Monday, October 4, 2010

Space Suit Construction Update #2

Well! A weekend's work put a big dent in the suit. After much hack-sawing and box-cutter butter blading (my term for the smooth cuts made by a fully extended box cutter blade), the shape is really coming through.

First rough shaping pass:

The above is mostly hack-saw work, then the box cutter to trim down the waste rim:

The back needed some treatment as well, getting it closer to flat:

This is where this tool became my best friend:

Using the belt sander and a hand sanding sponge, the torso began to take shape. I also used the box cutter to start to shape the rims of the helmet and arm holes.

It was very difficult getting them to be perfectly round after all the sanding and shaping and cutting, which is where the next step helped a lot. Using a different grade of styrofoam, cardboard rimming, and very stick masking tape, I shaped the helmet and arm rims to be properly circular:

Wooden dowels held the circles in place. And the back:

So there you go! It took a bit of reshaping and eyeballing, but it's almost there. Another night of precision trimming and probably some card stock and more tape will get the shape ready for curing and fiberglass. Just a little context of the workshop and the mess involved:

More to come soon!


  1. Thanks for the updates, this stuff is really fascinating, keep them coming!

  2. Just a suggestion for you. I work in props and have found lately for low budget armor/space suits etc the method of using papercraft one of the best. You take your digital model into software like pepakura designer [or you can use unfold in sketch up as well] and print out full sized, spray glue to card stock and assemble. then paint on a thin layer of fiberglass resin. Once hard, paste on bondo and sand to shape. look up various halo armors made by this method.
    If you need lots of these it would be better to vacuform.
    Good luck.

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