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DarthBiscuit

DarthBiscuit's R1TK Build (Jim's helmet only, for now)

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So I ordered my R1TK helmet from Jimmiroquai and within a week he has it finished! He’ll ship it out soon, so I need to get ready!

 

In the meantime, I’m looking through the forums to determine equipment requirements and gather supplies so I’m ready when my LBB (little brown box) arrives. I’ve listed below the items I expect to need, along with my to-do list when the helmet arrives. I don’t have any cosplay experience, or even much crafting, so I’m hoping to keep my tasks simple. Some of my vendor options are limited (pretty much focused on Amazon or Target online), since I can’t go out to Home Depot or anywhere else (for now). I appreciate any guidance anyone will give to better prepare me for this undertaking. Otherwise, just ignore me and I'll keep updating this for my own future reference. Thanks!

 

Equipment

  • Eventually I’ll want fans, a mic and speakers, and possibly hearing assist, but those can wait until I have the full costume and go trooping. It looks like ukswrath has everything I need, and I don’t think I’d go wrong with him. Obtained ukswrath's speaker system
  • Dremel
    • My buddy has one he’ll lend me, along with 1.5” cutoff wheels. Will those be good for all the vents, or should I get smaller Lukcase 22mm (7/8”) wheels too?
  • Needle file set
    • I’ve seen R1TK helmet vents start out rugged and end up perfect after taking some needle files to them. I also read that up/down works best and breaks vents less than in/out. I found some assorted shapes (Flat, Flat Warding, Square, Triangular, Round, and Half-Round) with 3mm width and 4” file length.
  • Glazing putty
    • To fix imperfections, I found Bondo 651 Glazingspot putty tube.
  • CA glue
  • E6000 glue
    • I found a 3.7 oz tube, which I figure will be enough for the helmet (vocodor, mesh, maybe vent backing)
  • Two-part epoxy
    • I don’t think I’ll need this since I’ll have E6000. Am I wrong?
  • Sugru
    • I saw someone recommended using Sugru moldable glue to permanently glue the lens in place, if I don’t go removable.
    • Popsicle sticks, for spreading
  • Interior coating
    • Some R1TK builds recommend coating the inside of fiberglass with resin or Plasti Dip; does that apply to the helmet? I’m not sure if I’d want to insulate the bucket if there’s no need, but I’d want it strong enough to sustain minor hits/falls.
    • If recommended, which is easier/better for inside the helmet: Plasti Dip spray or an Epoxy Resin?
  • Sandpaper
    • I found a pack of 220, 400, 800, and 1000. One sheet of each should be enough for just the helmet.
  • Painting
    • Tape: a few rolls of 48mm (1.88”), maybe one roll of 24mm (0.94”) for smaller areas
    • A few good paintbrushes
    • Drop cloths: 0.7mil clear plastic (will hang some to make a little paint booth)
    • Rust-Oleum 241526 Comfort Grip for easier, more even spraying?
    • Justin (TheRascalKing) outlined his paint walkthrough really well. Since he’s using rattle cans like I want, I’m going to mimic his process.
  • Primer
    • Rust-Oleum 249088 12 oz. flat gray primer spray
  • Paint
    • What does the CRL means by “tears and traps may not be hand painted”? I figure that means brush strokes should not be visible, so spray paint would be acceptable.
    • White: Rust-Oleum 249090 12 oz. gloss white spray paint
    • Gray (teeth, tears, traps, ear bars): Rust-Oleum 338924 (edit) 12 oz. gloss smoke gray spray paint
    • Black (tear, trap, and ear bar outlines): Sharpie oil-based extra fine (edit) point paint marker
    • Black (interior): delta Ceramcoat black acrylic craft paint
    • Clear coat: Rust-Oleum 249117 Painter’s Touch Ultra Cover 2X gloss clear spray paint
    • Black (vocodor, brow, neck trim): Justin recommended Plasti Dip rubber spray
    • Any issues with these choices?
  • Mesh
    • Jim said the helmet comes with mesh. Is he only referring to the frown?
    • I’ll want breathable black fabric for the traps/tears and blue for the tubes. Any suggestions? I’ll probably wait until I can go to a crafts store so I can feel it and cut how much I need.
    • Obtained mesh for the frown
    • Still need mesh for the tears/traps
    • Still need blue mesh for the tubes
  • Lens
    • Jim said the helmet comes with a lens. Does anyone recommend a different lens?
  • Padding
    • I have some extra pads from an old kevlar helmet that should do the trick and can be attached with velcro
  • Neck trim
    • Is it fine to just spray it with Plasti Dip, or do I need to attach a separate piece of tubing?
  • Velcro
    • Strenco 2” black hook/loop heavy duty strips with adhesive (5 yards)
  • Clamps (I don’t think I need clamps for just the helmet)
  • Magnets
    • Mikede N45 grade neodymium magnets 32mm x 3mm (12 discs)
  • PPE
    • Respirator mask
    • DEWALT DPG94-1C Dominator Safety glasses
    • Nitrile or latex gloves
    • Dowellife level 5 cut-resistant gloves
  • Lamp
    • LED desk lamp with 5x/10x magnifying lens

