Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/27/2015

SKS Props

Sr Member
Hey everyone I have decided to start a new build thread based on my own design for a change. This time I will be making something I have always wanted to build, a big bad ass orc warlord helmet. Many of my builds are based on game designs and by getting to do my own I get the freedom to play around with new products and techniques. For this build I will be using Tandy Leathers thermoplastic product Terraflex along with a foam structure. Terraflex is very similar to Worbla in its build properties and manipulative abilities. The main differences between the two that I can see are number one Terraflex is a little bit thicker, which helps when manipulating the product as it is less likely to rip. Number two Terraflex is a little smoother and had less texture that a sheet of Worbla so I should have less cleanup work when the build is complete. To begin this process I had to come up with a design so I sat down and sketched out what I wanted my orc helmet to look like. Sticking with a more traditional look I decided that my orc helmet is going to have lots of rusty metal layers. I wanted a found object feel so there would be big horns, strips of leather, beads, hair, and jagged bits of metal spikes and rivets.
I started building the template out of bristol board just so I could get a scope of the size before I transfer it to the craft foam.
Once I am satisfied with the scale of the faceplate I transfer this to 3mm craft foam.
The helmet is going to consist of multiple layers of "metal" so each section has its own template.
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Active Member
Re: Orc War Boss Helmet SKS Props Updated 5/6/2015

Can't wait to see more of this, the shapes you've gone for are really nice.

SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc War Boss Helmet SKS Props Updated 5/6/2015

Now that the foam templates have been cut out I can attach the Terraflex to the foam to bulk it up and give it some support. First I trace out the foam image onto the Terraflex then draw a 1/4" space around the foam outline. I cut this out with some heavy duty shears and place it on a granite stone tile for heating. Like Worbla you have to heat this product up to become mailable. Once you have heat on it one side will become more tacky than the other this is the side I press the foam on and then work my way around the perimeter folding the Terraflex over the back of the foam. To smooth out the Terraflex I use a wooden mallet I picked up from Tandy and a 1" dowel cut down.




SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc War Boss Helmet SKS Props Updated 5/8/2015

The same process was used to make the next layer up on the Orc helmets mask. These sections were cut out formed and then glued onto the lower mask using EcoWeld. I used the heat gun again to help the EcoWeld dry and to make the surface tacky. This two glue method made the bond hold up extremely well. I left slots at the top of the mask where it will bend in and start to give the helmet shape. These slots were also treated with the EcoWeld and heatgun process to round out the top of the helm, as seen in the last pic.








SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc War Boss Helmet SKS Props Updated 5/8/2015

I now have my base structure built so I start to make the supports for the back and top of the helmet. These are not going to be very elaborate because I plan on having hair cover most of the top and back. Once again I use craft foam and cover that with Terraflex then attach the two to the helmet using EcoWeld. I want the helmet to have the plate metal feel so I start to also bulk up the top of the helmet using 5mm craft foam. A center strip is made to cover up the center seam and smaller strips of just the Terraflex are heated and added to the helmet in a design patters. This pattern does two things it breaks up the plain look of the face guard and covers the seams at the top of the helmet where it folds in. I now have enough support so I cut out the nose section and fold the Terraflex back on itself for strength.














SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/11/2015

A huge detail to this helmet will be the execution of the horns. I chose to keep everything relatively light and made the horns out of a foam wreath from Hobby Lobby. Since it already had a great curve to it I just had to cut the foam down to the size I wanted. Once I had cut it down I used my belt sander to get the gradual taper of the horns. One of the horns was going to be broken so I just had to make sure that they were pretty close to the same size up until the break. Just like the helmet I covered the foam with the TerraFlex layer by layer overlapping the previous.
The main problem I ran across was the I had to heat up the plastic completely before it went onto the horn because the heat gun would surely melt the foam with direct air contact. Once the horn was wrapped I used the leather tools is got from Tandy to help move the Terraflex into place and tuck it in. Since the material had to be heated up a lot this help save my fingers. ( I would recommend to have a bowl of water close to dip your fingers into so you do not get burned ) After the horn was completely wrapped and had cooled some I used my Dremel to smooth down all of the overlapping extra plastic. Then after that had cooled I went back with a newer sanding drum and created all of the detail chip lines in the horns. These will really pop once I get some paint on them. The horns are attached to the helmet using screws and wing nuts so that I can take them off for travel. The horns are positioned up in the final pic but that is because I will be working on the lower jaw next the final look will have the horns pointing down.












