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Easy

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  1. Stormtrooper Store is basically selling FX type armour. The boots are good, the soft pieces are generally good, much of the armour is good enough to work into acceptable 501st standards. The armour is very thick, which I like but it needs too much work to meet CRL standards. That being said, I’m considering some of the special ops trooper designations that currently have no CRL outline that some aspects of this armour might be well suited for based on the ‘flaws’ in the FX design. I have a kit and will be modifying it and submitting for a new CRL guideline for an elite division.
  2. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    In this section I’ll be putting the snaps and rivets in the AB plate. The famous Han snap. 20mm x 20mm. Left side river locations marked at 10mm in then 20mm, 52mm and 53mm from the top down. I’m making some support strips to strengthen the area where the left side rivets go. Two of the four strips are marked, 140mm x 20mm. Two equal strips sanded smooth. I set one strip trip in place, evenly spaced at either end past the holes, and marked it for drilling. I stacked the four strips, two shown here, and drilled them all together. I’m cutting the elastic strapping long enough to reach across the two strips that will be glued to the plates. Using my soldering iron I made holes in the elastic straps for the rivets. The strap holes are slightly closer together than the holes in the armour will be. This will keep a slight stretch on them and keep the plates together better. Using the rivets I set the strip in place with E6000 and clamped it to cure. Here is one of the other drilled strips with spacers. It’s a cover strip. These will be glued on so that the elastic strap will fit in between them where the marks are. The spacers are made from some of the trimmed off ABS and are about the same thickness as ther straps. You can see here how the straps fit in. These will sandwich the straps and add even more strength. This is a known weak area prone to cracking or breaking from the stresses of normal use, trooping. I designed this to carry the load without stressing the armour. Once the glue is cured on all the pieces I’ll set the straps in, glue the cover strip on, hammer the rivets in and clamp it to cure.
  3. I’m building my AM kit now. It’s fantastic stuff. Victor Matts is the guy to contact if you want a great kit. I’m doing a detailed build thread here if you care to see how nice this armour really is. It’s very reasonably priced and comes with a couple extra parts for other versions to choose from. This is my thread. https://www.whitearmor.net/forum/topic/46165-anh-stunt-build/
  4. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    I’ve see quite a few methods for latching the right side AB to kidney plates. Nylon straps, elastic straps, special brackets and hooks and so on. I’m trying something new…at least to me because I haven’t seen it yet. I’m using the same system as I did on the shin latches, magnets. Here is the thre parts that will be attached to the kidney plate. I made an ABS strap with a hole to fit the magnet in and a cover plate to glue the magnet into. The magnet is thicker than the ABS strap so it sticks out a bit. This is perfect because it will sit in the saddle piece that will be glued into the AB plate. Some E6000 and clamps to assemble it, and two more to go. All set, ready for some light sanding to smooth it out. I don’t want it snagging the undersuit. I used two ABS plates for the saddles. Here you can see how the saddle is taller than the magnet. The strap magnet will sit in the saddle effectively locking it in place while you wear it, same as the shins. Here is the three straps with the saddles glued and predrilled. I used the step drill bit to drill out the saddles. They will be sanded smoothe and the strap side of the saddle will be tapered to make it easier to feed the straps into them. The straps are smoothed out a bit already.
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    ANH STUNT BUILD

    I’m making the snap plates that will attach the white elastic straps to the shoulders. I made a total of six plates for the snap anchors. I stacked and drilled all of them so alignment is exactly the same on all of them. These are the male halves installed in the plates. I’ve seen lots of posts about E6000 and metal causing ABS pimples/warts. To avoid this I cut extra shins and drilled them to fit around the snap base. This way the glue will only contact ABS to adhere them to the chestcan back plates. Once again I used my step drill bit like I did with the magnetic shin latches. A little E6000 to glue the snap plates together and clamp them to set. The other two plates are for the elastic straps. I cut a length equal the the length of the ABS straps…shown here…then cut longer ones because I need to fold them over the plates. I’m gluing them into the straps with E6000. This is the longer strap with the plate glued on. After applying E6000 to the other side, I folded it over and clamped it to set. After drying I drilled through where the holes are and installed the female snaps. Both lined up perfectly because I predrilled all the plates at one time while stacked.
