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Helotech

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About Helotech

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    Dave

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  1. Hey everyone. I have a pic of me in my armour, but can't upload it cause of file size... I seriously thank all of you for taking the time to answer, and I hopefully I don't come across as bashing or demeaning to anyone. I like having honest and frank discussions with people, and it is difficult doing it through forum posts. The forums are great but become a serious information overload. I guess part of my frustration is the fact that possible problems with the armour I chose were my own doing. I've been wanting to join the 501st for years, and finally had the $ and wife's very enthusiastic approval to start the ball rolling. It is hard when you think you researched something to death, only to realize you possibly dumped a ton of cash on something that may not get approved. I really don't want the hassle of shipping everything back, so will live with and improve on what I have. Right now I'm torn between trying to do screen accuracy and go for Centurion in the future, or keeping the armour like I want it and staying basic. I actually like the armour with all black strapping, and no rivets on the side. I also don't like the rubber on the back of the gloves and prefer the ABS. Looks a little more sleek. If I set aside all the lawsuit stuff, I thought I had picked a good armour in the SDS offering. As I stated in earlier posts, once you go through the hundredth page about armour builds, everything blended into one and I just bought something where I could open a box and put it on. I recently did unboxing video reviews of everything I received. With the help of my talented niece, I am editing the vids and will be posting on Youtube within a month or so. I saw a notification that the CRL's had recently changed. I can't open the link though as I don't have access for some reason. Is there a way to see these? I'm not sure if there is an all encompassing list of things to do with the SD armour, but so far I have seen the following by looking at my set: 1. Hero helmet : - Seems accurate for hero helmet in every way, except it has 4 ear bumps. This precludes me from going Centurion. This may be a hard fix so I won't go through the trouble unless I can source complete new ear pieces. - I've painted the inside black and am attempting to fit in all the various electronics. Added to this is the fact I am attempting to scratch build all the components that are displayed in famous cut away pics of what a "real" Stormtrroper helmets would have. I like the looks and feel of it instead of keeping it purist movie quality 2. Armour overall: - Very good mouldings (in my mind) Crisp details from what I can tell - I believe all the open ends of armour are rounded over slightly. I think this is not accurate for Centurion, but okay for basic builds? - Abdomen button panels have correct colours and are separate pieces glued on. - I've read posts saying this is a mish-mash of armour from all movies, but not exactly sure what the issue is. From ANH screen grabs, this looks accurate. - Everything is held together with black elastic and Velcro, 1.5 or 2" wide. Pile is on the armour, and the hook Velcro is sewn to each end of the elastic. This is good to accommodate various sized people. - Until I start adding snaps, I will need to add additional pile Velcro in select areas to aid in fitting my body style (5' 10.5", and 190lb) - No rivets or snaps on either right or left side of abdomen / kidney armour. - Shoulder belles and bicep armour is held together with drop down black 3/4 ish elastic and snaps - Front / back armour has black elastic joining them at the shoulders. This is an easy swap for white straps if requires, but I actually prefer the black - Cod piece is attached with elastic and to posterior piece. One snap each end of elastic. Additional snap would be needed - Shoulder ribbed armour is attached on both ends with white Velcro to chest and back armour. Easy to glue front down, and tie down the rear end with white elastic band as per movies 3. Belt: - Sort of a let down. Came as a complete ABS belt, front attached to the wrap around back. Wrap around back portion has very strong secure Velcro. There is only a small tab of white velcro on back of front of belt to attach to a small Velcro piece on abdomen and is meant to stop the belt from sliding down. The front ammo bump belt is attached to the back wrap around part, but not sure how. I ordered and received a white fabric belt and should be is a fairly easy mod. - The drop boxes are made of a smaller inner box sitting inside the larger outer. It is attached to belt with 3/4 " white pile Velcro strip. Easy enough to source white strapping to let them hang. 4. Holster: - Nice quality, black leather. Has black belt loops a-la ESB or ROTJ. I just have to source some small strips of plain brown leather and will attach it to back of belt with rivets 5. E11 Blaster - I thought it was okay, but after reading posts I now think the SDS is overpriced for what you get. HOWEVER, some people were describing big issues with the casting and moulding of the gun (which I agree with. It is rough in places) but the alternatives they listed also look rough in places. Blaster does not have sling loop at back. Easy to add one. I'll try to post more info in a bit
  2. Totally agree. I can't wait to see my armour beside someone else's at a 501 event. The comparison pics I've found online don't seem to show that much difference, if any at all. I want to see the quality of the molding, sharpness of casting, etc. It may be splitting hairs (and I ABSOLUETLEY LOVE STRIRRING THE POT!!!!) , but I do find it funny how people say that certain armour is not screen accurate, but theirs is. Then you find that their armour has added straps and buckles on the inside to make it fit better. They've added a helmet suspension system inside to make it more comfy, as well as comm boxes, micro phones, screen mesh behind the teeth, black fabric gloves instead of rubber, on and on and on... None of that was on the screen. My little dastardly soap box 2 cents. I'll be doing an unboxing review with a ton of pics this weekend. I'm just deciding whether I should do a Youtube video of the unboxing. Never done one before. I'll have to source new ear caps. Hopefully not too hard to find. Things like the complete plastic belt (if it is still that way as I haven't opened the box) will be an easy fix. I'm still waiting to hear back from my local Garrison to see what they require.
