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Debater2nd

501st Stormtrooper[TK]
  • Content Count

    497
  • Joined

  • Last visited

About Debater2nd

  • Rank
    Major
  • Birthday 12/18/1980

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
    http://www.epalexander.com

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Reston Virginia

FISD Info

  • FISD Service Medals
    1
  • EIB Awards
    3
  • EIB Cohorts
    ANH-S
    ESB
    HWT

Standard Info

  • Name
    Daniel
  • 501st ID
    2618
  • 501st Unit
    Garrison Tyranus

Recent Profile Visitors

274 profile views
  1. I use my v1 all time time, and plan to continue doing that. It's held up really well, and the updates they've released have been great.
  2. It's finally time to replace my old FX/whatever armor, so I decided to go with ATA's new ABS kit. After being on a wait list for a couple of weeks, ATA let me know that it was on the way, and it did indeed arrive within the week. Very fast shipping! I opened the box and found that all of the items were in great condition. I have no idea how they all fit in there, since for the life of me I haven't been able to duplicate the process. The pieces are all wrapped in protective plastic film, and rough trimmed with extra ABS included. I took all of the pieces out, and assembled the ones that I will be working with. I have a thermal detonator and canvas belt that I will be keeping, and I am moving to get latex handguards and TK boots. I will also be using a HIPS ATA bucket...the color match seems ok to me. I will be building this to the EIB "Should-Have's," so I'll be adding in all of the little touches that are required. I have done some preliminary measurements, and I think that I'll be able to make the sides work without adding anything, which I couldn't do with my old kit. I still need to figure out how to do the ab plate and buttons, and how to attach the knee bandoleer and sniper plate, but I'm hoping that won't be too challenging. The only other concern that I have is that, based on what I'm seeing, there is no way that the bicep pieces won't overlap the shoulders. I'm 5'8, and unless I cut them WAY down, it's going to overlap, which seems to be something of a gray area right now. Trimming starts soon...I'll post more pictures as I make progress.
  3. Ok guys, since the weather has been so miserable this month, I want to see pictures of TK's having some fun in the snow. Why should we let the Snowtroopers get all the glory? We'll pick the best photos, and use them in the next newsletter. So...submit away!
  4. Look at it this way...at least this isn't being played in your home stadium while your disaster of a team has to watch! The real kicker is (see, football pun!)...I'm watching it with a few people in my "man cave" basement, which I have spent the last few years turning into a mini-version of Cowboys Stadium, replete with autographs, memorabilia, jerseys, rugs, a constantly-playing video highlight reel, and stadium seats from the old Texas Stadium. Oops...guess what I'll be doing during the game... It'll be fun...should be a good game. If the Steelers get their running game going during the 1st half, I think they win. If the Packers can keep pressure of Rodgers, they'll be in good shape.
  5. Got a few more pictures yesterday...did some recon work with a TB, and we successfully stopped the great rebel snowman threat of 2011.
  6. So, what's a teacher to do when there are three snow days in a week? Why, go play in the snow with a new Hyperfirm MG-15! More pictures coming tomorrow...we have Friday off, and I'm feeling another photo session coming on.
  7. Thanks for the info and picture...much appreciated!
  8. I know the T-21 has a sling, but I was wondering if anyone has attached a sling to either the DLT-19 or the MG-15? While not canon, it would certainly make sense, particularly from a trooping perspective. I think it could look good if a sling similar to the T-21 sling was used, but I'm not sure about placement. Any reference pics or others would be appreciated!
