Vader ROTJ Helmet build from a warped casting (pic heavy)

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Imperial Weapon

Active Member
As some of you may know I bought a EFX ANH Vader Helmet recast off of Etsy and It was stuck in two pieces, one day I tried to seperate them left the helmet outside to have my dinner then the wind blew it over then it smashed.

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The lenses were awful had to push them off by hand, there was an obsessive amount of silicone used on this helmet (sometimes in stupid places) it took me forever to get that off of the eyes and the inside of dome. getting off the dome was tricky in the end I just used a kitchen knife and alot of pulling and the neck of the mask snapped off heres the inside.

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Worst of all the face plate is all warped the neck the skull but at least the face is okay.

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I dremeled out the inside for one safety because of all the sharp nasty bibreglass bits sticking out, two a flater surface for the mouth mesh to be inserted and three for grip of new fibrglass as the original is too weak.

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Heres the fibreglass work.
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I accidently dremeled through the mouth wall on the right so that had to be fixed, the neck is mended but still needs more work.

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As you can see in the last image there is a pencil line showing whats gonna be reshaped (grinded/machine sanded) because theres barely any material to do that I decided to put body filler(bondo) underneath as grinding material once its in the right shape thenput fibreglass underneath.

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Needs more filler but you guys get the idea, I can't decide which version to do I mean being a cast from an ANH helmet I mean seems like an obvious choice but the face plate is abit more cleaned up like ROTJ and ESB, If I did one of those two I'd have to sculpt some of the dome mount with milliput make a fibrelass ring to go on top and secrue it with bolts and threads I felt like If I made an ANH helmet It would be to much like what its cast from. If anyone can tell me if anything needs redoing to the facemask to be more accurate eyeshape, nose ridges any suggestions at all would be gratefully appreciated.
 

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Imperial Weapon

Active Member
I'm still not there yet on the 'skull' reshaping but its still going rather well its way better than it was.

Before

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After
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side shots

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The neck doesn't look as wide and fat as it used to.

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after this I will fix the tubes not just where its damaged but to also give it a more organic look like the originals.
 

Imperial Weapon

Active Member
Also I was thinking about doing a ROTJ helmet out of this (because the EFX helmet is a cleaned up ANH and ROTJ has the most cleaned up gear in the trilogy) but would that mean I'd have to erase the nose notch? or make a new dome since the ROTJ helmet utilises a smaller dome (assumably by thermal casting), I know I could use the thick lip on the edges of the dome to my advantage in reshaping it but then theres the forehead would I be better using another dome? or make an ESB instead? please someone let me know your advice will be most appreciated.
 

lethyry

Jr Member
Are you going to trim those edges on the face plate down? I’d assume that face plate is quite heavy with all that body filler. The original face plate was very very thin. Here’s a picture of a production made for ESB
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I would’ve recommended if possible to keep that ring mount on the face plate. Makes dome-face connection a lot easier. But that isn’t to hard to remake. You could use that dome to make an alright ESB or ROTJ, ESB would obviously be a bit easier to do. Trim the widows peak and widen the dome strip a bit on one side. As well as the mouth vent being larger. ROTJ could be done as well, dome strip wider/soften edges of strip, flatten widows peak and fill in indent. There’s also some other little things you could do like make the dome skirt flatter, fix the dome brow edge slightly, to be a bit less rounded among other things. It’s a simple case of looking at solid reference and picking out the little things to incorporate into the helmet for the version you want to do.
 

