Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Tony Stark's'd you do that?

Photo by:  Norm Chan

Photo by: Jarvis

My second costume for Dragon*Con was a Tony Stark Heads Up Display/Interior of Iron Man's suit.  So many of the shots from the Iron Man/Avengers movies showed Tony's face with graphical information and targeting displays that look really cool.  I aimed to come up with a way to bring that effect to life.

Here's how:

I started with some very nifty source material.  The artist who designed the HUD and a lot of the graphics for the movies had some materials that I used to design my own HUD.

I took elements that I thought would look cool and work well in my design and created a Vector image in Inkscape.  I created two layers that would nicely compliment each other when I combined them as red and blue.  These images were taken to a local maker space that had a laser cutter.  The edges of the acrylic were cut and the pattern were etched.

These two panels where then heat bent with a heat gun and a large cylinder (of oatmeal, if you're curious).'d they light up?  Well, if you've read my original Tony/Pepper build, you'd see the tablet we made by shining light through acrylic.  Any scratches glow due to internal reflection.  (SCIENCE!)  I simply controlled where the light would diffract with my etches.  I put some surface mount LEDs along the edge to create the effect.  I added three reds and three blues, but it was probably overkill.

Here's Bill trying out the sweet view.

The two layers were epoxied together using a spacer and I put a foam edge over the wiring.

The whole thing got a stiff wire to hold it place on my shoulders.  I had to Velcro it to my belt loop to keep it from tipping forward.

That's pretty much it.  It is actually a pretty simple build that could be done with a knife and time, if you don't have access to a laser cutter.  As usual, I did my best Stark Stache and used my brother's arc reactor shirt to complete the Tony transformation.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Claptrap: Untz untz untz untz...

Some time ago I was offered a chance to go to Dragon*Con with some fantastic cosplay pals.  I wanted to make it a secret to my brother, so I built a Claptrap robot from Borderlands in secret.  Here's the result.

I started with a papercraft model of Claptrap.  You can find the model here.

I used MATH to scale him up to a size that would fit into a suitcase.  The challenge was the I would have to be able to assemble him in a hotel room.

I made templates out of card stock and cut the body pieces out of this plywood.

Most parts were epoxied and screwed together.

He got some yellow and black paint on the body.

I intended to make this a puppet that I could wheel around.  I also wanted to be able to move his arms.  I built shoulder and elbow joints to accomplish this.

I got a glowy ball at Wal-Mart for his eye.  I used a PVC adapter to hold his eye.  I found an old wheel for him to scoot around on.  He got a few layers of acrylic and rub'n'buff for the details.  As a bonus, I put a speaker in him and ran an the input from my phone to play sounds off a sound board.

Claptrap got a lot of love and I enjoyed pushing him around Dragon*Con.