 

To Do

  • Unbox!
  • Wash the fiberglass with soapy water
  • Interior coating? (with Plasti Dip or epoxy resin?)
    • Tape off openings to prevent external adhering
  • Cut out the vents
    • Should I instead cut out the vents before applying an interior coating? I figured the coating would strengthen the trap vents so they might not break as easily.
    • Dremel with cut-off wheels
    • Needle files
  • Sand the interior, tape some openings, and brush paint with black paint
  • Sand with 220 grit
  • Tape off lens and vent holes
  • Prime
    • Fill imperfections with glazing putty
    • Sand with 220 grit
    • Spray with Rust-Oleum gray primer
    • Wet sand with 400 grit
    • Repeat for 2 or 3 coats
  • Wet Sand with 1,000 grit
  • Tape off non-white areas
  • Paint
    • White
      • Spray whole bucket
      • Wet sand with 1,000
      • Repeat for 2 or 3 coats
    • Tape off white-only areas
    • Spray gray on traps, tears, teeth, and ear bars
      • Wet sand with 1,000
      • Repeat for 2 or 3 coats
    • Black outline of traps/tears/ears with paint marker
  • Glossy clear coat
  • Spray black Plasti Dip on brow, vocodor, and Jim’s Hovi tips
    • After clear coat so they don’t end up glossy
    • Is it acceptable to paint Jim’s brow, or do I need a separate rubber tube?
  • Attach vocodor with E6000 CA glue
  • Attach Hovi tips
    • Probably drill holes and bolt from inside, so they can be switched out one day with ukswrath’s speaker system
    • Drill holes to attach Tony's speaker system
  • Attach lenses
    • Permanent with Sugru? Temporary with magnetic strips, velcro, or something else?
    • Leave small opening to cut down on fogging
  • Attach frown mesh
    • Permanent?
  • Attach vent mesh
    • Permanent? Maybe with magnetic strips or velcro for removability.
  • Attach padding
    • Adhere velcro hook side to helmet
  • Enjoy..?
Edited by DarthBiscuit
Changed sanding process

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On 4/20/2020 at 9:37 AM, DarthBiscuit said:

 