  9. January 2011 FISD Newsletter In this Issue... 1. From the Commander 2. Kudos Around the Detachment 3. From the Membership Officer 4. From the Intelligence Officer 5. Imperial Commissary 6. From the Front Lines 7. From the Provost Marshall 8. From the Communications Officer 9. Imperial Command Memo FISD News From the Commander Greetings Troopers! Welcome to 2011 on FISD and an exciting new chapter for the detachment. The tagline for this year is "Set for Fun", and we're cooking up some neat ideas to keep with the spirit, as well as celebrate our 5th year as a detachment. Here is a sampling of ideas from both the membership and staff: * Create a better visual guide for the costume, both for Legion as well as Expert Infantryman details * Create a new member welcome packet and have it PM'd to new members, including both tips for trooping and tips for how to get started. * Make the EI program more interactive, such as clicking on a person's EI award to see their profile. * Merch Runs: coins, hoodies, and a new 12" patch * Update the site to a darker background and remove the ESB style FISD is home to every stormtrooper in the Legion and our goal is to make the site as enjoyable for the new recruit as it is for the old timer. I'd like to welcome each and every one of you to swing by and share any ideas on what we can do to make FISD a better resource for you. With unquestioned loyalty, Paul C. Hoeffer TK-8020 "Daetrin" Imperial Command Memo Kudos Around the Detachment On behalf of FISD, it's my honor and privelege to present the FISD Service Award to the following troops: To the 2010 Staff for a year full of newsletters, Imperial Reception Center articles, moderation, and a whole host of other work, we honor: Dan (Debater2nd) Terry (pandatrooper) Brian (tkrestonva) Terrell (supertrooper) To the 2010 Imperial Propaganda Machine. These are the folks who put in countless hours creating 5 CRLs (now published on the Legion boards), processed all Expert Infantryman photos, creating banner signatures, trading cards, and other photoshop work for the benefit of FISD: Ryan (bluehickey) Noel (No'l) Pete (StukaTrooper) Jesse (TK 4702) Pablo (TKDUENO) Tray (as himself ) Damian (Dmian) Please join me in saluting these hard working troopers who truly embody the spirit of "Troopers Helping Troopers". From the Membership Officer New Recruits, New Attitude Greetings troopers! 2011 is off to a quick start and the days are flying by. So far I have counted at least 21 new recruits for the empire since January 1st – that’s huge growth for the detachment (and any 501st detachment for that matter). I appreciate everyone welcoming the new members with enthusiasm and helpful comments. That is exactly the type of atmosphere we want to have here at FISD. I remember what it was like when I found the forum and things have only gotten better in terms of newcomer-friendliness and the availability of information. We have already begun rolling out the new member welcome letter and the TK handbook should be ready soon. With that said, as with anything there is always room for improvement, so if you have suggestions on how to make FISD even better for new members feel free to message me, or any of the other staffers with comments or ideas. “Be the change you want to seeâ€, and remember, for 2011 – Set for Fun! With unquestioned loyalty, A.C. Meyers TK – 5597 “NoVATie†From the Intelligence Officer Featured Tutorials and Tips This month, we feature a full review on ATA armor! Greetings troopers! Going forward, (the staff with assistance from FISD members) will be conducting detailed reviews of the various armor makes, to give troopers a better idea of what the specific features and qualities of each kit are. This month, we have chosen to highlight the ATA kit. ATA Armor Highlight and Review by Terry / Pandatrooper FISD Intelligence Officer ATA has been around for some time and has produced a quality armor / helmet set for troopers wishing to portray TK's, TD's, TX's (kits are available in black) for any stormtrooper based character. The lineage of the armor comes from CAP-W / TE, which has roots to the ROTJ tour suit. Thus, it's "screen accurate" in terms of sizing and detailing, and will fit most average / idealized sized troopers (commonly believed to be approx. 