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Repairing and Reinforcing TE2 bucket


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I posted this over on MEPD too, but I figured I would post here as well since a lot of what I have read has been over here.

 

The great helmet adventure...

 

Let me preface this by saying that I have never put a stormtrooper helmet together, and until today I have never taken one apart.

 

So I took my bucket apart today. The main reason was to get it prepared to paint the inside black. I am doing this in order to make the lenses appear darker....and frankly because I think it looks cooler. I also wanted to make it a bit easier to install my new lenses when I get the material in.

 

8MXcXir.jpg

 

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Anyway, after some nerve wracking drilling out of rivets and a bit of cutting at some stubborn glue, it came apart. I've noticed a couple of things.

 

First were cracks. I was aware of several cracks under the chin, but I hadn't noticed that there is some cracking under where the brow trim was. This concerns me and I wanted to repair it. I think I read somewhere that the best way to do this is a bit of fabric and crazy glue. Is this correct? If so, I will probably run a strip the length of the brow for reinforcement.

 

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I also noticed that the bottom right hand side(looking at it) of the mask is pushed in. I'm not sure I can do anything about that but not too concerned about it.

 

Parts of the helmet are really thin. Because of this, I think I am going to change my game plan as far as the inside goes. I think I'm going to use plasti-dip instead of paint. I'm hoping that this will add a bit of reinforcement. I am going to put down a coat of white primer underneath in order prevent a possible gray outside appearance.

 

7mmchyM.jpg

 

 

 

Does all of this sound about right?

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If your using the t shirt material and super glue , never use poundshop or cheaper superglue... It won't work and is a false economy.

 

Mask the outside well especially around eye sockets as overspray with interior black will cause problems.

 

If you can can get green welders lens material then you will find that it works better than the lighting gel. If you cannot source that product then double up on the gel either by folding it in half or use use two sheets.

 

 

Hope that helps, and i look forward to seeing the results of your work

 

 

Cheers

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I have the welder lens ordered and will be cutting those when it gets here. I'm planning on mounting with rare earth magnets. Not sure if that has ever been done before or not. I will definitely take my time masking it!

 

Is there a type of glue you recommend for the reinforcement?

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Get some really good CA glue. I prefer Slo-Zap for the thicker consistency and longer working time:

 

http://www.hobbytown.com/Shop/Slo-Zap-CA-Adh-PT-20-1oz/

 

I can speak from experience. I almost totally melted a TE2 stripping the paint once. But the t-shirt method, some glazing putty, and a lot of diligence and patience later, and it looks almost good as new. My cracks were much worse.

 

Good luck!

 

p.s. re: lenses -- I actually use both. Welders visor material covered with the acetate on the outside to give the look of the screen accurate lens, while still maintaining the opacity I want to keep people from seeing in. Try it! :D

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I would recommend fixing the cracks with plastic backing, glue with either E-6000 or Plastic weld. Much stronger...the CA glue will crack itself since its soo brittle.

Edited by sith_241
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What is glazing putty? I don't think I have ever heard of it. I have a HobbyTown right up the road so I will look for that glue.

 

Any insight on the mask being pushed in? I'm pretty much stuck with that huh?

 

Thanks for the input guys!

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Bondo Glazing putty:

 

http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_x_7100876-P_x_x?cm_mmc=CSE-_-Google-_-VALUE3-_-VALUE4&ci_src=14110944&ci_sku=7100876

 

You can find it at Home Depot with the other Bondo products. Use it on the outside of the helmet to fill the cracks after you reinforce from the inside. Easy to apply and sand. And if you want to reinforce in a way other than the t-shirt and CA glue patch, you can. One way would be HIPS putty (made by submersing plastic scraps in acetone) -- but if you don't actually have scraps that becomes difficult. ;)

 

Not sure what you mean by the mask being pushed in. I would get the parts reinforced and filled, then refit everything to make sure it is really a problem. If you must, you could try a heat gun (low heat) or blow dryer to help manipulate it. But then you are really risking some serious warping.

Edited by Madmartigan
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Luckily all of the cracks are in places that will be covered by the brow trim and neck trim on the outside.

 

As far as being pushed in...

XjYapUM.jpg

 

You see how the right hand side is pushed in further than the left? It isn't as noticeable while wearing so if I can't align it better, so be it.

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I bought the glue, and plasti-dip today. I also picked up some primer. Lowes didn't have white plastic primer. They had white primer and they had clear plastic primer. Wasn't sure what to do. I picked up this stuff:

 

http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_SPM2310977603P

 

Should that do the trick for the inside of the bucket?

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Busy morning.

 

I made a template for and cut out my lens frames. Tried bending them with hair dryer and it wasn't hot enough. Gonna have to borrow a heat gun.

 

gsQ76Hc.jpg

 

I also did the reinforcement of the helmet. I used some CA glue and strips of t-shirt. Due to the location of the cracks, I put a strip on the outside as well. It will be covered by the neck trim. Very strong now.

 

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I then masked off the outside of the bucket to apply the primer. 2 coats drying now. Plasti-dip tonight.

 

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  • 8 years later...

Just used this method again (superglue and tshirt) to fix an old Tk helmet.

The area behind the mic tip had worn thin and brittle. 

Two minute repair and good as new (1976-1977 style)

 

 

wish i had videoed it though.

cheers

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