It is currently Sun Dec 05, 2021 2:30 am

All times are UTC


THE PROP DEN is primarily a Darth Vader Prop Discussion Board, but we also deal with other Star Wars Props as well as Prop Replicas from other movies. If you do not yet have an account, set one up, sign in and jump into the Vader Prop Discussions!


Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 40 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next
Author Enter your Message here
 Post subject: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 5:15 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
Will this never end?

Well, here I go again. Around nine years ago I bought an SPFX ANH casting. And I thought, AWESOME paint and play.
ImageImage

Of course, no such luck. I'd spent the previous six years trying to figure out what the frack was wrong with my Don Post
classic action and had literally destroyed that helmet by the time my SPFX arrived. Upon comparing the two helmets, it was easy
to see the problem all along had been that the dome was too small on the DP classic action. That and the fact that the riser
totally miss-positions the dome. After burying it in putty, sanding and puttying it again and again, then cutting it up, trying to
fix the riser, I was finally ready to throw in the trash.

Image

In the end it started to look right, but only after I had sanded down all the facial features till they were closer to the comparative size of the helmet.

Image

It was a huge letdown. Especially since all the adds talked about how it had been cast directly from an actual ESB screen used helmet.

And now it looked like I was going to start all over again.

So the first thing I did was start taking pictures, since I realized that the ultimate problem with the first helmet had been an undersized dome
and not any actual problem with the face. I did my best to replicate screen shots and look for variance. Right away I noticed that there was some serious issues.
The sides of the facemask were seriously sunk in and the front of the neck sagged. When viewed straight on, the facemask had the shape of a peanut,
and I could tell the dome was squished in on the sides as well. It was gonna take some serious work.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 5:27 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
So I whipped out the putty and got to work.

And I puttied.


Image

...and I puttied

Image

...till I finally ended up with this in the summer of 2005.

ImageImage

I was very happy with how the paint turned out. But to me it still looked completely wrong.
Again, there was an issue with the shape and I wasn't sure what it was, since I didn't have anything around that was correctly
shaped to compare it to.

So out came the sandpaper and the putty once again...


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 6:07 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
After quite a lot of work...

Image

Somewhere around 2008, I finally felt as if maybe I was making some headway.
But there was a problem. My favorite ANH picture. No matter what I did. I could not match it.

After staring at it for a long time and comparing the pictures, I finally noticed the following...

Image

The red lines indicate the true positioning of the edge of the center strip on the far side of the forehead and eyebrow overhang. I could see
that all this stuck out further than it should, and so I sanded... And I sanded...

...'til sometime around 2011, when I ended up with this...

Image


But what I had not ultimately realized, was that because this stuck further out, in an attempt to fix it, I had assumed that the cheek faces were too
far back, so I had puttied them out (as seen above, the green line indicates how much further I had puttied them out) and this was inadvertently
adding to the problem. For once I had done a whole lot more sanding, the problem still existed. In fact, now it seemed worse.

But the reason it seemed worse, was because I had also sanded the nose back almost an eighth of an inch. In the end I ended up doing the same thing to
this helmet that I had done to that DP classic action five years before... And then came that great wonderful day, when I got my hands on an EFX.

Once again, the problem was in the dome, for not only was it squished, but as the pic shows below it was stretched in other areas.

Image

I used the ESB stunt helmet to illustrate just how bad it was. I skewed the picture to match the shape with the arrows showing the direction of distortion.
Having finally realized this, I felt I was done. And so it sat...


Last edited by Darth Obsession on Fri May 23, 2014 8:25 am, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 6:41 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
But I couldn't let it go to waste...

I haven't worked on it for nearly 8 years just to throw it away.

I've always wanted a Darth Vader helmet. But what I really wanted was an ROTJ Darth Vader helmet.

When I got the EFX helmet, I had no problem matching it up to my favorite ANH picture. So I knew the shape was correct.

So now having a helmet around with the correct shape, I began to look again at this SPFX.
Using the EFX as a guide, I began reworking the facemask.

