BF Helmet Instructions.
This page contains The Helmet process
There are two types of Boba Fett helmets available from Don Post Studios. The standard "Collectors" edition and the Deluxe version.
The "Collectors" helmet is about 7/8 scale. Although, if you find the difference is acceptable, it is a decent choice for the helmet.
There are several online dealers who carry the standard and deluxe edition helmets.
Your local costume shop should also prove to be a be a good source for the standard edition helmet.
Before you begin, rember that the helmet and armor paint scheme slightly differs between movies.
Be sure that you have good reference pictures.
Helmet Reference Pics.
You might have to reshape the standard helmet, as a lot of the helmets on the shelves are slightly warped.
One method of performing this is to use a hairdryer, on a hot setting, to soften the vinyl.
Once it is soft, you will be able to reform the shape of the helmet.
While the helmet is still soft, reinforce the new shape by lining the inside with some heavy 12 guage wire. If you do not brace the helmet, it will most likely retain it's "memory" and slowly reform to it's original shape.
After the helmet cools, the wire may be left in to retain it's new shape.
The standard helmet will need:
Fist step is to use a Dremel tool (with cutting disc) to remove the T-shape visor. Remove the existing plastic visor and the lower black section from the DP helmet.
Then widen the viewing area, to the sides, about an inch each way. You should now be able to see the antenna in the lower "scanner mode", through the widened area.
Do not remove any of the red portion of the helmet.
Finish by sanding the cut edges with 200 grit sandpaper.
You may want to keep these removed pieces as a future template when cutting your new visor.
Helmet with removed visor.
Next, prepare the helmet for painting.
Begin by sanding the Entire helmet with 200 grit sandpaper, removing as much paint as you can.
Next, putty the imperfections and spray it with a primer, such as Krylon sandable primer. Check the results, and re-putty and prime as needed. Apply at least two coats, allowing the primer to fully dry between each coat. Lightly sand the top primer coat , to create a "distressed" surface on the helmet. This will allow the base coat of paint to better adhere.
Now it's time to paint the helmet.
Because of the limited color choice of spray paints, custom mixed paints are recomended. Although it has been proven that the helmet may be done totally from regular spraypaints, such as Rustoleum and Krylon brand spray paints.
With minimal effort you can achieve a great finish right out of a can.
There is one important factor to remember, while painting the inexpensive viynl helmets, with regular spray can paint.
Use a base primer coat. Preferably with a laquer based primer. Most enamel based paints have trouble adhearing directly to vinyl. Do not put the main color coat (especialy enamel based) directly over the viynl helmet! If you do the paint may not be durable and could remain tacky Forever. Having to strip the paint, to do again, may ruin your helmet in the process. The primer will act as a barrier between the viynl and color spraypaint. You should be able to use any brand of spray primer. Also be sure to apply several coats of primer. Test the primer first on the inside of your helmet in a small spot to see if it will fully dry.
1.) Moss green for the top of the helmet and lower cheeks
2.)Forest Green (Satin Finish) OR Spruce Green (Satin Finish) -upper cheeks and back.
Additionally, for the upper cheeks and back section, good results have been reported by first spraying the area with Rust-oleum Dark Hunter Green Enamel. Then, a light coat of Rust-oleum Camouflage Deep Forest Green.
The ESB main helmet is like a moss green color, almost a light and dark blue.
The ROTJ helmet main green color is the sage/dark green and is overall darker then the ESB. 3.)Krylon Ruddy Red / Rusty Red (Satin Finish) -Around T-lens visor.
The ROTJ visor is not as beat up as the ESB.
Also, the ESB T-visor area is a darker red than the ROTJ and pre-production.
4.) Catterpiller Yellow (Satin Finish)-Square marks on left side of the helmet.
The pre-production helmet used red blocks instead of the yellow.
5.) Testors Silver (chrome) model car paint -dents,dings and scratches
6.) You'll also need some clear spray (either flat or semi-gloss) to spray over some of the colors.
Be cautious when using different brands of paint for the colors. Some brands may lift the underneath paint.
Remember that the helmet is a slightly differnt color then the armor and has a flat finish.
At this point, the painting methods vary.
These painting techniques will apply to all the armor including, the kneepads, gauntlets and jetpack.
Three different painting methods will be discussed below.
#1 First Method:
This is a slightly complex, but extremely nice looking method, using a peel off masking material.
