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Below you will find my guide to the process I used to customize one of theA many Don Post Boba Fett helmets I've worked on both for myself and others as well.
Due to the design of the Dremel, it was too difficult to cleanly cut the far corners of the T-Visor area.
Take an electric drill fitted with a very small drill bit and drill holes into the depressions of the key slots. Soak up some paper towels with acetone and scrub the helmet down until all of the exterior paint is wiped away leaving only the nasty green finish of the vinyl plastic. RLM 73 can be a very difficult color to find - and Tower Hobbies was the only place I found to carry it.
Tip: If you have a VERY fine point paint brush, you can apply (by hand) the symbols found on the ear pieces.
I downloaded the kill stripe template from The Dented Helmet and printed it out on paper that wasn't too flimsy. Mask the rest of your helmet so that paint will not get on it during the upcoming painting process.
Trouble Shooting: If you opt to use a paint brush as opposed to an air brush, you will likely encounter paint that drips behind the mask you applied. Take very fine grit sand paper and gently wipe down the yellow paint residue between your masked areasA so that your surface is once again smooth. The purpose of scratching is to give the illusion of battle damage by revealing the chrome silver undercoat. I next worked on the headband area around the helmet - following a bit of the MR helmet as well as using personal discretion. I next worked on the sides of the helmet, around and on the Panzer Olive Green ear-piece.a€?a€?Finally, I tackled the back of the helmet which was a nightmare. Here is the Mystery Helmet I did in 2008 that features a much more elaborate damage pattern. I used 3M adhesive spray to affix the material to the visible side of the foam (the part that would be touching your head), and then sprayed the other side so that it would stick to the inside of the helmet. Additionally, I would recommend using a Dremel to cut out your visor for the simple reason that scissors are challenging to cut with and not scratch the underside of the visor (i.e. Unlike the Mystery Helmet which has a rigid body to it, the DP helmets are reasonably flexible, and that can create all sorts of problems if you are trying to hold a lens in place and glue it at the same time without making a mess.
For the lower cheeks, you can use regular masking tape since the chrome color won't peel off when the tape is removed.
If you are using PRR Brunswick Green for the first time, you may be freaked out by it's extremely dark color. What's not shown in this picture is that I tucked a few paper towels into the top of the masking tape to protect the dome from overspray.A  The more you paint you apply in previous steps, the more effort you must take to protect it.
During my Mystery Helmet project last year (2008) I had three separate shipments of coagulated RLM 73 paint that were completely un-useable. Michael Heath-Caldwell M.Arch - HMS IllustriousFeb - March - April 1948 Diary  This is a secret document during Hostilities.
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If you require further details regarding the transaction data, please contact the supplier directly. A Before each chapter, I noted the tools and supplies needed, and the approximate amount of time you'll need to invest. The curvature of the lens is too extreme and hardly pliable to accommodate a Don Post Helmet without excessive force (e.g. A As a result, I got as far as I could and literally pulled out the remaining tab with a pair of needle-nosed pliers. A This will remove all of the slick paint Don Post used, and allow your primer and base coats to adhere better.a€?a€?Let dry for about 20 or 30 minutes and then sand it down with a fine sandpaper.
A A I let this sit in the hot summer sun for about four hours, and then stored the helmet inside overnight without any more work done to it.
A The visible textures are due to the molding process of the helmet - not inconsistencies in the paint layers.
A I would suggest applying two coats, one hour apart from each othera€?a€?I should also note that some people have difficulty masking the T-visor due to the curvature.
A Masking this area can be very tricky due to the curvature both above (where it meets the T-visor) and below (where the lower cheeks are). A That being said, if you do order it through Tower Hobbies, make sure you speak with a customer service rep and explain that you want the bottles checked for freshness prior to them being shipped.
A Here, I would advise painting by hand, letting the area dry, and then lightly dusted the area using an airbrush to remove any brush strokes that might have been showing.
Because of the curvature of the pieces, focused spraying will result in pooling or excessive dripping.
A It is recommended that you start off with just a dusting and let dry, then follow up with a more thorough coat. A If that's the case, use a sharp pointed steak knife and just scratch out the excess Concrete color to reveal the Panzer Olive underneath.
