WWWIP 2019-2020: Kyle's Week 8 Progress

WWWIP 2019-2020: Kyle's Week 8 Progress

Hello fellow crafters! Kyle here with our 8th week of progress, and we’re getting into the final stretch of our armor making journey. This week I made two more armor pieces, added some more bevels to existing pieces, and began rigging the armor. I also began testing out a new sealing method for the Lumin's Workshop foam.

Sometimes as you get to the end of a project you start noticing missing details. I had to backtrack and make the wing spikes for the knee guards. I decided to make them two layers to allow more depth with the bevels and curvature.

In order for Harl to continue working on the details of the bodysuit, we needed to mark where the leg armor would go. So we placed them on her while wearing the suit and took reference pictures and notes.

While we were looking at the armor, we decided that the hip plates would benefit from adding a bevel to the edges. So I marked them and dremel sanded them.

To attach the leg armor to the bodysuit, we’re going to use sew on purse magnets. One half of the magnets are flat, but the other half is about ¼” thick. To get the armor to lay flat against the fabric, I decided to trace and dremel pockets into the inside of the armor. Once I dremelled deep enough, the thicker magnet halfs fit in perfectly! I super glued them into place, and then added a little extra super glue over the corners.

Now onto the fun part! We’re going all out with this armor and using an HVLP (high volume, low pressure) spray gun to seal and paint our parts. These can be a bit of an investment, but if you plan to make a lot of armor or props and want your paint to go on smoothly, an HVLP will outperform rattle can spray paints any day of the week. You can find parts for them at home improvement stores or online. 

Some of the sealants we’re working with are highly toxic, so we use a spray booth and wear respirators to be safe. 

This was uncharted territory for me, but we were lucky enough to have helpful advice from Jarman Props along the way. He made the 3D printed armor parts, and has many years of expertise in professional painting.

To start out, we are using a highly flexible gloss coating to seal the EVA foam. Since I haven’t worked with it before, I test it out on a scrap of foam first. The key to learning any paint process is to test it out on scraps before you move on to your finished armor pieces.

A great idea when putting multiple coats of anything onto your armor is to keep a tally of your coats as you go. It can help you find a balance for your seal, or the right amount of color if your paint isn’t as opaque. And it can keep you from forgetting if you are multitasking, which will be pretty common for me as I wait for each coat to dry.

Jarman recommended one light coat, one medium coat, and a couple of heavier coats to seal our foam up. Here’s how it looked from start to finish.

After I practiced on a few scraps I became comfortable enough to begin coating the rest of the foam pieces. This will take time and patience to do properly, so I will have to wait until next week to show you pictures of all the armor together.

So with that said, we still have to Bondo, sand, and primer a couple of 3D printed pieces, and then we can get into the final painting stages for all of our armor. Tune in next week for our last blog post!

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