  6. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    This section is the front armour…chest and ab plates and shoulder straps. Once these are ready and assembled I’ll be fitting them and the back section to me with the undersuit on. Here are the untrimmed shoulder straps. I marked and trimmed one. You can see the difference even before sanding it smooth. Both are done and sanded on the sides. The front edge will be trimmed to about 1/2 the width of the sides. Notice on th AM straps there’s a subtle difference on the front end from most other kits. The longer tapered rise is shorter and less tapered, and the rear hasn’t got this at all. In some cases, depending on the size of the trooper…smaller troopers, that end is trimmed off for a neater look. I don’t think I’ll be trimming them but the fitting session will determine that. Front edges trimmed and they’re ready to be glued on. To make a better surface area for gluing the straps on I cut a couple scraps of ABS to fit into the end divet. There’s plenty of return edge on the chest plate. I’ve marked it for trimming to leave a little for the thicker look. I fit the plate to my chest and there’s a substantial gap on the sides so I’m trimming the entire return edge where the shoulder straps will be glued on. This will allow me to heat and straighten them up and that will close the gap for a really nice fit. This side is trimmed but not sanded yet. You can see the return edge is trimmed flat on one shoulder and the neck edge is still on. Here it is with both sides trimmed and the neck edge removed completely. Some sanding will help finish it nicely. Also notice how deep the neck cutout is. It may come very close to actually touching the shoulder tabs of the back plate. Fitting time will tell if some trimming will be needed. After lining up on the ab plate I marked the area where the strap brackets will go. I made three reinforcement pieces and glued them in place. Once the glue is well set up I drilled the holes and mounted the brackets. The E6000 will cure with everything set in place. Next I cut the elastic straps and attached the chest to the ab. I used E6000 to glue the straps into loops and clamped them together to set. Here are the shoulder straps glued to the chest plate. AM ARMOR has a very long section on the chest and back armour so there’s lots of material for trimming. For this process I’m not trimming off any length. I applied glue to the straps along the edges and across the ribs then clamped them on. This gives the straps lots of surface area for a stronger bond that will hold up under the harshest trooping conditions. The edges that protrude will be trimmed or sanded smooth. Well clamped and setting up.
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    ANH STUNT BUILD

    Time to start on the body armour. I’m going to be securing all the pieces together with elastic loops and metal brackets. You can buy these as a kit but I’m making mine because I’d just rather do it myself. These are a couple of mock ups I did to get a feel for it. They are not bad really. There will be 15 short ones and 3 tall ones in a complete set. I made a jig for quick measuring. These are the tools to mark and cut the pieces. You nee regular pliers and needle-nose pliers to bend them to shape. I used a pair of needle-nose pliers to make a loop in each end. Regular pliers to bend each loop 90° and make sure the bends are as close to even as you can. Here is the template I made to help me keep them all pretty close to exactly the same size. This is a tall one. I marked the bend locations with a sharpie so that it will be 5/8” tall and 1 1/4” wide (approximately) when done. As it happens my pliers are the perfect width to set in and bend around. First one done. On the template it’s a bit off the mark but it’s ok as long as a 1” elastic will fit in when done. Two more like this then the same process for the 15 short ones. Here’s the first one. I only used the big pliers to bend the loops to 90°. The rest was all done with the needle-nose pliers. Easy enough to do in very little time. Here they are ready for when I need them. I just found out I used all my 1” elastic so I’ve got some shopping to do. I decided to do a quick test fit of the ab/kidney plates. At 6’2”, 130lb the AM ARMOR fits nicely as is. Might require only minimal return edge trimming but this is in jeans and a t-shirt so I’m not going to need to cut or add gap filling plates to join them. The AM 2.0 armour is amazingly easy to work with. Nice fit all around for just taping. Ok, change of plans. After looking at the screw heads and seeing how they would come together between the pieces I was not happy. A significant gap because they are round heads looked bad. I tried the flat heads with bevels and don’t like the strain it puts on the armour to set it in deep enough to look ok. Then I thought, “Chicago screws!” They’re nice and flat. The same reinforcement pieces will be fine too. They only need a slightly bigger hole than the screws so no biggie. I made a test piece from a trimmed edge to simulate the actual armour. Here the screws are tight and are the perfect size. Very discrete and white paint will make them disappear. Nice and neat inside as well. Nothing to snag the undersuit. I marked the center of both pieces… clamped the reinforcement shim in… and drilled the holes in the armour. The female half will be to the outside. It’s harder to