Image

In my attempt to fix it originally, I had filed down the face of the nose and the corner of the black cheek almost and eighth of an inch
and I had built out the gray face cheek more than an eighth of an inch. I noticed that the bottom of the left eye socket also sagged as
well in the area right beneath it. After rebuilding those out with putty and removing all the putty from the left cheekbone, I can definitely
see it is starting to take shape. I took the big plunge and cut the chin hole larger. But I didn't have the tools to really do it right,
so I put that off for now.

And then there was the dome... OMG!

This was NOT gonna be fun...


Last edited by Darth Obsession on Fri May 23, 2014 8:29 am, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 7:10 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
The dome...

The first thing I had to do was strip it all down and see what I had.

My SPFX dome was cast pretty thick and probably weighed twice as much as the dome on my EFX. But now it had so much putty on it
that it weighed twice as much as my whole EFX helmet! The good news was, the thicker the putty, the easier it was to remove it
and in some areas, it was half an inch thick. I was amazed at how much lighter it was once all that putty was gone.

But how do I straighten it out?

Unlike my DP classic action, I couldn't just heat it up, bend it, then rapidly re-cool it.

So I got myself a fiberglass repair kit.

I started cutting out the worst areas and laying in new fiberglass. The downside of this, is that I will not be able to cast new areas.
I will have to build them with fiberglass sheets and try to shape them as I go. Ultimately, the external skin of the dome will be made
smooth with putty.

Image
Image
Image
Image


Last edited by Darth Obsession on Fri May 23, 2014 8:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 8:11 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
Nasty work...

So far it's working better than I thought it would. Today I spent a couple of hours grinding down the right side of the
forehead that sticks out to far. I need to get that figured out before I can ultimately start laying the resin on that side
of the helmet. I've ground down a quarter of an inch and still have some way to go, but I thought my Dremmel tool was
gonna catch on fire, so I took a break.

I've been trying to decide which Jedi helmet I'm going to do. And it's come down to these two...

Image

or..

Image

The second helmet is my favorite helmet, period. And it is ultimately my desire to replicate this one. But if I had a second favorite helmet
it would be the one above it. They are both similar, but the top helmet is sharper and more angular in the face, it also has 'blacked out' grills
in the teeth and even though you can't see them in these images, the lower helmet does not. There is also about 10 times as much reference
material available on the first helmet as there is on the second.

But in the end I think it's gonna come down to how my helmet ultimately looks once I've worked out all the shape issues.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 8:51 am 
User avatar

Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 5:56 pm
Posts: 1271
Location: Germany
Speachless... you are crazy :ac10


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 9:33 am 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Aug 31, 2006 8:58 am
Posts: 10831
Location: Denmark
Indeed. But the cool kind of crazy.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2014 10:05 am 
Random avatar

Joined: Sat Oct 28, 2006 1:51 pm
Posts: 1394
Location: Geislingen, Germany
I see lots of talent. Great work so far. I like both of your prefered helmet styles. Cant wait to see the progress :thumbsup


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Mon May 26, 2014 1:58 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
Thank you, thank you!
... And yes it does hurt.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2014 2:19 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
Update

I've worked some more on the dome over the past few days.
Ground down that right front area over the eye some more, and started to apply resin to the side skirt, that
was previously just glass cloth. I had to build up the area behind where I have been grinding, as I am actually grinding
through the fiberglass to the inside.

Image

I keep having to go back and tap on areas of the inside and outside as the resin dries, to get the shapes and contours I need.

Image

I have to go back and recheck constantly to maintain the correct angle on that skirt as it slightly sags over time. When it gets hard enough, I will go back and start
building the lip by wrapping the edge in glass cloth, then shaping the lip as I go by pushing the cloth back toward the edge on the inside.

Image

Image

I am trying to replace as much puttying as I can with resin. So I am layering in resin on the repair to the other side, then once it hardens going back
and sanding down the high spots and adding resin to low spots. I will then use putty just to tweak it.

Image

Image

Loads of fun!


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2014 12:26 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2006 12:12 am
Posts: 3114
So let me get this straight, you are modifying an SPFX ANH helmet to be like a ROTJ helmet? And you spent years before that trying to do the same to a DP helmet? So if you don't mind me asking, why are you showing this now? I mean, if you were working on this back in 2005 I would have remembered a thread by you about it....did you show any during the time you worked on this? And if my memory does serve me well, then why all of a sudden now you show this years-long project? Why not just get a GH ROTJ helmet as there were at least two or three available for sale during that time, including the master casting, not to mention the TM ROTJ helmet run. This is very baffling to me why you would go through all of this trouble if you are that interested in having a screen accurate ROTJ.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 3:11 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
Sorry, I can't figure out how to post a link. Check out WIP, page 2. "SPFX ANH - A Vader Odyssey (or a Nightmare on Vader Street)".

