NASA S1035 (ACES) Helmet


Teletran

New Member
ACES helmet is considerably larger than a Gemini helmet.
I know, but the basic design and some of the fittings are very similar. I doubt the size of the neck ring has changed much although the mechanics probably have because the Gemini helmet rotated on the neck ring. I was just reading some reports about how they're refitting the ACES suit design for Orion and they're basically going back to a Gemini style life support system, complete with retro 60s gas couplings. The larger helmet is actually causing some issues because the ACES suit was never designed for water landings so they had to add wire reinforcement under the helmet to prevent neck injury during splashdowns.
 

lmgill

Sr Member
I'll say it again. The ACES helmet, is considerably bigger than the Gemini, it is also a different shape.
The Gemini helmet is a conformal helmet, the ACES is a non-conformal helmet.
The helmet disconnect is a different diameter as well. Gemini is 10.3" in OD and ACES is 10.8" in OD
The ACES and Gemini disconnect actually have virtually the same design. The ACES disconnect also rotates, but this rotation has been partial disabled with block on nylon screwed onto the back, which overlaps the rotating ring, acting as kind of a "brake".
Gemini helmet face opening is considerably smaller and round / oval.
They are using the same Airlock O2 fitting on Orion and the X-EMU.
Gemini helmets are the ones on the top shelf, far right. You can just see an ACES helmet, lower left (Half out of frame) on the middle shelf. (This is the same helmet posted earlier in this thread. The 2 helmets far left on the middle shelf are S-1030 replicas, which are closer to the size of the Gemini.

IMG_1817.JPG
 
Last edited:

edmshero

New Member
Howdy, I am the 3d artist who converted the files for machzeropoint2. As for the 3d printing company he contacted, I do not know. He would have to tell you. I do know of ShapeWays. One of the largest 3d print on demand companies out there. They are expensive for a project like the HGU-20P mentioned before, but I doubt something like that would ever be cheap.
Hello! and excellent lead, I appreciate it. I'm on the hunt for someone to print this helmet, and once I get it going I'll post progress photos and investment costs as well I suppose if that would help anyone out down the road. I'm curious to see how much this costs to print because I'm not an expert in this field. But whatever it is I feel its worth it, this helmet is very cool.
 

mcarlin19

New Member
Howdy, I am the 3d artist who converted the files for machzeropoint2. As for the 3d printing company he contacted, I do not know. He would have to tell you. I do know of ShapeWays. One of the largest 3d print on demand companies out there. They are expensive for a project like the HGU-20P mentioned before, but I doubt something like that would ever be cheap.
Would I be able to purchase those converted files from you?
 

adamszki427

Member
hey there.... so was just wondering if anyone can advise if the "beats headphones" visor bar part was also 3d printed or was it made from flat sheet stock of some kind of thermoplastic and bent to shape?
 

TtonyGreybeard

New Member
hey there.... so was just wondering if anyone can advise if the "beats headphones" visor bar part was also 3d printed or was it made from flat sheet stock of some kind of thermoplastic and bent to shape?
Im not sure if you mean the white piece at the top of the visor or the aluminum bar, but the white piece Adam Savage made from 1 or 3mm Styrene from memory, & if it was the bar then it was made from Aluminium bar & hand ben to shape. You can always watch Adam's Tested Youtube video. Good luck with your build...Im about to embark on this special Endeavour myself. ;)
 

adamszki427

Member
Im not sure if you mean the white piece at the top of the visor or the aluminum bar, but the white piece Adam Savage made from 1 or 3mm Styrene from memory, & if it was the bar then it was made from Aluminium bar & hand ben to shape. You can always watch Adam's Tested Youtube video. Good luck with your build...Im about to embark on this special Endeavour myself. ;)
yeh the white piece at the top of the visor, in Adams videos he referred to it by saying "look i made a pair of beats headphones"
bailer bar definitely aluminium of course.....
awesome that you are going to get into building one of these, i have been working on files for 3d printing the shell etc too.... i think im pretty close to being ready to start making them from cinema4d into STL files but alot of mesh checking to do first i think as cinema4d doesnt really play well with 3d printers due to phong shading tags etc.
 

