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ABS vs Fiberglass, weight and maintainability.


fishgoh0nk
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So the armor bug bit hard and I'm looking for TLJ armor now. I've browsed a lot of TFA and TLJ builds and couldn't find an apples to apples comparison in regards to weight, comfort and maintainability (probably because of how new the armors are).

 

I'm hoping to draw input from people that have built, or worn from the different vendors, mainly jimmiroquai's and another ABS vendor in regards to the aforementioned aspects.

 

I like thickness and high durability as I'm not the most graceful person; but I wouldn't want anything too heavy, especially on the head. 

 

Repairs - I'm familiar with repairing ABS; but are there any benefits to the material the jimmy armors use in terms of modding/fixing?

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I have one of Jim's Sith troopers, now I have more than a few medical issues and I find it quite heavy compared to my ABS costumes. Other issues with the flexible fiberglass is it can crack in places which are under any strain, or as I found round pieces can go oval when stored, I think this was a curing issue and was fixed by strapping round again and storing for some time.

 

Now in saying all of that I know of other troopers who don't have issue with the weight and although have suffered a few cracks they have fixed with a fiberglass auto filler and touched up the paint. Hey we get cracks in any armor, ABS, 3D print and fiberglass.

 

ABS suppliers KB props, also 850 armor works, and recently Walt's (WTF) all on Facebook, now those kits are pretty new and I've heard a few issues with the helmet pieces aligning but no real feedback on the armor, there are a couple of builds currently on the forum which you may want to take a look at.

 

No matter which kit they all need some filling and painting unlike an OTTK.

 

There is another option of 3D printed we have one on the forum BUT I've not compared the details or if it would pass 501st approval, it's the same with most files, until you see them in hand you really don't know.

 

Definitely go through some of the builds, you will find most have the armor make in the titles.

 

Good luck with the research.

 

 

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Thanks Glen, very helpful info especially on the fiberglass cracking under strain, definitely the info I'm looking for. How thick would you say the jimmi material is? I'd assume it's a lot thicker than ABS vacuum molded material, would you say filling the thicker material with bondo is easier than patching ABS with paste/fiiller?
 

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1 minute ago, fishgoh0nk said:

How thick would you say the jimmi material is? I'd assume it's a lot thicker than ABS vacuum molded material, would you say filling the thicker material with bondo is easier than patching ABS with paste/fiiller?
 

Very much so, twice if not 3 times as thick, varies in places.

 

I use a fiberglass filler as it is stronger than bondo, then go over the fiberglass filler with a thin layer of bondo as it gives a smoother finish.

 

Fixing ABS is easier as you don't need to fill and paint (although you can add some ABS paste into cracks, sand, compound and polish, but most don't) Normally gluing a pieces of ABS behind is all you need, although you can still get cracks a little further from the original crack so adding a long piece of ABS behind is better ;) 

 

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