A If you find that your brush is too soft despite being a fine point, dip your brush into the Flat Black paint and let it dry. A Before the paint was fully dry, I placed a piece of purple painters tape OVER my new paint work, and pulled it off almost immediately. A To erase these, simply mask the top portions of the stripes with a little bit of tape, and dust the area with Panzer Olive Green from a distance of about 14" inches. A For the most part, I identified the major scratches and locations and started with those. If you've seen the movie production helmet, or the MR helmet, it's an un-patterned mess of four colors: Concrete, Light Gray, Lark Dark Gray, and Green RLM 25. A Some of the target areas have a similar outline to the Master Replicas Fett helmet, but just not as elaborate. A With double-epoxy, small globs of it can be applied with relative ease, and with much less chance of making a mess as compared to using a caulking gun with Liquid Nails.
Two more pieces can be used at each corner of the T-visora€™s eye line too provided you have enough overlap on the inside of the helmet. A He suggests mixing the washer fluid and black paint in a regular sprayer bottle, lightly spraying the helmetA and immediately wiping off with a clean rag.
A This will remove all of the slick paint Don Post used, and allow your primer and base coats to adhere better.Let dry for about 20 or 30 minutes and then sand it down with a fine sandpaper. A I would suggest applying two coats, one hour apart from each otherI should also note that some people have difficulty masking the T-visor due to the curvature. A The experience I gained from customizing numerous DP helmets over the years gave me the confidence to finish my Mystery Helmet last year - that of which I am very proud of. A Generally, I prefer to cut them out and add a screen on the inside to improve air-flow to the interior of the helmet, but in the case of this particular helmet, I chose not to. A The purpose of this is to weaken the plastic, and to make cutting with an X-Acto knife much easier.a€?a€?When finished with the drilling, use an X-Acto knife to cut the key slot impressions exactly way they are molded. A Wipe down the helmet with a dry paper towel to remove any sanding dust, and proceed to coat it with primer.a€?a€?If you use Duracoat filler primer, only one coat is needed. A The painters tape has less adhesive making it less likely that you'll pull the chrome off when removed. A I was not charged for the previous three shipments, and the customer service department was trying to be helpful throughout the ordeal. A Just use light coats each time until you have full coverage on the outer surfaces.a€?a€?With regard to the right ear-piece (range finder side, #1 below), I'd recommend applying the Earth color first and allowing to dry for a few days before masking off for application of the metallic color if you need to do some touch-up work. A Let the second coat dry for several hours before applying a third or fourth coat as necessary. Please note that Don Post helmets have varied in size from one production run to the next - - and the model yearA of a DP helmet will also affect the sizing for these.
A I'd recommend using an X-Acto knife which makes this task much easier than a typical razor. A If you feel that your exposed chrome undercoats are a bit too dull, simply use a fine paint brush and apply a fresh layer of chrome silver over the chrome base.
A I began with the Reefer Gray, applying it to areas of importance, and then letting it dry before applying the Lark Dark Gray. A The purpose of this is to weaken the plastic, and to make cutting with an X-Acto knife much easier.When finished with the drilling, use an X-Acto knife to cut the key slot impressions exactly way they are molded. A Wipe down the helmet with a dry paper towel to remove any sanding dust, and proceed to coat it with primer.If you use Duracoat filler primer, only one coat is needed. A Just use light coats each time until you have full coverage on the outer surfaces.With regard to the right ear-piece (range finder side, #1 below), I'd recommend applying the Earth color first and allowing to dry for a few days before masking off for application of the metallic color if you need to do some touch-up work.
A After completion of my project, I realized that I had aA considerable amount of paint left over, and could possibly customize a few more helmets with what remained. A If you still have a bit of roughness there, fold a piece of rough grit sandpaper tight enough to fit in the corners, and pull it back and forth quickly to smooth out the three areas that make up the corner. A a€?a€?If you make any errors with regard to making them uniform, you can use Bondo glazing putty (since it's easier to sand) to re-mold them, provided you didn't screw up too much.


A Regular masking tape needs to be affixed for the areas surrounding your paint-work because it will stay tight to the helmet thus reducing the likelihood of paint running behind it to parts you don't want colored. A This may take a few more coats of paint than what I've described, and may even take a day or two to verify that you have perfectly uniform coats on the helmet.