screw in the male half on the inside but the finished look is nicer. A quick test fit to check the holes for alignment… a smidge of E6000… Then put the pieces together and screw the bracket down. Easy Peezy. Only 17 more to go. I’ll be making the 1” black elastic loops to put on the brackets later. I’ll either rivet or sew them. Not sure yet. Making the loops that will join the parts using the brackets. I sewed the first two by hand then gave up. Turns out E6000 will hold the electric strapping very well. Each strap for the short brackets is 3/4” long and glued with about 1/4” overlap. Heres one of the glued ones installed. The kidney and butt plates connected. I installed the back plate in the middle only. The AM armour is not straight along the bottom edge. It has a beautifully sculpted contour that will have the corners hanging over the ab plate just slightly more than the center point low contour. Picture the ocean bird silhouette with the wings arched up and tips are the lowest point by a smidge. I have a couple specially made brackets for those corners. But now it’s sleep time. I made custom reinforcement shims to match the arch in the corners and glued them into the top of the ab plate. Here is a close up of the custom shim. I also made a couple custom brackets to compensate for both the curvature in the corners and for the return edge angle on the back plate. The back straps all on. Nice and neat on the outside. I did a quick fit to check the feel. I’ll need to trim some return edges for a comfortable fit but the length is really good. I marked the return edges for trimming. This looks a lot nicer. I also removed the entire neck return edge. I put a nice sculpt into the bottom return edge, just to add some character.
  8. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    Before: Healthy return edges that need trimming. After: Less than an hour with a pencil to trace out the cut and a Dremel with the pink grinding tip to take away the unwanted material. Still enough left to add some definition to the look.
  9. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    I will be editing the posts each time I have the next step in the build ready to post. This will keep all of that part of the build process in one section in the thread so it’s easier to follow. (Arm build section, thigh build section, shin build section etc.) Some of the replies will show after the build post but may have been posted before the build is complete, and might seem pointless so I’ll try to respond accordingly to minimize confusion to future readers. For those following this and haven’t seen new progress on the build, please have a look back at my posts as the continuation for those build sections are in the original posts not in new ones. Hope its helpful.
  10. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    I’m using pretty much the same set up as in Crickets build. Here’s the link.
  11. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    I have a stirup design that will keep the shins lined up and held down. I’ll be making the backs perfectly flat (as close to perfectly flat) and using magnets to close them.
  12. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    The shins are a special bit of the armour. Just read enough posts in any media and you’ll know what a pain they can be while trooping. They shift up and down, left and right and the worst is that they won’t always stay shut in the back. I’m going to try to build all of that out of mine. It’s m fortunate that I’m building an AM kit and there’s plenty of room to cut and re-cut until it’s right. First step is to identify the pieces that belong together. I did this earlier and marked them. This is the AM shin. Huge. I’m not going to come close to filling it out so I’m pretty comfortable trimming the front to the 25mm width to match the cover strip width. The ankles are to be trimmed completely. It’s easier to mark the inside and follow the cut line. Here isthe left leg trimmed and sanded smooth. The top return edge edge will stay as is for now. Here is the right leg inner half trimmed down the length of the shin and the inner strip glued and clamped. Again I used the strip I trimmed off the shin as the inner strip for support. The outer half is trimmed as well, the trimmed strip is laying there too. Here’s the two halves together to check the joint before gluing. Nice and straight, even lines all the way. Glued, taped, clamped and secures with magnets. You can’t tell from this angle but the mage nets are 3 on the outside and two inside. This is a tougher piece to set because of its shape. I took great care to line it up and clamp it in the position I want it to set up in. I clamped the Back seam to hold it steady in the position that it will be in when I wear it. The main idea here is to only ever stress it when putting it on. It should fit most naturally when closed on your leg. With the glue dried I measured the length to use for the outer cover. 