The Rocketeer - My 3D printed Rocketpack and Helmet

Don't want to see this ad? Sign up for anRPF Premium Membershiptoday. Support the community. Stop the ads.


New Member
Warning . . . Very Picture Heavy.

So I've been working on a project for the last 2 months. Most of it was spent modeling. I tend to go a bit overboard when it comes time for Halloween. I've tried a lot of different techniques to build different costumes. I am by no means an expert or a master at this. I am able to tell you that with each costume I learn a lot . . . Bondo, Mechatronics, Servos, Control Boards, Sewing, Working with Foam, Glues/Chemistry, Different Power Systems, and most important . . .patience.

With the newly acquired, quite awesome SeeMeCNC's Rostock Max . . . I wanted to see if I could build a costume/prop using 3D printing. Why not . . . how hard could it be? I was wrong. So with only 2 months left till all Hallow's Eve I set to work. As a quick note, most of the build is 3D printed . . . not all of it, but most of it.

Most of the time i spent modeling up the Rocketpack and Helmet. I'm not an expert at Solidworks, but did learn a lot from shaping, 3D curves, lofting, etc.

On to the printing . . . I had to cut the helmet into 4 sections and will glue the pieces on later due to build envelope of the printer. The first problem I ran into was scale. The helmet ended up 2x to big. Kinda made me look like a bobble head. Some of the pieces took between 12-16 hours. So you can imagine my dismay when I printed only to find the wrong size. I rescaled and ended up in the other direction, too small. Again wasted plastic and a lot of time. Finally found a scale that worked.

Once the pieces were printed i had figure out a way to glue. Again, a lesson learned, PLA doesn't like to glue with traditional types of glue like the favorited Superglue. I dug around the internet and almost gave up on the whole project till I found some Acrylic Glue that someone only had some great luck with gluing PLA objects. Turns out he was correct, the stuff works.

The 8 pieces of the helm didn't fit exactly correct. I never did build in registers so fitup was tricky. In the end I used a combination of Acrylic Glue to fit it up Hot Glue. Once primed I noticed a ton of voids in the cracks. With some prior knowledge of Bondo I was able to feather out some of the features. Prime, Bondo, Sand, Prime, Bondo, Sand.

The black tubing is just vinyl tubing found at Lowes and would provide the accents I needed.

I was running out of time so i had to get started on the rocketpack . . .

Ran into a huge amount of problems with the nacelles and center fuselage. First it was the rolls of filament kept binding on itself. Hours lost because of it as I had to scrap builds because of it. Orientation of the part being built was an important factor. I must have scrapped at least 20 hours build because of the geometry of the center fuselage. Eventually the printer crapped out when I lost the hot end thermistor. I was unsuccessful in build the bulbs or the top heatsink. Even if I ordered the parts, I had to dismantle the printer assembly to fix . . . good grief the dreaded calibration. With only a week till the party, I had to go with what i have.

Worst possible time to have a plug. . .

I started wiring and doing final build assembly.

Painted, Primed, Wired, and Assembled

Gloves with switches and bracketed, riveted in.

Scratch build harness

Helmet lens installed, full paint job

Rocketeer Build - YouTube

Finally, I performed a preflight check ... hehehe

Definitely not done with this guy but I got enough to get to the party. Thermistors are coming in and I'm hoping to print the ailerons, fuel bulbs, and top heatsink by the time Halloween actually hits.

Learned a lot and had a ton of fun. . .

Don't want to see this ad? Sign up for anRPF Premium Membershiptoday. Support the community. Stop the ads.


Well-Known Member
That pack is great, love the detail you've added including the awesome lighting. You'd never guess it was 3d printed!


Well-Known Member
Awesome work. Did you do any finishing work to the helmet or pack to smooth it out any? What program are you using for modeling?

Don't want to see this ad? Sign up for anRPF Premium Membershiptoday. Support the community. Stop the ads.