Jump to content

Search the Community

Showing results for tags 'how to'.

  • Search By Tags

    Type tags separated by commas.
  • Search By Author

Content Type


  • Communication Center
    • Announcements
    • Forum Help & Support
  • New Recruits
    • Getting Started - Read this First!
    • FISD Guidelines
    • 501st and Detachment Access Requests
    • New Member Introductions
    • Newly Approved Members - Sound Off!
  • Enlisted Barracks
    • Off Topic
    • Field Training Exercises
  • Advanced Tactics
    • TK Pre-Approvals
    • Expert Infantry Program
    • Expert Infantry Honor Gallery
    • FISD Centurion Program
    • FISD Master Armorer Program
    • The Replica Section
  • Imperial Commissary
    • eBay Armor
  • Armory
    • Hard Armor (General Discussion)
    • Assembly, Mods, and Painting
    • Boots, Soft Parts, and other Accessories
    • Electronics for Helmets / Blasters
    • 3D Parts and Technical
    • FISD 3D Contributor Program
    • The Foundry - Armor and Prop Making
  • Costuming and Builds Original Trilogy and Anthology(501st Approved)
    • Rogue One
    • Anthology/Remnant
    • Captain Enoch
    • Night Trooper
    • ANH (Stunt and Hero)
    • ESB Stormtrooper
    • ROTJ Stormtrooper
  • Costuming and Builds The Mandalorian
    • Imperial Commando Build Threads
    • CRL's and check lists Quick access
    • Weapons Imperial Commando
    • Quick find resources
    • Gallery & Research
  • First Order Battle Group
    • Costuming and Builds First Order (501st Approved)
    • CRL's and check lists Quick access
    • Weapons of the First Order
    • Quick find resources
    • Gallery & Research
  • Costuming and Builds - EU (501st Approved)
    • Heavy Weapons Trooper
    • Stormtrooper Commander
    • The Force Unleashed Stormtrooper
    • Incinerator Trooper
    • Death Trooper
    • Star Wars Rebels
    • Concept Armor
    • Legacy Stormtrooper (Joker Squad)
  • Weapons Locker
    • General Weapons Discussion
    • BlasTech E11
    • BlasTech SE-14R
    • BlasTech DLT-19
    • MiniMag PTL Missile Launcher, T-21, RT-97C (MG-15)
    • BlasTech DC-15A and DC-15S
    • TK Lightsabers
    • Flamethrower (Plasma Rifle)
  • Recon (non TK 501st approved)
    • Kashyyyk Stormtrooper
    • The Force Unleashed Costumes
    • Other 501st Costumes
    • Other Non-Approved Star Wars Costumes
    • Non Star Wars Costuming
  • Imperial Embassies
    • Ayuda en español
    • Unterstützung auf Deutsch
    • Praesidium Italica
    • 银河帝国中华大使馆
    • Section Française
    • 日本語 Kiosk
    • Русскоязычный форум
  • Recasting Discussion
    • Recasting Discussion

Find results in...

Find results that contain...

Date Created

  • Start


Last Updated

  • Start


Filter by number of...


