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About Jeklynhyde

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  1. @justjoseph63 I'm glad they will be useful You’re welcome to make requests for additional shots if you think they’d be helpful. Now that I’ve got a process in place, it’s easy to grab more. Just sent a DM. I’ll do a proper update later today, but I figure I’ll post the next stumbling point that I’ve run into. This one was 100% preventable and due to a lack of fore-thought, but in doing a hot-water bath to shape my forearms, I used twine, and managed to mould the lines into the plastic on the left forearm rather visibly. I haven’t dug too deep into other threads yet to see if others have done the same or how I might go about resolving this, but I figure I’d post here before I move on with making attempts in case anyone has any suggestions or can point me in the right direction. I started using the sealing iron though was having issues with the curve looking like it's starting to flatten out, so I paused my efforts before doing any more damage. Tools I have at my disposal: More hot water, Heat Sealing Iron, Hot Air Gun. A suggestion from one of my friends was to fill and sand, which I could potentially do with ASB paste, but I don’t know how decent the final result would look given that finish is important in these areas since they’re highly visible. On the plus side, the hot bath did the trick and the forearm is shaped correctly and ready to be glued… just need to ease out those lines a bit if I can before I do that. boooo boooooooooooo
  2. @MaskedVengeance that does sound like a lot of hard work as well! The process of going through was time-consuming, but the end result is absolutely worth it as I'm sure your project will be as well! Not only do I have shots that are easy to reference in high quality (and which can be manipulated to pull more detail), I'm also able to share them out and giving back to the community is something I am interested to do. I'm lucky that I've got some pretty handy tools and smarts at my disposal that have made the process a lot more streamlined (and technically repeatable, with little adjustment, if I get my hands on a 4k copy). Davinci Resolve for video editing to mark the timecodes I wanted to grab stills from, and a program that allows me to make a macro out of any action that I perform, which allowed me to very easily name all the stills for export. It would have taken a lot longer without these. The right tool for the job always makes things go by faster and allows for more flexibility and higher quality in the long run. @ticopowell Thanks for the link! I wasn't aware of that resource. Without digging in too deep, it looks like those are a series of shots from the films at regular intervals. Which is still helpful. My shots are directed specifically toward the stormtroopers and aim to take the most useful images for build reference (though some are for fun). Today I'm working on going through the shots and reviewing the quantifiable particulars between the suits - that's going to be an ongoing process, I may put up a doc somewhere. Aiming to get the helmet completed tonight. Or at least complete enough for review and acceptance into 501st. I'm going to leave internal revisions until after acceptance so that I can hopefully squeak into the 1000 EIB we're aiming for. What's left right now, update late upon full completion: tear and trap stripes, neck edge trimming and S-trim final cut, paint the ear screws white.
  3. I uploaded a couple youtube videos recently. One from 2018 that I didn't have an opportunity to edit and upload at the time. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k_COt9bd0Qg The more recent one I went over some stormtrooper progress, but I've got a poster of Motoko Kusanagi from Ghost in the Shell in the background that isn't quite appropriate for the boards here, so if you want to hear the update it's on my channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=63ewYsCifNc Basically I was agonizing again over the particulars for screen accuracy. This time, the stripes in the tears and back traps. So.... I finally went through ANH and wrote down all the scenes with stormtroopers, then went frame-by-frame through the various scenes to get picture grabs for reference and take notes. I used the “A New Hope” disc as part of the “Star Wars: The Complete Saga” blu-ray collection 2015 release (Bar Code# 024543742180 81). I won’t post all the images here (at present there are 1059 images), but I created a new Google Photos album for all of them that is available here: Star Wars: A New Hope - Screenshots - Stormtroopers. This album only covers "A New Hope" stormtroopers: stunt, hero, and sandtroopers (and a couple tie pilots), and shots that include blasters or stormtrooper belts. These can also be downloaded in a zip file in the Stormtrooper folder on my Google Drive: Stormtrooper Folder If I add any new images, they will be in sequential order to match the movie. Image names match the timecode they were pulled from. A note on copyright: These images are protected under Fair Use as they are intended to be used strictly for educational purposes. I highly encourage you to go through the scenes yourself and if you don’t already own a copy, go out and buy one :D. Umm.. just in case you haven’t watched the movie yet??? Spoilers ahead!! Just sayin’. These timecodes will only apply to this version of the movie as it has been edited over the years multiple times (for an idea of how many times and how much it has changed, check out “All Changes Made to Star Wars: A New Hope (Comparison Video) PART I”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNbzSH84mj0 … Han shot first! In case your time codes vary for whatever reason, as an “anchor” point we’ll set the moment the text “Star Wars” appears on screen since it’s a straight cut (it does not fade in). Move forward to the moment the text pops on screen. It should be just over 00:00:28 (+16 frames). Another note, this film is running at 23.98fps NTSC. The original-original may have run at true 24 fps, but the difference between the two fps rates is very slight over the length of the film regardless of version (less than 10 second difference). So whatever time you have, if it differs from 28 seconds into the movie, adjust the following time codes by that value. One way or another, these time codes should get you into the ballpark of a stormtrooper scene if you’re on watching it on a blu-ray copy as mentioned above. Here’s a text run-down of scenes involving stormtroopers as well as a little fun colour commentary. For now, I’ll exclude detail specific notes (counting stripes and the like). But as I go though the pictures, I’ll add the notes here later or somewhere else where it makes sense. (If there is interest / if this hasn’t been done before I can post this somewhere else as well so that it’s more accessible for others.) A New Hope - Stormtooper Scenes (+extras) 00:03:46 (+03) - First appearance. Stormtroopers board Tantive IV and shootout begins. 00:04:31 (+17) - First appearance of Darth Vader. 00:04:52 (+11) - End scene. 00:05:31 (+22) - Stormtroopers escort Tantive IV prisoners. First trooper looks like they are missing their screen-left side drop box. 00:05:41 (+00) - Darth Vader chokes a dude out. Good view of back of helmet – This appears to be a hero helmet due to the reflection visible in the eye later in the scene. View of shoulder strap. 00:05:39 (+13) - Mr. No Stripes appears! (behind the first trooper). Mr. No Stripes does not have the larger button panel on the abdomen. 00:06:17 (+07) - This one bonks their head on the pipe. Clear view through frown cuts. Clear view of green eye tint. 00:06:28 (+13) - Mr. No Stripes shoots Leia! 00:06:29 (+19) - It looks like the shoulderbell may have a connecting strap to the chestplate? 