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 Post subject: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Wed Feb 03, 2016 8:59 pm 
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Location: Dallas, TX, USA
Now over 20 years old, the Don Post Deluxe Darth Vader Helmet was at its release the most accurate licensed Vader helmet you could buy. The sanded down and softened features of the DPDLX, its reversed paint scheme, the inaccurate dome mount, the sparkly in-your-face gunmetal paint, etc. left many unfulfilled.

Some amazing authentic casts have been discovered. Impressive fan-made helmets have been created (many of which started off as DPDLX's or casts thereof). The eFx Limited/Legend Vader is generally regarded as the most accurate licensed helmet today. I won't dispute that claim or debate it.

In this thread I want to highlight some of the hidden details in the DPDLX. Details which survived the sanding, the smoothing, and the obfuscating paint.

So this thread is to offer a bit of respect to the old guy. And to those who made it, a nod of thanks for sparing the sanding somewhat to allow some of the authentic details to remain. They are there if you know where to look, and how to look for them.


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Wed Feb 03, 2016 9:14 pm 
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Looking at the right cheek in particular, here's a comparison of the DPDLX versus a screen capture from ANH Tantive IV.

The top photo of the DPDLX was taken using indirect lighting. This reduces the direct reflection from the glittery surface and helps to highlight those sections that are slightly higher or lower in depth, giving us a better view of any surface features under the paint.


The viewpoint was not the same, so I did apply a bit of perspective correction to modify the curvature. But it was only applied to the entire image, not to any specific area. i.e. I didn't cheat! Adjustments to brightness and contrast were also made.

Here's a top/bottom single image comparison followed by an animated GIF of the two overlayed and blended:


Image


Image


Anyone else see where the two match up? Or am I Vader-goggling? :disg


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:41 am 
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Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado
Respectfully, I think the Vader goggles are on. I'm not sure what you are comparing. I'm curious what the DPDeluxe photo is that you are using to compare? Is that a snap of helmet you own?

We have a pretty decent look at the unpainted DP Deluxe Master which is owned by Bill McBride and the cheeks are smooth as glass:

Image

I've got a soft spot for the DP Deluxe as well. I owned DPD #166/165 that I bought back in 1995 (the face had plate #166 and the dome had plate #165). I currently own two DP Deluxes: the one that I reworked a few years ago (number unconfirmed) and then #79 that I bought off eBay about a year ago.

I've also been collecting photos of them for years as they come up for sale on eBay or elsewhere just to see how many numbers I can find.

Cheers!

Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2016 4:04 pm 
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I have to agree with Mr Carty here, and I still have a fondness for the Don Post Deluxe too.


I bought number 888 back in 1997, and after drooling and lusting over the ad I'd seen in the Star Wars Insider magazine for so long it was such a thrill to own it. I bought it from a dealer who'd come over here to the UK from the States to see a mutual friend and was displaying it at con I went to. It was his personal prop and he was hoping to sell it at the event but hadn't had any takers by the end of the day so offered it to me at trade value, which was a good bit less than retail. I don't think he really wanted to have to take it back on the plane home with him, he planned to just get himself another when he got back but I found out later from my friend that by the time he tried they'd been discontinued!! (I felt for the guy).

I eventually sold it on to another friend who'd seen it at the same event but couldn't afford it at the time, so he ended up the happy owner but I sometimes wonder about looking for another one, just for nostalgia's sake. Happy times.


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2016 7:46 pm 
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That area at the cheek is notorious for creating paint irregularities, mostly when you paint the face mask lying down on it's back. I created a similar air bubble deviation in that spot when painting my vac-formed face mask some years ago.


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2016 7:29 pm 
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Well I've sobered up a bit from my DPDLX Vader-goggling stupor and am beginning to agree with you guys that fine surface textures aren't likely to be present. When there are lots of dots to connect it's tempting to see what one wants to see! I think the circles and curves show up as they do because of the inherent shape plus the effects of any paint irregularities, and not from fine surface textures that might have remained.

Hey Dave, yes that picture was from my DPDLX #525. I should have tried a little harder to get the viewpoint to match the screen reference I was comparing it to. There's a little bit of grittiness in the surface when I run my finger across it, but that's probably the metallic bits in the silvery gunmetal paint. I also save pictures from ebay whenever a DPDLX goes up for sale (#665 and #709 currently are listed). You're probably seeing the same thing I am which is that some of these DPDLX don't look the same as others. And not just some random way but like there's two different DPDLX types seemingly produced from two distinct molds. I tried to match my DPDLX faceplate with that master and I simply couldn't do it. But I could easily match my DPCA face plate to it. And I think the earlier DPDLX masks would also match that master. The blue rubber bands at the base of the neck are some of my initial attempts to correct it by narrowing it a bit. The overall size of the DPCA is about 8% smaller than the DPDLX.

