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Blast 'Em!'s ANH Stunt Anovos Build

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I've fallen behind on my updates, so this will be a longer recap of Tuesday and Wednesday's progress.

 

Shins! I started with trimming the fronts of my shins down to create a 20mm ridge for the cover strips to lay upon. At the ankle, I marked how far I'd need to trim inward to create my intended taper, drew a straight line with my ruler, and made my cut. Then, I clamped the two ends together, mimicking the final overlap, and I used the edge of the armor to trace my second cut-line.

EzcXoeSh.jpg

 

I found this resulted in a more seamless butt joint than tracing a line with the ruler twice. Here's the result pre-gluing my cover strip

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Plastic peeled back, cover strip ridges all sanded (110 grit) and ready to go.

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Clamped, magnets applied, and taped down. I then completed the same steps on the other shin.

fV12O3lh.jpg

 

Back to the biceps. I knew I would have to create some more space in this piece, so some shimming was in order. I didn't want to go too wide, otherwise my cover strip would look too big. I settled on expanding the cover strip from 15mm to 25mm, and I would use a 15mm wide shim (I used the original cover strip). I started by creating an inner cover strip to help bridge this new 15mm gap.

owyYogMh.jpg

 

I sanded all pieces and glued the "used to be the 15mm cover strip but now is my shim" to the inner cover strip, allowing this to sit for 10 min so that it wouldn't move too much. You can see my new outer cover strip on the right.

7HnXnuzh.jpg

 

Gluing everything together. Magnet setup and final taping.

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The next day I applied the outer cover strip.

1pYKCVMh.jpg

 

Back to the shins!

I cut up some scrap pieces to use as the inner cover strips, reinforcing this joint that will be repeatedly stressed each time I don and doff my calves. I chose thinner, more flexible scrap pieces for these strips. All faces were sanded, E6000 was applied, then clamps and magnets. Both shins were left to dry.

xe0YgCth.jpg

 

And lastly, I jumped over to the forearms. After cutting the back joint edges to capture my intended taper, I found that this piece still had a gap in the middle that made me uneasy. So I started with an inner cover strip, which will make application of the outer strip a lot easier. 

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At this point, it was 11:30pm and I had used 40 N52 and 12 N40 magnets, so I called it a day. I'm going to finish off my biceps and forearms (I need to shim both remaining pieces), and I'll come back to the back of my calves later (going to try Cricket's magnetic shin approach). I also will be leaving my thighs until I have my shins and torso ready- I want to make sure everything measures correctly before I cut there.

 

 

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Looking STELLAR, Shane, and excellent idea with the bicep cover strip shims... you are NAILING it!  :jc_doublethumbup:  One small thing you may have noticed is that you have a point at the top of the forearms.  I would suggest using your Dremel tool (with the sanding drum attachment) to even that out a bit so that it won't snag your undersuit.  I can't tell you how VERY glad I am to see that you removed all the return edge from the tops and bottoms of the biceps.  EXCELLENT!  :D

 

eRQA9ze.jpg

 

I must

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Unfortunately, I've made no progress over the past 11 days but it's for a good reason. Our family grew by one and we've been busy taking care of this little guy.

XlP0e1zh.jpg

 

I'm aiming to get back to finishing gluing the limbs today/ tomorrow, but we'll see how thing shake out with the puppy.

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How cute, can be a handful and they love "helping" good luck

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I hope the puppy doesn't like ABS :laugh1:...

 

On the other hand, you are doing a very, very, very good job...:duim:

 

 

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Progress! Not much, but it still counts :). I found an hour on Tuesday night and glued a 25mm wide cover strip over my bicep shim (both biceps are now done) and I glue an inner strip and teeny shim to the back of a forearm. After gluing the cover strip to this forearm, both forearms will be done.

 

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Forearm inner strip + shim setup: I determined the shim size by taping the forearm into the desired size, based on the measurements I took back on Page 1. I sanded the inner strip with 120 grit, cross hatching my sanding, and rinsed and dried the piece. I did the same for the top and bottom of the thin shim. I coated the inner strip with E6000 and placed the shim where intended, then left those to get tacky over the next 15-20min. Then I clamped everything together, slapped on magnets, and taped it up to keep things from migrating. Last step, cleaning the glue from all over my fingers and work station haha.

 

I have learned that using a popsicle stick or tongue depressor to spread the E6000 really is the way to go. I was a doubter at first. Forgive me, Joseph. But spreading around the glue makes things slide around less when clamping and applying magnets. 