5' 9" / 10", and 165lbs). Completed ATA armor ATA armor is available in complete sets, helmet only, or even individual parts (pending availability) The armor is made from a bright white HIPS (high impact polystyrene) plastic. It has a matte finish and is very easy to trim, cut and reshape with a heat sealing iron (if required). ATA kits generally include the following "hard parts": ATA armor ATA helmet - Helmet parts (brow and neck trim, green welders lens, white Hovi mic tips, mesh, helmet and mic tip hardware) - All body armor parts (depending on which stormtrooper character) - Additional plastic for cover strips - does not include any velcro, adhesives, elastic, etc. ATA comes rough trimmed, so you will not only need to assemble the armor, but also trim along the proper edges. Some edges are more clearly defined than others, but using reference photos can help in trimming. Trimming the armor can be easily done using the "score and snap" method (repeatedly scoring along a line and snapping the plastic to separate the parts) or using lexan scissors or tin snips. While a Dremel cutting wheel can work, care must be taken as HIPS plastic is softer and can heat up quickly. In terms of sizing, ATA is a fairly "standard" screen accurate size which is common among other makers such as AP, TE2, etc. Components Since ATA has lineage to the CAP-W/ TE, many of the components are considered "standard" in terms of common details seen on most armor. All of the armor and helmet pieces are considered much more accurate than FX or AM armor. Below are some details regarding specific pieces, which may be an upgrade from those transitioning from the older fan sculpted FX armor. Helmet: The helmet has good detail in the face and cap and back. The undercut on the cap and back is slightly less than other helmets, but it does not detract from the overall shape. The mic tips are a cast white resin, with silver mesh which must be assembled and painted. There are "U" shaped rubber trims provided for the brow and the neck trim. Partially completed ATA helmet Ab buttons / button plate: The AB comes with a TD specific ab button box molded into the ab plate. Should you want to portray a TK, there are separate button panels and a button strip that must be trimmed and glued on. Partially completed ATA torso Belt armor / rivet covers: the belt armor does not have square indentations where the rivets or snaps can be installed (to attach the armor to a canvas belt). The covers can be simply glued on top. Close up of belt detail Butt: The butt is formed separate from the back plate, which is correct for ANH and ESB suits. Biceps and forearms: The CAP-W / TE2 suits have unique biceps and forearms. The left bicep is "pointy" while the right is slightly larger and has a square notch opening. Also note the "thumb print" on the bicep, which was seen in some of the original armor. Bicep and forearm pieces Thighs: The thighs again are derived from the CAP-W / TE suit. As such, the right thigh is slightly longer and pointier at the top, where as the left is slightly shorter and has a rounder top. Comparison of left and right thigh tops Chest and back: Of note to those with FX armor, you will notice a big difference between FX or even the updated AM compared to ATA armor. The ATA chest and back are much more accurate. The chest is rounder, and much smaller and more defined than fan made chest armor. The back is also similar with a more modestly sized back box and "OII" details). Thermal detonator: the thermal detonator includes the control panel and end caps. You will need to find a section of PVC or ABS pipe, along with metal clips to attach the detonator to your belt, if you want an accurate replica. Conclusion This is a very fun and easy kit to assemble. The HIPS plastic is very easy to trim and finish, which can result in a very screen accurate armor build. The quality, affordability, customer service and availability of the kit are it's strongest factors. ATA's customer service and support is great, and they are willing to answer any questions you may have. In terms of a final white finish, you have several options. You could leave the white matte finish as is (which works fine for TD's), paint the kit (sanding, using a white primer or white lacquer based paint) or polish the kit. The majority of people tend to paint the kit as it results in a very glossy white finish, and is fairly easy to achieve. The most common paints troopers are using are Rustoleum and Krylon, both of which can achieve a good finish. It's been reported that Rustoleum achieves a glossier finish. You can also polish the kit via wet sanding, and using plastic polish to give it a final sheen. See links below for discussion threads and tutorials. Many troopers in the 501st legion have either upgraded their armor and or helmets to ATA due to it's great features and quality. Links to options for adding a gloss finish to styrene kits Painting a HIPS kit Discussion for making armor shiny Polishing a HIPS kit to make it shiny Some links to ATA kit builds Dashrazor ATA build Midnyt17 ATA helmet build Naatsirhc ATA build Dark GT104 ATA build Pandatrooper's ATA TD build With unquestioned loyalty, Terry Chui TK-2886 "pandatrooper" Imperial Commissary New Gear Issued 2011 starts off well with commemorative glass mugs (link to sale thread), available in two formats. All coins and patches are sold out with the exception of EI rockers, so