Image

Before moving on to other aspects of the DPDLX that I think are hidden details, here's another comp of the right cheek using a better screen capture reference. Specifically I'd be looking for constellations of points connected together that seem to match up across images. I stretched the DPDLX image some to overlay the screen capture, but applied no other image adjustments. If there are matches, they may be due to matches of surface shape rather than to surface features.

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Thu Feb 11, 2016 2:19 am 
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Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado
That's awesome! If you want to share any more pics of your DPD I'd love to see them :)

I've seen that DPD #665 up for sale on eBay for months now. I'm not sure why that guy thinks he can get $1200 for it but I guess he's going to keep trying.

As far as hidden details are concerned I don't want to burst any bubbles but I've stripped and repainted two of the beasts and there was nothing extra underneath the paint on either of them. Both had casting flaws filled in here and there (the first way more than the second) but there were no paint drips or warts or anything. The surface of the casting was as barren as the master casting was.

Cheers!

Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2016 2:23 pm 
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I haven't posted to this thread in a while not because I haven't been searching but because it is hard to find the details I'm searching for. They are hidden quite well if in fact it is evidence of its being derived down the line from an original helmet after many casts, pulls, sanding, and cleanup. I'm not trying to show that the DPDLX is uniquely accurate in any way. I'm just trying to highlight some of the not-so-obvious details that demonstrate it's derived from something authentic.

Here's a comparison between a ANH screenshot and a single image of the DPDLX with whole image scaling, contrast, and brightness adjustments (none applied to particular areas only) in an attempt to highlight similarities in the right cheek detail.

https://youtu.be/7afusRsbktU


Last edited by banthapoodoo on Thu Mar 31, 2016 9:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2016 4:52 pm 
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Err... why wouldn't it be derived from something authentic? I doubt very much anyone thinks it isn't. The most likely candidate is that it is a copy of a RotJ tour helmet.


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2016 9:16 pm 
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No Humor Man wrote:
Err... why wouldn't it be derived from something authentic? I doubt very much anyone thinks it isn't. The most likely candidate is that it is a copy of a RotJ tour helmet.

Point taken. I reworded it from "I'm just trying to find some hints that it is derived from something authentic." to
"I'm just trying to highlight some of the not-so-obvious details that demonstrate it's derived from something authentic."


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 9:38 am 
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Well... that's not exactly better. We know it is derived from something authentic. However... whether details haven't been completely sanded away - both on the Don Post master as well as the tour helmet or whatever authentic helmet source was used is another matter. I take it that is what you are interested in finding? Remaining details. :thumbsup


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2016 7:31 pm 
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Yes exactly. I will next be showing some pics of the nose tip from left and right sides under different lighting angles to highlight the curvatures and detail there. They differ from how it was painted. I agree it's derived from a ROTJ tour, but I too haven't seen that anyone has determined the lineage of where those came from.


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 8:48 am 
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No matter what authentic cast I could get my hands on nowadays, nothing could ever replace the feeling I felt looking at the Don Post back in the 90's looking at the Star Wars magazine and finally getting my hands one .

(A bit like when i received my 1st FX stormtrooper armor from the Wookie Cantina ).

To this day the Dp deluxe remains sentimentally my favorite Vader helmet in my collection and as inaccurate as it is I'd never sell it.


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 10:43 pm 
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HDPE wrote:
No matter what authentic cast I could get my hands on nowadays, nothing could ever replace the feeling I felt looking at the Don Post back in the 90's looking at the Star Wars magazine and finally getting my hands one .

(A bit like when i received my 1st FX stormtrooper armor from the Wookie Cantina ).

To this day the Dp deluxe remains sentimentally my favorite Vader helmet in my collection and as inaccurate as it is I'd never sell it.



I love this post. In the end, this is what it's all about. I feel the same way about my RS Stormtrooper helmet that just went up on the shelf in my office.

I've always wanted a Stormtrooper helmet, and I've always wanted a Vader Helmet. I was 8 years old when Star Wars originally hit the theaters, and it was the following year a grade school buddy of mine showed up with this Stormtrooper helmet. He let me wear it, and from that point on I was hooked - just never new how to get one, much less afford one that 'looked' like the read deal.

After all these years, and with a renewed sense of discovery leading up to the release of TFA, I found what I was looking for in terms of the ST helmet.

Everyone has their own reasons and attachments for collecting. When you find what makes you happy, who cares what others think? I know there are neighbors who think I'm nuts for coughing up any kind of dough I spent on the RS. I couldn't care less. I look up at that bumpy/wonky white lid, and it brings a smile to my face. And better yet, it brings a HUGE smile to my kid's faces - especially when they wear it.

Now I've shifted my focus to a Vader Helmet to place next to my Trooper helmet. ...I already have it's place cleared out. :D


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 Post subject: Re: Don Post Deluxe: Revealing the Hidden Details
PostPosted: Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:32 pm 
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DPDLX fans sounding off! I like it!

I've got some nose tip detail pics to post in a few minutes (exciting huh?), but here's an off-topic pic I'll put up first. Just a cool looking pic, I think, while I was experimenting with different light sources and directions. Titling it was "all too easy."

Image


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