00:06:34 (+20) - End scene with a booty shot. 00:07:27 (+20) - Stormtroopers escort Princess Leia to Darth Vader. Hero helmet scree-left next to Stunt helmet screen-right, front two troopers. 00:07:29 (+15) - The hero’s screen-right bicep looks like the shoulderbell-bicep-strap-anchor-point has ripped off. And for whatever reason, the chestplate looks like this guy is sweating a bit… 00:07:41 (+06) - The bicep was covered with white tape. Thick strap clearly visible between bicep and forearm on the screen-right trooper. It looks like a small portion of the strap was painted white. Shoulderbell strap clearly visible foreground screen-left trooper. Some kind of strapping malfunction at the shoulder? Background screen-left trooper. 00:08:04 (+11) Lots of good views here: back traps (left side), ear bumps (left side) (both stunt and hero), Shoulderbell strapping, over-the-shoulder straps, left-side Shoulderbell sweeps (both straight and sweeped), Thermal Detonator positioning, kidney plate mounting hardware visible top return edge (closer on screen-right trooper), forearm return at the elbow edges. Also good views of the E-11 Blasters. There’s a view near direct front-on where you can see the scope. 00:08:29 (+12) End Tantive IV troopers, and shortly after, end scenes on Tantive IV. Get ready for sandy bois! 00:15:08 (+17) - Troopers scouting the desert - Added scene. These appear to be either ESB or ROTJ troopers. Check out the hand guards (scoop style) and the blacked-out frown. Cod is beveled. Abdomen button panels are there but paint is gone. It looks like there are stripes in the tears as well and most of these appear to be “hero” helmets (or at least they have bubble lenses). Troopers with black pauldrons, screen-right has bubble lenses, vocoders are hero style... Recreated scenes? 00:15:27 (+04) - Digital Dewbacks. Stripes in the back traps. I don’t trust these added scenes for accurate representation of true ANH troopers. 00:15:32 (+05) - Original scene. Orange pauldron, stunt helmet. Upper torso shots. White pauldron. No lines in tears. No lines in the back traps. Rear-most ear bump painted black. 15 tube stripes left side (orange pauldron trooper) 14(?) tube stripes (white pauldron trooper). 00:15:35 (+20) - "Look sir, droids!" 00:15:39 (+08) - End scene & transition. 00:43:04 (+20) (4 seconds) - Stormtroopers in the Mos Eisley streets (digital addition). 00:43:19 (+20) - The "Move along" scene. Good shots of heavy backpacks. 00:43:56 (+04) End scene. Some troopers visible in far, mid-ground on Mos Eisley streets. 00:47:31 (+20) (6 seconds) - Scene transition from Cantina interior to troopers questioning people in the streets. Digital trooper & dewback have been added. Digital trooper has knee plates on both sides and is missing knee ammo belt : /. 00:51:43 (+05) (10 seconds) - Checking the side streets looking for the droids. Lots of views of backpacks. 00:54:59 (+21) - HWT & other troopers on their way to attempt to stop the Millennium Falcon. Helmet close-ups. 00:55:13 (+07) - Shootout scene begins! 00:55:40 (+06) - End scene. Millennium Falcon departs as troopers watch on from the streets. Goodbye Mos Eisley! And onto the Death Star 01:05:31 (+05) (5 seconds) - Stormtroopers - in - Spaaaaaaaace. Super far out, but they're there. The area they're in doesn't look like it's inside the ship, so I don't know if this is part of some special field, or if these troopers (or if it should be considered that all armour) have the ability to withstand space...? (I have significant doubts.) 01:05:45 (+17) - Troopers to your stations! Running through the halls. Hero next to stunt again. Troopers board and search the Millennium Falcon. 01:08:04 (+06) "Hey down there" Troopers leave their post to their inevitable doom. Note: Both of these are stunt helmets. Both have return edge at the bottom of the chest. 01:08:05 (+19) - Side (blurry) & Back view of The Grappling Hook trooper. Why this one is outfitted with a grappling hook? - To progress the plot of the storyline of course.. But why in actuality? - What as part of the normal duties of a Death Star Stormtrooper would require the use of a grappling hook? 01:08:15 (+06) - Shots are heard within the Falcon. 01:08:17 (+21) - We're going to have to assume that some time passes in between the previous shot and this one with the commander in the comm room asking TK421 why they're not at their post, because on walking over to the window to look out, like movie magic, Luke walks out from the Falcon. Without having ever done it yet myself I can well tell you that it takes a heck of a lot longer than 5 seconds to don that armour without the inconvenience of having to strip it off someone else's unconscious (probably dead) body first... Note again: Kinda still looks like it’s a stunt helmet. We know this is Luke because in a moment, Han and Chewie bust in and commandeer the comm room. Also, if these troopers were shot as the sound effects suggest, where are the phaser marks? Or perhaps, the guns went off in the process of the struggle. How does one render an armoured stormtrooper unconscious without leaving marks? The world may never know.. 01:08:33 (+07) - *knock-knock-knock-knock* (read as: my comm unit appears to be malfunctioning). 01:08:40 (+17) - Han & Chewie take over the landing bay comm room, with Luke shortly to follow.. Mostly body shots in this scene, not so much with the helmets. Neckseal/under helmet shot. Also Luke hair flip <3. Both Han and Luke are wearing suits that have the shoulderbell "sweep" detail shown on both sides. More shots with Shoulderbell strap. Also, stationary hero helmet in the background, right side visible. 01:10:44 (+12) - Cod Shot!! - haha.. At first it looked like the edge of the right thigh was beveled, but it can be seen here to clearly have a return edge around the top edge. 01:12:28 (+00) - End scene - cuts to hallway scene with Chewie in tow as "prisoner". 01:12:31 (+19) - Hero helmet closeup. High brow. 01:13:02 (+06) - Pretty sure Chewie is checking out that droid's butt.. Hah. 01:13:15 (+10) - Clear view of the S-trim being joined together at the back of the helmet. 01:13:28 (+12) - Stunt troopers in the halls & then Obi Wan sneaking around in the back. 01:13:34 (+08) - End troopers in the scene. 01:13:49 (+21) - Elevator Scene: Good closeup on back trap stripes. 01:15:02 (+04) - Close up on the back of the helmet, but it's fast and a little blurry. In the same second, the back of the trim is visible again to be seamed together at the middle-back of the helmet. 01:15:13 (+10) - It’s looking like there is some kind of material on the inside of the chest and backplates. 01:15:27 (+00) - "We're all fine here now, thank you. How are you?" 01:16:03 (+00) - "Aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?" 01:16:19 (+18) - End scene. 01:17:10 (+22) - Han, no more helmet. Shootout with stunt troopers. 01:19:04 (+13) - End scene and into the garbage chute. Now these are the real dirty boys.... Rolling around in garbage. 01:22:10 (+14) - Cut to C3PO's handheld communicator and you can actually see “HOVI MIX Pa 2.” written on the communicator. 01:22:15 (+18) - Enter stunt troopers into the comm room. One of the guys in back hits their head on the door… I laughed out loud seeing this again, haha. The S-Trims in this scene appear to vary on whether they join at the back or not (or at least some of them have been seamed together better than others). 01:23:01 (+21) - Cut back to garbage masher. Cut to landing bay (Falcon & troopers in the background). Cut back to garbage masher. Cut back to R2D2. Cut back to garbage masher. Cut to C3PO. Cut back to garbage masher. Cut back to C3PO. I don't know why I bothered to detail that, but these cuts are getting ever shorter... 01:24:08 (+00) - "Will you shut up and listen to me! Shut down all garbage mashers on the detention level, will ya?! Do you copy? Shut down all garbage mashers on the detention level!" -squiiiisssshhhh- 01:24:45 (+05) - "We're alright!" 