lmgill

Sr Member
yeh the white piece at the top of the visor, in Adams videos he referred to it by saying "look i made a pair of beats headphones"
bailer bar definitely aluminium of course.....
awesome that you are going to get into building one of these, i have been working on files for 3d printing the shell etc too.... i think im pretty close to being ready to start making them from cinema4d into STL files but alot of mesh checking to do first i think as cinema4d doesnt really play well with 3d printers due to phong shading tags etc.
If you want to make the "ACES" helmet, then that piece across the top of the visor, as with the strip on the bottom, should be a brownish fiberglass piece. The helmet in this picture is a reproduction, but it is indistinguishable from the real helmet. (On the outside) The inset picture is the real helmet. The newer Orion helmet, these pieces are white, but in the original ACES / S-1035 helmet, they are brown. I don't think this was changed until the Orion helmet.
To make this you can lay up a composite sheet on a piece of glass. For the composite sheet, I use polyester resin and a few layers light tan / brown fine weave fabric. You can lightly tint you resin to fine tune the color. Overall thickness is about .040" to .060" This piece is then epoxied to the visor and sanded flush with the outer edge of the visor. I do not know the composition of the real piece.
1640360876584.jpeg
 

adamszki427

Member
If you want to make the "ACES" helmet, then that piece across the top of the visor, as with the strip on the bottom, should be a brownish fiberglass piece. The helmet in this picture is a reproduction, but it is indistinguishable from the real helmet. (On the outside) The inset picture is the real helmet. The newer Orion helmet, these pieces are white, but in the original ACES / S-1035 helmet, they are brown. I don't think this was changed until the Orion helmet.
To make this you can lay up a composite sheet on a piece of glass. For the composite sheet, I use polyester resin and a few layers light tan / brown fine weave fabric. You can lightly tint you resin to fine tune the color. Overall thickness is about .040" to .060" This piece is then epoxied to the visor and sanded flush with the outer edge of the visor. I do not know the composition of the real piece.
View attachment 1523477
awesome thanks for the info and the images.... i would love to think i could get that close, but i think mine will have to have some compromises maybe i will see how deep the rabbit hole goes.
 

lmgill

Sr Member
Edit- The bands should be off-white / light tan. The pictures I posted earlier show it darker than it should be. The brand new helmet look like they are off white, and get darker with age.
Here are a couple more images of another ACES helmet and you can see they bands are more off-white in color.
IMG_6868.jpg
IMG_6867.jpg
 

TtonyGreybeard

New Member
Edit- The bands should be off-white / light tan. The pictures I posted earlier show it darker than it should be. The brand new helmet look like they are off white, and get darker with age.
Here are a couple more images of another ACES helmet and you can see they bands are more off-white in color. View attachment 1523501 View attachment 1523500
That band seems to be like the old fibre glass circuit board but thinner once I zoomed in on the previous pics. I was just wondering is there a spacer or a stepped piece between the clear visor & the Helmet body, all the pics I have seen look as if it touches the body when locked down. I would take it a spacer would hinder the visor pulling back & seating on the seal...am I correct?
 

lmgill

Sr Member
That band seems to be like the old fibre glass circuit board but thinner once I zoomed in on the previous pics. I was just wondering is there a spacer or a stepped piece between the clear visor & the Helmet body, all the pics I have seen look as if it touches the body when locked down. I would take it a spacer would hinder the visor pulling back & seating on the seal...am I correct?
Yes, some circuit boards were glass composite, while others are phenolic composites. The glass composite on the visor has no "gel coat" and the resin is slightly tan off white. But this may be from UV ageing.