  • My buddy has one he’ll lend me, along with 1.5” cutoff wheels. Will those be good for all the vents, or should I get smaller Lukcase 22mm (7/8”) wheels tooSmall wheel will forsure help with the tube vents if you cut them. Make sure you have several large and small sanding drums as well.
  • To fix imperfections, I found Bondo 651 Glazingspot putty tube.  Just make sure it's never more than a very thin amount in a small area - Bondo will crack when hardened if applied too thick, even under your paint. Many parts of Jim's kit have a good amount of flex to them, so keep that in mind or use a flexible filler.
  • E6000 glue
    • I found a 3.7 oz tube, which I figure will be enough for the helmet (vocodor, mesh, maybe vent backing)
  • Two-part epoxy
    • I don’t think I’ll need this since I’ll have E6000. Am I wrong? Might still need it pending your kit. E6000 is just an adhesive and is rubbery when dry and easily peeled off of areas where it isn't bonded. Epoxy can be used as filler to an extent, dries extremely hard, and bonds strongly to what it is on. Different tool for different uses.
    • Some R1TK builds recommend coating the inside of fiberglass with resin or Plasti Dip; does that apply to the helmet? I’m not sure if I’d want to insulate the bucket if there’s no need, but I’d want it strong enough to sustain minor hits/falls.
      • If recommended, which is easier/better for inside the helmet: Plasti Dip spray or an Epoxy Resin? I strongly suggest reinforcing your helmet, at least in the dome. Resin is probably the best thing for doing so, but is a somewhat involved process. Some guys will do a combination of cheesecloth and Plastidip - the spray by itself doesn't do much. I did FibreGlast 1100 vinylester resin with great results, then Rust-Oleum truck bedliner on top because I like the texture.
  • Sandpaper
    • I found a pack of 220, 400, 800, and 1000. One sheet of each should be enough for just the helmet. Sounds good. When you get to the kit, I recommend sanding sponges/blocks to really get it level and save your hands.
  • Painting
    • Tape: a few rolls of 48mm (1.88”), maybe one roll of 24mm (0.94”) for smaller areas Especially on the helmet, real thin tape definitely helps for masking.
    • A few good paintbrushes The whole kit needs to look like it was sprayed, so don't leave any brushmarks or no go.
    • Drop cloths: 0.7mil clear plastic (will hang some to make a little paint booth)
    • Rust-Oleum 241526 Comfort Grip for easier, more even spraying? Helps me not spray my fingertips, can't hurt.
    • Justin (TheRascalKing) outlined his paint walkthrough really well. Since he’s using rattle cans like I want, I’m going to mimic his process. My process worked well but is admittedly for a perfectionist paintjob. Feel free to adjust as needed - my helmet was actually pretty smooth, so it didn't need as many layers of paint and primer as say, the thighs.
  • Paint
    • What does the CRL means by “tears and traps may not be hand painted”? I figure that means brush strokes should not be visible, so spray paint would be acceptable. Bingo.
    • Any issues with these choices? Anyone else wanna weigh in on the color blue that's best?
  • Mesh
    • Jim said the helmet comes with mesh. Is he only referring to the frown? I assume so... I didn't get any frown mesh, but had some handy.
    • I’ll want breathable black fabric for the traps/tears and blue for the tubes. Any suggestions? I’ll probably wait until I can go to a crafts store so I can feel it and cut how much I need. Same, no suggestion currently. 
  • Lens
    • Jim said the helmet comes with a lens. Does anyone recommend a different lens? His is fine, just be prepared to cut it down a bit.
  • Neck trim
    • Is it fine to just spray it with Plasti Dip, or do I need to attach a separate piece of tubing? It's molded in, so I guess you'd have to grind it off if you wanted to...
  • Clamps (I don’t think I need clamps for just the helmet)
  • Magnets
    • Mikede N45 grade neodymium magnets 32mm x 3mm (12 discs) I didn't really use magnets or clamps much on this build - very different from ANH or how an 850 would come together.
  • PPE
    • Respirator mask GET A NICE ONE and WEAR IT. Fiberglass aint no joke.

To Do

  • Wash the fiberglass with soapy water Use a rough scouring pad or ScotchBrite pad to remove any wax/mold release or loose fiberglass hairs
  • Cut out the vents
    • Should I instead cut out the vents before applying an interior coating? I figured the coating would strengthen the trap vents so they might not break as easily. This. I waited as long as I could (until after primer) to cut the vents. Makes masking easier but needs to happen before white forsure.
    • Repeat for 2 or 3 coats Might help to get a couple different cans of spraypaint so you can see the layers when you sand. Helps you to know when you're done and truly level.
    • Is it acceptable to paint Jim’s brow, or do I need a separate rubber tube? Absolutely acceptable, you'd have to hack the helmet apart otherwise.
      • Probably drill holes and bolt from inside, so they can be switched out one day with ukswrath’s speaker system Be super careful here, like any TK helmet. That area on mine feels pretty fragile, even after coating with resin.

