UK based cosplayer, gamer and digital designer.
Sadly I only get paid for one of these things.
Here it is!
Si’s finished the boomstick. It’s had a couple of coats of primer, then another couple of matt black to get everything nice and uniform. A whole load of masking tape and paper to cover the bits that need to stay black, and another two coats are added, this time in a light grey. The screws were taken out beforehand though, since they needed to stay dark - provides a good bit of contrast.
Added in the all important weathering, done with ebony Rub ‘n’ Buff and aluminium paint watered down, and the really cool wires, which are black power leads wrapped in thin foam. Pop the battery covers on, and we have one M-27 Scimitar.
It’s a beast! And I’m totally in love with it.
If we’re making an Ashley, she needs a weapon. And what better to make than a boomstick?
Si’s been working on this for a couple of days now, forming foam shapes around a tube centre. The tube is a £4 toilet part from B&Q, re-inforced with wood for strength (it’s a bit bendy otherwise).
He’s built in a box for a 9v battery, to power some LEDs on the side, because LEDs make everything better. Foamcore forms some of the side detail, and extra barrels and the like are made from model helicopter tail booms. Obviously.
We realise there’s a bit of a time leap between the first and second photos - someone got a bit carried away and forgot to take pictures.
Mentioning no names, eh Si?
These are the middle thigh pieces and the knees, in their component parts and then assembled. Everything follows the same kind of process as the bicep armour - cut out all the bits beforehand, then the large foam is heated and shaped, with the thin sections added afterwards. Be careful though, when the thick foam bends, the surface area increases, so you may need to add in some allowance on the detail pieces.
More work on Ashley this weekend. I spent a couple of hours making the bracers this afternoon, which involves a lot of small, trickier parts.
Each piece is made of three sections - the main base, a middle plate and the raised segments that sit on it. You can see the individual bits all cut out in the first photo, and then assembled underneath.
As with the bicep armour, it’s a lot easier to heat shape everything first, and glue after. The joins will be far more seamless, and you’ll thank yourself for it. I actually used a spray can to wrap these round to geth the basic shape right, and then a heat gun on the wrists to get them nice and tight.
The raised area needed some Dremeling to round off the edges, so I did that before assembling each portion. Once those areas were glued together, it was a simple matter of marking their correct position on the bases then sticking them in place. All done, ready for sealing.
Those LEDs that arrived a few days ago? They’re in!
Si’s been busy wiring up the N7 suits so there’s lighting in the back plate and belt. All that’s used to power them is a 9v battery that sits in the spine piece (the hollow area at the waist).
Adding these really finishes the whole thing off. Now we might enter them in a masquerade next year…
Been making some progess with the Ashley build this weekend, so here’s an update and part two on how to make it.
This is the process for one of the easiest pieces, the bicep. which is basically just a tube of foam. The first thing is making your pattern. For this part, I measured around the arm circumference to get the width of foam required, and the same for the length. It’s important to remember that your arm needs to bend and move in this, which is why the lower edge isn’t level. I just use paper to make my patterns - you can add or take away bits of it easy if it’s not right, and obviously you can fold it round yourself to get a decent fit. Once you’re happy, use a sharp scalpel to cut out the pieces.
To shape it, the foam has been heated in an oven at around 100 degrees, for roughly 10 minutes. Ovens vary, and so do foams, so you mght need to run a few test pieces first. Once it comes out, the piece is incredibly bendy and malleable, so I wrapped it round a can to get the right shape. Once the foam cools (it only takes a couple of minutes) take it off, and you have a bicep piece that fits nicely.
Time for the detailing. Both the N7 suit and this one have indents running from the top area, so these are marked up and cut out. The strips removed are then cut in half and glued back in. Surprisingly, it’s actually better to do this after heating it, as the foam is already in the right shape. If you cut before heating (which I did for FemShep), when you bend it round your form, it doesn’t stretch as nicely where it’s been glued.
The grip around the top is just two pieces of the 2mm foam glued together, then attached round the edge. Eventually I’ll add elastic on the inside to keep everything in place, but that happens later on!
Time for Si to start wiring up the N7 suits!
These LED strips are the perfect thing to light up the back plates on the Shepard cosplays. We ordered them months ago from eBay, but international shipping being what it is, they didn’t arrive until well after Expo. Still, they’re here now, so this weekend they’re being put into the Renegade suit.