Dec 16, 2012

The TK Project - Part Three

Part Three

For Parts 1 & 2 click HERE

Progress on the TK project makes me hopeful that I will have the armor completed by the end of January, February at the latest. Today was an intensive trimming and bucket-building day.

Mark, a 501st Legion member, came over and helped me assemble the pieces of the helmet, or bucket. Mark has built several sets of TK armor and knows more about about armor than anyone else I know. Mark is also the person who helped me get into the 501st Legion as well.

Mark did most of the work assembling the bucket while I continued trimming, and it was done in a little less than three hours, much less time than it would have taken me.

Did I mention yet how much time and effort goes into putting together Stormtrooper armor?

Mark works on the bucket and Gary helps with the trimming. There is a LOT of trimming involved, and three Dremels are better than one.

The ears are attached to the outside of the bucket and are one of the trickiest parts to trim, as the curve must hug the side of the bucket to minimize unsightly gaps.

The ear on the left is untrimmed; at the right is a trimmed ear, ready to be attached.

Left: A completed ear attached to the bucket. I will be replacing the gold screws with the white screws used to fasten switch plate covers to wall  electrical outlets, as those screws are white.

Right: Mark has clamped the back of the bucket to the front in before using the screws to attach the ears, which will also attach all the pieces together.

Below: I work on trimming the excess ABS plastic away from each piece. When the parts are molded in the vacuum-molding machine, there is plastic around the edges of each part where it is attached to the frame of the machine. This plastic must be cut away, following the "seam" visible on the inside of each piece

Dremel cutting and sanding bits are invaluable in this process. By the end of the day it looks like there's been a snow storm, with all the white flakes of plastic that are flying

Trying out my bucket. The lenses still have to be added to the inside, and the black rubber gasket that rings the front seam put on, and the decals and paint after that.

There is just enough room inside to add the padding that will make the bucket sit firmly on my head so it won't move about while it's being worn.

Some members install small fans in their buckets to reduce the condensation that develops on the inside, making it hard to see; I will probably install at least two. 

Below: the inside of the assembled bucket

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