A Much unlike the Mystery Helmet, the vinyl plastic of a Don Post helmet doesn't absorb paint very well.
A I've found Earth to be more challenging in terms of mess and adhesionA than the other paint colors. A Unfortunately for me, I had misplaced my X-Acto knife and had to use the knife pictured below. A Please note that the lighting situation in the two images above were considerably different at the time the photos were taken. A If you make any errors with regard to making them uniform, you can use Bondo glazing putty (since it's easier to sand) to re-mold them, provided you didn't screw up too much. A If you can't check the bottles yourself, askA  someone to do it for you.A  Trust me when I say that it will save you a considerable amount of time.
A If it looks filled in and completely smooth, verify this by spraying a light coat of primer over this area. A a€?a€?After the first coat, let dry for several hours in the sun (if possible), then re-apply.a€?a€?When finished, carefully remove the painters tape so that you don't tear the previously painted areas. A a€?a€?If you opt to have brush strokes visible, be certain that they are consistent in direction.
A The exact same colors were used on both helmets even though they appear to be quite different above. A So, earlier this year (2009), I decided to take on yet another DP helmet but doing so in similar fashion to the process used forA my Mystery Helmet. A After the first coat, let dry for several hours in the sun (if possible), then re-apply.When finished, carefully remove the painters tape so that you don't tear the previously painted areas. Additionally, you will need to sand down the back side of the T-Visor (from inside) to have a reasonably consistent depth all around so that the new visor will be flush to the plastic when installed. A I would recommend waiting a full day (whether you used one coat or two) before moving on to the next step.
A The kill stripes also appear thicker on the DP helmet due to it being a smaller sizeA to the Mystery Helmet which is a 1:1 scale. A Some of the spray may bleed through your cover material once you apply it to the foam padding,A and you don't want the adhesive to touch your skin.
A Depending on how the helmet was manufactured, there may be inconsistencies with the plastic's thickness in certain areas. A If needed, re-sand and re-apply a thin coat of Bondo glazing putty, let dry, and re-sand once again. A If you live in a warm climate or are doing this in the summer months, leave your helmet out in the hot sunlight for a few hours so that it quickly bakes on.a€?a€?I cannot emphasize enough that you don't need to prime the helmet all in one step.
A Just be sure that it is secure to the area you want masked because with light pressure, it will lift off.
A Now, take a piece of tape and cover up one stripe so that you are perfectly aligning it to one side.
A Once you have some green covering the yellow, stop and wait about 10-15 minutes for it to dry. A If you find that you are having problems removing the paint, use a very dull butter knife and try to get the scratching started, and go back to using a fingernail if you want. A This will create an illusion of impacted metal traveling in a constant direction to the upper left of your Fett helmet. A Re-mark the visor again and trim as needed.a€?a€?You will likely be close, but still off the mark by just a bit.
A It may be easier to do earlier on, but I figured I'd do last minute touch-ups when I had finally had everything installed and looking good.a€?a€?I'd recommend using a clear coat semi-gloss or flat. A If you live in a warm climate or are doing this in the summer months, leave your helmet out in the hot sunlight for a few hours so that it quickly bakes on.I cannot emphasize enough that you don't need to prime the helmet all in one step.
A I literally used 5 coats, each time having very little paint on the brush, and giving a minimum of 10-15 minutes to dry between coats. A If this is the case with your helmet, use the Dremel sanding cone (it's safer to use than the sanding cylinders in terms of how much plastic will wear away). A If you over spray, you will get paint runs which will cost A you more time and effort to correct (with sanding). Additionally, I would recommend using many small strips in order to follow the curvature of the area you want masked off. A There should be a small amount of space between the bottom of the horseshoe graphic and the mini-chrome platform of the range finder assembly.
A Take another piece and put it on the nearest stripe aligning it perfectly the side facing the other masked stripe. A The last thing you want to do is get that sticky residue on the outer part of your helmet!a€?a€?You should now have a nicely padded helmet, though fairly smelly due to all the glue.