01:24:51 (+15) - End scene. 01:25:19 (+09) - Troopers pass by in the background while Obi shuts down the gravity field controls. 01:25:39 (+08) - Han and Luke ditch the suits but keep the belts. Another view of Luke's suit here shows the bottom edge is cut straight. Han's in the background even from a distance it's easy to see the return edge. 01:26:07 (+20) - Bye-bye now dirty "hero" suits! disappearing around the corner. 01:26:19 (+08) - Obi is still at it deactivating the tractor beam. Troopers are on the lookout. 01:26:34 (+00) - "Do you know what's going on?" "Maybe it's another drill." They really need to work on communication skills in the management at the Death Star... 01:26:48 (+00) - More jedi mind tricks. - alarmed: "What was that?" Reminds me of Elder Scrolls games (I must be hearing things...) 01:26:53 (+09) - End scene. 01:27:01 (+05) (9 seconds) - Troopers hanging out around the Falcon, probably standing guard while the murder(?) of the two troopers that got mugged onboard is investigated? 01:27:18 (+13) - Another shootout in the hallway. 01:28:07 (+13) - The grapling hook scene! 01:28:32 (+09) - Mr. No stripes reappears! And he’s got the big button panel this time. 01:28:33 (+06) - Willhelm scream! 01:28:55 (+06) - Boots! Scuffed up, black on the bottom, slight heel. You can see the side fabric U bit of the boots here (painted white). May be good lower calf reference. 01:29:10 (+15) - Belly troopers! 01:29:13 (+11) - End scene. Cut to troopers running through the halls again. 01:29:21 (+16) - End with Obi Wan sneaking around the halls again. 01:29:31 (+00) (3 seconds) - Troopers hanging around the Falcon again. 01:29:39 (+05) - Running the halls again, chasing after Han & Chewie. 01:29:50 (+18) - End scene. 01:31:26 (+05) - Troopers around the Falcon again. Luke & Leia join back up with Han & Chewie. 01:31:48 (+09) - Lightsaber battle is taking place in a room off the bay with the Falcon. Troopers in the background. 01:31:51 (+07) - Trooper Closeup! Hero Helmet. Blurry stunt helmet in the background. 01:31:52 (+18) - Troopers abandon their post to watch the lightsaber battle. 01:32:35 (+01) - Trooper's shoulderbell is all blown out - waaay out of place. Almost looks like they disjointed their shoulder. 01:33:09 (+20) - Falcon exists the Death Star Bay. End Scene. Bye Death Star! 01:34:28 (+00) - Incoming tie pilot scenes. 01:35:58 (+14) - All the tie fighters are destroyed. 01:46:15 (+20) (2 seconds) - Momentary scene of troopers running about behind the gunports as the X-Wing fighters launch their mission on the Death Star. 01:46:48 (+11) (2 seconds) - Troopers running about through the halls. 01:47:13 (+20) - Troopers fall victim to blast attacks that make it to the inside halls! - How can the walls be so thin? Or the blasts from such small fighter ships be so strong? 01:47:17 (+20) - End scene. 01:47:41 (+23) (1 second) - Troopers in background while the gunners get blasted out. 01:47:55 (+17) - Get ready for more Tie fighters! 01:48:27 (+22) (1 second) - Darth walking the halls, stunt trooper walks off screen. 01:48:33 (+22) (2 seconds) - Tie fighter pilots directed to follow Vader. 01:52:44 (+23) (2 seconds) - Troopers in the hallways get shook up by the first attempt to drop the missiles into the Death Star Weak point. This is the last scene with stormtroopers. 01:56:44 (+09) - Han, Chewie, and the Millennium Falcon swoop in to the rescue. End tie fighter pilot scenes. Vader goes spinning off into the void. 01:57:10 (+20) - Death Star go boom. Goodbye ANH Stormtroopers - and everyone else on that station!
  4. For the frown, not all helmets had the line painted all the way across that last tooth gap at the end. I decided to go for a look the preserves the gap.
  5. More painting... aaand... GO! Here are some of my tools'o'the'trade so I've got lots of options. In order to determine what brush would likely do the best for the purpose, I did a couple dry runs. Here's one that's wide, flat, & angle-tipped - This one may work well for the smaller teeth. Ah, another note.. I ran a utility knife on the edges of the teeth to clean them up one last time before we get the paint involved. If you're putting in mesh behind the frown, make sure you paint these guys first so you can get good coverage without painting your mesh. Wide, flat, flat tip. I ended up using this brush for all of the teeth (including the bitty ones at the end. This is a thin, round, & pointed tip brush. The shape doesn't fit for the little guys in the corner, so this was not used here. Thin, round, long pointed tip. This looked like it would be a decent fit, but I didn't end up using it. Getting ready with the Humbrol Gloss 5 Admiral Gray (if I remember the name right) & starting with that wide & flat brush. Every time before I open up on of these lil' guys, I shake them up vigourously for at least 30 seconds if not closer to a minute. I'll make another post after this (late on) to give some brush use angles, but this post is mostly just going to be the progress and results of painting. I used the flat edge of the brush to connect the corners to match the cut edge at the top and bottoms of the teeth and then connected the space in between. First coat on and ready to hang out for a while to dry After drying for ~16 hours (this paint only needs 6 between coats). For the traps, I used another wide brush, but to clean up the edges a little, I switched to the thin, round pointed tip brush. I filled in the traps & tears. I decided to go for full coverage so that the gray layer would have a full flat base to avoid the paint gradient being visible. Managed to forget about the ear bump here. We get back around to that. I rounded off the bump that was a little too square as well as giving the whole thing a general, thinner, second coat. This helped to flatten out the glossiness of the paint. And then I decided to tackle the tube stripes. I did not purchase stencils, but I did get a decal sheet. Here's a point to note the CRL again. CRL Survey says! (Expert Infantry)... "Fall of tube stripe tops ideally lean toward the front." This phrase confused me until I searched through a few threads where the stripes had been put on the other way. Then I saw that it's referring to the angles of the ends of the stripes. At least that's what I think it's talking about. When positioned correctly, the ends of the stripes, particularly those closer to the front of the face, lean inward towards the face slightly. So with this decal sheet, you can see the end points on the inner edges are slightly lower than the points on the outer edges. That makes the one on the left for the right side tube (or in other words left from the front) and the ones on the right, the ones for the left tube (right from the front). Turns out these stripes are smaller in width than the painter's tape that I'm using and that the tape is transparent enough to see the stripes through it. So I used that to trace the stripes onto the tape Pulling up the tape, of course the decal wants to come up with the tape. None of that! Stay down you! ... pinned it down in place while I peeled the tape off. Same for other parts where it tried to take the stickers away. I drew lightly enough that this did not damage the decals (in case for whatever reason I decide/need to use them in the future). Then what to do with the tape? I needed to cut out the stripes to create a negative to use as a stencil. But that requires needing something hard underneath, and, well, it's painter's tape, so it's going to lose its stick if it touches anything else... So I put the tape on a plastic bag which I placed over a wood block. These are in the same orientation as on the decal sheet. This allowed me to cut out all the stripes, with care, using a utility knife. Then I marked another piece at a pencil width Putting the pencil width tape up against the face edge. I probably should have placed this guide