Ruined the formatting but, some thoughts on some things. Hope they help :)

Edited by TheRascalKing
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Jim emailed me this morning that he was able to get the bucket shipped! FedEx tracking somehow has its expected delivery this Friday (which just doesn't sound feasible)... Now I have to get some things on order!

 

Thanks Justin for the suggestions! I have some follow-ups for you or anyone else with an opinion!

  • To fix imperfections, I found Bondo 651 Glazingspot putty tube.  Just make sure it's never more than a very thin amount in a small area - Bondo will crack when hardened if applied too thick, even under your paint. Many parts of Jim's kit have a good amount of flex to them, so keep that in mind or use a flexible filler. What else is recommended to fill imperfections?
  • If recommended, which is easier/better for inside the helmet: Plasti Dip spray or an Epoxy Resin? I strongly suggest reinforcing your helmet, at least in the dome. Resin is probably the best thing for doing so, but is a somewhat involved process. Some guys will do a combination of cheesecloth and Plastidip - the spray by itself doesn't do much. I did FibreGlast 1100 vinylester resin with great results, then Rust-Oleum truck bedliner on top because I like the texture. FibreGlast 1100 price/shipping isn't going to work for me. What about Bondo 3004.7858 201224-4PK All Purpose Fiberglass Resin? Or Dr. Crafty 2 Part Epoxy Resin Kit?

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22 hours ago, TheRascalKing said:

Different tool for different uses.

Justin, I think I was confusing the 2-part epoxy as an adhesive, instead of a filler/strengthener.

 

What adhesive is recommended for the vocodor and other permanent fixtures?

  • E6000
  • CA glue
  • Gorilla Glue 2-part epoxy
  • Something else...

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5 hours ago, DarthBiscuit said:

Jim emailed me this morning that he was able to get the bucket shipped! FedEx tracking somehow has its expected delivery this Friday (which just doesn't sound feasible)... Now I have to get some things on order!

 

Thanks Justin for the suggestions! I have some follow-ups for you or anyone else with an opinion!

  • To fix imperfections, I found Bondo 651 Glazingspot putty tube.  Just make sure it's never more than a very thin amount in a small area - Bondo will crack when hardened if applied too thick, even under your paint. Many parts of Jim's kit have a good amount of flex to them, so keep that in mind or use a flexible filler. What else is recommended to fill imperfections?
  • If recommended, which is easier/better for inside the helmet: Plasti Dip spray or an Epoxy Resin? I strongly suggest reinforcing your helmet, at least in the dome. Resin is probably the best thing for doing so, but is a somewhat involved process. Some guys will do a combination of cheesecloth and Plastidip - the spray by itself doesn't do much. I did FibreGlast 1100 vinylester resin with great results, then Rust-Oleum truck bedliner on top because I like the texture. FibreGlast 1100 price/shipping isn't going to work for me. What about Bondo 3004.7858 201224-4PK All Purpose Fiberglass Resin? Or Dr. Crafty 2 Part Epoxy Resin Kit?

I know Matt used Spies Hecker 7715 and I used Dynatron 650, both worked well. I went with the Dynatron because it advertised a finish with some flex, but I'm not gonna lie... it looks and behaves just like Bondo glazing putty so far hahaha The key (same with auto body work) is just to use it in as thin a layer as possible. There are a LOT of very minor imperfections in the kit, so depends on how hardcore you wanna go.