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SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/12/2015

Building the lower jaw. I start by taking my original paper face template and trace that onto some Bristol board so I can figure out the size and shape of the lower jaw. After that is cut out I transfer it to the 5mm craft foam, since I want this to be pretty thick. Taking two pieces of heated up Terraflex I sandwich the foam and use one of Tandy Leathers metal tools to press them together. These tools are awesome and allow you to push the plastic into the cracks and crevasses without burning your fingers. Once the TerraFlex had cooled some I used the heat gun to warm up the back and front just enough to bend it to the correct shape. This is also the time that I pushed and stretched the Thermoplastic to give it a warped metal look that I will refine later with the Dremel. Once I am happy with the shape I take EcoWeld and attach the lower jar to the face mask. The horns are repositioned and I am ready to move onto teeth and details.








SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/13/2015

** People have been asking about the bubbles and yes I wanted to leave the air bubbles in the Terraflex. I actually took the time to create more to give the lower jaw some texture. I made them by heating up the material and moving/pinching it until I got the desired effect **

Teeth and Details. Just like Worbla to make the teeth I took scrap Terraflex heated it up and mashed into a rough shape. Then I took leather shears and cut it down to a point, again while it is still warm to the touch. After heating up the jaw a bit I was able to stick the tooth onto the jaw and hold it in place until it had cooled down a bit and held firmly. To make the spikes I used my Astrid spike silicone mold and quickly cast up enough to do the job. No sense in making extra work for myself :) I attached them to the helmet by heating it up just a bit and gluing them in place with Locktite superglue. After all of the teeth and spikes were in place I went back with my metal tools and touched up some of the overlapping TerraFlex.










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SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/14/2015

Started the painting process on my Orc Warlord helmet. Instead of sealing the thermoplastic with wood glue like everyone else does I decided to use an automotive self etching primer directly on the TerraFlex and resin cast bits. This layer will dry for an entire day just to make sure it has a decent chance to attach firmly to the material. Having the primers neutral matte color really helps the helmets details start to pop.











SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/15/2015

Teaser pic - Before and after paint on my Orc Warlord helmet. I will be going through a step by step painting process next week!


SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/16/2015

So lets get into this painting process. After the etching primer has dried I spray the helmet with Rustoleum metal flat Soft Iron. This give a nice dark but metallic bast to the entire piece. After that dries I strategically highlight spray some flat Antique Nickel here and there. After these two have been applied I move onto hand painting the rest of the helmet. I start with a wash of Liquitex Mars Black. Using a mop brush I make sure that the paint gets into all of the little cracks and detail areas. Taking a round head brush I will also start to take less water downed paint and buildup the dark areas. To speed up the drying process I use a Hello Kitty hair dryer that I stole from my daughter, this will also help keep some of the splatter effects from getting wiped away. The build up process is created using multiple Liquitex acrylics in specific orders. I went to school for illustration and had lots of color theory classes to really find out what it takes to make something look natural. For instance before I add any of the rust colors I highlight areas of the mask with Light Blue Violet, and Chromium Oxide Green. Then I paint thin layers of Bronze Yellow and Iridescent Bronze mixed together this give the bronze yellow a metallic finish. Iridescent Copper is used as the final layer before the Rust colors are applied. By adding these colors in this order it give the metal a weather patina finish. The rust colors are built up in layers as well, but I use less water to thin the paint. I dry brush Raw Sienna as a base then slowly mix in Cadmium Yellow until I get the desired finish. A highlight of Bright Silver is final layer on the exposed metal.













SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/18/2015

Horns - I made the horns detachable for shipping reasons but I am glad they could detach for painting. The horns are again made out of a Styrofoam wreath and wrapped in TerraFlex. They were sprayed with an etching primer and once dry sprayed again with a dark brown camo paint. Just like the helmet the horns are black washed with a mop brush and the excess paint is wiped away with paper towels. I have included a pic that shows the dry brushing steps. #1 Raw dark brown camo #2 black wash and drybrush with Burnt Umber #3 drybrush Burnt Sienna #4 drybrush Burnt Sienna and Raw Sienna mix #5 drybrush Unbleached Titanium #6 drybrush Parchment Each drybrushed layer is faded out from the tip of the horn detail to the back of that layer. The horns can now be reattached to the helmet using the screws and wing-nuts that I installed earlier.












Well-Known Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/19/2015

Beautiful work on the weathering.

How did you embed the screws into the styrofoam horns? Will they survive running into doorways at a con? :)

SKS Props

Sr Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/19/2015

Beautiful work on the weathering.

How did you embed the screws into the styrofoam horns? Will they survive running into doorways at a con? :)

I covered the head of the screw in Terraflex and sandwiched it between a couple of layers once it cooled the screw was held in place. Yeah it should actually hold up really well :)


Sr Member
Re: Orc WarLord Helmet SKS Props Pic Heavy Updated 5/19/2015

before i said it looked great, now it looks amazing :thumbsup
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