it will be some months before we can get them restocked. In the meantime, we should be announcing 12" patches and hoodies soon, so keep an eye out for them on the boards. Trading cards (link) are still available, and now is a great time to have them ordered before the busy trooping season begins. If there is anything else you'd like to see, give us a shout on the boards! From the Front Lines Set For Fun! We asked our members how TKs have fun, and they responded! We'd like to thank everyone who submitted photos, which can be viewed by visiting the FISD thread. Here are the top staff picks for photos of Stormtroopers who look like they may be due some extra leave time. Submitted by Billhag Submitted by SW1 Submitted by Billhag Submitted by Billhag Submitted by Quebectrooper Submitted by R2Dan Submitted by Locitus Submitted by Debater2nd From the Provost Marshall Security Memo This month’s article can be considered the second installment of the “it’s not what you say – it’s how you say it†theme. We are fortunate to have many talented artisans here that are willing to share their creations with the membership. Whether it’s full-on armor kits, parts to upgrade your existing kits, required accessories (holsters, blasters, etc.), optional accessories (uber-accurate handguards, helmet mic-tips, etc.) or simply cool items that show your pride in the FISD (T-shirts, patches, mugs, etc.). Most of the items are for sale, but some are literally given away – be it the item itself or detailed instructions on how to create your own. That’s not the case on many of the purely prop-oriented boards, and I feel truly fortunate to be a part of such a selfless community. Furthermore, we have new and exciting projects on the horizon – including a major new offering to be debuted in time to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Return of the Jedi. Of course we’d all like to see the new (and old) merchandise and supplies as the best stormtrooper-related stuff on the internet. However, if I was one of those artisans and I thought my hard work would be met by contempt, belittlement, and generally unconstructive forms of criticism, I’d be very disinclined to share any of it. Which brings me back to my theme – it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it. As much as we may try, none of us are perfect, and in fact those who believe that they are, in my experience, tend to be the least perfect of all. There is more than enough room here for all who wish to offer quality products at reasonable prices, and it’s the market that determines what a “reasonable†price is – not the FISD staff or anyone else. Offering suggestions on how something can be improved upon is welcome and encouraged. Being critical of a new (or not so new) offering to boost one’s own ego, sales, or because the new product may be seen as a competitor is not, and will be dealt with appropriately. Call it “trollingâ€, “hijackingâ€, or any other term, behavior such as this is prohibited and will result in disciplinary action by myself and/or other staff members. If you take a look at the FISD Guidelines as well as the rules for the Imperial Commissary, several of them address this either directly or indirectly. Again, I’m very proud of the supplies available at the FISD, and even more so of the members who spend their time, effort, and creativity to make them available to the rest of us. From those who will settle for nothing but the most screen-accurate prop replica available anywhere, to those who simply want to be able to get decent, easy to assemble costuming gear at an affordable price, there is something here for everyone, and room enough in the market to accommodate a wide variety of needs and wants. Happy New Year, troops. With Unquestioned Loyalty, Brian Robinson “tkrestonva†TK-2918 From the Communications Officer New Year, New Motto, New FISD Sometimes, I think we forget that this is supposed to be fun. I've noticed that, especially recently, there have been a number of serious-minded or even damaging threads that have popped up that usually have to do with prop replication, or in a couple cases, sales, and they usually end up spinning towards the garbage compactor fairly quickly. This trend is a bit disturbing, particularly considering how few people they usually involve, and how many troopers read these threads before they get closed down, usually after a request for moderation from someone. Now, before I offend all of the prop-makers etc., let me say that I am not saying that prop-making threads that discuss details and nuances are a bad thing...not at all. I think that every single TK has greatly benefited from the time that dedicated makers have taken to make sure that armor, weapons, and other props are painstakingly crafted to meet high specifications. Healthy discussion and debate over these types of things can