It is strongly suggested to NOT rush this process. Allow several or more
days for the paint coats to fully cure and dry before putting on the liquid
mask, and applying the next coats of paint.
Also, use a generous amount of liquid mask in each selected location. Larger amounts of liquid mask will allow easier removal after layers of paint have been applied. You may want to do a practice test on some scrap plastic. ( This will allow you to get an idea of how the process will work.)
After you are satisfied with your primed helmet.
Base coat the WHOLE thing by Spraying with Testors Silver (chrome) model car paint. It is recomended use an airbrush for this Testors produces an inexpensive, pressurized propellant can and airbrush system, located at The Testors Website with easy to follow directions. If you choose not to use an airbrush, it is suggested to use chrome bumper paint from an auto supply shop. Cover the helmet completely. 2 coats at least, with your selected metallic color.
Be sure to let the paint dry several days before applying the masking material. Not allowing the paint to fully dry may result in damage to the previous layer of paint.
After the metallic paint is dry
Apply a liquid mask randomly to all areas that you wish to remain silver.
You should apply the liquid mask in patterns and shapes that will look natural and not just painted on the top of your main color. Then let the masking material completly dry.
The type of liquid mask that is recomended is called AMBROID EZ MASK . This is a light blue
liquid mask that turns to clear blue rubbery substance, when dry.
It is applied with a brush and removed by peeling it off with tweezers. You can find it (or an equivelent) at most hobby shops or this site Happy Hobby will have it. Listed under Tool's & Glues.
Another option for masking material is to use rubber cement, for your masking substance.
If you decide to use rubber cement, most art supply stores sell a "Rubber Cement Eraser". This is a yellow 2 in. x 2 in. rubber square used for removing rubber cement. This will allow easy removal of the dried cement.
Please note that no masking will be removed untill after the next layers of paint applied and fully dry.
Complete this step by lightly scuffing/sanding the uncovered silver areas.This will aid the next paint coat to adhere.
This next step is
For chest, shoulder, back and cod pieces only.
After liquid has dried, spray a coat of Catterpiller Yellow or Tan paint over and around
the liquid masked areas. Be sure to look at Boba Fett reference pics. You will notice that almost all battle scars on the chest and cod armor are surrounded by a yellow type color around the silver and before the green color begins.
When the yellow is dry, peel off the masking material. If you accidentally pull off some paint while removing the masking,do not worry. If the paint is not removed all the way to the original piece, it just may enhance the battle damage look.
At this point allow all paint to completely dry.
When dry , Lightly scuff paint to allow for
better adhesion of the next paint coat.
Then reaply the Liquid mask over the silver and Yellowish color and let dry.
Now paint your main green color Let dry, then peel off the masking material.
As stated before, you may pull off some of the paint with the masking. Rember, this should not be much
of a problem as it may enhance the damage effect.
Now let the helmet /armor dry for a few days.
Before moving on to the final steps, you must look at your pieces and decide if you would like more scarring damage.
If so, paint the metallic color on top of main color. Just be sure to do so sparingly.
The next step is to weather your finished pieces.
This can be done using an airbrush, spray paint, washes, charcoal, or chalk powder.
Whatever you prefer to make it look dirty.
Finish by spraying the whole thing with a dullcoat (flat clear paint) Be sure to apply this in many very light coats.
This will not only dull the body color down, it will also bond the material you used to dirty it up.
This process requires the most work of the three but, the results will be worth the work involved.
#2 A Less Complex, Alternative Painting Method
involves the use of a masking material, available from art supply shops, called "frisket".
The first step is to prep and paint the helmet using your selected silver color.
When the silver color is completely dry, get some frisket and trace random damage spots.
Make them jagged and irregular in shape along with many different sizes. Make more than you will use.
The more you make, the eaiser it will be to fit the damage to the selected area.
Cut out the damage spots and put them on the helmet anyway you like.
When using this same method for painting the armor,
the next step is to paint the entire armor pieces with yellow. Use the same color as the shoulders.
After you have painted enough coats and are satisfied, trace some larger marks to fit over some of the smaller ones.
By placing a larger "wound" over a smaller one, the multi layer effect is created.
When you paint the final green color, and remove the frisket, some scratches will be chrome,surrounded by yellow, surrounded by green.
Because the yellow scarring is not found on the helmet,
this step is unnecessary for the helmet.
Next step is to apply your green color. Once you have applied the green, and it has dried, remove the frisket carefully. Make sure the paint is completely dry. Otherwise you will risk tearing the paint.
