Production: Armor
Armor Makeup and accessories

The body armor was also inspired by Japanese medieval pieces, although the shoulder design is definitely Roman. To the right is a sketch of the basic design.

I started with a mannequin upper body and built it up with cardboard, newspaper and duct tape to create a broad curved shape. The breastplate was then cut out and "press formed" over the form.

Press forming (my term, not sure if a real one exists) is a method of forming plastic by cutting it to the desired shape, heating it in an oven on a sheet of foil and slapping it on a onto a form and rubbing and pressing until it cools, more detail can be added using a heat gun if desired. This is useful for simple shapes without drastic compound curves and details. Oven mitts are required.

I was shown this method by some friends in the SCA that use it to create armor from ABS that you can actually fight in.


Note the different chest designs and the back plate at far left.

Four suits ready for strapping.

The back plate was formed on the back of the mannequin in a similar manner. The backplate was optional (Orcs never run from battle!) and was only used on the banner bearer's armor as it was required to mount the banner.

The shoulder plates were heated in the oven and formed over a one-gallon paint can. The larger shoulder plates were heated with a heat gun and curved only where needed.

I wanted huge square studs for the body armor; these would have to be fabricated. I started with a pair of copper fence post toppers, after prying them off of their wooden mounts I cemented them to a sheet of plastic a to form a base for molding. I then brushed on several coats of mold latex and once it dried I poured plaster over it to create a solid frame for the latex. This was used to cast the plaster "studs" to be used in vacuumforming.

For the skirt plates a piece of plastic was cut to the desired size of the plate then decorated with the XL pyramid spots and plastic faux rivet heads. A single plaster stud casting was placed on the plate form and the entire piece was vacuumformed (3 at a time could be vac'ed at once).

The armor was then decorated with additional pyramid spots and textured in the same way as the helmets. After painting (see helmet section) the pieces were strapped together with leather strap and copper rivets; exposed rivets were painted to match the armor.

Next up: Makeup and Acessories>