 

Next up are the backs of my shins. I'll cut them to size and then water bathe em. I'd still like to entertain magnetic closures, but we'll see how much time I have this weekend. Cricket's guides are awesome and I have all required materials, but the quickness of velcro is calling to me...

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I'm now 28 hrs into my build as I'm starting on the ROTS soundtrack for the third time (listening in order of release: 4,5,6,1,2,3,7,8,9). I'm enjoying this marathon, and I'm hoping to keep a sustained pace until I submit for basic approval sometime in June. 

 

Questions:

  • Can I use Anovos shin velcro, or is it crap? If I should replace it, any recommended products? I saw Justin recommend some ultra thin velcro, but you have to buy 25 yds at a time 
  • For water bathing calves, if they don't fit in my sink and I don't have a large pot, is a bathtub my best bet?

 

Recent Progress:

I completed my last forearm cover strip, so all forearms and biceps are fully assembled. In the near future I'll be further trimming some of the cutouts that allow arm bending because motion is a little restricted right now. I only added inner cover strips to the joints with shims because I didn't want to lose any more internal space within the armor piece, but I'm realizing I might as well add inner strips behind the raised portions of the forearms. I want to water bath the biceps so I might still add inner strips to them after. 

 

I started trimming the backs of my shins. I found that when I measured the amount of material I wanted to cut and used a ruler to draw that line down the back of the shin, my joint seam became angled (not straight up and down like intended). I quickly realized that you want a cut a slightly rounded line to accommodate the curve of the piece, so I used a ruler to measure to the apex of the "calf bulge" to clean up my previous cut line.

OA1SWeGh.jpg

 

For the second calf, I ended up measuring my cut distance of 1/2" from the current edge all along the piece (you can see faint pencil dashed on the right side), since the initial trim edges lined up well. I followed this path with my straight lexan scissors and this turned out well when I taped the back of the calf together. 

aEO5FWPh.jpg

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A quick eval of the calves on my boots showed a mistake I made that was accentuated by the curvature of a piece. For my right calf, the front cover strip appears to angle out because the inner piece is much more convex than the outer piece. I don't remember trimming any of the outer piece, but this is a good reminder to assess whether you should take more off of one side than another and not just distribute your cut 50-50 between two pieces. 

8cAIOflh.jpg

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I'm going to slightly trim around the ankle then water bath both calves, so I'm hoping that makes this issue less glaring.

 

I remeasured my shin circumferences at the calf and ankle and found they're a little smaller than what I targeting, so I'm short on space for magnetic closures. I'll start with velcro this time.

 

Next Up:

  1. Thighs: I need to slightly trim the circumference on one, then I'll glue inner cover strips for all pieces, then outer strips. I'm waiting to do any 
  2. Torso pieces: gluing reinforcement strips around high stress pieces
  3. Painting buttons. Planning on tracing a dime on my painters tape and cutting out templates. I'll try two coats, unless only one is necessary
  4. TD: hacksawing to correct the length. Painting screws black. Applying velcro to both sides of metal clips
  5. Snaps snaps snaps
  6. Helmet modifications: trimming eyes, cutting out lenses and adhering with Sugru. Replacing incorrect ear screws. Saving repainting tube stripes and ear trimming for a later time haha.
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7 hours ago, Blast 'Em! said:

I'm now 28 hrs into my build as I'm starting on the ROTS soundtrack for the third time (listening in order of release: 4,5,6,1,2,3,7,8,9). I'm enjoying this marathon, and I'm hoping to keep a sustained pace until I submit for basic approval sometime in June. 

  • Can I use Anovos shin velcro, or is it crap? If I should replace it, any recommended products? I saw Justin recommend some ultra thin velcro, but you have to buy 25 yds at a time 
  • For water bathing calves, if they don't fit in my sink and I don't have a large pot, is a bathtub my best bet?

Great progress, Shane! At some point you'll need to tell me what your favorite tracks of the saga are. I'm pretty sure mine are all from the OT, though there were also standouts in Phantom.

 

As for shin velcro, my understanding is that most of the Anovos strapping should be replaced, but I think you'll find @TheRascalKing to be the expert on that front. Maybe he'd even sell you some of that ultra-thin he got, assuming he has excess. I might even be interested myself.

