My ANH Kenny Baker R2-D2 Build

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zorg

Master Member
EDIT....NEW PROGRESS POST #14



Probably should start a build thread before i get any further along...........

Replicating 2 legged Kenny Baker costume from Star Wars A New Hope (droid sale scene mostly) there may be some additions, have not decided yet.

It is static only apart from lights and sound (have not got sounds yet). I'm not going to spend more time and money making it move for it to sit in a corner for 99.99999999% of its life.

Everything is aluminium except for foot shells (apparently some ANH droids had fiberglass ones), skirt (what's left of it) and frame (A+A)

I have been collecting parts for at least 15 years, some have been sold and re bought. (upgraded)

There are some things that i would like to change but i don't have the will to buy anymore parts, i just want it DONE!

This is the most expensive project i have ever done and i WOULD NOT do it again and i recommend you don't either.

I have hundreds of hours in this already and it probably looks like i have done nothing.

Here is a quick overview of the process/parts/progress.........
R+J dome, sherrell skins, A+A frame.
Yxomqf2.jpg


some of the parts...

some 3d modelled parts
O3hIU0k.jpg

WR38mtB.jpg


fiber optic displays copied from the screen used ones (same spec fiber cable)
Kyk8hBR.jpg


creme leather ankle boots that go inside the battery boxes and leg hoses. (probably won't see much of them)
oOdZfB0.jpg


7gvgr2H.jpg


i also have leg movement restrictor plates installed on the legs not pictured yet.

here is a paint test for the blue, this was one of the things that was holding me back but i'm finally happy with this paint.
5uGiJwP.jpg


you may have already seen the rollerskates i made
AVinzHf.jpg


when there are new updates i will put what post # in the first line of this thread (y)

-z
 
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Borjis

Well-Known Member
Wow.
I know what you mean (don't do one).
I had 75% of the parts then got one of the Hasbro 2002 voice controlled R2 units and quickly realized that was satisfying enough.
Sold everything on eBay some time later.

Your much further a long. Love the aluminum bits.
 

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Treadwell

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I'm with ya on parts upgrades. I've done my share (non-R2 projects), but I've also been able to pick a point to stop the revolving door. Because it will never end!
Oh, someone came out with one that's 1mm more accurate. I'd better (slaps self NO, STOP, IT'S FINE).
 

zorg

Master Member
I'm with ya on parts upgrades. I've done my share (non-R2 projects), but I've also been able to pick a point to stop the revolving door. Because it will never end!
Oh, someone came out with one that's 1mm more accurate. I'd better (slaps self NO, STOP, IT'S FINE).
Exactly, I've just drawn a line. Trying to make the parts I have more accurate has probably used more time than anything, the feet in particular have so many hours and they are still not right. I will never buy fiberglass parts again...
 
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zorg

Master Member
most of the blue parts are now painted, 100% happy with the colour. i'm waiting for the clear coat to fully harden before bonding to the dome. they are not fixed in place yet. i'm going to use magnets to apply pressure while the bodykit adhesive sets..
i have a couple of small pieces i need to redo. little flaws like fish eyes that would just bug me if i left them.

all the blue parts were polished then a light key added, base coated, chipped with a scalpel then clear coated to seal it all in. the inside edge of the main eye was misted with humbrol polished steel to give it a darker shade. weathering is next but i'll do that when it's all together.

i know i said "droid sale" as my main inspiration for this build, i think (correct me if i'm wrong) it was one of the first shoots in the schedule so it doesn't have too much chipping and wear, so i'm adding a little more from other shots. it's just personal preference...

where i have sufficient reference i have tried to replicate the scratches and chips. there are some large ones on the top pie panel for example which i'm not going to copy, i think it might be too much. it will probably be a hybrid of different scenes but definitely ANH
XuDW3CO.jpg

jCQuroD.jpg

H2mRJqM.jpg

PaenMtp.jpg

6UDEIjy.jpg


-z
 
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Vagabond Elf

New Member
Oh, very nice!

I confess, the idea of trying to reproduce specific weathering patterns is at least one bridge too far for me, personally - maybe even two bridges too far. But given that that's your goal (and it's your hobby, I'm not trying to tell you what you do for fun is somehow "wrong"!) the result is incredible. The wear patterns are virtually identical.

I think I need to go put a hat on, just so I can take it off to you.
 

zorg

Master Member
Oh, very nice!

I confess, the idea of trying to reproduce specific weathering patterns is at least one bridge too far for me, personally - maybe even two bridges too far. But given that that's your goal (and it's your hobby, I'm not trying to tell you what you do for fun is somehow "wrong"!) the result is incredible. The wear patterns are virtually identical.

