My Guy Manuel (tron)- shape it, fill it, sand it, prime it...Photograph it


Well-Known Member
Hello fellow RPFers,
Well thanks to the inspirational builds of fellow members like Volpin, Sorenzo, Thermistor, Firewire and my fascination with Daft Punk and Robots in general, i've decided to finally take the plunge and start my own Guy-Manuel build (and first build). I actually started this a few weeks ago but decided to hold off on starting a thread because i wanted to get past the ''boring'' early stages and wait until i had some progress and pics to share and it looks like i'm finally at the stage of building up outer detailing.

There won't be many surprises in my build to Guy-Man aficionados, i will be using the Volpin Method.Now to the uninitiated ''The Volpin Method'' might sound like some kind of bizarre scandanavian contraception process but to those of us here at the RPF it's known as just a flat out fantastic way to build a helmet. So without further ado....

Stage 1

Stage 2

i used unfortunately expensive craft foam here and an orbital sander to get the shape i required, it worked out well and gave me the confidence to proceed with nice little smug grin on my face.

Stage 3


Ear placement holders in and covered in PVA

Stage 4


Bondo (or P38 here in the uk) applied and first of many rounds of sanding, starting with 40 grit and working up to about 120grit

Stage 5

More sanding, this was the point where i became OBSESSED with the chin section and as you can see i kept sanding too far and back to the foam. Still not a happy bunny.

Stage 6


Still going back to the foam every damn time, frustrating to say the least. Sometimes it looked fantastic, other times i hated the way it looked. I did a coat of primer to see if i could get a better look at what was going on. What my problem might have been at this point was knowing when to put the orbital sander down and work by hand. Many good members at the RPF have promoted the virtues of the orbital sander in builds like these and rightly so, my new B&D sander will go through P38 without batting the proverbial eyelid but i now think that if i'd stopped using it a little earlier i might have stopped going through to the foam quite so much. Hey that's how you learn right?
Also the white filler is white extra fine Milliput in an attempt to fill some smaller holes. Now i believe Volpin did mention in his build what a nightmare it was trying to sand two different densities of filler. I can absolutely concur with this statement. For those very small and frustrating holes i found that a very very light skim of P38 worked way better than the milliput.

Stage 7


Gouge out those cheek areas that i keep sanding back too and then fill with P38.

Stage 8



Now we're getting somewhere or at least thats how it feels, pretty happy with the shape in general, few more coats of primer after filling a few more little holes and the sanding has gone from 240grit upto 1000grit i think. I also tried a little ''wet sanding'' just to be sure that ''wet sanding'' was what i thought it was ,sanding with water !!duh!!.......and it was, i now see how that super glossy finished look just prior to moulding is achieved, it's super cool to see my build do what it's supposed to.

Stage 9



I took some pics of the size of my bucket so far, I'm only 5'8'' and 160lbs so i was worried about the bucket being too big for me. I did a test shot and photoshopped it onto my head for a rough guide and it looks good for me. Since this will be the TRON red carpet bucket i wanted it to be reasonably snug. The behind the scenes pics of DP on set certainly have Guy-Mans head looking like it's filling the bucket nicely or at least his face looks pretty close to the visor to me. Note too that i got one side of my ear templates wet during the wet sanding and it's swollen up a fair bit, i'll either replace it or sand it away, not sure which yet..

Well thats it so far, i have a carpenter friend knocking me up some ear templates so that i can build up the outer details.
I wrote this in one go so if i've missed anything then please feel free to ask anything you like, also all comments,critiques and help is more than welcome at this point..
Thanks for posting this up Trooper, looking awesome so far. I think your thread was the last straw and now I want to dive into a GM build. Just wasn't sure if I wanted to pep it or do the Volpin method. Looks like I'll do the latter.

Keep up the good work and I look forward to seeing your progress.
Thanks Lumber, I reckon you should go for it, when i first saw Volpins Guy-man i was just incredibly intimidated because it was so amazing and never thought i could do it myself, but i'm maybe a 3rd of the way done and while it hasn't been easy i am delighted about just how ham fisted i'm not.....Good luck with your build when u start
Looks great man! Thats one of the helms I wanted to start on, but I haven't built up the guts yet to buckle down and give it a shot. Keep it up!
Looks great man! Thats one of the helms I wanted to start on, but I haven't built up the guts yet to buckle down and give it a shot. Keep it up!

Thanks Jardine, Much appreciated. you should definately start your own bucket, i'm enjoying the build so much that i can't believe i waited so long to start....
NICE! what color are you plan to paint? "Alive" version or "Tron" version?

Hey ASLumbas, i think i'll probably do both, my personal preference is for gold but it'd be a shame not to do the tron colourway given that's the bucket i'm using mainly for reference. I prefer the look of the filleted back section rather than the wires
Did you have and experience sculpting before??

No , Not like this, i'm a hairdresser and i have an eye for creating a shape ,but i've never worked with auto filler before and i'd never so much as touched an orbital sander before this.......I'm a proper noob, but it's a very satisfying process when you get going..
Small update before this weekend. Made a couple of ear pieces that im gonna use as templates for building up the outer details. I'm going to put strips of styrene around them before the bondo goes on so i can take them out after with hopefully a nice clean arch. Oh and i marked out the details as you can see below, they're not final as i cant decide if the bars accross the back and top are too wide. anyone got any thoughts?

Today i did a little more sanding. I used Sorenzos tip for using a long piece of sandpaper to sand "shoe shine" style accross the top getting rid of an annoying bump i'd noticed. A couple of coats of primer and then i marked out the placement of the outer details again, making the top and back bars a little narrower....


I have a sandpaper trick which ought to help with the "shoe shine" method. I have gotten in the habit of putting duct tape on the back side of sand paper to keep it from tearing. You can really go to town with it with the reinforcement. Great for higher grit sanding, to obtain the polished look. Liking this build...
I have a sandpaper trick which ought to help with the "shoe shine" method. I have gotten in the habit of putting duct tape on the back side of sand paper to keep it from tearing. You can really go to town with it with the reinforcement. Great for higher grit sanding, to obtain the polished look. Liking this build...

That is a great idea Darth, fortunately the 5m roll of sandpaper i bought is already backed with some kind of woven thread similar to duct tape or ripstop silk..

Also while i'm at it, my ear peices are taking a little longer than i'd hoped to get ready so things have ground to a halt until i get those in so i can move forward and i'm dying to get more done......hmmm might be time to start on my Daft hands
Just the tiniest of updates folks, a friend of mine said he'd turn out my Guy-Manuel ears for me. As it happens he went for the 3D CNC approach, some may say thats overkill but it's his tool of choice, so who am i to argue. This was an hour ago. Many thanks to Conan Abel.

Well that was quick, my friend just sent me this pic and with any luck i'll get these tomorrow, cant wait. Not having ears has really held up the build for the last couple of weeks, so hopefully full steam ahead this weekend....
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Here's a bit of an update. I've started building up the outer details finally, it's going pretty well but i've run out of P38 (bondo), so here's a couple of pics of how its going so far..



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