Because I am unfamiliar with the hobby versions of clear coats by manufacturers such as Floquil or Testors, I would go with something like Krylon (in the new adjustable nozzle spray cans). A Follow up with the rough grit sandpaper to get everything uniform, and then use a fine grit sandpaper to get that perfect smoothness.a€?a€?Now, looking at the front of the helmet, be sure that the front part of the T-Visor is squared off. A Unlike regular masking tape, you can't bend the Duck Tape because the adhesive doesn't bond as well. A I used a VERY light coat the first time around (because again, that chrome under-coat is slick!) and let dry for 15 minutes. A The Light Gray is no good over the Panzer Olive Green so stick exclusively with the Lark Dark Gray. A a€?a€?When you can get a good fit, determine which method of affixing the visor would be best for your situation. At the time of me writing this, I have not sealed my helmet, but would assume only a light, uniform coat would be sufficient to help protect your helmet against any unwanted paint removal from accidental scrapes or bumps.a€?a€?a€?The Finished Product:a€?a€?Once again, another Fett-project that I am very proud of! A Follow up with the rough grit sandpaper to get everything uniform, and then use a fine grit sandpaper to get that perfect smoothness.Now, looking at the front of the helmet, be sure that the front part of the T-Visor is squared off. A Assuming that it is, take a popsicle stick and place it to the interior sides of the T-Visor and see how straight your cuts were. A I then applied a second coat that provided nearly 100% coverage and let dry for a half hour.
Repeat this process across the rest of the kill stripes (though be aware that because of your tape placement, some stripes will have to be corrected later on). A As bad as this interior work smells after being completed, the MR Boba Fett helmet was as bad if not worse upon delivery due to the glues they used. A IfA you want something permanent, I'd suggest you consider double-epoxy or Liquid Nails - particularly double-epoxy.
Devonshire.After and introduction to our “nurse” in the morning we were dismissed to look for our future divisional officers. A If you see any gaps between the popsicle stick and the helmet, fill the gaps with LocTite Liquid Metal paste.
A Just let it dry fully, and then apply a second coat which should completely cover the helmet. A Your final coat should effectively cover any of the residual yellow between your kill stripes. A When those dried, I finished my work with the smaller scratches on the dome of the helmet. A Let it sit for about 20-30 minutes and use a fine grit sandpaper to smooth the paste out, and re-test the area with a popsicle stick. A Patience will certainly save you time and effort in the long run with this sort of project.
A I left this to set overnight, and revisited it the next day using some chrome paint and a paintbrush to do some minor touch up work around the masking lines.
A Let dry for a full 30 minutes before removing the tape.a€?a€?Now, repeat this process for the other areas of yellow between the kill stripes that you couldn't get the first time around. A If not, then re-apply the LocTite Liquid Metal and repeat the process until you are satisfied. Consisting of a circular brush made of wire and coir turned by an electric motor, the machine is operated by a pair of handles very much the same as an auto-scythe and cleans the deck up very quickly compared with the usual elbow grease methods in general use. A If you use extra long strips of tape, you will show paint lines on the dome making it obvious that you did repair work.
The Commander (Air) says its just another of the new-fangled gadgets which are tried out in the ship; he doesn’t think its much good.
A Due to the extensive supply needed, I purchased some of mine through Hobbylinc, others through Tower Hobbies.
A For a color listing, please look further down this column.A  All paint recommendations are by Rogue Studios of The Dented Helmet. A Please note though that sanding of Loctite Liquid Metal should be done within 25-30 minutes of the initial application. A If you wait longer than 6 hours, it becomes extremely durable and quite difficult to sand down. Besides that he told us about trials in general and how the wardroom has to put up with these hordes of ?800 a year spivs who seem indispensable to aircraft trials if they are only screw turners.Lieutenant Wall paid the gunroom a visit in the evening.


Of course most people agree that something should be done and that this is one way of doing it, perhaps the best way.
We had a talk on the Air Department of the ship and its organisation by the Commander (Air). Very soon he started talking solely about the trials themselves and what our future programme may include providing nothing very unusual happens before we have had our repairs completed.I had the afternoon watch with Lieutenant Grayson.
