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501st Stormtrooper[TK]
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    Naast MMCC, GA Garrison 501st

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  1. Plainsrunner, you hit on the point I was trying to make in the previous post. I permanently closed off the front side of the legs and arms and used Velcro to close the back seam and this has caused stress cracks. My suggestion was to experiment and see if its possible to keep the two halves of the armor separate and close both the front and back with Velcro. I can not do this since I have already welded the two halves together on the front seam on my armor but you or others can try the suggested method and see if it works before going the route I did. Before we get started I wanted to add some helpful information. I recommend you use a hot glue gun when folding the webbing before stitching. Also, I recommend you use a soldering iron to melt the holes in the webbing for the snaps. First, I need to cover a few quick notes. I do not know what level of sewing you (the reader) have so lets hit some basics. Start and end all stiches with a lock stitch. That is when you run a line for 3-5 stitches then reverse over the 3-5 stitches, then resume the stitch going back over the 3-5 stitches. All sewing machines have a reverse level or button, and this is what it is meant for. This ensures the stitch is locked in place and will not pull out. Next, when possible (meaning if you have the available area) do a box stitch. This is where you stitch a rectangle then two crisscross stitches in the center. In the pictures below, look at how I sewed the Velcro, that is a box stitch. Lastly, the 4 part #24 snaps can be a bit confusing if you have not worked with them before. In the picture above from left to right you can see the 1-cap, 2-socket, 3-eyelet, 4-stud. To the left of these 4 parts is a cap and socket correctly assembled but not struck, and right of that is a eyelet and stud correctly assembled but not struck. It is entirely possible to mix these up and assemble the snap incorrectly. Also, note below the snaps are the two tool you will need the two sided anvil (seen here with the cap side up) and the punch. The next picture shows the anvil with the eyelet side up. Ok, so today I will try to explain how I made the two primary shoulder straps for the abdominal armor and the two back straps that close-up the abdominal armor. The sole purpose of the shoulder straps are to support the abdominal armor. On my armor I made these straps out of 1” wide nylon webbing but in this tutorial, I recommend you use 1.5” wide nylon webbing. I honestly do not know if it will make a difference, but I believe it would be more comfortable. My 1” straps are not uncomfortable but if I am doing this again, may as well do it right. If you do your strapping like I did you will end up having three sets of straps on your shoulders. Base layer is the straps I will demonstrate today. The next layer is the shoulder straps that connect the chest and back armor and support the shoulders. The top layer is the exposed shoulder straps that come with the armor and are made of fiberglass or the urethane rubber straps I make. If you look at the list above, you see we will need the following for the Abdominal shoulder straps: Quantity Length Width Use 2 31” 1.5” Nylon Webbing Abdominal Shoulder Straps 2 #24 4 part snaps Abdominal Shoulder Straps 2 1.5” Plastic loop Abdominal Shoulder Straps 2 4” 1.5” Velcro (both sides) Abdominal Shoulder Straps 2 5” 1.5” Nylon Webbing Abdominal Shoulder Straps After cutting all the materials this is what I have. Note: I did not have any black plastic loops in 1.5” so they are green in this picture. Next, I fold the two 5”x 1.5” nylon straps over one end of the plastic loop and use hot glue to hold the nylon closed. Also, I expose the sticky back of the Velcro and apply a 3” hard piece at the end of the 31”x1.5 nylon webbing. I space (the white chalk X) 1” then apply the 4” soft Velcro. Next I sew the Velcro on the 31” straps using a box stitch. I sew the 5” strips closed; however, I do not use a box stitch because we will be punching a hole inside the sewn rectangle for the snap. Next using soldering iron, I melt holes in the 5” nylon webbing. Next I mount the cap and socket set of snaps to the 5” straps. I use a drill to make the holes in the armor and mount the eyelet and stud set of snaps. You will want to be careful to not crack the armor when doing this. I placed the armor around a board I suspended with a vice and hammered the eyelet/stud set closed. The two holes for these snaps need to be on the front of the armor close to where I have them in the first picture of this thread (my armor hanging). Next, I run the 31” straps through the loops and you should have two assembled straps like this. The Velcro we sewed on the front end of the 31” straps allows me to adjust the straps a few inches to get the best fit. The back end of the 31” straps are adhered to the inside of the