As for the gap; External visors on pressure helmets need a way to avoid contact with the rubber seal while opening and closing. On Mercury helmets, this was done via an inflatable seal, which only inflated when activated.
Most other pressure helmets, us some type of mechanical system to articulate the visor down onto the seal, once lowered into a closed position. This is what the bail bar is for, and why you don't lower the visor with the bail bar.
In a Gemini helmet, there are some cams and radial tracks in the pivot mechanism that draw the visor into the helmet (Both straight in towards the face, and squeezing in from the sides) when the bail bar is lowered. In the ACES helmet, there is a gearbox inside each side pivot (rectangular box with radiused ends, inside the white "washer") The bail bar is attached to one shaft, parallel to the pivot axis, with a small helical gear. This gear engages another, which is perpendicular to the first, and when the bail bar is lowered, the second gear rotates against a pivot, which draws the visor towards the face, while at the same time squeezing it in on the side, forcing the visor against the seal.

If you look closely at the top picture of the whole helmet, where the bail bar in resting in front of the visor, note the gearbox is biased to the back of the opening inside of the white "Washer". Then note, in the closeup, where the bail bar is in the down, locked position, this gearbox is now biased to the front of that opening. This is because the visor has been drawn back against the seal.
If one was to pull down on the bail bar, with the visor in the "up" or open position, the gearbox will articulate the visor into contact with the top of the helmet and any further pulling on the bail bar will just damage it. The astronauts are trained to pull down on those white tabs mounted on the lower edge of the visor to pull it into the closed position, and only then, pull down on the bail bar.

ACES pivot.jpg


Funny, I just noted the date on my pictures, they were taken almost exactly 24 years ago.
 

TtonyGreybeard

New Member
Yes, some circuit boards were glass composite, while others are phenolic composites. The glass composite on the visor has no "gel coat" and the resin is slightly tan off white. But this may be from UV ageing.

As for the gap; External visors on pressure helmets need a way to avoid contact with the rubber seal while opening and closing. On Mercury helmets, this was done via an inflatable seal, which only inflated when activated.
Most other pressure helmets, us some type of mechanical system to articulate the visor down onto the seal, once lowered into a closed position. This is what the bail bar is for, and why you don't lower the visor with the bail bar.
In a Gemini helmet, there are some cams and radial tracks in the pivot mechanism that draw the visor into the helmet (Both straight in towards the face, and squeezing in from the sides) when the bail bar is lowered. In the ACES helmet, there is a gearbox inside each side pivot (rectangular box with radiused ends, inside the white "washer") The bail bar is attached to one shaft, parallel to the pivot axis, with a small helical gear. This gear engages another, which is perpendicular to the first, and when the bail bar is lowered, the second gear rotates against a pivot, which draws the visor towards the face, while at the same time squeezing it in on the side, forcing the visor against the seal.

If you look closely at the top picture of the whole helmet, where the bail bar in resting in front of the visor, note the gearbox is biased to the back of the opening inside of the white "Washer". Then note, in the closeup, where the bail bar is in the down, locked position, this gearbox is now biased to the front of that opening. This is because the visor has been drawn back against the seal.
If one was to pull down on the bail bar, with the visor in the "up" or open position, the gearbox will articulate the visor into contact with the top of the helmet and any further pulling on the bail bar will just damage it. The astronauts are trained to pull down on those white tabs mounted on the lower edge of the visor to pull it into the closed position, and only then, pull down on the bail bar.

View attachment 1523679

Funny, I just noted the date on my pictures, they were taken almost exactly 24 years ago.
Thank you so much for the high detail explanation, I dont think I will be going into such detail at this point, but it gives me a higher understanding of these parts & how they go together & work. I wonder how Adam's helmet is going & if he has done any new mods & how its weathering.
 

lmgill

Sr Member
You are welcome.
Understand, I wouldn't think a hobbyist builder would want to go to this much trouble on a replica.
Space suits /helmets are far more complex, and have to endure far greater stresses than most people understand.
Given the amount of force you can apply with the bail bar, and the strength required for the parts it interacts with, the best plan, on a replica helmet, is to fix the bail bar in it's locked down position, and just make a simple pivot for the visor.
 

adamszki427

Member
i agree, if i can get to a point where i am able to build a visually good looking replica of a helmet like this, then that will be good enough for me as a hobbyist.... without getting into lathes or outsourcing parts etc theres no way i could get a mechanism that accurate and functional....
i thought i was just about ready to start converting my 3d files to be sliced for printing but I have a few questionable areas on some of the meshes so more work to do first.
 

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