At this point you may want to use an exacto knife to rough up the edges of the damage. Scratch down to the yellow and chrome. Use your own judgment to create the look you want.
Finish by dry brushing a mixture of black and brown into all of the damage, and make streaks around the visor area.
Make it as dirty and worn looking as you like. Remember to weather the armor in the same manor.
#3 An even less involved method is sponge painting
When using a sponge to brush the paint on, custom mixing the colors by hand adds to authenticity. Mix a touch of black in with the spruce green to get a nice color. Mix more for the cheek area. The details should turn out very well.
First step is to mask off the selected areas ,and using the final green colors ( as above), paint according to reference. NextNext, sponge paint the weathering details onto the helmet. Now, sponge paint the same color you started with on top of what's already there.
For example, if the top of the helmet is painted spruce green, put the same color green on the sponge and dab it over the top again.
By doing this you will achieve a nice multi layer effect. This technique may also be used for the armor. Finish by using Silver model paint for all the dings and scratches.
Painting the helmet rectangles.
There are 14 rectangles although one of them is completely chipped away to bare metal. A couple of others are mostly gone as well.
In the preproduction and ROTJ helmet pics, Fett had red/maroon marks on the helmet. In ESB he had yellow marks.
The following info isn't "official" but, most suggest that the ideal size of the 14 yellow rectangles is( 7/8" x 5/16" each, with about 1/4" spacing in between.)The rear edge of the the fourth rectangle should roughly be in line with the end of the finished T-visor area. Additionally, the middle of the 7th block should be centered just slightly behind the center line, of the left side ear piece.
Due to the curve of the helmet, it may be difficult to keep pattern correctly aligned. You will want to combine careful measuring and placement by eye to create a proper looking pattern. These shapes can be created with the use of masking tape.
The 14 masked rectangles.
First mask complete rectangles, then add bits of masking tape (pre-cut in ragged shapes) one at a time.
overlap the rectangles in the appropriate design.
Rectangles with bits of tape added.
After applying the yellow paint and allowing to dry, remove the masking tape. You will notice that pre-distressed shapes were created. These are now ready for further detailing.
Finished rectangles, prior to final weathering.
Another version of the pre finished rectangles
Multicolor bar variation
The right ear is gold, with black and white decals and black hash marks.
The left ear is a dark green with white and black decals. ROTJ Version
The Left and Right ear pieces for the Rotj helmet are silver with no decals present. To color Fetts right ear (ESB), use any kind of metallic color as long as it has a yellow or brownish hue, such as gold, bronze or copper.
The correct decals for the sides of the helmet
can be be made by finding someone who will custom cut the stickers for you using a vinyl sticker plotter.
It should only cost a few dollars. This will save you hours of painting. The stickers can be weathered and trimmed. Try airbrush shops and car detail shops for these types of stickers. If you supply them with the measurements, they should be able to cut the decals. Excellent diagrams of the helmet sides can be found in the Helmet Reference Page. You can refer to the Build Your Own Boba Fett site.
Finished helmet decals are available online.
PleaseE-mail for details.
An alternative is to use black electrical tape and white vinyl. The vinyl sheets are commonly found in hobby stores.
You will have to cut each piece individually, using a hobby knife and different size coins for the curvature.
Remember that the ROTJ has the silver ears on both sides and no decals.
Another variation, you may try with either version, is to use any of the masking methods and paint the sides yourself. Remember, when you pull the masking off, there will be chips in the paint, giving it the worn look you may be looking for.
Real metal dings
|After ALL the painting is done, it's time to install a new visor.
The best suggestion for visors is to look up "Sheet Plastic" in the yellow pages. Most places sell scraps and odd sizes at low prices. Use this pre-tinted sheetstock for the visor.
An alternative is to go to a local welding supply store and get a replacement shield shade #5 green. They are around
$8-$10. A third suggestion is to use a clear face shield , found in most hardware stores and apply window tint. The visor should be flexible enough to bend around the curve on the inside of the helmet.
Now, use the original visor you cut from the helmet as a pattern and trace your original visor onto the welding shield material. Next, cut out the pattern leaving about 1/4 inch excess to allow you to glue it to the inside of the helmet.
