Heavy Duty Helmet: Sandtrooper

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TK 4702

Active Member
I tend to like my lids to feel like "real" helmets. So I thought I would share the process that I go through, while building a more durable Stormtrooper helmet.

Tools & Supplies:
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TK 4702

Active Member
Build your lid... BUT don't cut eyes and teeth out just yet!

Apply Plumber's Putty in and around gaps, dips, cracks, etc.

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Seal up any gaps where liquid (or plastic resin) might seep through.

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Although it isn't necessary, I like to close up the ear gaps. Even though the Screen used lids HAD gaps around the ears. I like to close them up pretty good. It also adds (in the end) to the overall stability of the lid.

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TK 4702

Active Member
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I then use painter's Caulk to fill any small holes in the glue. I like the water based stuff, it's real easy to clean up and you can get a real smooth surface by just running a wet finger across the stuff.

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TK 4702

Active Member
Then we use the casting resin to coat the inside of the lid. THIS is why we don't cut the eyes and teeth out yet. You basically have to pour it in the helmet and slosh it around inside, giving the whole things a good thick coat of plastic. I repeat this process maybe two or three times. Once it starts to solidify a bit you can start to mush it down with a piece of cloth or a rag. You will have some drip marks in there that would be easier to mush down than sand smooth, but either way works.

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If you want to avoid getting drops of resin on the outside of the lid. Run painters making tape around the opening, and tape a plastic shopping bag over it.

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TK 4702

Active Member
Once that cures, I do a primer coat to see the bumps better when sanding the inside smooth. I sometimes add a bit of bondo to the difficult areas, it's a lot easier to sand smooth than the resin. I also cut out the eyes and teeth at this point.

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TK 4702

Active Member
Now I can begin spraying my final coat of paint. Don'y forget to make off everything with tape, and again wrap a plastic bag on the outside. They spray the s#@t out of the inside. I like using Rustoleums Textured spray paint.

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TK 4702

Active Member
One reason for the Plumber's Putty around the eyes and such. It not only makes it thicker for drilling screws into, etc. But levels everything out so it lays flat on the surface, staying attached easier, not moving around or coming lose.

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TK 4702

Active Member
Now, when painting the outside. I like to mask off the eyes and teeth from the inside, or at least put a plastic bag in there. This will keep your cool looking interior from getting dusted with white paint or whatever.

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TK 4702

Active Member
Once again, masking tape and a plastic shopping bag to protect the paint. And BTW, I like using Rustoleum's "Smoke Grey" for the details. I'll later use an Elmer's brand fine point black paint pens for the outlines on the grey, and the chin is done with a brush and some of Testor's black acrylic paint.

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TK 4702

Active Member
It's obviously hard to tell just from looking at a picture, just how rugged this helmet is. But trust me, it's worth the all the effort!

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TK 4702

Active Member
Did a 1st pass at making it dirty. Looks more scratchy than the traditional "oily" look that most go with. But I like it so far.

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TK 4702

Active Member
It depends on the casting material you go with, and how much you slather on... but this stuff is heavier than most casting resins, as it actually has aluminum powder mixed in (to withstand heat). I use it for vacuum forming templates.

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Anyhow, I would guess maybe 2-3 pounds? I get asked that question a lot. I should find out for sure.

I don't recommend trying it on a lid that's been completed, but it CAN be done. It's just a lot messier! I did it on my 1st lid that was already put together, eyes and teeth were cut out and everything. Anyhow, the resin just got everywhere.

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I mushed some clay in the teeth, and taped the eyes off but it didn't really stop it from leaking out.

Good luck guys!
 

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Stilgar

Well-Known Member
Nice tut here! Thanks for your effort!

Smart to use these 'super-magnets' (?) to hold the pieces in place. :thumbsup
 

Timmythekid

Sr Member
Looks fabulous! Any thoughts on what might be a reasonable substitute for the kwik-kast; something maybe a little more easily accessible? I'm in a pretty remote area with only the usual run of small hardware stores around. I've seen a product called plasti-dip or plasti-coat or something similar in the automotive department...anything like the resin cast material? I just received my first TK lid and want to start putting it together, AND give it a little more heft than 2mm abs has.
 

TK 4702

Active Member
The dip will help, but it's not as hard as the Kwik Kast. I don't think you will be able to paint the plastic dip, it's too flexible. But you could try the black colored dip so you wouldn't need to paint it. And if you can do a few coats.
 

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