only improve our hobby. However, taking these discussions and turning them into flame-wars and demands for proof, or even worse, defamation threads, only causes harm, and there is nothing good or productive that comes out of them. The "for sale" threads that have either become divisive due to members airing out laundry are just as bad, since it doesn't take much for someone's hard-earned reputation to take a dive into the toilet when a new trooper looses confidence based on one or two bad reviews stemming from bad feelings. The "for sale" threads that are scams...enough said. Our new theme is "Set For Fun," and I stand behind that fully. We need some more fun around here. Why would you want to spend your time and money investing in something that isn't fun to do? I think, at some level, we are all that kid who just saw Star Wars, and wanted to be a Stormtrooper, following Vader as the Empire restored order to the Galaxy, or something like that. More than that, while we may have differing opinions about what props are top-notch, the people that see us typically don't notice slight differences in gear, and are thrilled just to pose next to a character from one of the most prolific movies ever made. This year, I hope that I, along with the rest of the staff, can help steer this board back towards the fun that this hobby should be, with things like picture submission threads for the newsletter, merchandise that you can get to show off your affiliations, more prompt EIB-submission feedback and acceptance, and a whole host of other things that are still in the works. I think that if we all work together, we can create an atmosphere around here when all troopers will feel welcome, and feel like they can be a part of the TK community, regardless of whether they have a good working knowledge of prop replication or armor lineage. So, put on your bucket, grab your blaster, and mark 2011 as the year that we all create a new FISD where we "Set For Fun." Dan Brown (Debater2nd) TK-2618 Imperial Command Memo New Communications Feature Can't get enough of Stormtrooper Armor here? Want to another way to network with TK's from all over the world? Join the FISD on Facebook! This post has been promoted to an article
  10. January 2011 FISD Newsletter In this Issue... 1. From the Commander 2. Kudos Around the Detachment 3. From the Membership Officer 4. From the Intelligence Officer 5. Imperial Commissary 6. From the Front Lines 7. From the Provost Marshall 8. From the Communications Officer 9. Imperial Command Memo FISD News From the Commander Greetings Troopers! Welcome to 2011 on FISD and an exciting new chapter for the detachment. The tagline for this year is "Set for Fun", and we're cooking up some neat ideas to keep with the spirit, as well as celebrate our 5th year as a detachment. Here is a sampling of ideas from both the membership and staff: * Create a better visual guide for the costume, both for Legion as well as Expert Infantryman details * Create a new member welcome packet and have it PM'd to new members, including both tips for trooping and tips for how to get started. * Make the EI program more interactive, such as clicking on a person's EI award to see their profile. * Merch Runs: coins, hoodies, and a new 12" patch * Update the site to a darker background and remove the ESB style FISD is home to every stormtrooper in the Legion and our goal is to make the site as enjoyable for the new recruit as it is for the old timer. I'd like to welcome each and every one of you to swing by and share any ideas on what we can do to make FISD a better resource for you. With unquestioned loyalty, Paul C. Hoeffer TK-8020 "Daetrin" Imperial Command Memo Kudos Around the Detachment On behalf of FISD, it's my honor and privelege to present the FISD Service Award to the following troops: To the 2010 Staff for a year full of newsletters, Imperial Reception Center articles, moderation, and a whole host of other work, we honor: Dan (Debater2nd) Terry (pandatrooper) Brian (tkrestonva) Terrell (supertrooper) To the 2010 Imperial Propaganda Machine. These are the folks who put in countless hours creating 5 CRLs (now published on the Legion boards), processed all Expert Infantryman photos, creating banner signatures, trading cards, and other photoshop work for the benefit of FISD: Ryan (bluehickey) Noel (No'l) Pete (StukaTrooper) Jesse (TK 4702) Pablo (TKDUENO) Tray (as himself ) Damian (Dmian) Please join me in saluting these hard working troopers who truly embody the spirit of "Troopers Helping Troopers". From the Membership Officer New Recruits, New Attitude Greetings troopers! 