 

A bathtub could work for a heat bath, but you'd lose a lot of volume due to the large surface area of a tub. Perhaps a 5-gallon bucket would work better? Might not be tall enough for the calves, though, depending on how much reforming you need to do.

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4 hours ago, MaskedVengeance said:

As for shin velcro, my understanding is that most of the Anovos strapping should be replaced, but I think you'll find @TheRascalKing to be the expert on that front. Maybe he'd even sell you some of that ultra-thin he got, assuming he has excess. I might even be interested myself.

No expert but I have some thoughts haha

The stock strapping is fine to use, especially when you first get the suit and are figuring out how to get it to hang so it's comfortable and looks right. But if you're going to be putting a lot of miles and troops on it, eventually snaps will be a better solution. The main issue with the Anovos stuff is that the Velcro and really the adhesive aren't great. Even replacing the loop side that sticks to the armor with 2" industrial does wonders.

For the back of the shins, I just use regular 1" Velcro that I can buy by the foot at my local Ace hardware - you want it to be able to open and close, so industrial is too much. Haven't tried the ultra thin yet, but it might not be enough hold...

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Caleb- I'm right there with ya. I grew up on the OT soundtracks so I'm heavily biased in that direction. But I am also a big fan of some prequel tracks from TPM and ROTS (Duel of the Fates, The Droid Invasion, Anakin's Betrayal, and Anakin's Dark Deeds come to mind). For the water bath, I'll try that 5 gallon bucket suggestion. I was hesitant to put near-boiling water in a thin Home Depot plastic bucket, but it looks like the HDPE material can withstand 110 C for short periods of time. 

 

Justin- I appreciate the feedback. I'll go grab some standard 1" velcro instead of using my Anovos velcro. For the rest of the armor, I'll be using Tandy snaps, employing double snaps, nylon, and elastic similar to your setup.

 

Recent Progress:

I was able to spend a decent amount of time working between yesterday and today. I finished trimming my thighs (only one required some adjustment), and I glued an inner cover strip to each piece, choosing the slow route so assembly is easier.

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After 24 hrs, I glued one of the thigh pieces together in the front. I'll wait for this to dry before gluing the back, and finally the outer cover strips.

MPnlFrrh.jpg

 

I also glued inner cover strips to the outer joints on my forearms. With all of my clamps and magnets in-use, I decided to start on my HWT ammo pouches :smiley-sw013:. Here are all four, as delivered, with foam inserts.

PZZmsG5h.jpg?1

 

I started by removing all foam inserts, cleaning up the mess they left in the pouches, then I wrapped the foam in electrical tape to water proof and contain the foam from further degradation. 

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Next was cleaning and conditioning the leather pouches, as they came with some marks on them. I used some leather products from my car detailing bucket and I touched up my Imperial Boots while I was at it. Lastly, I sat down with a pen and starting coloring the white stitching black (it took me around 45 min to do the one on the left). One down, two to go.

IdrEx9Ah.jpg?1

 

Next up:

  • Finish the thighs over the next 3 days. Then I'll clean all the excess glue off all the limbs to tidy things up.
  • Glue reinforcement strips around the torso pieces and then do another test fit. I still need to order my TKitell belt but I want to assemble and measure the torso pieces first to get the sizing dead-on.
Edited by Blast 'Em!
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Yesterday I continued the process of gluing my thigh inner cover strips. One more day is needed to finish the back strip on the left thigh, then I'll do a fit check to see if I need to trim the thigh tops before applying the outer cover strips. I only have 12 of the larger N50 magnets, so I'm double stacking my smaller N52 magnets to create sufficient clamping force.

RfSRki2h.jpg?1

 

I also started cleaning up the excess glue on my forearms. I'm using a combination of light scoring with my hobby knife and scraping with scrap ABS. It all takes so much time haha! 

 

Today I'll continue with the thighs and I'm going to try my first water bath in my 5 gallon Home Depot bucket- gotta get those shins aligned before I apply the rear cover strips! I'm still struggling to find a rubber blaster (Praetorian or HellHounds). Communication with both parties has been, well, let's say difficult. But I'm sure they're both slowed down by COVID-19, so I'm waiting to see who has inventory first.

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10 minutes ago, Blast 'Em! said:

I also started cleaning up the excess glue on my forearms. I'm using a combination of light scoring with my hobby knife and scraping with scrap ABS. It all takes so much time haha! 

Another practical tip to remove the E6000 glue in excess is just rub it with a soft cloth. the heat makes it peel off easily. try it.  :salute:

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