abdominal armor along the back opening. How you adhere the straps is up to you and you should test fit them and cut any unneeded length of the 31” straps from the back end before finalizing how you mount them. Once the back end of the straps are adhered to the armor, the front side should snap like this. The straps should crisscross in the back. So I hope that was somewhat clear… Next, we will make the two straps that close-up the back of the abdominal. For these straps you will need the following: Quantity Length Width Use 2 7” 5/8” Nylon Webbing Abdominal Back Closure 2 5” 5/8” Nylon Webbing Abdominal Back Closure 2 5/8” Plastic side release buckles After everything is cut you should have a set of parts like in the top of this picture. The bottom strap is a completed strap. There are two sides for plastic side release buckles and some buckles are slightly curved to fit a contour. These 5/8” buckles are curved so how I sew them is important but most of the time any logo or residue mold marks are on the back side. I wrap the 5”x5/8” strap around the female side of the buckle and fold it in half. Again, I use hot glue to hold the webbing closed for easy stitching. On the 7” strap I fold one end twice and run a stitch the width of it. This creates a finger hold to better tighten the strap down and it also prevents the strap from coming out of the male end of the buckle. Note how the strap is threaded. If you thread it incorrectly it will not hold tight when you cinch it down. These two straps are mounted to the inside back of the abdominal armor and should look like this. I made sure I could reach behind and access them so I could put my armor on and take it off myself but it does make life easier if you have someone help you put the armor on. How you adhere these two straps inside the armor is up to you. I permanently adhered these straps and given how tight I cinch these straps, I do not recommend using Velcro. Since the back plate covers this area, you could consider rivets but I felt that would stress the fiberglass. I used PC-7 putty to adhere my straps. See my build for more details on the PC-7 method. Well, I hope this is a good start. Please let me know if this tutorial is unclear or requires more detailed pictures, etc… I have more webbing and Velcro on order so it will be next week before I continue this. As always, thanks for the interest.
  2. Oh my.... thanks for the plug and wow you guys are doing 7 kits! I just want to through out that if yall get asked to do some stand in roles for Season 2 of the Mandalorian or any other SW projects, yall need to reach out to me so I can take time off, fly in to CA, and stay with one of yall to participate. Best of luck on the builds.
  3. I have started a new thread in the in the Rogue One builds as a tutorial on how I strapped my ROTK here:
  4. Because I have been asked numerous questions about how I did my strapping, I am making this tutorial on how I strapped my ROTK. First, you need to decide on two things before you do anything with your kit. 1. Do you plan on lining the inside of the armor? I chose to line the inside of my armor with flex seal liquid white that was applied with a paint brush. The decision to line the inside of the armor was made for two reasons. One was that the armor is fiberglass and was very abrasive on the inside. The second reason was because I paid for the under-suit and wanted to prolong it wearing out. 2. How do you plan on attaching the strapping? In most places I adhered the straps to the armor with PC-7 putty. Normal TKs adhere their strapping with Velcro. I was not comfortable with how well this would work so I went with a permanent PC-7. The Velcro may work just fine; however, I cannot attest to this. So, if you plan on lining the inside of the armor, you will want to mask any area you plan on applying Velcro because the Velcro will not stick to the flex seal and removing the flex seal is damn hard. It embeds into the fiberglass and even after sanding and using chemicals, it still was not receptive to apply Velcro. This should also be considered when you are planning out the Velcro to hold the leg and arms pieces closed. While I am talking about this, I would like to suggest that you attempt to use Velcro on the front and back of the lower leg armor. I did not do this, instead I permanently closed the front side of the leg armor and used Velcro for the back and this has caused stress on the leg armor when putting it on and taking it off. This has led to cracks. If I get around to ordering another set of RO armor, I will try to close the legs on the front and back with Velcro, so just a suggestion. I digress… so once you know if you are lining the armor and what attachment method you will go with you will need the following: Note: everything is black unless noted and all Velcro is 3M industrial sticky back Velcro except the drop box Velcro, its 1” “sewn on” Velcro with no backing. Quantity Length Width Use 2 31” 1.5” Nylon Webbing Abdominal Shoulder Straps 2 #24 4 part snaps Abdominal Shoulder Straps 