Someone thought he was trying to wrangle more hands to bring the ships company up to a more workable minimum.If the officers heads (?) were not on the dock there would have been very little to do indeed.
As it was these officers streamed back during the ‘dogs.’ I found it was very monotonous saying “Carry on” or words to that effect when about fifty petty officers went ashore at ten minutes to four just as the last notes of (carry on [correction – secure]) and coops(?) had died away. At both watches for exercises the bugler made a very queer call which was apparently due to his instrument being blocked up, according to him. The Quartermaster spent about a half hour explaining to us how the doctors discovered that his right kidney was not working and that he had a stone there which suddenly stopped growing.
Most of the Wardroom was in the rounds party as it was a mess decks inspection and the route was not definitely fixed before hand.Read a very interesting story in Saturday Evening news called “This is my Sa” by Clarence Budlington Kelland.
All other American serials seemed rather dull, anyway I never seemed to be able to read them through without skipping large and boring pages.The Government today announces that the prices of coal, electricity and gas will be pegged, as all other commodities, in order to check, or to attempt to check, the ever spiralling cost of living. Hagannah announces that its forces will in future resist arrest by British forces, following an incident in which four Jews were killed after being set free in an Arab stronghold form an army lorry, and killed a few minutes later by armed Arabs. The congregation in the Chapel this morning was very small indeed, consisting entirely of officers. It is not at all surprising that clergy these days are very dispirited.Part of the dockyard power supply to the ship was cut off this evening and half the ship put in darkness. A lead coming aboard over the Starboard side onto the Lower Gallery deck overheated causing the rubber insulation to melt. That mucked up my fire main chasing programme, however I had decided that the only way to make a plan was to draw a large seals layout of each deck first, then put in the main and branches later.
Spent at least two hours searching for pipes at the expense of a layer of oil and filth all over my hands and on my reefer.Reached the HMS Boxer by jeep just before tea.
After tea we walked round the ship and paid a visit to the bridge where we were struck by its size and openness.
There we also noticed that the evening was very cold, so we decided unanimously to walk back to Illustrious and muster all our warm clothing.There are three Sub-Lieutenants onboard. To get the stern out we went ahead on a back spring then, when clear astern and round to Port. As soon as we were clear of the harbour we started directing planes from Ford and Lea-on-Solent. It had been decided that a ship,which could direct large numbers of planes onto shore targets and enemy planes, should be built for fighting in the Pacific. This specialised ship, a floating Fighter and Bomber Direction Unit, was to be used within about ten miles of Japanese islands to direct planes from aircraft carriers which would be about 70 miles off shore in order to be less accessible to land based planes. Boxer was passing through the Mediterranean when Japan capitulated, on her way to the Pacific. The weather became rowdier still as we steamed up to the Needles to enter the West Solent and anchor off Yarmouth. Nigeria is to be sent to the Falkland Islands where the Argentinos and Chileans are busy setting up a military base in the Falkland Island Dependencies.
Possibly it is Peron’s idea to direct his countrymen’s thoughts from internal affairs to something more dramatic. Nigeria will alter the situation when she arrives mainly because she is so heavily outnumbered and also because the distances over which the other ships would have to be send, are so great.
The Argentine papers have been very insolent about the whole thing, the trouble is that they know or are pretty certain that we shall not be able to do anything decisive. We are all very glad we went back to the HMS Illustrious on Monday evening to take some more sweaters, scarves, gloves etc.
Today we were directing Barracudas and an Anson, which every now and again come in on a torpedo or bombing run at us. As we entered the Solent past Nab Tower we passed the black funnelled Dutch liner Wilhelm Huys.When being lowered, shortly after we had anchored, the Starboard Motor Cutter was nearly wrecked. The sea was very rough, there being a high short swell, and when the boat was nearly lowered to the water, instead of slipping it was pitched up on a creast of a wave and flung down again onto the falls. Started to snow in the morning and the wind, as usual, was Easterly and even colder than before.
The ship apparently handles very well.A jeep was supposed to be at the jetty to bring us back at 1630. Ministers are accused left, right and centre of making self-contradictory statements about the various nationalised parts of our economy. The Sunday Chronicle has a long article on the Falkland Islands incident headed “The Lions Tail,” with the Lion in rather an awkward position at present.