line a little further in - more to the point, I should have tested the width with the pencil before putting on the stripe stencil, but no... Now the issue of carefully removing the tape without ripping it to pieces. I I pulled up along the edge gently until everything had released from the plastic. Then placed the inner edge to match up with the tape line for the pencil guide. I aimed for about a fingertip / pencil gap between the front and the tip of the forward-most strip. This stencil is _rough_. There's no way I'm getting a clean pull from this, and even if I could, the edges would be a bit janky. Again I will note, I checked the gap here, but failed to double check the distance from the side of the face. We'll see if I need to stretch these out. So I used the stencil to gently mark the tube in pencil. Which was just enough to show up to give me a painting guide. Adding another piece of tape at the bottom to give a guide for the outer ends. And then going to town. Same deal with the right side. It doesn't look like it's marked, but even a gentle pencil mark is enough to see on the tube when the stencil is removed and it's naked again. Adding the bottom guide ended up in more bunching on this side, but I was able to get good contact for the stripe ends. This process took a while. I flashed past it on the right tube, but it was a similar process to this. Painting, aiming to cover the pencil lines completely so they will not be visible after painting is finalized. Lots of oopsing into areas that aren't allowed to have paint. I tackled these areas with a toothpick dipped in paint thinner. Then wiping away the offenders with a cotton swab. Although this resulted at times in little fibers being left in the paint. No, no, no... But I was able to pick them off gently with fine-point tweezers. Not including the time to make and draw the stencil on, and with stops for pictures, both sides took roughly 40 minutes each. Painter's tape on. I removed the straight-edge tape guides right after completion, without waiting for the paint to dry. If I need to go for another coat in areas, I can add one back on. Stormtroopers look a little odd without their brows. These lines are not perfect and will need some cleaning up. It was later on that I decided to test the pencil width again, and found that I fell a bit short of hitting it. Hopefully I can extend the edges inward a little more without having to completely remove & repaint (although if it was necessary, I'd be willing to do so). Pencil for forward positioning reference (fast forward pic) This side is closer, and would not need much to improve. Pencil for forward positioning reference (fast forward pic) Looking again from a slightly different angle, the stage-right side does look like it needs to come in a bit more. Though not sure how much the uneven lighting is playing a factor. This is a point where I wouldn't mind input on if / how much I should stretch the stripes inward. Another coat to the teeth I went with just the one black base coat straight to graying out the traps & tears. If the black lines need more, I can touch them up later. When I was painting on the black, I managed to brush a couple of the wet sides against my pants as I was painting other areas and the paint picked up a bunch of fuzzies which are not so visible when the paint is black. But as glossy gray, these fuzz-bumps are much more prominent. I used a combination of scratching them off (gently) and rubbing the paint around to loosen them up and then removing with sharp precision tweezers. Which improved it somewhat. Same with the fuzzies on this one. WIP-pic Got the ear bumps painted now! The lines look a little thick, but if so, I can expand the gray out a bit more before (or after) painting the straight lines This ear bump was harder to figure where the outline should stop., but ultimately ended up with this shape And another coat to the teeth. The gray paint was getting a little sticky at this point, it may have been from the brush since I didn't clean it between this and the traps. And current state while I wait for the ear bumps to dry. Again, I'll do another post later for varying brush positions. Things left to do on the outside: - Make an attempt to straighten up the tube stripe lines, probably go around and finalize all edges to attempt a little more straight-edged looks. - Add lines to back traps & tears. - Gray out the ear bumps, then add one black stripe back - CRL (Centurion): "Ear bars shall have only one bump painted in black (rank stripes)." - Clean off any remaining pencil lines. - Paint screws white. Not done yet since I still haven't put in the rivets - That may end up being the last thing that I end up painting on this bucket. - Plastic polish the dome (and just kind of all around) since the whole thing has experienced a fair bit of abuse in the past ~4 years. Any critiques are openly welcome on any adjustments so I can get this one wrapped up and move on to the next part.
  6. @justjoseph63 the answer to that would very obviously be, "yes, yes, yes", lol. This one first though!
  7. I appreciate the positive feedback! Good to know I'm progressing along correctly and helps keep me motivated to get this project complete! I'm very much looking forward to joining the 501st, as well as gaining Expert Infantry & Centurion status. But more than that, I'm looking forward to fulfilling a desire I've had since high school.
  8. Here's my current workstation. I've been using a camera tripod to help with helmet stuff since it's conveniently sized and allows me to position & tilt the helmet as necessary. Dremel is hanging on the key holder. Easy access to an outlet and lights directly above. Overall a decent setup. This is not really applicable to a clean ANH trooper, but I love the look of those pauldrons, so I got myself one for funsies. I will very likely be making a dirtyboi at some point as well, so we'll just say I'm prepping for that. Purchased from TrooperBay. This arrived in a folded, but otherwise mostly flat state. When doing test fits, the sides kept popping up... ... so I used an old blown out hairtie to help shape it. I'm guessing the orange part is painted on due to the couple orange smudges on the black parts of this. I'll have to figure out a way to get that stuff off gently. Moving along to the Vocoder. Humbrol 85 Satin Coal Black. Using a rounded brush tip this time. And so we begin! Reference ever present in the background. Going about this again by hand, no masking off. I started off with the helmet on the tripod, but moved along quickly to holding it with one hand or resting in my lap at every varying angle (from the front, from the side & upside down to anywhere in between). Made the mistake of turning the helmet upside down when there was enough excess paint to run up past my paint lines on the left side. Used a cotton swab with a little paint thinner to clean up the area. I did this a number of times when the paint went past where I wanted it to go. Pausing to check reference, where do I put the paintbrush? Where else but in my mouth, geez. Oooor I could rest it on those pliers. More progress pics: Initial outline going to the mould edges, then expanding the middle three up. Extending the next ones out upward a bit more and painting the middle three through to the neck at the bottom. Expanding upwards a bit again. This is where I left it since parts were starting to dry and it was getting a little harder to work the edges. Overall shape is looking ok, but there are a couple edges that I will likely clean up, mostly the right side (left from the front) That corner looks too squarish. going to even that out next go-round. Looking at the helmet from a bit of a distance, it actually looks like the vocoder is at an angle to the vertical line of the helmet. Taking a close look at the original helmets, this indeed seems to be the case. I don't think I'd noticed this before!