Imperial Weapon

Active Member
Are you going to trim those edges on the face plate down? I’d assume that face plate is quite heavy with all that body filler. The original face plate was very very thin. Here’s a picture of a production made for ESB View attachment 1487345
I would’ve recommended if possible to keep that ring mount on the face plate. Makes dome-face connection a lot easier. But that isn’t to hard to remake. You could use that dome to make an alright ESB or ROTJ, ESB would obviously be a bit easier to do. Trim the widows peak and widen the dome strip a bit on one side. As well as the mouth vent being larger. ROTJ could be done as well, dome strip wider/soften edges of strip, flatten widows peak and fill in indent. There’s also some other little things you could do like make the dome skirt flatter, fix the dome brow edge slightly, to be a bit less rounded among other things. It’s a simple case of looking at solid reference and picking out the little things to incorporate into the helmet for the version you want to do.
Yes I am aware that its is way too thick but if it was too thin it would break too easily on its own once I grinded away the material into shape then I will make it thinner and add fibreglass on the inside (like reverse car body work), the ring was too weak so it broke off and the dome sat too low at the back so I am going to sculpt the fore head outof milliput and make a fibreglass ring like this.

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Thanks for your support so the whole thing about the ROTJ dome being shrunk is a myth then?
 

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lethyry

Jr Member
Yes I am aware that its is way too thick but if it was too thin it would break too easily on its own once I grinded away the material into shape then I will make it thinner and add fibreglass on the inside (like reverse car body work), the ring was too weak so it broke off and the dome sat too low at the back so I am going to sculpt the fore head outof milliput and make a fibreglass ring like this.

View attachment 1487462

View attachment 1487463
Thanks for your support so the whole thing about the ROTJ dome being shrunk is a myth then?
The ring that goes on the face plate can be found. It’s a plastic piece and would the face plate a lot lighter. I used it when I was doing a 20c helmet, you’d need to make the base the ring secures to but that’s not hard at all, I’d recommend using light weight filler or bondo glass if you can find it
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No the ROTJ dome is smaller, but it’s not a huge difference in size. Approx 5% or so i remember reading somewhere.
 

Imperial Weapon

Active Member
So milliputs a no for the outer ring then? also 5% smaller I'm not too worried about as I can shape it to be like that also being a recast of a EFX PCR its probably shrunk by bout 5% anyway do you know where can I find the plastic ring? or should I just use a plumber pipe? if its too hard to get
 
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lethyry

Jr Member
I've never had strong results using miliput on fibreglass, thats jut me but i don't recommend it to others, car filler or body filler is the way to go, like i said previously, bondo glass is what i used to the ring mount, the ring itself was a found part, people know what it is but aren't the sharing type, i was able to find a close alternative, to it in the hardware store in the heating and cooling section, if not there should be some good alternative plumbing pipe like objects, you wouldn't really need to make this look smaller as its already a recast so it should be a bit smaller already, i'd just leave it the scale its at now.
 

Imperial Weapon

Active Member
Ok so that proves ROTJ is the best choice for this helmet ,is bondo glass that fibreglass stuff in a tin? If it is then that's amazing because I love that stuff okay so My idea would be to cut lines in the bottom use a heat gun to bend it to make a spread out ,almost flat surface and apply the stuff over it.
 

lethyry

Jr Member
Ok so that proves ROTJ is the best choice for this helmet ,is bondo glass that fibreglass stuff in a tin? If it is then that's amazing because I love that stuff okay so My idea would be to cut lines in the bottom use a heat gun to bend it to make a spread out ,almost flat surface and apply the stuff over it.
I actually had a quick question, what did you use to ground out the inside of the faceplate before laying the glass down?
 

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Imperial Weapon

Active Member
I used grade 60 sandpaper and for the most part I used a dremmel flat stone bit like this in blue.

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Sorry I haven't posted anything recently I had some trouble with my college course and I got some work to do but don't worry this project is still going It might be a week or so when I post again depends.
 

Imperial Weapon

Active Member
The Inside was this horrible sharp mushy thing originally (the mouth was the worst...had to wash mine out with soap and water after doing it lol.) sorry I don't have any pics.
 

Imperial Weapon

Active Member
I'm back with updates sorry this took so long but from now on I'll try posting once or twice a week, as you can see I've reshaped the head in a more workable state, I will obviously have to fibreglass it again for the holes and I will pick up the fibreglass filler to make it thicker as its more durable than bondo so in the meantime I will work on the dome.

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Whilst I'm still stuck on reshaping the head and strengthening it I think I'm finally getting somewhere.
 

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