Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Space, 1929

Continuing with the retro trend, while I struggle to get the CAD files completed on the Raygun, I'm breaking into more traditional prop methods on another project.

The task is to take these parts:

And make them part of a primitive space suit -- think Rocketship X-M (of course, they had the excuse that they were exploring Mars, and at the time it looked plausible that one wouldn't need a full pressure suit, just supplementary oxygen.)

Insignia for the helmet worked...laser-cut 1/16th acrylic and hot-formed it to the helmet using my heat-shrink gun. Laser cut a hole in the center for a super magnet that holds the insignia on.

Started forming a mask; made a duct-tape dummy, in the process of reinforcing it before I make a sculpt then pull ABS or similar over it using the shop vacuum former machine. Then I'll laser-cut strap holders from more acrylic, hot-bending them around d-rings.

The lenses are going less well. Tried shaping both acrylic rod and multiple cuts of 1/8" acrylic. The later came closer to filling the narrow triangular vision slit in the helmet, but I'm not happy with it. So current idea is to take a mold off the helmet, probably with silicone (and I wish I had some thickener for it), then make a reverse mold and lastly cast some clear acrylic resin.

All of this is made a little more difficult by budget woes. A bunch of bills came due at the same time and I still don't have enough work (or, rather, work that pays enough). Stuff like this; the more scraps and different materials and tools you already have, the better it goes. But if you can't just open up an old jar with enough chemical left over from another project, if you actually have to buy a fresh can -- then projects like this can run into money.

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