Clone Armor

Clone Armor

It’s been almost a year and Wonderfest fast approaching. I really wanted to have my Jedi Clone Armor ready for this year. Let me say this,”This build is not for the faint of heart.” There are no instructions, no alignment pins and no friendly 1-800 help desk. This build will take the skills of an advanced model builder. One that knows no fear and can handle all that aspects of the hobby from cut and trim to fit and finish. A master model builder if you will. Thusly, I”M SCREWED.

What you see, is what I came home with. A box full of molded plastic. This is taking every skill I’ve learned plus a few new ones. Before even trimming any flash from the plastic, I sat down with Youtube to see what others might have done or suggest. The good thing is that there are so many people building so many things from plastic or foam. You will be able to find many different techniques and you can choose the one that best suits your skills and abilities. I found FOO of Foomart Productions. He takes you through the build of his Republic Commando Armor with tutorials on everything including wiring electronics. Luckily for me. I already have that skill. It still took me about a week to get up the courage to cut on the armor. There’s only one way this is going to get done. So, it was time to be bold. Oh dear god.

I started with the leg armor. Specifically, the calves. They seem fairly straight forward. Foo suggested using Devon. And I did use that on my first seam. Foo always says,”Make sure your using this in a well ventilated area.” Well, he’s not kidding. The stuff, stinks, its messy, but is does work. As long as you don’t might the wait time. He also suggests using industrial strength velcro. This is the method I finally ended up using 95% of the time. I just like the readjustability factor of the velcro. It really works well. They call this the clamshell method. . This would be my suggestion over anything else.  One thing I didn’t factor in was the fact that my calves are different sizes. It was very important to test fit and mark the left and right. And this will be the theme for the entire build. At the time, I was also test fitting in whatever pants i was wearing at the time. Do yourself a favor and get some bike pants or something similar to what your going to be wearing under your armor. You can always get another pair if you wreck these in the build. But they will be mostly covered up anyway. Once both calves where done I moved to the thighs. They

Devon on the left, velcro on the right.

Hot glued tab for garter.

Hot glued tab for garter.

I decided to take a break from the legs and work on the upper body. Although there is a butt and cod to clamshell for the lower torso. I’m not going to use them. In order to clamshell the upper pieces for my body. I had to devise a way to hinge the shoulders and sides. I found some 3mm foam sheets at  Hobby Lobby. The were soft and pliable, are easy to cut, paint would stick to it as would the velcro. Using two 6″x9″ strips with velcro I made and adjustable diaphram pieces for the sides. The plastic shoulder straps had to be heated and shaped to the proper angle. Using 1/4 20 screws and lock washers held it all together at the shoulder. I wanted to use the shoulder armor I made for my Jedi costume instead of the ones in the kit. The seems a bit large. Again the foam was perfect to cover the gap between the chest and backpack. While also giving me a place to attach the shoulderimageimage armor plate to. By this point I’m starting to get excited. Separately the piece look good. But we all now that just because the piece are good, doesn’t mean the part come together well as a whole. I still have more trimming and adjusting to do. So, for know I’m happy with the progress.

2 weeks after Wonderfest

Sorry for the lack of updates prior to Wonderfest. I had to work feverishly on the armor to get it done in time. Deadlines in a strange way are somewhat liberating. They force you to  make hard choices and live with the results. To a certain degree. The wonderful thing about modeling is that you can always  re-prime and repaint later.  And here it is.  Completely by accident the photo what take in a very patriotic manner. And I love the way it looks.

Completely by accident the photo was taken in a very patriotic manner. And I love the way it looks.

 

The picture was taken seconds after I got the armor on. I used it to straighten out the armor and adjust my tunic and sash. Everyone seemed to like it. The guys from the 501st said it looked good. I think I even got a nod from some guys that do this kind of modeling on a more professional level. That made me feel good. The kids always love it, despite always being called Mace Windu. The upside was that the hotel was a bit chilly and the armor kept me toasty warm.
Now that Wonderfest 2013 is a fond memory. The questions is once again. What do I do next year? I can worry about that later. It’s not like I have a deadline to meet.

 

 

 

Clone Armor Helmet     What armor would be complete without a helmet. So far, I’ve only removed the flash. Stay posted for the continuation of the Armor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After looking at some photos of this years Wonderfest. I decided that my shoulder bells looked too small. Luckily, I had never used the ones that came with my armor.

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Trimmed the flash,primed and painted.

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The guard was masked for the transfer of the Jedi Logo.

 

 

 

 

 

Jedi Logo cut from paper and glued to shoulder bell.

Jedi Logo cut from paper and glued to shoulder bell.

 

The image was traced,trimmed with an Exacto and the tape removed. Then into the paint booth.

The image was traced,trimmed with an Exacto and the tape removed. Then into the paint booth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My homemade guard on the Left. The Clone Armor on the right.

CIRDhxXUcAEapxB I’m starting to realize that the armor is a work in process. There’s will always be something that I need to tweak, change modify or replace.  The last  touches I did for this years Wonderfest were  replacing the shoulder pads, adding color and of course the helmet.  It’s much like and old car that you never complete.

 

 

Wonderfest 2015, they had a green screen.

Wonderfest 2015, they had a green screen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Its been awhile since I’ve done anything significant to the armor. I decided to add a lower torso covering to give a slimmer look. This is my first attempt at any type of foam armor. After much research by way of EvilTed and Chinbeard (Bill Doran) I got some mats and started cutting. I’m mostly okay with the design. the only problem now it that I can’t get completely dress by myself.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

While rummage for odds and sorts and having the armor fresh in mind. I came across the remains of the Star Trek Defiant model. I’ve been holding onto that kit for something and now that something has come about. It is going to be a jetpack for the Clone armor.

 

     Here is the final product, but this is the second version of this jetpack. The first one had a jet nozzle at he top. My son said it looked like a showerhead. Once he said that I couldn’t unsee the showerhead. So, I changed it to the pointy thing. I knew I didn’t want it to be a rocket or missile. I’m calling this a spare lightsaber for my Jedi General. Never hurts to be prepared.