Fiberglass/Resin Molding of helmets

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OdiWan72

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Hi again...

Like I wrote before, I´m in the process of creating an imperial/ coruscant guard costume (taken from the Luke action figure) and I still have a few question reg. sculpting/molding/casting the helmet and armor pieces...

People are telling me that the first mold/cast should be made of plaster, then cleaned up and remolded for the final fg-work. Does this mean:

- I´d have to make the MOLD out of plaster (instead of silicone)?
- I´d have to make the mold out of silicone, but with a plaster mothermold?
- I´d have to make the mold out of silicone, but then POUR plaster into it?

May sound like a dump question, but I´m confused :/
I started to sculpt the shoulder armor and want to do the helmet next. I was able to get the surface of the shoulder bell pretty smooth but would rather clean up a first pull and remold it.

Could anyone of you help me please by explaining all the neccessary steps?
I already searched the internet but still have these questions...ALL info is
much appreciated.

Thanks, Markus
 

clonesix

Sr Member
Markus,

I will try and answer your question as best possible, but keep in mind that to give you all the information you need would fill several pages, and all you are getting here is the Reader's Digest version.

It would help if you posted a picture, but I am going to guess that you are making the blue royal guard? Either way, a helmet is a helmet.

To all you questions: yes, dependining on what you want and how much you have to spend. I know that doesn't help much, so read on.

What I think they mean by "make the MOLD out of plaster," is for you to make a "waste" mold; a mold you only once. So it makes sense to make it out of plaster. A plaster mold is ridged, and depending on the undercuts, will most likely destroy your sculpt. A fiberglass cast is also ridged, and will, most likely, destroy your plaster mold (if you have a lot of undercuts, or detail, you may need to smash the plaster to get ther part out.). In the end, you have exchanged your soft sculpt for a solid fiberglass part. From there, you sand, putty, sand, primer, sand some more... (are you getting the idea that you are going to sand A LOT?) It is just like getting a smooth fender, it's all in how much work you are willing to do.

After you have sanded everything straight and primered the helmet, you sand it some more with 400 grit, then 600 grit, then 1000 grit. Then give it a coat of wax and buff a shine to it.

Now that you have a nice shiney helmet, you can either wear it as is, or make a silicone mold.

Hope that makes sense





Originally posted by OdiWan72@Oct 4 2005, 03:53 PM
Hi again...

Like I wrote before, I´m in the process of creating an imperial/ coruscant guard costume (taken from the Luke action figure) and I still have a few question reg. sculpting/molding/casting the helmet and armor pieces...

People are telling me that the first mold/cast should be made of plaster, then cleaned up and remolded for the final fg-work. Does this mean:

- I´d have to make the MOLD out of plaster (instead of silicone)?
- I´d have to make the mold out of silicone, but with a plaster mothermold?
- I´d have to make the mold out of silicone, but then POUR plaster into it?

May sound like a dump question, but I´m confused :/
I started to sculpt the shoulder armor and want to do the helmet next. I was able to get the surface of the shoulder bell pretty smooth but would rather clean up a first pull and remold it.

Could anyone of you help me please by explaining all the neccessary steps?
I already searched the internet but still have these questions...ALL info is
much appreciated.

Thanks, Markus
[snapback]1089546[/snapback]​
 

OdiWan72

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Makes total sense to me, thanks...even if I´m less than thrilled to have my original sculpt destroyed after the first pull (I´m afraid of the first pull not being useful :unsure )

To clarify...I´m not talking about the blue guard, but the Luke IMPERIAL/CORUSCANT guard outfit from the SotE action figure. Know what I mean? So the helmet and armor parts WILL have some undercuts, that´s for sure.

Did you use kneadable or brushable silicone for your final mold(s)?
So it´s also possible to make the mothermold out of plaster-bandages, right?
What do you make the very first pull of?...FG, resin or plaster as well?
Will this first pull be SOLID of HOLLOW?

Many thanks for your input. :thumbsup

Markus
 

Boba Frett

Sr Member
Originally posted by TK1536@Sep 23 2005, 09:12 AM
I'm beginning this process as well. My plan is to coat my sculpt with silicone, then back it with fiberglass. I'll leave the head opening open, and lay in gelcoat/fiberglass mat to create a one-piece helmet.
Check out progress pictures here

Any advice or places to purchase materials would be appreciated.
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Just checking your progress pics again , the new Cody stuff you added looks great :thumbsup :thumbsup
 

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TK1536

Sr Member
Originally posted by Boba Frett+Oct 6 2005, 05:56 AM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Boba Frett @ Oct 6 2005, 05:56 AM)</div>
<!--QuoteBegin-TK1536
@Sep 23 2005, 09:12 AM
I'm beginning this process as well. My plan is to coat my sculpt with silicone, then back it with fiberglass. I'll leave the head opening open, and lay in gelcoat/fiberglass mat to create a one-piece helmet.
Check out progress pictures here

Any advice or places to purchase materials would be appreciated.
[snapback]1082324[/snapback]​

Just checking your progress pics again , the new Cody stuff you added looks great :thumbsup :thumbsup
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Thanks. I need to pick up some polyester resin and fiberglass mat this week to get started on casting the helmet. That's the big hurdle.
 