Illustrious .Spent the whole day going in and out of compartments on the Main Deck looking for the fire main pipes.
A rumour was started that the British had caused the outrage, and the Jewish crowds became very hostile to our men helping in the rescue work so that after a short time all British police and troops were withdrawn.
In the Dogs it was returned alongside by a tug after going aground and getting stuck just off the pontoon at dead low tide.An escort was sent off to London [correction – to catch] by 1920 train to collect two deserters picked up by the Naval Section of Scotland Yard. The leave for the ship’s Company is from 19th March – 12th April for the watches in succession.
At Commanders requestmen(?) this morning six men were granted afternoon leave to watch the Navy-Civil Services football match. Sheffield has been ordered to Belize from Cartagena, Columbia where she was on her spring cruise. Devonshire was ordered away because of reports that British Honduras was about to be invaded. Just before lunch an airman rating was brought up before the Officer of the Watch on a charge of disobeying his superior officer, namely by refusing to sweep out his mess when ordered to by his leading hand. Illustrious - Lectures on Divisional Matters and another lecture on Operation of Carriers were given by Lieutenant Commander Hamer and Lieutenant Turnbull.
The latter’s lecture was mainly about carrier warfare in the Pacific and of course the accent was on flying, as Lieutenant Turnbull is a pilot.In the evening Few, Lemon and myself went ashore mainly to have our hair cut. The first barber’s shop was shut, and later when we came back after walking along the Southsea front we passed another shop which had also closed.
Today we had a more interesting time than usual.After Stand Easy a party of officers from all the services came onboard for an outing in their Photographic Interpretation course. Illustrious was docked.Owing to the mist and cloud at the time of sunset we were able to see sunspots on the face of the sun through our telescopes.
Illustrious - Lieutenant Commander Hamer gave us a very interesting lecture on the Middle East. He explained the reason why it was so important to England and the Empire was because it was on our main East-West sea route, besides being a road between North and South.
Jews will probably pour into Palestine, the Jewish part of which would soon be overpopulated, and then the immigrants would have no other course to take than to attempt to beat back the arabs by force of arms. The Arabs have the advantage in desert warfare, as they know their country and have all the Moslem countries from which they can expect to receive modern arms and volunteers, to help in the cause. The Jews may have a well trained and organised army but all their arms are supplied from abroad. The help that is given by the American Government depends on the political parties in power and whether elections are in the offing, in which case the candidates in the Government in power will pander to the Jewish electorate. At present, however, the Americans can either please the Jews and endanger their oil pipe lines across Arabia, or dissatisfy their Jewish electorate but safeguard their oil, or, as they are doing now, make vague and noncommittal statements about their policy which generally annoys all the parties concerned.Trouble in our colonies has now spread to the Gold Coast where riots have broken out in Accra.
There, a native party, demanding self government for the colony, has incited ex-servicemen to agitate for better living conditions. After a short visit at Salisbury I caught the Bath train which took me to my home town, Warminster. After waiting at the station for a car a little while the mist started to come down reducing visibility to about two yards. Eventually I reached home after a hair raising drive, mostly on the pavement at the right side of the road. Saturday 6th March 1948Warminster - Another very fine day with clear sky and hot sun. Both sides seem to be organising themselves for the time when British forces leave the country, in the mean time the position of our soldiers and police in Palestine becomes more insecure every day. Sunday 7th March 1948Warminster – The King and Queen and Princess Margaret are to visit Australia and New Zealand in 1949. The Navy is not as strong as it should be, and the Government has not exaggerated its state. Illustrious - School in the morning and Organisation, a lecture by the Commander in the afternoon. After a second long walk, it seemed very long carrying a heavy grip, we arrived at Hornet.Before Stand-Easy we were shown round the establishment, Gun Boat Yard, the two German E-boats there and several captured enemy craft, including one with a hydrophane attachment and an Italian explosive motorboat. 2012, a Long boat, called Dog boats by the officers on them.As we went past the forts outside the harbour in the Solent we saw an E-boat leave the harbour behind us. We were developing full speed, but very soon we were overtaken by the other boat which, we were informed afterwards, was only developing ? power.



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