 

Yea the FibreGlast was not cheap, I definitely feel ya. It was a bit more palatable just because I bought a full quart and did the whole suit with it. Vinylester resin in general is expensive, but again, it advertises maintaining a firm flex, and improving impact resistance. I am VERY new to the fiberglass world, so I can only endorse what I've used and know works, but give that Bondo stuff a try and let us know how it goes! Just make sure you research if you're not familiar with fiberglassing. Little tips like supergluing your chip brush bristles in and "double cupping" when thoroughly mixing resin help LOTS and making sure you use the right type of cups and whatnot (they can melt!). Also gauging how much to mix within your working time can be a challenge - I would probably do like 2 coats of 100ml or less. Remember to get the lip at the bottom of the helmet, near the neckline, and by the mic tips well.

 

The 2-part epoxy CAN be used an adhesive as well, but each (between E6000, CA, and like a flexible bumper filler like I also used) behaves a little differently and works better in certain applications. Good to have options. I'll probably CA glue the vocoder and mic tips on - I'd actually probably rather have the glue fail than epoxy them on and have the helmet crack, you know? The GEL version of CA is a huge improvement over traditional too if you haven't used it. Gives you much better control when applying it, and an extra couple seconds before it cures usually.

 

My only other advice off the top of my head is to make sure you really PLAN your build steps out - with these suits as opposed to ABS, a lot of things HAVE to happen IN ORDER for best results. Always happy to answer what questions I can though. Good luck!

Edited by TheRascalKing
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On 4/22/2020 at 1:29 PM, TheRascalKing said:

My only other advice off the top of my head is to make sure you really PLAN your build steps out - with these suits as opposed to ABS, a lot of things HAVE to happen IN ORDER for best results.

Yup that's why I'm trying to plan it all out on here, so hopefully the pros will guide my hands ;-)

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34 minutes ago, DarthBiscuit said:

Yup that's why I'm trying to plan it all out on here, so hopefully the pros will guide my hands ;-)

Definitely. Jeff's build was very helpful to me, though I did deviate on a few things, so definitely check it out when you have a chance (if you haven't already) - his suit is AWESOME and he did an amazing job documenting his build. Until Tony gets ahold of one of these (lol), his is pretty much the go-to guide for R1. He's also a nice guy (and sells urethane shoulder bridges!), so don't be afraid to reach out - there aren't a ton of resources available for R1, so take advantage of all you can!

 

 

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So, while assembling my supplies in preparation for receiving Jim's helmet, I was back-and-forth on ukswrath's speaker system. I knew I wanted it at some point in the future, so why not now? I ordered it and @ukswrath sent it out right away! Received, assembled, and tested it this morning! So excited to get this installed and use it! Thanks Tony!

5Eb4T3nb.jpg

Everything else is slowly showing up. I should have all supplies, and even my helmet, by May the 4th!

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Little Brown Box day!!

2xfcSG8.jpg

 

cibIFjl.jpg

 

dadojaK.jpg

Big thanks to @jimmiroquai for quick production and shipment, despite the COVID checkpoints!!

 

First step: wash and scrub with scour pads and dish soap.

 

First obstacle: maintenance broke a pipe and there's no water in the whole community.

 

Second step: lay down drop cloths and use Bondo fiberglass resin and cloths to reinforce the interior.

 

Second obstacle: still waiting on those items from Amazon.

 

Third step: once resin has cured, cutout teeth and vents with a Dremel (hopefully without breaking anything since it should be stronger).

 

Off to a great start! Lol!

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Received the last of my supplies!! Setup my corner of the garage and unpacked my bucket!

 

dCti93xb.jpg

 

Question: what is recommended to trim the lens? I didn't realize it came like this. I have a Dremel with cutoff discs. What about the router attachment?

 

Washed and scrubbed the fiberglass pieces. It all looks so great! No major issues or anything. It seems stronger than I expected, but there are still some parts that I can easily see through and want reinforced.

 

The kids (7y b, 5y g) were so excited to help me scrub it <3 The wife, on the other hand, has already found other reasons to be pissed... I need to be on my best behavior if I'm going to get her onboard with the full armor someday...she's already upset about the cost of supplies.