If you are not using a green tinted face shield, get some black Limousine window tint and cut out a piece that will cover the new visor. Be careful not to get any air bubbles while applying! Next, lightly sand the 1/4" excess edge to create a rough surface for the glue to stick to. Now, Superglue the visor into the helmet while taking care to keep the helmet properly aligned. Some small clamps will be helpful to maintain the correct shape while drying. You may also use a glue accelerator to speed up the drying. After the glue is dry, sand the inside of the visor from the mouth area down and paint it black. This keeps excess light from shining through and lighting your face. Because this area is low, your vision will not be affected.
BF helmet lights
A nice touch is to add helmet lights to the front arrow shapes.
This can be done simply by drilling out the triangles and placing two LED's behind them.
The above photo is a fan made suit by Jayse.
" A small photo of my custom Mandalorian helmet taken at Mann's Chinese theater. The triangle lights blink on and off at a steady 'scanning' pace. Quite cool! (If I may say so myself)"
Range Finder Replacement
The targeting range finder antenna is a little short, on the standard Don Post Fett helmet.
If you choose, you can replace the original plastic rangefinder.
This is acomplished by first removing the rangefinder cover, over the right ear.
Try using a screwdriver first. If that doesn't work, make light cuts around the seam with a dremel.
Then, use the screwdriver again to pry it the rest of the way off.
Next, you will need a solid rectangular aluminum rod, found at most hardware stores, to replace the original rangefinder post. For a lighter weight or to allow electronic wiring, you amy choose to use a hollow post. These are usually available at model railroad shops and hobby stores.
Finish, by filling the
little space between the two halves of the range finder base, with epoxy putty.
If you feel really adventurous, try adding a remote control rangefinder with lights.
Use an RC servo* in the helmet and run a wire down to your gauntlet under the vest and suit.
Attach the wire to a push button. The result will allow you to press the button for the rangefinder to go down, press it again, and it will go up.
Another very nice effect is to include the red LED's into the range finder.
In the 'Star Wars Chronicles' book there is a pic, on pg 133, showing Joe Johnston touching up the #2 Fett helmet, you can clearly see the 2 LEDs, at the top of the range finder.
To acomplish this, you will need to insert the lights into the head of the rangefinder.
One optionto acomplish this is: First install a small momentary switch, into the base housing, where the rangefinder is attached.
Position it at the point where the range finder will hit, while in it's downward position.
Then, cut a channel along the length of the rangefinder shaft, on the side closest to the helmet. Run a small wire down this shaft and then bondo over it, to cover it up.
Next, drill two small holes into the head of the rangefinder (study pics for proper location) and insert the 2 LED's into place
For pre-wired alternating, red, LEDs, go to any good hobby shop and look in the railroad section. They are sold for crossing gate signals, and are available in several "scales".
Now, when the range finder rotates down, it will push the button and turn on the led(s).
You will also need a battery source.
There should be just enough room in the helmet to put the servo, and a 9v battery, for the led's.
Or, you may hide choose to hide the battery source in a different area, such as a pocket.
* Note:A servo is a tiny little box motor with many gears inside that is used in R/C cars, planes,and boats. They are used to control the operating functions of the vehical (steering,throttle,ailerons,brakes, etc..) You can get them in numerous sizes and strenghts depending on their application. They normally run on AA batteries. They can run you $15-$100 or more depending on size, strength, if it has ball bearings, and what it's being used for. You can get these at any well stocked hobby shop that sells R/C vehical kits. Tell them that you want to run the servo without the radio equipment
They should be able help you out. You'll probably just need an on-off switch and a power source to make it move. But they can help you out and tell you what strength servo you may need. Just tell them what your going to do with it so you can get the proper size.
Fett helmet padding
If you are interested in getting padding similar to that used in the Riddel BF helmet.
It is available through a company called Danmar and their number is 1-800-783-1998.
The padding will run about $50.00 (01') a set for 1"x1" squares that are 1" thick.
Although this is not exactly like what you see in the Riddel helmet, it is the same type of material and the same color.
The pads you what to order are the post-operative helmet
pads, custom cut to 1x1 square.
There are several products tha can keep the visors in helmets from steaming up.
The first is the small bottles of Anti-fog designed for auto widshields.Found in most auto
parts stores and shoping marts. A second choice is to use the little anti-fog towlettes, found at your local
drugstore. These tissues are used for eyeglasses or to wipe down your bathroom/shaving mirrors etc.
A third alternative is a product made by sporting equipment manufactors. It is a spray sold where you buy
sports helmets that have visors or masks.
There is yet another product found at paint ball stores.
This is a spray used on the inside of the paint ball