  9. Doo doo dooo, ok. what's next? So while I was working on the other bits of the helmet, I have also been working on the Mix-Tips on the side. (CRL) Survey Says: ..."with the rim of the mic and the inside white or painted white." The RS Kit that I got came with the Mix tips painted black on the outside and with the mesh already installed with the inside of the tips being unpainted resin. Considering the comment above, we need to fix that. There's that HOVI-MIX Pa2. - But the paint job.... It was flaking off right out of the box. So these meshes were already glued in place. How to remove without deforming the mesh too much? The first one I ended up bending a bit getting out, the one on the left in this picture. I think I just tried using my fingernails to pull it up in places. I noticed the bending and switched to a utility knife. For the other side, I popped a little utility knife under one of the more open edges and kind of popped up the ends of the wires one by one until I could fit the blade underneath and then held the mesh on top with one finger while I pushed up with the flat of the knife on the other side. This way I was able to keep the mesh flat & reduce deformation significantly. The inside was a bit dirty, and I needed to remove that glue. I used a paper towel to wipe out the inside with my finger. Used the utility knife to scrape gently around the inside edges of the rim which did a good job of chipping away the glue, being careful not to dig into the resin. Resulting in nice clean surfaces to paint. For the meshes, a few times, the little wires would pop out of place or completely off. I was able to put them back into place with my fingers, matching the weave, then used some wide & flat pliers to squish and flatten everything together a little better - I also used this to flatten the mesh that I had bent trying to get out. Sometimes when handling the mesh, it was loose enough that the shape became more oval and the square gaps of the mesh became more like diamonds, but when putting them back into place, they went back to being square-shaped. This isn't the greatest picture for silhouette value, but if you look close, you can see one of the wires is out a bit. Side note: I have "rediscovered" the timer function on my camera, so maybe I can stop putting pencils in my mouth now. I figured for the painting, I could install the tips into the helmet as a place to hold them while I painted and stay there to dry. This is the first coat, wet. First coat dried. There's still not a very good consistency, so I'm going for another coat. I planned to work on the helmet while these dried, so I took the tips out to do the second coat. Once done, I rested them off to the side in the tape roll set at an angle so they wouldn't fall out. Later I upgrade to a piece of cardboard +++. I used a flat, angular tipped paintbrush and Humbrol Gloss White for this. Using the paint on the cap was enough to coat both the tips. I'll be painting the outside after this, so no precision is needed here. You can see there's paint over the edges. I expanded it to make sure I'm not leaving any more big paint lumps on the outside. Aiming to coat the entirety of the inside and along the rim edge. This is a half-and-half pic. Coat #3 applied on the left side of the picture, and the result of coat #2 on the right. Here's the result of coat #3. I used the bottlecap to keep my meshes safe while they were waiting. And hey look! I've got a little helper now! The paint is pretty decent, though it looks like it could use another coat. I decided to check out how things looked with the meshes in place before going for another coat. In place, even up close, unless you are trying to look inside, you're not going to notice the slight variation of the white, so I decided it was good enough to reinstall the meshes. This is a test fit. This is one of those original Lego stormtrooper guys that came with a head, but no face... Because, I mean... Stormtroopers are a faceless foes? But with helmet on, this guy reminds me of Gomez Addams. To get the meshes back in, I aimed to place one corner (one where there were lots of wires converging at the same point) onto the little ledge and held it in place with one finger while I poked in the other edges with my fingernail. This process took a while to narrow down because at times, the mesh would fall into the tip, or didn't want to push down past the rim, but I was eventually able to get things situated correctly. Some of this took a little bending and pushing one of the wires that was poking out too far on one side with the help of the pliers. This is one where the wire is out of place on the left one which prevented the mesh from sitting fully inside the tip. I took it out again and adjusted things. Now it's sitting correctly. Both meshes are below the rim & sitting nicely. I got smarter for the gluing and painting phase. I stuck one of the drill bits though a piece of cardboard (9/64") and screwed the mix tips in place. For the gluing here, I used some Gorilla Super Glue Gel. This has a thicker consistency than liquid super glue and allows for the use of a toothpick to apply the glue with precision. Going all the way around the edges and making sure that I don't create any little windows with the mesh (where the glue completely fills the gap). I dragged the toothpick across the top to pat down any excess glue that was poking up. Looking good. I just tested both of these after ~24 hours of cure time (inadvertently - it cures faster than that) - using a toothpick and gently trying to pull on the mesh to see if it would release, there was no movement. These guys aren't going anywhere. While the glue sets, I moved on to painting. I used the same flat, angle-tipped brush that I used for the inside. This gave me decent control and I was able to get good coverage. I rotated the tip around by spinning the screw from the bottom. This helped me hit the sides of the tip all the way around without running into the other tip. Using Humbrol 85 Satin Coal Black. Here's the right side started. And here's the end result. This was done by hand. No masking. Whenever I blipped the black paint too far up, I wiped it off with a cotton swab. If I feel like it, I can do a lil' touch up later on. From the top: Here's more of an edge-on view after they've had plenty of time to dry. Was surprised at how reflective this paint came out, but unless the lid was switched out before being shipped to me, this should be the semi-gloss.
