted, but will be fixed before the next posting. You may also notice that you can sort of see through it in places. I will likely purchase some mirrored tint (like you might put on windows) and attach it to the inside of the visor, in order to preserve the dark coloring but cut down on the amount of light passing through from behind it.

I won't have another update for a couple weeks as I will be vacationing, but the next one should be a fully assembled helmet (lights and stuff).
 

GeekStation

Active Member
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

This is absolutely fantastic. Always love to see Batman Beyond stuff out there, keep up the awesome work, Vox!
 
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Vox

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Small Update: I've assembled the lighting wiring for the helmet. The battery pack attaches to a step-up voltage regulator, which also connects to the LED. I decided not to put a switch in it since I can just pop a battery out when I want to turn it off. All of that sounds really fancy and complicated, but I didn't know squat about it before this project (including soldering!). Use your projects as your own personal education, RPFers!

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The full helmet should be assembled by this weekend! (Then I get to figure out that damn torso...)
 

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laellee

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Looks great! And you realize the monster you've created.... Once you start getting into soldering and the electronics, you are going to want to over-complicate every project with extra electronics features from now on too. :) I'm speaking from my own experience; I started with a $6 soldering iron to build LED circuits, next thing I know I'm installing cam systems and programming microcontrollers. IT IS AN ADDICTION :lol
 

Vox

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Looks great! And you realize the monster you've created.... Once you start getting into soldering and the electronics, you are going to want to over-complicate every project with extra electronics features from now on too. :) I'm speaking from my own experience; I started with a $6 soldering iron to build LED circuits, next thing I know I'm installing cam systems and programming microcontrollers. IT IS AN ADDICTION :lol
Oh I can already tell. I've raised my own personal bar, and I must now suffer the consequences!


UPDATE TIME!

The helmet is complete. After a busy week, I finally had a couple hours to assemble everything over the weekend. It needs some internal padding to sit correctly/comfortably on my head, but other than that, I am thrilled with it! (Sorry for the crappy cell phone pic.)

IMG_20150927_175333_516.jpg


Now I have a bunch of L200 foam on the way for the rest of the costume. I just have to figure out how to do it. This is going to be a bitch to template...
 

Vox

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Thanks to what was a potential bed bug problem (EEEK!) my progress was virtually non-existent over the last couple weeks. Thankfully, that crisis should now be averted. I was able to at least purchase and receive the foam, Barge, and paint for the rest of the armor. Will I be finished by Halloween? Time will tell, but I am not going to rush it. While that is still the goal deadline, I want to make this as good as it can be, which may take more time. I can always reprise Red Hood if it comes to that.

Tonight I was able to make a 50%(ish) scale model of the forearm template, so that I could see what it looked like in three dimensions. Definitely helpful, as I was able to see what proportions of my template need to be adjusted. A big shout out of gratitude to Bill Doran of Punished Props for suggesting some ideas on how to tackle this complicated shape.

IMG_20151014_205421_498.jpg
 

Vox

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

After finally getting a template that gave me a relatively correct shape for the forearm (seen in pic 1 of this post, third from the top), I realized that without any sort of wrist movement, the costume looks very clunky and poorly constructed, even if the still silhouette is true to the source material. I can't find nor think of a cheap material out of which I could create the armor in such a manner as to allow the range of motion exhibited in the show, so I am creating the arm in two parts: the hand, and the forearm.

But first, for anyone unfamiliar, here's an idea of how much experimentation some projects require:

IMG_20151025_155333_094.jpg

Starting from the bottom, the first 5 are miniature prototypes with which I was experimenting on the template slope angle that would yield the truest curve for the hand. Once I got that, I built a full size model big enough to accommodate my entire fore arm plus the internals that will house the lights and sound for the palm sound generator. As you can see, it is quite large and rather stiff, even built out of just 1/4" foam. After that, I decided to downgrade to the separated armor. The first hand prototype (second from the top) was too shallow to fit both my hand and the fixture for the lights/sound. Finally, the top prototype was the right shape, so I cut out the circle on top to try mounting the dome accent from inside the glove, and decided it would be better to simply mount on top.

Below is the final template for the hands, shown resting on top of a simple base template. I anticipate tapering the sides of the base inward, and cutting a curve to allow for downward motion of of the wrist/hand, but figured I would post this as work in progress.

IMG_20151025_193420_565.jpg


Stress week has begun! The moral of this post: always buy extra foam (glad I did).
 
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collinE83

Well-Known Member
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

This build inspired me to introduce the series to my son. Already through the first season. And when we got to the shriek episode I got to show him your progress. Great job on this! The build quality looks professional.
 

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Vox

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

This build inspired me to introduce the series to my son. Already through the first season. And when we got to the shriek episode I got to show him your progress. Great job on this! The build quality looks professional.
I am honored, sir! Thank you so much for the kind words; it means a lot and the encouragement is invaluable at this point. Also, kudos to you for introducing your son to some well written classic animation!