37cm should do it. I measured the other leg and it’s the same so I cut two 37cm x 25mm strips. Notice the offset on the top ridge. A quick check to see how it sits before gluing. Now with the glue on and clamped with magnets. Here is a special magnet. The very top edge doesn’t follow the shin curve so this broken earth magnet pulls it into the correct position. Front cover strip on and looks good. Notice the offset of the crown. That’s normal. Many kits have one or both like this. I pulled the shon on and made a mark where it fit me best. Using that mark I set it with clamps and found the center line up the back and marked the halves for cutting. Here the first cut is done and clamped on to mark the second half. You can see the marks at the top and bottom edges if you zoom in on those areas. Both cuts done. Using the cut off pieces I can mark the left shin for cutting once I put the front of it together. Securing it in the back will be done once both are built to this stage. I’m not using Velcro or bra hooks. I’m setting up a magnetic latching systemthats a variation of a build by Cricket. Left inner strip glued in. Here’s wheee the fun begins. This is the start of the shin magnetic latch closure. This is essentially the inner strip but will only be glued to the inside shin piece. It’s marked for 5 evenly spaced magnets down the center line of the strip. These are to be drilled to fit the magnets in. Part of the system is the magnetic button covers. I’m making these from scratch. The magnets are 12mm x 3mm rare earth magnets, so super strong. I’m using the cover strip ABS pieces supplied by AM with the kit. I centered a pair of magnets on the prepared button piece. I cut this a bit larger than needed so it can be sanded down to size when it cools. This is a tool that came with a faucet kit I bought for the kitchen sink. It just happens to be the perfect size to press the button covers. Using the two magnets makes center ing it a snap. I apply heat until it starts to soften… apply enough pressure to push it flat to the table. This is what it came out like. See how the magnet sits flush in the button. That’s what I’m looking for. I used the button to mark out the next four. I cut them out and made each one individually. Using the inner strip I marked and cut a matching outer cover strip. I marked where the outer magnets will be glued. I’ll make another full set like this for the other leg. See how the magnets fit nicely into the holes. That’s important for easy use and secure latching. Maybe I should have put this up earlier…this is the stepped drill bit I use to make the holes. Using the hole strip I marked the area to be cut out on the shin. This is where the magnets will latch when done. The cover strip will completely hide the holes and the magnets will be glued to it where the cut-outs are. The inner strip (hole strip) will house the magnets, slightly recessed, so the outer magnets will actually sit in a slight depression to lock the back solidly. With the back closed I put the hole strip on and blackened the spots where magnets will join…with a sharpie. I cut out all of the black with the dermel. I fit the hole strip inside and glued it in with E6000. I used a small stack of the 12mm magnets to check the holes and ground off any spots that didn’t allow them to pass right through. I marked the magnets on the ‘north’ sides and laid them in the buttons. A decent dab of E6000 in each one then push the magnets in. All sitting in the glue. A magnet is used to draw it in better… Then I stack them for some real pull to seat them right in. I fit the outer cover strip on to check for any adjustments that might be needed. Everything lined up perfectly. E6000, clamps and magnets. I’ll be able to glue the magnets inside on the cover strip later today. I cut the holes for the left leg. Then alligned and glued in the hole strip. Left leg buttons made with the magnets setting in the glue. Here is the right shin return edge trimmed to fit my leg. I still might trim the back for mobility. This is a link to a clip that shows how well the magnets work. I glued the sniper plate on. Had to heat and slightly reshape the rear tips to make a better mating surface for gluing. The ammo belt is on and glued in the front. White paint onand drying.
  13. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    I will with the front strips only because the raised area will be 20mm, so that’s all that will fit on the inner channel. I will probably use the 40mm sections I cut off the outer thigh shell front as an inside strip on the rear of the thighs. It’s for strength so the more surface area the more grabbing power. Generally I don’t worry about the inner size as long as it’s not too small.
  14. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    I like the idea of the strength but I’ve seen many pictures of the return edges broken with large chunks missing. I’m toying with an idea to make a laminated trim piece that will replace the return edge, perhaps two layers of the material I’m trimming off. A 1/4” high 2 layer laminated piece would give it a look of thicker armour and be much stronger than the natural return edge. It would require some cutting, bending and gluing but I think the results would be worth it. My only real question is the order of the steps from start to finish. I’m leaning toward one layer at a time with overlapping seams on the layers. I didn’t destroy the return edges that I removed so I may start by using those.
  15. Easy

    ANH STUNT BUILD

    After a couple discussions I decided to trim off all the return edges on the lower ends but on the shin pieces I’ll definitely have some return edge remaining. I like the heavier look. It’s not really seen at the bottom unless someone is laying down to look. Hoping to avoid some armour bites as well.
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