2 1.5” Plastic loop Abdominal Shoulder Straps 2 4” 1.5” Velcro (both sides) Abdominal Shoulder Straps 2 5” 1.5” Nylon Webbing Abdominal Shoulder Straps 2 7” 5/8” Nylon Webbing Abdominal Back Closure 2 5” 5/8” Nylon Webbing Abdominal Back Closure 2 5/8” Plastic side release buckles 2 6” 1” Nylon Webbing Abdominal connecting Posterior Armor 4 #24 4 part snaps Abdominal connecting Posterior Armor 2 5” 1” Nylon Webbing Abdominal connecting Posterior Armor 2 1.5” 1” Velcro both sides Abdominal connecting Posterior Armor 3 5” 1” Nylon Webbing Abdominal connecting Cod Armor 6 #24 4 part snaps Abdominal connecting Cod Armor 1 5” 1” Nylon Webbing Connecting Cod to Posterior 1 11” 1” Elastic Webbing Connecting Cod to Posterior 1 #24 4 part snaps Connecting Cod to Posterior 2 12” 1” Nylon Webbing Abdominal to Legs 2 6” 1” Nylon Webbing Abdominal to Legs 2 1” Plastic side release buckles Abdominal to Legs 2 2.5” 1” Elastic Webbing retention loops Abdominal to Legs 2 15” 2” Elastic Webbing Shoulder straps for chest to back armor 2 10” 2” Velcro hard side Shoulder straps for chest to back armor 4 #24 4 part snaps Shoulder straps for chest to back armor 2 3” 1” Elastic Webbing shoulder armor to shoulder straps 2 #24 4 part snaps shoulder armor to shoulder straps 2 5” 1” Elastic Webbing Shoulder Armor to Bicep Armor 4 #24 4 part snaps shoulder armor to bicep armor 2 6” 1” “Sewn on” soft Velcro drop boxes to box belt 2 6” 2” Velcro hard side drop boxes to box belt So all of these parts considered, this is your shopping list: Quantity Length Width Description 1 72” 1.5” Black Nylon Webbing 1 24” 5/8” Black Nylon Webbing 1 78” 1” Black Nylon Webbing 1 32” 1” Black Elastic Webbing 1 30” 2” Heavy Duty Black Elastic Webbing 23 #24 4 part snaps 2 5/8” Black plastic side release buckles 2 1” Black plastic side release buckles 2 1” Black plastic loops 1 box 15’ 2” Black Industrial Strength sticky back Velcro 1 12” 1” Sew on black Velcro In addition to these materials you will also need the following: Sewing machine (preferably an industrial machine but most of this stuff can be sewn with a standard sewing machine). Black bonded nylon thread, I use #69 bonded nylon thread, but I also have an industrial machine, if you are using a standard sewing machine just get some black nylon thread general purpose. Webbing hot knife/ cutter. You can just cut the webbing with a box cutter or scissors and the melt the end with a lighter but this can be tedious if you are cutting a lot of webbing. I use a hot cutter like this one for $74.99 https://www.ebay.com/itm/Electric-Rope-Cutter-For-Paracord-Cord-Webbing-Belting-and-Blade-/293128089661 Snap setting tool and a hammer. You will need the anvil and the punch set. The anvil should be double sided to accommodate the cap and the eyelet. I recommend this tool set found on Amazon. https://www.amazon.com/Snap-Setting-Snaps-Vaughan-Bros/dp/B074HKBBW1 Most of these materials can be found at Joann’s or a similar craft stores but I would suggest that you purchase these materials from Amazon or webbing supply stores. On amazon you can order smaller rolls of webbing like 10’ in length; however, most webbing supply stores will require you to purchase full rolls which are often 1,000 yards and quite costly. Additionally, you can use polypropylene webbing instead of nylon webbing which is often cheaper but does not have the abrasion and strength of nylon webbing. Ok so that is the list of materials and tools needed. In my next update, I will cut and assemble the straps and show where they go and what they do. Thanks for the interest.
  5. Well since California Garrison is doing a rather large ROTK build, I guess I will knock out that overview of the suspender system. Stay tuned guys...
  6. RascalKing, I made the harness myself out of 1" nylon webbing and some 2" elastic. Kind of made it up as I went along. If I had it to do over, I think I would have gone with 1.5" or 2" webbing but the 1" is what I had on hand at the time. As time permits I may do a more detailed breakdown of the suspender system.
  7. Fro the armor I used Automotive primer, paint, and clear coat. I shot it all with HVLP gun. the color I used was Ford Frozen White. See page four of my build here:
  8. Tsongololo, I just messaged with Kevin Merritt from 850 AW. I have a set on standby, i need to pay the ballance and i plan on doing that after DragonCon this year. I would recommend you message him on FB. He seems quite responsive and they are now forming in white ABS which is awesome news. The pulls he posted on the Star Wars Rogue One TK Stormtrooper Page on FB look great.
  9. BTW Yosh, what did the shins cost from AW?
  10. Great job on the black series helmet. I have one waiting on my second set of RO TK armor to build and sandy but I am skeptical about 850 AW ever getting the armor done.
  11. Damn, I am off the forum for a few months and look at what you have gotten into. Awesome job on the new shins, I am still waiting on 850 to get me my ab plate and belt box. Anyword on when they will have the TK available?