--------------

UPDATE!

I purchased 2 dome closet lights for the hand generators. After dismantling the lights, I removed the domes because I am using them as the controls (the parts that rest on top of the hand). I used a rotary tool to remove the flat rim that keeps it mounted to the lights. Here is a before and after pic.

IMG_20151026_191441_540.jpg

The actual fixtures will be mounted in the palms to be used as generators, with translucent blue acrylic replacing these domes. The lighting looks pretty cool and I can't wait to show you all.


The universe cut me a break after all the trouble that the hand pattern gave me. My first attempt at the chest/back template yielded exactly the shape I wanted.

IMG_20151026_225343_780.jpg

You'll note that it is not quite the same shape as Shriek's. I realized that if I made it come down over the shoulder, I would have nearly no shoulder mobility. While the end result would have looked straight out of the animation, it would only look that way in still shots. I decided that a variation on the design that allowed for more range of motion would be a far better choice, hence the above template.

After tracing that out and cutting the foam, I applied some Barge so that I could fit it together. While I gave that some time to get tacky, I "templated" and cut out the outer detail for the chest sound generator. You can see it below, fitted around the "sound generator" a.k.a. another, smaller closet light which will have the same aforementioned acrylic over it, and will illuminate.

IMG_20151027_223457_429.jpg

Once I put the chest and back pieces together, I stuck the above in the chest just to grab a quick shot. Nothing is glued together, which is why it is a bit crooked, and everything still needs beveling and (obviously) painting, but it all FITS.

IMG_20151027_225926_266.jpg

Thankfully, that should take care of the tough templates. The arm pieces should be a piece of cake, comparatively.
 

laellee

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Wow. It's looking really good. Like, reallllyyyyy good. You are really nailing this for how it should look, real world. Awesome work.
 

Vox

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Wow. It's looking really good. Like, reallllyyyyy good. You are really nailing this for how it should look, real world. Awesome work.
Thank you! It all started with you, so I cannot offer enough gratitude.

-----------------

I am at an impasse.

On the one hand: I'm very close to finishing in time for Halloween, but it means I would have to cut some corners. (i.e. Only 1 coat of Plasti-Dip due to drying time, as opposed to my usual 2-3). I promised myself I wouldn't do that, but again, I'm VERY close... Not to mention, living in Chicago means that once mid-November comes around, building/painting anything outside (where I usually work when I'm going to make a mess) is probably impossible until April, so why shouldn't I try to get this done ASAP? Especially considering that C2E2 falls at the end of March and I probably wouldn't be able to do any more work on this before then due to winter weather.

On the other hand: next week is supposed to be beautiful here. No rain in the forecast, highs in the 60s all week long, low wind speeds; perfect for spraying outside, which means I could finish without rushing.

At this point, I do not think I will be finishing in time for Halloween. I want to make this thing right. It should only take me another week to complete, but for now, I am going to force myself to take my time.

UPDATE TIME!

I fired up the laser cutter at my local hackerspace to cut the acrylic disks for the lights. The bigger disks have notches cut into them to fit around the screw holes in the fixtures.

IMG_20151028_212837_522.jpg

None of them worked flat. The larger ones clearly showed the LEDs inside, and the smaller one (the chest) is actually just being glued directly on top of the existing plastic cover, which is domed. So it was time to get out the heat gun. It worked pretty well in the case of the smaller one because that is such a shallow dome. I liberally applied heat, then just gently pulled the edges down (to avoid rippling and unevenness) and it turned out looking pretty great once illuminated.

IMG_20151028_231304_985.jpg

The bigger ones though... because the original domes are so large, I couldn't heat form the acrylic evenly, to the point where I would be able to avoid rippling and still get them to fit in the fixtures. So they only have a slight bulge shape to them, rather than a full dome. Unfortunately, the 4 distinct LEDs are still very visible. I am currently deciding if I dislike it enough to just leave them off while wearing the costume. (I should point out that the camera is really picking up the lights; in person, the 4 distinct points of light are much more discernible.)

IMG_20151028_231007_065.jpgIMG_20151028_231015_447.jpg

Templates and fabrication of the arm armor and claws are next!
 
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Vox

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: [WIP] Shriek - Sound Villain from Batman Beyond

Thanks to too many speed bumps, Shriek is not going to be ready by Halloween. I am bummed, but I also do not want to rush it.

Everything is cut, shaped, and has been heat treated. All that's left really is Plasti-Dip, paint, and the last bits of assembly. The Plasti-Dip/painting should be done this coming week, thanks to a beautiful weather forecast for Chicago. But here's a pic of everything laid out (minus the lights), to give you all an idea of what the final product will look like.

IMG_20151030_160308_329-1.jpg

Also: unless you really want that clean edge, always bevel your foam. Even if you are just barely shaving down the angle, it will look less like a fresh arts and craft project. (Pictured below: right claw has been beveled, the left has not).

IMG_20151030_131014_963.jpg
 
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