  3. Hey all, Thanks for the info. It is truly appreciated. I will post detailed pics of the pieces and how they fit together by this weekend. I'll aim for a new post in the build section? I'll also copy and paste allot of this info there. I am 5' 10, and about 190 lbs, so the armour should fit okay. This is incentive to lose that extra 10 or 15 lbs to get closer to that typical British actor size they used in ANH After getting home I only unboxed the helmet (of course!) before heading off for a work function. People have complained about the odd shape of the SDS helmets. And I can attest to the fact that it seems warped. However, from my readings most of the original helmets were all oddly shaped and individual. No matter how much I love the movie, I've never had the opportunity to even be close to a set of armour before. I've gone all these years thinking all the armour was the same between all the movies, not realizing there were differences in design, fit, shape of helmets, paint jobs, etc. I hadn't even noticed after watching all the movies dozens of times that the teeth colour had changed! I thought I had researched this to death before buying. I downloaded pics of the SDS, plus images from 501st, movie screen grabs and other sources. From online, I could make out some of the differences, but some other differences described by users eluded me. As I mentioned before, there is way too much info out there. Many forum discussions go back and forth "No this armour had this feature" " No, you are wrong. This armour was different during this scene, with features such as this..." All very confusing. Things like the complete plastic belt will be fixed before trooping. I'm pretty handy and this should be an easy fix. From my reading, it seems like every original suit was an individual work of art and not the same as any other suit. That's what makes this confusing. Some sites I've gone to briefly describe what is wrong with the SDS, but from my understanding it is a recast of ROTJ and ESB parts. After talking with the VERY HELPFUL customer rep in the UK, he told me the suit was based off of ANH armour. I have noticed the following: 1) This is listed as a hero helmet and has most of the features, (like the bubble eye lenses) but there are 4 ear bumps not 3. 2) Tear drops, rear vent trap details are very neat decals, not painted 3) The holster is a ESB design. Black loops meant to fit over the belt I'll know the quality of the molding once I get everything unpacked and laid out, but even if I think it looks good, somebody may say "Nope. It's wrong" As to the licencing and claim for design rights, that is a topic which I don't really want to discuss in depth. But like details about the armour, from what I've read (and it is not an exhaustive study by any means, so be gentle on me) there are many varying stories about this saga, some which go along with the theory everyone states of AA lying. However, I've also read parts where AA states he didn't do the complete design, he just designed the molds to better suit production. Anywhoooooo, More to follow this weekend. Cheers
  4. Hi all, Kind of a long rambling post with some questions near the end, so please be patient. I've never posted here before, but have been creeping this and various other armor sites for a long time. This may not even be the proper place to post this. This is not a true criticism of this or any other site, but there is such a thing as way too much info. LOL I became overwhelmed with the amount of separate forum topics, criticisms and comparisons of one armour over another, and trying to get past peoples biases. Also, some of the info was several years out of date. I originally thought to purchase a good quality set of TK armour for display and occasional wear. Not that money was no object or that I'm lazy, but I wanted something with minimal fuss that I could pay for the convenience of having it pre -assembled and look decent. People consistently posted that you should order the basic pieces, be willing to trim plastic, source small snaps and buckles and build the armour from scratch to truly enjoy this amazing hobby. Sorry, I don't buy that. I was not sure of joining the 501st for various reasons, so absolute complete screen accuracy was originally not too much of a concern. I soon learned, amongst other things, that there were various definitions of what screen accuracy is / was. Who was right in this respect? Anyways, after I had gone down every rabbit hole I thought I could find, I decided to take the plunge and order a complete Hero set from SDS. (Some of you probably just spit out your blue milk...) Only after paying for it and having confirmation of shipping (more on this in a bit) did I go down further rabbit holes. I then discovered mostly older but some new posts from various sources saying the AA / SDS armor is " No good! Stay Away! Avoid at all costs! Not screen accurate! Cobbled together from ESB or ROTJ pieces with lots of inaccuracies" Also, no matter what many people think of AA's business practices, he eventually did win the legal right to make the armour. Lets please not harp on this in this post... Various reviews I've seen on other armour manufacturers listed worse problems, so I felt relatively safe ordering this armour. Yes, the SDS armour is expensive, but: - The customer service was excellent - The complete armour, boots, body glove, neck covering, gloves, E11 blaster and holster plus display stands were ordered from the UK last week on Wednesday and just delivered to my front door in Canada. They are sitting in my dining room waiting for me to get home from work. - SDS seems to be one of the only makers that has the correct colour for the armour (once again, I'm not a complete expert here) Anyways, the questions are: 1) Is SDS sill considered bad? 2) More importantly, why? 3) It looks like a very good representation of TK armour. It may be missing a few rivets, snaps or buckles here or there, but these are easily added if I choose to. Is the basic armour still acceptable for 501st? 4) I think the armour comes with a complete solid / ABS belt. (main bad point I've noticed) This will be confirmed once I open the boxes. Was the movie TK armour only supplied with a fabric rear portion? It is hard to discern in movie stills. Sometimes it looks like fabric, other times it seems to solid and plastic like Thanks for any help you can provide. Dave (Hopefully future TK.........something.... something ......something......)
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