  12. Update, Ok so I was concerned that the Sentra that I chose to use for the base of the shoulder strap master mold would be too porous so I made the base from ¼ thick plexiglass and used the styrene half rounds. Once I had this completed I made the mold. Once the mold was cured, I sprayed it down with release agent and molded another set of shoulder straps. The results were the same, the cured rubber was not smooth and was pitted. So, I cleaned the mold and made another set without the release agent and man did that make a huge difference. So at this point these are as good as I can get them until I can find a supplier that produces ¼” half round plexiglass or acrylic rods at a decent price. Here are the pics: If you are interested in a set, I have created a sale thread here: As always, thanks for the interest.
  13. Outstanding, I was considering making my own vacuum formed kit but getting the smooth both side ABS is way too expensive for me. I noticed that I forgot to mention that 1 4'x8' sheet will produce (roughly) 1 set of ANH TK armor. As for the ROTK armor, I was able to snag a black series RO helmet off Amazon for $49.00 last year. I plan on modifying it for a ABS armor build once I get the armor. I plan on keeping my Jimmy kit shinny white but the ABS will get weathered. Also, for anyone who does not know, I have made some urethane rubber shoulder straps to replace the fiberglass ones since they cracked last year. I am still perfecting the process but once they are ready for prime time, I will make them available to whomever wants them. More details in my ROTK build thread here on FISD. Not really looking to make money or push sales in anyway, they will go for cost basically and I just wanted to make them available to all who want them.
  14. Imperial Valour, you may want to message 850 Armor Works and HSP to get a time frame on when these will be available. I paid for a chest plate and ammo belt with 850 last year before DragonCon and have still not received them. When I contact them they say they are still working on the bucks. They have offered to refund me but I am fine to wait. However, I still have no idea when (if ever) I will see my parts. I do not think anyone has done a comparison between the flexible fiberglass and the ABS. I will say that I have vacuum formed Mandalorian armor in both ABS and HIPS. Comparing the three materials, the ABS seems the most resilient. In my experience, the flexible fiberglass will crack at stress points if it is flexed often (like putting it on and taking it off). Additionally, since the fiberglass must be painted, the paint can crack when flexed as well. I used automotive paint so that is not a huge issue with me but I would think that spray paint would crack when flexed. ABS vs HIPS. Originally the standard TK was formed with HIPS (I believe); however, many formers are now using ABS because of the cost. For example, a 4’x8’ sheet of 1/8” thick (.125) HIPS is $55.60, where a 4’x8’ sheet of 1/8” thick (.125) ABS is $35.20 from my supplier (Calsak Plastics). However, the ABS is not smooth on both sides. One side has a hammered finish (textured like a truck bed liner) and even if I form the armor with the smooth side up, the detail of the texture side comes through. This can be sanded but it would take a lot of work to make a TK kit with this textured stuff. Calsak can order both side smooth Abs but you must purchase a whole pallet of 100 sheets for this and that is a lot of cash. I know 850 is using the smooth both side ABS so their armor should be good to go. Another down side of the ABS is that it is mostly available in black. HIPS is glossy white and therefore no need to paint but most ABS armor will need to be painted. Using Abs for Mando armor is not an issue since we mark up most of our kits to look extensively battle worn so the texture is more of a benefit than a hindrance. The last Mando kit I built I used a combination of Abs and Sentra. Sentra is a not a vacuum forming plastic, but you can shape it with a heat gun, so for Mandalorian armor it is idea and I have been very impressed with it. Hope this helps. Ukswrath, agreed, I prefer ABS for vacuum forming.
  15. Thanks Yoshix. Ok so a little update on the shoulder straps. After pondering options other than Velcro for attaching the shoulder straps to the breast plate, I came up with several possible methods. I considered everything from snaps to a hook latch but nothing really jumped out to me, then out of the blue I came up with the simplest idea of them all, a simple pocket. So I took some left over HIPS about 1/8” thick and cut two small pieces to fit the area behind the raised portion of the chest plate. I had filled this area with PC-7 originally to provide an angled surface for Velcro so I needed to mill all the PC-7 out and reduce everything back to the way the chest plate came. Next, I used Bison contact cement to attach the HIPS. Once the Bison cured, I blended the outside of HIPS with the inside of the back plate with PC-7 and let is cure. After the PC-7 cured, I painted it white and added the Velcro that holds the black elastic shoulder straps that run from the back plate to the chest plate. Next, I did a test fit of the shoulder straps and the are perfect. The only thing that holds them in the pocket is friction; however, the pocket is about 5/8” deep so I do not think they will come out hen wearing them. So, I feel this has solved the attachment to the breast plate. I am working on building the new master bucks to cast. Once they are done, I will make a silicone mold then cast some new shoulder straps. Thanks for the interest.
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