TK1536

Sr Member
Originally posted by OdiWan72@Oct 7 2005, 07:14 AM
Could anybody please answer the remaining questions I posted?

Thanks, Markus :)
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One way or another, I'd recommend covering your sculpt/model with silicon. Then back that with either fiberglass or plaster as your mother mold, either in two or three parts. Remove your model and now you have a master mold with which to make many final casts in your preferred medium. As CloneSix would say, that's the Reader's Digest version.
 

OdiWan72

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
So it would be possible to pour plaster in the silicone mold (thin-walled to save costs, backed with plaster bandages) and make a solid cast to clean up and prepare for final molding?

Would I have to seal/prepare the silicone with PVA and wax before pouring the plaster in it?

Markus
 

TK1536

Sr Member
Originally posted by OdiWan72@Oct 7 2005, 08:28 AM
So it would be possible to pour plaster in the silicone mold (thin-walled to save costs, backed with plaster bandages) and make a solid cast to clean up and prepare for final molding?

Would I have to seal/prepare the silicone with PVA and wax before pouring the plaster in it?

Markus
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That's exactly what I plan to do this weekend. My clay sculpt is lumpy and needs to be sanded smooth. The plaster will not effect the silicon.
 

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TK648

Sr Member
Originally posted by clonesix@Sep 28 2005, 05:39 PM
I know a little about helmet/mold making, and if you don't mind, I'd like to throw in a nickel's worth of free advice.

I get the impression from reading your post that you want to make a one piece helmet by using a one piece mold.

I recomend that you make a two piece mold and lay in the fiberglass in two halves.  Once this has set-up, then put the mold together and apply a fiberglass seam.  If you try and lay resin and fiberglass into a "bucket" mold, you will have to reach your arm into the opening  to get the FG in there.  1) this fills the only hole with you arm and prevents you from seeing what you are doing.  2)  Since you can't see where you are putting the fiberglass, you will get lots of air pockets in the lay-up.  3)  you wil end up with as much resin on your arm as you have in the mold.

I have put together a mold tutorial for making a case mold.  If you want, I can email it to you as a Word attachment.

I will try and post some pics when I get to my home computer.
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TK648

Sr Member
Originally posted by clonesix+Sep 29 2005, 02:21 AM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(clonesix @ Sep 29 2005, 02:21 AM)</div>
<!--QuoteBegin-Goldenrod
@Sep 29 2005, 01:07 AM
Can i get a copy of this tutorial as well? And maybe some pics??
I am working on a Republic commando sculpt and would like to use your technique to mold it when i'm done sculpting it. Your Ep2 clone helmet looked great. Is this the way you moldeed them?
Thanks.
Goldenrod
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pm me your email address and I will send it out to you.


Here are a few pics of the process. This is the final mold. I decided to make the mold in three pieces in order to put the seem lines in inconspicuous places. I wanted the dome in one piece and not have to clean it up.


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I have been molding and casting for several years never made a case and I mold have a question.

I see two pour spouts sticking out of the back of the fiberglass jacket
are these for pouring the silicone into.

Thanks TK648
 

Firespray

Well-Known Member
I have put together a mold tutorial for making a case mold. If you want, I can email it to you as a Word attachment.
If you still have your tutorial for making a case mold available, I would enjoy reading it as well. Thanks. :)
 

fettster

Sr Member
Originally posted by Firespray@Dec 15 2005, 07:44 PM
I have put together a mold tutorial for making a case mold. If you want, I can email it to you as a Word attachment.
If you still have your tutorial for making a case mold available, I would enjoy reading it as well. Thanks. :)
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me too
 

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Reactor drone

Well-Known Member
You could also try rotational moulding with those case moulds.Instead of laying up fibreglass inside you just need a mould that can be closed off completely.Pour in the resin and rotate the mould until it has an even coating all over then rotate until the resin has set.

Obviously you need a fairly viscous resin for this process(and hopefully a fast setting one) but there are specific resins on the market for this type of casting.

No reinforcing can be added so the resin should be like an ABS plastic when set.BJB F series resins are supposed to be good for this so might be worth thinking about.

I've only used it for small stuff,Zat gun components but it should scale up alright,they make rainwater tanks with that technique.
 

TK648

Sr Member
Originally posted by Reactor drone@Jan 1 2006, 01:20 AM


Obviously you need a fairly viscous resin for this process(and hopefully a fast setting one) but there are specific resins on the market for this type of casting.

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Please point me in the direction of these resins.
I ask only because I have not come across a resin that
is viscous enough to cling to a silicone mold and most set up
to quickly depending on the mass amount that you mix.

TK648
 

FON

Well-Known Member
How did I miss this thread?? Clonesix, anychance I could still get that tutorial?

Email. (f_0_n@hotmail.com)
 

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