2011 is off to a quick start and the days are flying by. So far I have counted at least 21 new recruits for the empire since January 1st – that’s huge growth for the detachment (and any 501st detachment for that matter). I appreciate everyone welcoming the new members with enthusiasm and helpful comments. That is exactly the type of atmosphere we want to have here at FISD. I remember what it was like when I found the forum and things have only gotten better in terms of newcomer-friendliness and the availability of information. We have already begun rolling out the new member welcome letter and the TK handbook should be ready soon. With that said, as with anything there is always room for improvement, so if you have suggestions on how to make FISD even better for new members feel free to message me, or any of the other staffers with comments or ideas. “Be the change you want to seeâ€, and remember, for 2011 – Set for Fun! With unquestioned loyalty, A.C. Meyers TK – 5597 “NoVATie†From the Intelligence Officer Featured Tutorials and Tips This month, we feature a full review on ATA armor! Greetings troopers! Going forward, (the staff with assistance from FISD members) will be conducting detailed reviews of the various armor makes, to give troopers a better idea of what the specific features and qualities of each kit are. This month, we have chosen to highlight the ATA kit. ATA Armor Highlight and Review by Terry / Pandatrooper FISD Intelligence Officer ATA has been around for some time and has produced a quality armor / helmet set for troopers wishing to portray TK's, TD's, TX's (kits are available in black) for any stormtrooper based character. The lineage of the armor comes from CAP-W / TE, which has roots to the ROTJ tour suit. Thus, it's "screen accurate" in terms of sizing and detailing, and will fit most average / idealized sized troopers (commonly believed to be approx. 5' 9" / 10", and 165lbs). Completed ATA armor ATA armor is available in complete sets, helmet only, or even individual parts (pending availability) The armor is made from a bright white HIPS (high impact polystyrene) plastic. It has a matte finish and is very easy to trim, cut and reshape with a heat sealing iron (if required). ATA kits generally include the following "hard parts": ATA armor ATA helmet - Helmet parts (brow and neck trim, green welders lens, white Hovi mic tips, mesh, helmet and mic tip hardware) - All body armor parts (depending on which stormtrooper character) - Additional plastic for cover strips - does not include any velcro, adhesives, elastic, etc. ATA comes rough trimmed, so you will not only need to assemble the armor, but also trim along the proper edges. Some edges are more clearly defined than others, but using reference photos can help in trimming. Trimming the armor can be easily done using the "score and snap" method (repeatedly scoring along a line and snapping the plastic to separate the parts) or using lexan scissors or tin snips. While a Dremel cutting wheel can work, care must be taken as HIPS plastic is softer and can heat up quickly. In terms of sizing, ATA is a fairly "standard" screen accurate size which is common among other makers such as AP, TE2, etc. Components Since ATA has lineage to the CAP-W/ TE, many of the components are considered "standard" in terms of common details seen on most armor. All of the armor and helmet pieces are considered much more accurate than FX or AM armor. Below are some details regarding specific pieces, which may be an upgrade from those transitioning from the older fan sculpted FX armor. Helmet: The helmet has good detail in the face and cap and back. The undercut on the cap and back is slightly less than other helmets, but it does not detract from the overall shape. The mic tips are a cast white resin, with silver mesh which must be assembled and painted. There are "U" shaped rubber trims provided for the brow and the neck trim. Partially completed ATA helmet Ab buttons / button plate: The AB comes with a TD specific ab button box molded into the ab plate. Should you want to portray a TK, there are separate button panels and a button strip that must be trimmed and glued on. Partially completed ATA torso Belt armor / rivet covers: the belt armor does not have square indentations where the rivets or snaps can be installed (to attach the armor to a canvas belt). The covers can be simply glued on top. Close up of belt detail Butt: The butt is formed separate from the back plate, which is correct for ANH and ESB suits. Biceps and forearms: The CAP-W / TE2 suits have unique biceps and forearms. The left bicep is "pointy" while the right is slightly larger and has a square notch opening. Also note the "thumb print" on the bicep, which was seen in some of the original armor. Bicep and forearm pieces Thighs: The thighs again are derived from the CAP-W / TE suit. As such, the right thigh is slightly longer and pointier at the top, where as the left is slightly shorter and has a rounder top. Comparison of left and right thigh tops Chest and back: Of note to those with FX armor, you will notice a big