  10. Next up, they eye lenses. The RS kit comes with a flimsy - film accurate - piece of green film for the eyes. I wanted to go with a sturdier option. I research a number of threads on what to use and a frequent suggestion was to use a welder's shield in "Shade 3.0" which is a dark green. I looked around at options on the interwebs (hadn't checked out TrooperBay yet) and I found a replacement shield on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00209I0UG/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 The image shown on Amazon is a curved faceshield and I was expecting it to arrive as such, but it came in flat in a plastic bag and with protective film on both sides: Do _not_ remove that film. Keep it in place as long as you can to help keep the quality of the finish. I stuck a piece of paper behind the eyes and traced the lines. Just a quick go around, it's going to be expanded. I drew another line to expand the area by roughly 1/4" (a compass could be used - I made a compass out of my fingers for this). I made a copy of the templates and cut them out. I moved them around a bit on the faceshield to determine the layout to make the best use of the material and here's what I found. I put the templates in place, traced their outlines, and then moved them to the next position. The shield (I assume) is the same on both sides, so it shouldn't matter what orientation the eyes are placed in. I didn't draw in the lens in the middle, so that in the - hopefully very unlikely - event that I should need a single lens after using out all the others, I can draw it on at that time. Both eye shapes fit in the spot and I ended up trimming off a bit more material from the shapes that I drew, so there's lots of room. In this layout, I've got room for 5 sets of eyes and room enough in the middle for one more. If at any point I should need to replace the lenses, I've got plenty to spare. For now, I'm only going to cut out one set. This shield cut very easily with my lexan-style scissors. I found the straight scissors did a better job for these. Once I got the lenses cut, I took another look at the trimming of the eye holes while holding the lenses in place. Another pencil-in-the-mouth pic for effect. I marked out the places all around both eyes where the material seemed to bulge out too far so that I could even up the trim lines - aiming for as flat a fit as I could manage. Looking from the inside, the mould line looks like it's a little further back and there's easy room to safely trim out more. For these edges, I used the little conical Dremel bit and hit it from both the inside and the outside. Most of the trims were made from the inside, but more final touches were made from the outside. Until I had a better fit along the curves (for both eyes all around the edges - I seem to be favouring the top of the right eye in these pictures) A little gappy, but not bad and I don't want to trim off too much more. After getting everything trimmed off and sanded out, I gave the entire bucket a bath. Soap on the outside to clean up some smudgies and water everywhere to get rid of all the tiny bits of plastic dust clinging to everything. I didn't get pics, but you can do an image search for "stormtrooper in a bath" and you'll get the idea. Here's where the Sugru came into play. This method is detailed by @justjoseph63 and I actually purchased the packets via PM here (Thanks Joseph!) Tutorial: Purchase: The packets arrived quickly, signed, and with a collector's card! (Ok, it's more of a business card, but I'm going to start a collection now XD). I did some searches into other people's experience with Sugru and at least one post said that they had difficulty getting the (flat) lenses to stick to the Sugru, so I figured I was going to need a little pressure to keep them in place while it cured. My tools: A couple of C-Clamps with blocks of wood taped to one side. Testing out the fit before I get involved with the Sugru, I put the blocks on the outside to rest against the cheek ridge and the area just above the eye. This provides a solid position that has enough structural integrity to withstand the pressure exerted by the clamps without deforming the mask (too much). Putting too much pressure on the clamps does start to bend the faceplate, so don't go too ham on this. The feet on the inside go right in the middle of the lenses, at least for vertical positioning. This forces the lens to match the curve of the faceplate. Just enough pressure to curve the lens - not so much pressure that you're deforming the faceplate. This also reduces the gaps significantly compare to holding the lenses in position by hand. Hey a picture of the left side finally, hah. Once I was happy with the setup, time to prepare the inside of the eyes. I sprayed on the plasti-dip early and through my work with the helmet so far I have found that it comes off very easily. I want a solid base to glue against, so I removed the coating around the eyes. I used a utility knife to score the coating and then I was able to easily remove a clean section all the way around both eyes. Where it didn't peel off in strips, I was able to rub it off with my thumb. One side cleaned up. You can also see the inside view of the final trim lines I have here for the eyes themselves. From the top: From the bottom: Both cleaned up. I cut out a triangle where I'd scuffed off the coating below the right eye during sanding as well as cleaning up the edges where the drill bit ate up the coating behind the right ear to give a clean area for another coat at a later time. From the top again: And the bottom: Drill went om-nom-nom to my coating. Cleaned up the edges Now we're ready to open up the Sugru. I cut off around three of the edges with scissors since tearing things doesn't always work so well. And quickly realized that I would benefit from wearing gloves to do this. Not entirely necessary, but it kept my fingers clean and made the material easy to work with. Removed from the packet - dragging the glue along the inside of the packet worked well to pick up the bits that clung. Then rolling it into a snake. Ruler for reference as it was advised not to roll this any longer than 7 inches. If you roll it out too long, you can squish it back down a little length-wise to make it thicker and roll it back to even it out along the length. Then squished it into place, leaving a gap at the top for anti-fog purposes. One note: When I was working with it, I found the Sugru kept wanting to peel away from the eye-rim when trying to press it against the lens. For the other side, I pressed the material to the rim with a little more force and squishing it down a little more. That film protected the lens up until now, but it's going to get in my way, so time to go. Remove the film from the outer-facing side of the lens. Do _not_ remove from the inside yet! I then used the round end of the craft stick provided to press the material into place against the lens on the inside. This is where the material kept wanting to come away from the eye-rim, so I put the clamp on and used the craft stick to squish it back into place against both the lens and the rim. After this was done, checking the outside, there's some cleanup to do. I used the cut end of the craft stick to scrape it away - and it gave no resistance. I should have tried to move the stick along the rim of the plastic rather than along the lens, as dragging it along the lens cause a little scuffing (maybe it can be buffed out? Still, it's not bad as it is). Overall, not much squished out onto the lens. I also made the use of a good handful of cotton-swabs to remove excess material from the outer lens side. Rub a bit away, then rotate to a clean section of the swab so I wasn't rubbing the glue into the lens. Same deal for the right eye, though this one I squished the material into the rim a little more for starters There was still a fair gap on the inner corner of the eyes that I didn't like, so I improvised a couple more clamps into place to pin those into place as well. My bar clamps don't have much reach, so I had to find something sturdy, flat, and kinda thin. Turns out a couple of packs of gum fit the bill. I was able to get the right amount of pressure in the right way by placing the packs of gum on the inside to give a flat surface to extend the bar clamps' reach with the outside feet pressing against the brow line above the eyes which again had enough structural integrity to withstand the pressure without deforming the faceplate. This got the inner corners pressed flat into place. For both sides. If you look closely, you can see that minty-fresh clampy-helper goodness at work, haha. And the final resting position while I wait the 24 hours for this to cure. *does the Time Warp again* 24 hours later, the clamps come off. Overall, good results. The left eye is a little off center, but it's not visible, so it doesn't matter. If I were to do this again, I would remove more material from the lenses. It was a little difficult getting the craft stick in underneath certain angles, especially around the tears. I ended up releasing the clamps a bit while in the process so I could press it in place before clamping it back down. I'm keeping the protective film on the inside until I get closer to completion. Certainly leaving it on until after I re-coat the white bits. The curvature is holding very nicely and these lenses aren't going anywhere. If anything, the sections for the air gaps could be expanded, but I'll wait to do some test runs (or just leave it alone) until it seems like it would be beneficial. Here's some of the slight scuffing I caused by trying to remove the excess with the stick pointed against the lenses: We're getting close to riveting the faceplate in position. (Though it looks like I could technically get away with just having it screwed in place since all these bits will be hidden. I'm debating it.) And we're getting REAL close to starting the paint job on this bucket. I got some goodies from TrooperBay, right now, mainly the Satin Coal Black. Also got a set of snaps (I may revamp the internal strapping to either include these alongside, or replace the original strapping method - but that's for later), some zap-a-gap and zip kicker (though I don't have any direct intent to use these at this time), and a helmet liner. The foam padding star is lovely and all, but I figure a proper liner will allow for better control of helmet movements as well as allowing for a more precise fit. I still have yet to determine how I will be going about attaching that. I've already started with painting the Hovi tips, but that will be another post.
