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Cosplay: Making lightweight 'fake' armor.

Mostlyjoe13Mostlyjoe13 Thanks Gort!The Dream RealmRegistered User regular
edited September 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
I've been studying different cost-effective ways of making cosplay armor. I've got a few pieces that need a curve like a breast plate, and shin guards. As it stands, cardboard so far isn't gonna do it and I don't want ot spend a mint on costly resin work.

So, have you ever had to build fake armor before? Any ideas on cheap methods?

Mostlyjoe13 on
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PSN ID - Mostlyjoe Steam ID -mostlydeadman

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  • matt has a problemmatt has a problem Six pack on a dick Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    great+stuff.jpg

    Usually around $3 a can. Just make a frame out of cardboard or chicken wire, cover with foam, then shave and paint.

    h1DI1.jpg
    All my fuckin life I lived a normal fuckin life
  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    That is amazing.

  • matt has a problemmatt has a problem Six pack on a dick Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    There is a pretty decent amount in each can too. And the amount that you see come out of the nozzle usually expands to another 2-3 times that size.

    h1DI1.jpg
    All my fuckin life I lived a normal fuckin life
  • matt has a problemmatt has a problem Six pack on a dick Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    You could always also do just a total soft foam rubber set, and I dunno, paper over it to have a smooth surface to paint armor-y.

    h1DI1.jpg
    All my fuckin life I lived a normal fuckin life
  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Man the applications for that is amazing in cosplay armor.

  • DanMachDanMach Registered User
    edited September 2010
    If you want to do it yourself for under 100$ you COULD cover yourself in foil, lay some fiberglass over yourself(ONE HALF AT A TIME. Do NOT encase yourself.), apply resin and let it dry. About an hour should do. Pop it off.. apply 3 or 4 more layers of fiberglass to strengthen it. Then apply 2 part foam on the outside and shape it how you want it. Then fiberglass over that.

    Then do the same for your back. Bamn. Chest plate.

  • MrDelishMrDelish Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Cover with what kind of foam?

  • Mostlyjoe13Mostlyjoe13 Thanks Gort! The Dream RealmRegistered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Usually around $3 a can. Just make a frame out of cardboard or chicken wire, cover with foam, then shave and paint.

    Bless you man, that's a great idea. How easy is it to cut? Should I use one of the heat knives they use for modeling foam? I'm going to create a breast plate, a wing structure, and a shoulder 'light'.

    My other issue is developing a support structure built into the breast plate to hold up wings. I want the frame to rest on my shoulders and my back (I'll build a double U-frame). Hmmm.


    How smooth does this stuff look painted? I don't want it looking too 'foamy'.

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    PSN ID - Mostlyjoe Steam ID -mostlydeadman
  • matt has a problemmatt has a problem Six pack on a dick Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Usually around $3 a can. Just make a frame out of cardboard or chicken wire, cover with foam, then shave and paint.

    Bless you man, that's a great idea. How easy is it to cut? Should I use one of the heat knives they use for modeling foam? I'm going to create a breast plate, a wing structure, and a shoulder 'light'.

    My other issue is developing a support structure built into the breast plate to hold up wings. I want the frame to weight on my shoulders and my back (I'll build a U-frame). Hmmm.


    How smooth does this stuff look painted? I don't want it looking too 'foamy'.
    I use just a serrated knife and a rasp, like this

    HoofRasp.jpg

    It's sandable too, once you have a general shape. A coat of sealer then a coat or two of paint and it has a nice smooth look.

    h1DI1.jpg
    All my fuckin life I lived a normal fuckin life
  • McGibsMcGibs Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    I'm also planning on making a suit of armor sometime over the next year. I'll be making mine out of sheet styrene (plasticard) which can be heated with a heatgun or oven and shaped, then rivited together. I think it's about as close as you can get to actual armouring without using metal.

  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Look into expanded high density rigid pvc sheet. Trade names are sintra and forex. Think of foam core poster board, but made entirely out of pvc and you can heat it with a heat gun to bend it. From what I understand, its used in sign making a lot.

  • Ani_BAni_B Registered User
    edited September 2010
    This dude made some amazing Mass Effect 2 armors from EVA closed cell sheet foam. This forum is full of people making amazing costumes and props, and so is full of really good advice.

    Felt dark planet turn under my feet and knew what cats know that makes them scream like babies in night.
  • SimpsoniaSimpsonia Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    While I've never tried making anything of this nature, why don't you try looking into Aluminum Flashing like this http://www.amazon.com/Amerimax-68320-20x10-Aluminum-Flashing/dp/B000H5OEB4. You'd get enough to make 2 or 3 breastplates most likely, it is real metal so it looks metalic without paint, it's thin enough that you can shape and bend it without much trouble, but strong enough to hold a shape well, and it's aluminum so it's incredibly lightweight. I use this stuff in miniature modeling over plasticard all the time because it's so good.

  • shugaraeshugarae Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Look into expanded high density rigid pvc sheet. Trade names are sintra and forex. Think of foam core poster board, but made entirely out of pvc and you can heat it with a heat gun to bend it. From what I understand, its used in sign making a lot.

    This stuff is pretty amazing! Cheapest foamed pvc (generic sintra) I've found here.

    Also, I know a lot of people who've had success with craft foam (but also a lot of ppl who have not). This person has some good techniques though, if you decide to go the craft foam route.

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  • see317see317 Registered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Here's a pretty thorough walk through that has impressive results.

    Not too many pictures of the completed project though.
    4880605361_d6ce58f2f8.jpg

    Ringo wrote: »
    Well except what see317 said. That guy's always wrong.
  • Mostlyjoe13Mostlyjoe13 Thanks Gort! The Dream RealmRegistered User regular
    edited September 2010
    Thanks everyone. This is really useful!

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    PSN ID - Mostlyjoe Steam ID -mostlydeadman
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