difference between FX or even the updated AM compared to ATA armor. The ATA chest and back are much more accurate. The chest is rounder, and much smaller and more defined than fan made chest armor. The back is also similar with a more modestly sized back box and "OII" details). Thermal detonator: the thermal detonator includes the control panel and end caps. You will need to find a section of PVC or ABS pipe, along with metal clips to attach the detonator to your belt, if you want an accurate replica. Conclusion This is a very fun and easy kit to assemble. The HIPS plastic is very easy to trim and finish, which can result in a very screen accurate armor build. The quality, affordability, customer service and availability of the kit are it's strongest factors. ATA's customer service and support is great, and they are willing to answer any questions you may have. In terms of a final white finish, you have several options. You could leave the white matte finish as is (which works fine for TD's), paint the kit (sanding, using a white primer or white lacquer based paint) or polish the kit. The majority of people tend to paint the kit as it results in a very glossy white finish, and is fairly easy to achieve. The most common paints troopers are using are Rustoleum and Krylon, both of which can achieve a good finish. It's been reported that Rustoleum achieves a glossier finish. You can also polish the kit via wet sanding, and using plastic polish to give it a final sheen. See links below for discussion threads and tutorials. Many troopers in the 501st legion have either upgraded their armor and or helmets to ATA due to it's great features and quality. Links to options for adding a gloss finish to styrene kits Painting a HIPS kit Discussion for making armor shiny Polishing a HIPS kit to make it shiny Some links to ATA kit builds Dashrazor ATA build Midnyt17 ATA helmet build Naatsirhc ATA build Dark GT104 ATA build Pandatrooper's ATA TD build With unquestioned loyalty, Terry Chui TK-2886 "pandatrooper" Imperial Commissary New Gear Issued 2011 starts off well with commemorative glass mugs (link to sale thread), available in two formats. All coins and patches are sold out with the exception of EI rockers, so it will be some months before we can get them restocked. In the meantime, we should be announcing 12" patches and hoodies soon, so keep an eye out for them on the boards. Trading cards (link) are still available, and now is a great time to have them ordered before the busy trooping season begins. If there is anything else you'd like to see, give us a shout on the boards! From the Front Lines Set For Fun! We asked our members how TKs have fun, and they responded! We'd like to thank everyone who submitted photos, which can be viewed by visiting the FISD thread. Here are the top staff picks for photos of Stormtroopers who look like they may be due some extra leave time. Submitted by Billhag Submitted by SW1 Submitted by Billhag Submitted by Billhag Submitted by Quebectrooper Submitted by R2Dan Submitted by Locitus Submitted by Debater2nd From the Provost Marshall Security Memo This month’s article can be considered the second installment of the “it’s not what you say – it’s how you say it†theme. We are fortunate to have many talented artisans here that are willing to share their creations with the membership. Whether it’s full-on armor kits, parts to upgrade your existing kits, required accessories (holsters, blasters, etc.), optional accessories (uber-accurate handguards, helmet mic-tips, etc.) or simply cool items that show your pride in the FISD (T-shirts, patches, mugs, etc.). Most of the items are for sale, but some are literally given away – be it the item itself or detailed instructions on how to create your own. That’s not the case on many of the purely prop-oriented boards, and I feel truly fortunate to be a part of such a selfless community. Furthermore, we have new and exciting projects on the horizon – including a major new offering to be debuted in time to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Return of the Jedi. Of course we’d all like to see the new (and old) merchandise and supplies as the best stormtrooper-related stuff on the internet. However, if I was one of those artisans and I thought my hard work would be met by contempt, belittlement, and generally unconstructive forms of criticism, I’d be very disinclined to share any of it. Which brings me back to my theme – it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it. As much as we may try, none of us are perfect, and in fact those who believe that they are, in my experience, tend to be the least perfect of all. There is more than enough room here for all who wish to offer quality products at reasonable prices, and it’s the market that determines what a “reasonable†price is – not the FISD staff or anyone