  11. Part 3: End results I sanded off all the rough edges with some drywall sandpaper. I was able to use the edge of the counter to assist in getting those curves. Ear caps final trimmed and sanded I thinned out the ends slightly by sanding the inside to aim for a tighter fit at the bottoms. And the end product:
  12. Part 2! The right side: 01: Starting Point: The ear caps arrived completely untrimmed. This is after initial trimming. 02: On this side, I drilled the holes to install the earcap into place after just one modest trim to get rid of the hard corners. These pictures are actually from after the holes were drilled. 02: 01: 02: 02: Back, the curve actually looked relatively decent, but I mess it up anyway. 03: Holding the ear cap in position, lining up with the lower hole that I already have drilled in the cap, there’s still a bit of material that needs to be removed from the cap. 04: We skip step 4 on this side since I got the ear screwed in place earlier on. 05: For this earcap I wanted to make sure that it covered the bump on the faceplate from the original RS hole location. 05: Lining up the ear again, on this side I decided to go with the bottom hole that I already had drilled in the cap below. Focusing on the rotation of the ear bump on this side for the angle of the earcap. 6: I drilled out the hole in the earcap to expand it from 1/8" to 9/64". This hole I used the drill. 06: 07: Drilling out the hole through the cap into the faceplate. 08: Countersinking the holes in the earcap. Using my finger to plug the hole so the drill could’t go too deep and rotating a 1/4" drill bit _by hand_. 08: 08: 08: 09: Screwing the earcap in place. 09: As a note: with one screw in, I was able to rotate the earcap in place to get it lined up to the correct angle. Here you can see I’ve lined it up with the upper hole that I drilled in the cap below. The angle doesn’t look good in the position. The ear bump is too parallel to the brow. 10: I drilled through the upper hole, then removed the ear once it had punched through the cap since the drill kept wanting to jump into the existing hole location. Drilling through the faceplate. 10: I ran into an issue with the plasti-dip coating on this side. Maybe my drill wasn’t sharp enough anymore, but the drill grabbed the coating and spun it up after punching through. 10: I backed up the drill to the point where it wanted to start wrapping it around in the other direction 10: Then used a utility blade to cut off the trapped coating. I was able to remove the coating from the drill and pull it back out again. 10: 10: Aaaand then screwing it in place. 11: Skipping step 11 as well since I got the bottom screw in place before additional trimming. 12: The existing bottom holes again lined up very close to the proper location for the bottom screw. 12: Removed the bottom screw and stuck a drill bit through the existing holes, I pressed the ear in place and twisted the drill bit by hand to mark the ear for drilling. Initially I tried to do this with a pencil which yielded very poor results. Drill bit worked much better to keep the holes aligned and provided a solid point to mark the hole to be drilled. Drill mark visible on the inside. 12: Drilling it out from the inside with a small drill (7/64" to start it) 12: Using the 9/64" drill bit by hand to expand the hole out and put the screw back in after. 13: Step 13 turned into the main trimming step. Marking the circular upper part of the ear since it seemed the only real way to reduce the gap here was to reduce the height. After the initial cleanup of the edge with the big gap, I made no additional trims to that area. 13: Kinda looks like I should have left it here, but I kept going. 13: 13: 13: Final trim before sanding (This one may look worse, but it's more likely due to the angle of the picture. 13: 13: 13: 13: 13: Final trim before sanding.
  13. Let's keep going! Now that the faceplate is in place, we can work on those ears... Get ready for some gappiness. Three-Parter! Two main points: 1. I wish I had not trimmed the ears as much to begin with. 2. I wish I had screwed the ear caps in place earlier while I was in the trimming process. I started on the left side. This was the side that fit better to begin with, so I figured this would be a good side to get the hang of things before tackling the right side. I trimmed out the ear caps with what I thought was plenty of excess. Turns out, took a little bit too much off (for the right side at least). And I could have gone easier on the trimming in the process. But gaps are accurate, so it's ok! This is a lot of back and forth, so get ready for lots-o-pics. Note: The initial pencil lines visible are those that were drawn on by RS Prop Masters, all the way to current state. For the purposes of this thread, I’ll show this one side at a time for the most part. Though in practice, I switched between front and back and between the sides at different points. Trim process: 1. Put earcap in place (initially by hand, eventually screwed in place) 2. Mark points to be trimmed by visual / dragging my fingernail in between the cap/face and the ear to feel where the ear was pressed firmly in place (can be done with a piece of paper if a fingernail won't do). 3. Remove the earcap (in the later steps, this meant unscrewing all 3 screws.) 4. Use a cylindrical sanding bit with my Dremel to remove the marked areas. 5. REPEAT TILL CRY. The entire thing, including all the stops to take pictures and bathroom breaks, took roughly 7 and a half hours to complete both ears. Left Side: 01: Starting Point: The ear caps arrived completely untrimmed. This is after initial trimming. 02: Initially I started out just trimming out bits by squishing the ear cap in place and eyeballing it since I figured there was a way to go. 03: Holding the ear cap in position, lining up the upper hole that I already have drilled in the cap, there’s still a bit of material that needs to be removed from the cap. 03: 04: After trimming out the excess on the cap, I started marking pencil lines where the curve of the ear was touching the cap. Still just using my hand to squish the ear in place. When you've got one hand holding the part, and one hand holding the camera, your mouth becomes the third hand, haha. This picture is to illustrate marking the trim areas. 04: 04: 01: 02: 04: 04: 04: 04: 04: 04: I should have stopped here! 04: Now it's too much. 05: It reached the point where I wanted to get the earcap attached so I would know its final positioning. Lining up the ear again, on this side I decided to go with the top hole that I already had drilled in the cap below. 6: I drilled out the hole in the earcap to expand it from 1/8" to 9/64". This I was able to do by hand with the drill bit. 07: Drilling out the hole through the cap into the faceplate. 08: Countersinking the holes in the earcap. I started with a 3/8" drill bit, but ran into an issue with this particular bit having cut outs in the tip that may be useful for other things, but caused an uneven countersink with a dig line. 08: 08: 08: Not terribly visible at this angle, but still there. 08: After that, I switched to a 1/4" drill without cutouts. 09: Screwing the earcap in place. At an angle, I was still able to see the second hole underneath, but it does not line up directly with the hole in the cap 09: As a note: with one screw in, I was able to rotate the earcap in place to get it lined up to the correct angle. (Not this angle) 10: Holding position to keep the ear in place while I drilled out the lower hole to size. Released the upper screw a bit to countersink. Drilling through the cap and faceplate. Then screwing it in place. 10: 10: 11: A little more trimming after the top two screws were in place. 11: 12: Removed the bottom screw and stuck a drill bit through the existing holes, I pressed the ear in place and twisted the drill bit by hand to mark the ear for drilling. Initially I tried to do this with a pencil which yielded very poor results. Drill bit worked much better to keep the holes aligned and provided a solid point to mark the hole to be drilled. 12: The drill mark on the inside lined up rather well with the RS hole location. 12: Drilled out and lined up. I drilled it a little small to begin with and widened the hole with the bit by hand. 12: and screwed in place. 12: the gaaaaps 13: Marking the circular upper part of the ear since it seemed the only real way to reduce the gap here was to reduce the height. 13: 13: This is one of the final trims before I did the final sanding to smooth out the edges. 12: 13: Gap actually looks a little bigger after the trim. 14: I popped on the S Trim to see how it lies with the end of the earcap. 14: And trimmed it down to the line that RS had marked.