 

OTEBJGD.jpg

 

OJyFsn3b.jpg y5NIqz4b.jpg T5Ss7ygb.jpg

 

Next up (probably tomorrow): use Bondo fiberglass resin and cloths to reinforce the interior

 

After that: use the Dremel with cutoff discs to open the vents

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I just used lexan sheers and my sanding drum to smooth things out on the lens. Oh and if you're gonna spray the interior, do that before cutting the vents - less masking. Otherwise sounds good and have fun!

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3 hours ago, TheRascalKing said:

I just used lexan sheers and my sanding drum to smooth things out on the lens. Oh and if you're gonna spray the interior, do that before cutting the vents - less masking. Otherwise sounds good and have fun!

Thanks Justin. I don't think I'm going to spray the interior with Plasti Dip since it prevents velcro adhesion, and I haven't planned far enough ahead to where/how I'm sticking everything.

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Prepped my workspace and added some fiberglass resin to the front interior and some fiberglass cloth to the Hovi ports, tears, and tubes. I'll work the back and/or dome tomorrow!

 

F2kCMAI.jpg

 

YepHcsr.jpg

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Added some resin and cloths to the dome and rear traps, hopefully strengthening them for when I cutout the vents. No pics since there isn't much to see.

 

Side question: how long until the Bondo fiberglass resin is hard? It says 2 hours until it cures, but the stuff I applied yesterday is still sticky. I'm pretty sure I added enough catalyst, so hopefully that isn't the problem. I don't want to start cutting out the vents tmrw if the resin and cloth aren't ready. Maybe I'll set it in the sun.

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The sun seems to be helping! I'll probably add a last coat of resin tmrw to smooth out some of the pointy frayed edges of the cloths, with definitely enough catalyst.

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Applied my final coat of Bondo fiberglass resin around the whole interior! Set it in the sun and occasionally rotate it. It's already feeling stiff and smooth!

 

AheM0di.jpg

 

Next (maybe this afternoon): sand around the inside, since some frayed cloth tips are poking out.

 

After that (probably Wednesday to ensure sufficient curing): start cutting out the vents with a Dremel...

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So cutting into the vents, I can see that the few layers of resin and the cloth pretty much doubled the thickness! It proved to be a bit more work, but I feel much more comfortable with its strength! Hopefully the thinner tear and trap vents hold out too.

 

The first tube vent went well, so I kept going...and the cutoff disc flew off in pieces! Switched to a metal disc for the remaining vents and it lasted the whole time.

 

E2fC53e.jpg

 

Used the Dremel to cut out every vent. You can see the resin that didn't quite get cut through, since the cutoff disc was as deep as I could get it without cutting the vent edges.

 

AmZZ75C.jpg

 

And here's after a quick pass with a few files! I think it's a great start.

 

F9du1Sw.jpg

 

I ran out of free time today, but I'm stoked with my progress! I'll file a bit more later on, but I think I'll focus on cutting all of the vents out first, and then focus on filing them all.

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Spent 50 minutes cutting out some more vents! The Dremel made quick work of them. The rear traps are so easy since they're long enough that the disc fully fits in it! I'll probably finish the vents tmrw, and maybe drill (?) the teeth out.

 

rg5m21B.jpg

 

Vg0nv1r.jpg

 

5sCtfIR.jpg

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Finished with the Dremel on the rear traps, then drilled out the frown.

 

1c1ayWm.jpg

 

6ysINB3.jpg

 

X6INYHb.jpg

 

Then I took some files to the right tube and I think it's done! I evened out the edges as best I could, and I'm sure sanding and priming will help hide the chunks taken out by the Dremel disc.

 

czXRQum.jpg

 

I realized something I'm missing, that I should probably start looking into: the mesh backing. Since I can't/don't go out to stores, I'm looking for online options for the frown mesh and the vent mesh/fabric, but I don't really want to spend $20 each on a huge roll of stuff. Any suggestions?

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Finished the left tube vents!

 

Naqtw4g.jpg

 

The tear vents are proving quite difficult... they’re too thin for my flat file...I ended up cutting a strip of 180 grit sandpaper, folded it in half, and used that. It works until it rips and I have to cut another strip. Any other suggestions??

 

SSnG0le.jpg

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