else. Offering suggestions on how something can be improved upon is welcome and encouraged. Being critical of a new (or not so new) offering to boost one’s own ego, sales, or because the new product may be seen as a competitor is not, and will be dealt with appropriately. Call it “trollingâ€, “hijackingâ€, or any other term, behavior such as this is prohibited and will result in disciplinary action by myself and/or other staff members. If you take a look at the FISD Guidelines as well as the rules for the Imperial Commissary, several of them address this either directly or indirectly. Again, I’m very proud of the supplies available at the FISD, and even more so of the members who spend their time, effort, and creativity to make them available to the rest of us. From those who will settle for nothing but the most screen-accurate prop replica available anywhere, to those who simply want to be able to get decent, easy to assemble costuming gear at an affordable price, there is something here for everyone, and room enough in the market to accommodate a wide variety of needs and wants. Happy New Year, troops. With Unquestioned Loyalty, Brian Robinson “tkrestonva†TK-2918 From the Communications Officer New Year, New Motto, New FISD Sometimes, I think we forget that this is supposed to be fun. I've noticed that, especially recently, there have been a number of serious-minded or even damaging threads that have popped up that usually have to do with prop replication, or in a couple cases, sales, and they usually end up spinning towards the garbage compactor fairly quickly. This trend is a bit disturbing, particularly considering how few people they usually involve, and how many troopers read these threads before they get closed down, usually after a request for moderation from someone. Now, before I offend all of the prop-makers etc., let me say that I am not saying that prop-making threads that discuss details and nuances are a bad thing...not at all. I think that every single TK has greatly benefited from the time that dedicated makers have taken to make sure that armor, weapons, and other props are painstakingly crafted to meet high specifications. Healthy discussion and debate over these types of things can only improve our hobby. However, taking these discussions and turning them into flame-wars and demands for proof, or even worse, defamation threads, only causes harm, and there is nothing good or productive that comes out of them. The "for sale" threads that have either become divisive due to members airing out laundry are just as bad, since it doesn't take much for someone's hard-earned reputation to take a dive into the toilet when a new trooper looses confidence based on one or two bad reviews stemming from bad feelings. The "for sale" threads that are scams...enough said. Our new theme is "Set For Fun," and I stand behind that fully. We need some more fun around here. Why would you want to spend your time and money investing in something that isn't fun to do? I think, at some level, we are all that kid who just saw Star Wars, and wanted to be a Stormtrooper, following Vader as the Empire restored order to the Galaxy, or something like that. More than that, while we may have differing opinions about what props are top-notch, the people that see us typically don't notice slight differences in gear, and are thrilled just to pose next to a character from one of the most prolific movies ever made. This year, I hope that I, along with the rest of the staff, can help steer this board back towards the fun that this hobby should be, with things like picture submission threads for the newsletter, merchandise that you can get to show off your affiliations, more prompt EIB-submission feedback and acceptance, and a whole host of other things that are still in the works. I think that if we all work together, we can create an atmosphere around here when all troopers will feel welcome, and feel like they can be a part of the TK community, regardless of whether they have a good working knowledge of prop replication or armor lineage. So, put on your bucket, grab your blaster, and mark 2011 as the year that we all create a new FISD where we "Set For Fun." Dan Brown (Debater2nd) TK-2618 Imperial Command Memo New Communications Feature Can't get enough of Stormtrooper Armor here? Want to another way to network with TK's from all over the world? Join the FISD on Facebook!
  11. Only a few days left...keep the pictures coming!
  12. In keeping with our "Set for Fun" theme for 2011, we're asking for photos showing TK's having fun to include in this months issue. This thread will be open for the next week, and the staff will choose the best photos to include in the January issue that is posted all over the 501st main and detachment boards. Let the submissions begin!
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