  • Start





Website URL





FISD Achievement Medals

FISD Service Medals

Attache Achievement Award

FISD Master Armorer Award

3D Contributor Award

Centurion Granted Date

EIB Awards

FISD Kudos


501st ID

501st Unit

Troops Completed

Found 3 results

  1. After having some of my blaster parts laser cut in acrylic I needed to jump on the strip heater to bend them into shape. It's a nifty device with an infinite variety of practical uses when manipulating plastic so I thought I'd share a quick "How To" for anyone unfamiliar with the magic of a strip heater. A strip heater is pretty much a long heating element (similar to the kind you would find in a toaster or electric home heater) that has an adjustable cover made of thick steel. This adjustable cover lets you expose just a "strip" (hence the name) of heat source at your desired width, which allows you heat specific sections of you plastic piece without affecting the rest of it. Unlike a heat gun or an oven you can heat very precise lines and very small areas individually, which allows for bends, sharp turns and shaping in only certain areas of the plastic. Think of taking a flat piece of any thermo plastic and bending it into an L shaped bracket for example. Of course, in my infinite wisdom it didn't occur to me to actually take a picture of the strip heater as I was working the parts, but basically they look like this: And work like this: It's an incredibly simple machine, and although it takes a little practice and care to get used to the plastic your working with, the heating times and the cooling times etc you can do some pretty nifty stuff very easily with this bad boy. So where do we start? First adjust your gap to the width that will suit the sharpness of the bend you are looking for. Obviously the wider the gap, the larger the area of plastic that will become flexible, so a small gap will make sharper turns, while a large gap will make larger softer curves. If necessary place some additional blockers to shorten the strip length wise as well, and place you piece of plastic on the bars, with the area you wish to bend directly above the exposed portion of the element. Here I am doing it with the flat cut out of the folding stock butt template: The length of heating time depends on the material and the thickness of that material - this 3mm acrylic took about 10 minutes to become fully pliable. You will know when it's ready as the plastic in that area stops being smooth and takes on a strange almost wavy appearance, as seen here: Don't worry - it's much easier to see in real life than it is in a photograph. At this point the plastic will take on the consistency of a stiff rubber. Remove the plastic from the heater and simply use your hands to bend the shape you want: The smaller the strip the more the plastic will naturally bend toward the intended crease. If you heat a wider area you must be careful to get the curve exactly where you want it. You have to work quite fast here as the plastic stops being flexible much faster than it seems to cool. (ie; it can still seem very hot to the touch long after it has lost it's flex and gone hard again) If you keep applying pressure too long it's likely you will crack the plastic. Much like working with a heat gun, It also helps to push a little further than your intended shape as there will be a little spring back. Once you've got the position right, hold it until the plastic has no more movement in it to ensure it stays where you want it. This is hard, as at this point the hot plastic will be burning your fingers, so don't wuss out here... The great thing is that once you've done one part, the strip heater will heat the next part while protecting the bit you just worked on from reheating and losing shape. Thus you can do one part at a time. This is my butt (oh ha ha - grow up <_< ) after heating and bending two sides: With a wider strip setting you can heat a bigger portion of plastic and bend softer curves like this: Of course this requires more holding and shaping with your fingers than a simple bend so you are really, really gonna burn your fingers doing this (if anyone says why didn't you wear gloves, it's because I'm really tough ) I also found that the smart thing to do was have a score line in your plastic where you want tight folds. It not only helps line up the piece on the strip heater, but it will bend more naturally where you want it to: (See the state of my hands? I repeat: your fingers will suffer and hate you - ignore them. They don't understand how cool it is to blend plastic to your will...) Now we understand the principle here's a quick series of photos showing it in action to make the arms for the folding stock: Rough test fit of the parts: You'll note the underside of the butt piece is a touch flatter than is accurate. I should have (and will soon) given that a slight curve by placing it underside down on a wider setting on the strip heater. All in all this a great piece of kit. It's much less strenuous than working with metal bending and using plastic allows for much more precision in shape. It would be ideal for making inner drop boxes too, or getting a better fit on your crotch tab. If you don't have access to a strip heater they are actually really quite easy to make (and let's face it: no workshop should be without one). They cost about $300-$500 but there's a great tutorial on how to build one for under $30 here: http://www.mp3car.com/fabrication/111936-how-to-build-a-heater-strip-to-bend-acrylic-for-30-bucks-or-less.html I hope this encourages other to give it a shot - if only because it's so much fun! Zero Over and out
  2. Supplies: Flat sheet of plastic or any material you prefer to use for the drop box covers Foam Sew on Velcro Sticky Velcro Glue (any brand CA glue works well) Rotary Tool (Dremel), Scissors, or Box Cutter Pencil Needle and Thread (optional) You can use a variety of materials for the covers. I used a spare sheet of ABS plastic provided from my armor kit. (1) Measure the length and width of the drop box. (2) Draw two rectangles on your drop box cover material from the measurements. (3) Cut out the covers. (4) Cut out 2 rectangles from 1/2 inch foam using the measurements. I used 1 inch thick foam and cut one rectangle then VERY CAREFULLY cut that vertically in half to make two 1/2 inch thick rectangles. (5) Loosely sew a piece of Velcro to the foam. If you sew too strong the foam will compress. You can glue the Velcro to the foam if you prefer. (6) Glue the foam to the covers. (7) Apply sticky Velcro to the inside of the drop boxes. (8) Place the covers in the boxes. Done!
  3. Alright I'm too young to actually join the 501st yet but I still wanna get a Stormtrooper suit that fits good and I could use later on. So I wanna know is how should I measure myself for armor. sincerly, cajoco
  • Create New...