Quote:
if you were working on this back in 2005 I would have remembered a thread by you about it....


I wasn't on the forum in 2005. I joined the forum in 2010. But I wasn't trying to make an ROTJ out of it. I always wanted an ROTJ, but I always completed
this helmet is an ANH. Until now that is.

These pics are a few weeks old, but I did a full 360 around both of the helmets, which helped me to figure out where the problems were.
Image
Image

By the time I joined the forum though, I'd already spent five years in frikken' hell with this helmet.

And as I said before, I spent eight years working on that stupid classic action. And was never satisfied. And I didn't know I could buy any reasonably
accurate castings until I came across Phil's posting on eBay. I tried to buy DP deluxe a few years earlier from a vendor on the Internet, they sent my money
back and said that it had been discontinued.
And I tried to get another casting from Phil, but of course he ripped me off. That MF still owes me $515, or an ESB.

Anyway, while I'm here, it's still going well... So, here's an update...

Image

Don't be fooled, it's nowhere near done.

Image

Rebuilding the right side of the dome is going better than expected. I have to apply one more full sheet of fiberglass mat and that should get me in the ballpark with that.

Image

I also began working on the left temple, which was sunk in a bit too much.

Image

Did a slightly better cut out on the chin grille opening and started working with the sides of the nose. Although the bottom pic makes my teeth grills look 'wiggly', I assure you they are straight.

Image

All in all, I am pretty satisfied with how it's coming out. I don't know if it really comes out in the pictures, but this helmet was really jacked up. Although I guess I shouldn't complain, I've seen a lot worse.

But if all goes well, hopefully by the end of this month. Of course, I know I just jinxed myself. Damn.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:44 am 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Aug 31, 2006 8:58 am
Posts: 10831
Location: Denmark
Be careful when using an ANH base as reference for RotJ.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: WIP - Screen acurate ROTJ Vader helmet from ANH ashes
PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 2:07 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 6:45 am
Posts: 234
Location: Northern California
No Humor Man wrote:
Be careful when using an ANH base as reference for RotJ.


I'm really only using it to get the general shapes and proportions down. :salut

Image

I was amazed that I could find Duplicolor black pearl so easy. I've been using GM318 charcoal grey, but that has some metallic in it.
So it wasn't quite what I wanted to see. I did a test and really like what I see. :thumbsup

I've been focusing on the face mask, fine detailing and photo matching as much as possible at this point. Still got a TON of work to do.
Got the chin grille opening in the ballpark.That was a major pain as Phil cast this facemask thick. It was as thick as 1/4 inch. I had
to grind and cut and grind and file and.....finally got the mock-up grille (pictured) to fit in there and be close to the surface as it should be.

I had to completely rebuild the neck. There is no part of this mask that has not been manufactured or modified by me.

Still got to figure out a way to build the riser. My first attempt didn't work out. :banger

Did some more work on Frankendome. I can see slowly it starting to take shape, but I still have a mountain of glass work to do before I use the glass filler
to smooth out the exterior. I am trying to eliminate all the putty. I still have to grind off the putty and paint on top of the dome and see what needs work there.
At some point in the past, I ground the eye overhangs up and used putty to fix them. Now I am working to restore them with fiberglass.

Pretty much seems to be leaning toward this mask at this time. But if I do go this way, I think that I will omit things like , the run in the paint
on the dome, which is glassy smooth , but has been sprayed on-set with a water removable dulling spray. some on the facemask as well. Notice
all the fingerprints on that upper black mandible.

Image

Back to the grind! :whip2


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 40 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next

All times are UTC


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
Blue Moon by Trent © 2007
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group
Hosted by Freeforum.ca, get your free forum now! TOS | Support Forums | Report a violation
buy web visitors
MultiForums powered by echoPHP phpBB MultiForums