  14. After deciding the faceplate positioning and getting magnets in place in the traps and just under the rivet locations, I was ready to drill the holes for the rivets. Here’s where the ear caps come back into play & time to decide their positioning a bit as well. In order to determine the position of the lower rivets, I needed to know where the bottom of each ear cap would fall. I decided that the holes in the caps here were safe to drill out since those definitely won’t change. I was also aiming to line up these holes with the holes I had already drilled in the cap. Marking the holes with pencil. These were already marked when received, but I remarked the positioning. These are aligned with the divots in the cast with slight deviation to get the upper hole on the left cap just a little closer to center and a little closer to the ear bump. I didn’t think it would have been reasonable to deviate from that positioning too much since doing so would leave a visible divot out of place. The screw heads get countersunk and painted white, so they kinda fade into the background... As a side note here, I looked around a bit at screw positioning and it seems to vary a lot from being roughly straight up and down kind of in a perpendicular line to the ear bump, as it looks for the right ear cap here, and the screws being at more of an angle to line up with the trap line, as it appears to be for the left ear cap... so screw positioning seems to be up to you for the most part: Drilled out, Swapped sides just to confuse you! And a close up on that left ear cap. These will be countersunk before being finalized, so the curve of the divot will kind of slope into that: Ear Screws – Correct drill size 3.5mm or 9/64” (maybe? - I started with 1/8” but they’re quite tight. I may drill these up a size): Putting a screw in place, it is indeed a tight fit. At this size, it does best to screw this in with a driver (non-powered), as opposed to by thumb and forefinger. This leaves thread marks in the hole. So using the holes drilled in the caps and trying to line up to the holes that I drilled in the caps, here’s where those hole alignments may lead you astray again... Wrong: Right side. As an example of poor placement. This is WRONG, lol. Tilted forward. No-no-no-no-no-no... Wrong: Here’s another angle that is also wrong, though it doesn’t look as bad. The positioning is too straight up and down. This is actually where the holes line up on this side. You can see the top hole lining up in the picture, but the due to the angle of the camera, you can’t see it, but it is lined up under there: Optimal: A lot of the times I see the tilt of the ear caps being referred to as being in a line with the end of the trap. What I found to help me out was looking at the original helmets and seeing that the ear bumps are not parallel with the brow trim. The ear bumps are tilted forward, down in the front slightly. This is the optimal alignment. For this picture and the general alignment of the cap, I lined it up with the lower hole. The upper hole no longer aligns with the divots in the cap underneath, so a new hole will be drilled through when it comes time. Over here on the left side, it’s a different story. Here the holes are lined up and the angle of the ear bump already looks good. With the ear caps held in position, I marked the bottom of the helmet roughly in the middle of the space where the ear caps end at the bottom. The faceplate was locked in position with the magnets on, so no issues with positional changing when handling the helmet to drill the holes. Rivets – Correct drill size = 4mm or 5/32” (Maybe? I ended up drilling these at 9/64". This ended up being a good size for the screws, but attempting to push a rivet through yielded no luck - some could, some couldn't. Probably too tight.) I started with the left side since this side fits more easily together. Marking my spots. Doesn’t matter really where these go since they will be covered by the caps. Left side - On this side, I actually drilled the lower hole first since its position was restricted somewhat by the available space to drill into on the cap. This hole got pushed to the back side from the midpoint of the ear cap bottom. Gripped the tubes together for an easy fit while drilling: Note: All magnets were left in place until all holes were drilled and with screws in. And the grip to drill the upper hole, grabbing through the eye hole to pinch both the cap and the faceplate together. If you have any hesitation in your drilling, you still have time in between the drill going through the cap before it goes through to the faceplate. I drilled it straight through both layers. Right side: Marked and gripped through the eye: For the lower hole, screws have been placed in all holes, gripping the tubes together at the peak of their arcs gives a good fit. The pencil mark isn’t visible, but the hole ended up getting nestled right into the little scoop in the plastic there. After getting all the holes drilled and temp screws tightened in place it was time to check out the ear cap placement and check for areas that needed additional trimming. Left side still looking good, but there is some of the cap visible on the faceplate side. Getting the ear in position, marked the cap with pencil along the curvature. These ear caps are going to get trimmed a little tighter as well, so these lines will need to be cut in further than the pencil line. Right side – lots to trim off over here: Look Ma! No more magnets!
  15. And the second thing that was stopping me: I wasn’t sure what size to drill the holes at. This is the easier one: I have seen 3mm & 4mm and for whatever reason, the less popular “standard” measurements seemed to elude me. Not wanting to rely directly on sizes that were stated without knowing what hardware was being used, eventually I smartened up and researched what drill bits to use based on the hardware you’re drilling for, and for just about everything but wood, you drill it to size. What I don’t yet know, I am more than willing to learn and fold into my repertoire. I am sorely tempted to go buy some calipers so I can have a more exact way of measuring things, but until then, I can compare the drills to the hardware by eye and go with that (pictures are your friend when it comes to this. Builder’s note: Do you have poor eyesight? Do you have a camera? You can take a picture of things and then go look at the picture to make judgments when your eyes may deceive you. Pictures allow you to zoom in to a much greater extent than what your eyes are capable as well as sometimes offering visual guides in the frame to help with straight-line features, etc. Big building point here: Don’t be afraid to take pictures - & - Take a lot of pictures. It doesn’t matter if it’s going to be posted or anything, take pictures. You can use pictures to review what you are doing in a more objective sort of manner to make more informed decisions. Feeling iffy about something: take a picture. Wanna know if that one bit lines up with that other bit: take a picture. I think you get the picture ; ) Ok, I’ll stop, lol I did a little mathing and came out with the following conversions: 2mm == 0.08” =~ 0.0781” == 5/64” 2.5mm == 0.10” =~ 0.1094” == 7/64” 3mm == 0.12” =~ 0.1250” == 1/8” 3.5mm == 0.14” =~ 0.1406” == 9/64” 4mm == 0.16” =~ 0.1563” == 5/32” As a side note: You can drill it up by 1/64th” size if you’re not sure, and you should still have a good fit. If you’re really unsure, you can drill test holes in spare pieces to determine the size that works best. I didn’t think about this until after, but it is an option. Hovi-mix Tips – Correct size 3mm or 1/8” (tight fit. For my purposes, tight means you have to rotate it to screw/unscrew the hardware as opposed to it just sliding in without friction - I may have widened these out to 9/64" eventually): Picture comparison: 2.5mm ~ 7/64” - you can easily see the threads on both sides = too small Picture comparison: 3mm ~ 1/8” – Resting the mix tip screw against my drill and holding the drill bit in line. The threads are visible on both sides again here. This is a tight fit for the screws. Holes marked for drilling at existing divot locations - These guys you can do any time. There's only one place for them, so no waffling: Right side hole drilled. Zooming in, you can see a slight crack at the bottom. I may need to do some reinforcing here as the plastic is very thin. And the obligatory “test the fit pic”. I did a number of test fittings like this including putting on the “S” trim and testing fit size comparing the differing faceplate positioning.
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