I think I need to go put a hat on, just so I can take it off to you.

thanks man, it's not even the finished surface, it's going to get further layers of scratches dirt and grime on top. the front blue panel with the psi hole i am re doing as the scratches were too low so i have been using that for some experimentation.

i got some vallejo model color acrylics in today, an "earth tone" set. i'm usually old school humbrol and tamiya type of guy but i want to be able to manipulate the weathering without ruining the clear coat surface with enamel thinners or alcohol based thinners, i've already tried and the results were not great.
the vallejo are water based and i am just using water to remove what i don't want or like, leaving the clearcoat untouched. from my limited tests so far i'm pretty happy that i can achieve the look i want.

i have to keep reminding myself i'm not trying to weather it i'm trying to replicate how "they" weathered it. two completely different things. it looks like they used a large brush / rag combo. i see so many builders slapping a load of oils on theirs and wiping it off leaving the colour in the corners, that is not what we see on screen in my honest opinion. (ANH)

so here is my initial tests with the weathering colours (earth tones). i've used some of the colours just for trial with no intention of using them .this is the white i'm using which is more of an off white, just what i want. its upol gloss white but in reality comes out in a satin finish. i think i will try a test piece with more coats , maybe it will gloss up a bit, if not i will need to clear coat it.

what do you think of my choices? (can also mix these together of course)
4. green grey (looks more like an oily colour)
7. medium grey (which comes out brown??)
8. deck tan (a nice light warm look)
12. stone grey (which also comes out brown??)
n1DSCYQ.jpg

2NVa0Jf.jpg

yuT3P13.jpg


cheers
 

Vagabond Elf

New Member
Honestly, judging colour like that through a computer screen is basically useless. Not only is it shifting from subtractive colour to additive colour, it is so dependent on my monitor's white balance and the relative lighting. I know I sound like a lawyer, but I used to do this for a living and it makes me cautious about the practical limits.

Also, the truth is that I'm really good at picking complimentary and contrasting colours... and really bad at colour matching, to the point that my boss at Sherwin Williams forbade me from doing it because I'd come up with things that looked exactly the same to me, and completely different to everyone else in the store, staff and customers alike.

I can tell you that grey is almost never just a mix of black and white, so the ones you're seeing as "brown" probably have a bit of red in them. Also, having all of your samples on the same sheet is changing how they look. Our eyes pull in everything when determining colour. If you really want to be meticulous, then I'd make a separate test sheet for each of your favourites. Paint it with the same white and blue as you used on R2. And then put your test colours on that.

But honestly, there's so many factors that feed into what colour we perceive when we look at something that I suspect any effort to carefully match colours is useless, because there's really no way to know (at this point) what colour the weathering actually was in Death Valley or Tunisia. So you're probably best off trying to make it "feel right" than trying to exactly match the colour you see.
 

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nkg

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
The ANH weathering is interesting. I don't know if it's just because I've seen the final look so many times, or what. But it just looks really convincing and legit somehow. A lot of more recent weathering jobs look too assiduously done. And they end up looking too contrived.
 

zorg

Master Member
Honestly, judging colour like that through a computer screen is basically useless. Not only is it shifting from subtractive colour to additive colour, it is so dependent on my monitor's white balance and the relative lighting. I know I sound like a lawyer, but I used to do this for a living and it makes me cautious about the practical limits.

Also, the truth is that I'm really good at picking complimentary and contrasting colours... and really bad at colour matching, to the point that my boss at Sherwin Williams forbade me from doing it because I'd come up with things that looked exactly the same to me, and completely different to everyone else in the store, staff and customers alike.

I can tell you that grey is almost never just a mix of black and white, so the ones you're seeing as "brown" probably have a bit of red in them. Also, having all of your samples on the same sheet is changing how they look. Our eyes pull in everything when determining colour. If you really want to be meticulous, then I'd make a separate test sheet for each of your favourites. Paint it with the same white and blue as you used on R2. And then put your test colours on that.

But honestly, there's so many factors that feed into what colour we perceive when we look at something that I suspect any effort to carefully match colours is useless, because there's really no way to know (at this point) what colour the weathering actually was in Death Valley or Tunisia. So you're probably best off trying to make it "feel right" than trying to exactly match the colour you see.
i agree everyone's monitor settings will be different and eyes.
from the reference i have and on my monitor , the colours i picked look pretty good (to me), i'm not going to spend a ton of time getting it 100% as you say we don't know what was used.

i will certainly try the colours separately as you suggested, thanks for the tip (y)
 

zorg

Master Member
The ANH weathering is interesting. I don't know if it's just because I've seen the final look so many times, or what. But it just looks really convincing and legit somehow. A lot of more recent weathering jobs look too assiduously done. And they end up looking too contrived.
i think it just looks more natural rather than perfectly carressed into each and every nook and cranny.

randomness is the key to looking natural.

there is a thing that grinds my gears, a perfectly pristine droid with immaculate alu parts then there is a little bit of brown paint blotched here and there and that is supposed to be "weathered"

it's just not believable.

the other thing that bugs me is raw finish machined aluminium holo projectors, painting mine was one of the hardest job on this project but it HAD to be done.
 

nkg

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Yeah, I think that's part of it. A lot of modern R2 weathering attempts look too evenly uneven. There isn't a sense of *why* the weathering is there in some places and not others.

And, yeah. I don't know how that idea came about with a lot of Astromech club folks that the holoprojector nozzles/grasps should be expensively machined bare aluminium, when the originals quite clearly were painted plastic. :)
 

Vagabond Elf

New Member
Yeah, I think that's part of it. A lot of modern R2 weathering attempts look too evenly uneven. There isn't a sense of *why* the weathering is there in some places and not others.

And, yeah. I don't know how that idea came about with a lot of Astromech club folks that the holoprojector nozzles/grasps should be expensively machined bare aluminium, when the originals quite clearly were painted plastic. :)

My guess would be that someone made an HP out of aluminium, including the grasps because it was easier to machine them than to injection mold a separate plastic part, and then everyone just thought they were too dang pretty to die. Er, paint. I've got an alu HP on my Scrubber-Zilla and it definitely hurt a little to pour "grime" all over it.
 

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