• josephaguilarsanch

Grenadier Helmet

Jorge's Helmet is my most ambitious project to date. I wanted to create something truly worthy of Noble Five


My inspiration for this project was motivated by the fact that I am no expert prop maker and I wanted to model my helmets in such a way that makes printing/painting/assembling them more accessible to people with less experience/fewer resources.

Additionally, I wanted a model that could accommodate common 3D printers, so that the model is accessible to everyone.

With that being said, lets take a look at everything I did to ensure everyone can own their own piece of Reach history.

Major Features




Unique, Easy-To-Assemble Design.

This helmet was designed to fit together like a 3D puzzle. This model is comprised of 40+ pieces. All of the large major pieces are designed to snugly fit together utilizing aligment pegs that allow for the helmet to be securely assembled/dissembled without the need for screws/glue. Some of the smaller accent pieces require glue to place in their slots, but outside of that, this helmet is printable in such a way that a vast majority of the pieces do not require glue to assemble, this ensures that there are no ugly seams to hide/sand away.


Below you can see two pictures, both show how the helmet slides together one piece into another. The first picture show how all the "central" pieces slide together from the front.

The second photo shows that all the "side" pieces slide in from the sides and lock all the rest of the "central" pieces in place.


The optimal order to assemble the helmet can be found in the video at the beginning of this post.





Additionally this allows to mix and match different helmet customization similar to what you would find in Halo: Reach and now the MCC.

The entire helmet design is based on the Halo 5 "Indomitable" Helmet. This is the Halo 5 version of Jorge's Grenadier helmet


Helmet Accessories

The modular design of this helmet lends itself to include some of the different "Accessories" that you can get in Halo: Reach and MCC. I've included some pics of the accessories i've added.


Here we can see the usual UA variant being available as well as a more bare bones version. Both of which slide into the main cap of the helmet from the side and can be screwed in place if desired.

Here we can see a model of the FC helmet variation.



Visor Insert Features


The inside of the helmet features Guides to hold the visor in place. While the visor can sit on these alone I would recommend a low strength glue or tape to help fasten hit while still allowing you to remove the visor.


Sizing Ring



Model includes a sizing ring to help you scale the helmet to fit over your head. Sizing ring is equal to the size of the throat of the helmet so make it so you can fit your whole head through without slicing your ears off. In my case, I was able to print the whole helmet at 93% scale, which saved plenty of time and made for a better fitting helmet.


Full Visor Resin Kit



This model includes a full kit to help you make a mold capable of casting a resin visor. A resin visor in and of itself will have some reflective properties while more importantly allow you to make the visor see-through and a color of your choice. It also allows for more complex geometries than vacuum forming and makes for a sturdier visor. I went with a simpler mold shell design without an alignment baseplate for this design. The visor and mold shell sheathe together, so just ensure that the visor plug is not touching any of the walls before pouring in the molding agent. As usual, I recommend glueing the two pieces to a flat piece of cardboard. The mold shell is designed to be able to flip over and stand flat when pouring in Resin to ensure the top does not leak or pour resin.

Visor Resin Volume: 192 mL

Visor Rubber Mold Volume: 621 mL


You can find a more detailed explanation of the resin casting process in my "Builds" section.


Smooth Ergonomic Interior


This helmet was design to have smooth, spacious head cavity. This allows for the inclusion of whatever interior helmet accessories you want, padding, speakers, fans, etc.

Builds



I am no master prop maker, but I could not anticipate how well this helmet came out!


The multi part design made sanding and painting each individual part much easier and allowed me to get a glossy smooth finish all the way up to each edge on the helmet. If the helmet was one solid piece, all the nooks and crannies would've been a real pain to try and smooth and would probably have lead to visible layer lines on all those inner edges.


When painting this model, I was able to get such a glossy finish by using a new technique of alternating between primer and bondo.

- First, apply a layer of sand-able filler primer to you initial 3d print.

- Next, sand away as much of that layer as you can with one quick pass of sand-paper, electric sander, dremel, etc. You should still have some spots where you still see the primer in the deeper layers, more uneven areas. I usually use 80 grit for this. This is not meant to get the object super smooth, mostly just to show you where bondo will be necessary

- Next, apply bondo to the spots where you still see the gray primer. I usually wet sand this away with 600 grit. This works well with the bondo shown below. If you get the bondo that is not premixed and comes with the hardening agent, you may need to use higher grits to get through it in a timely fashion. Again, don't spend too much time on this layer either, just make sure you sand enough away so that all the previously grey/primered areas are now red and smoother than they were before.

- Next add another layer of primer, wet-sand this with 600 grit till your model is now smooth. You should be able to see light reflect of the primer at this stage. I recommend 600 grit because it tends to hit the sweet spot of smoothing the paint, but also sanding the paint away quickly if its still not perfectly smooth. This will make quick work of swirl lines from the previous grits.

- At this point your piece should be mostly shiny-grey. You may see some small problem areas at this point, so repeat the previous two steps in these small spots as necessary.

- Lastly, you apply your paint! For this project I chose glossy enamel paint. The enamel paint tends to be hardier and stick to the props better. They are also more resistant to damage. Additionally if you need to sand it, it sands slower and can act the same as the primer from previous steps.


The piece that require the most repetitions of these two steps were the main helmet, especially because that raised feature on the top was not originally connected and I had to glue it in place and get rid of the seams. I have since changed the model to have these two pieces come connected. Additionally I printed the main cap upside down so the entire top of the helmet had horrible quality due to the supports and me getting them off. But as you can see in a lot of the pictures, despite this piece being the roughest by far, I was able to get it to a mirror-like finish.



The visor making can be viewed below.

1: I glued the visor to an old pizza box.

2: I then placed the mold shell over top the visor plug and used spray adhesive to keep it in place. I would not recommend this because it turns out it was not a tight seal and I had some silicon leakage. I would recommend hot glueing it to ensure you have no leakable areas. I used spray adhesive because I was impatient.

3: Next I removed the visor from the mold and placed the mold back in its shell. If you cant remove the mold without destroying the shell, you can always just print another, this is why I make the shell so thin, to save on materials. For my next project I will be experimenting on two piece shells, held together with small bolts.

4: Next determine how much resin you need, I list the amount earlier in this post, however, if you decide to scale the helmet, you'll need to do a bit of math. Mix as instructed with whatever dye you want.

5: I have a small vacuum chamber, so you can see I putt out the bubbles with that

6: I pour the resin into the mold, and since I included a little extra just in case too much gets stuck to the cup/mixing stick, I pour the excess into some small gem molds I made the other day.


Below you can see that the visor initially comes out pretty cloudy. After I sanded/polished it you can see that it starts to become see-through.

For this process I usually go 600>1000>1500>2000>3000 grit sandpaper on the visor. Lastly, and most importantly I finish with a microfiber cloth and Flitz polish.

Also note, that the resin visor is somewhat malleable, so when putting it in your helmet you can squish it so that it fits through the throat if it stretch out during the polishing process. In my experience It takes a lot of force to deform it so it is still pretty sturdy and does not effect the polish.


After all that I was all done! You can see the video of me putting the whole thing together below.

Note, that it must be put together in the order shown, back to front, then the side pieces lock the whole helmet together.





What Next?


If you are looking to create you own models like this one feel free to checkout all of my tutorials on 3D modeling and prop making techniques.


If you are looking to purchase the model so that you can print your own you can find it in the store.


Lastly, make sure to check back in every once in a while to see what I've been working on


Thank you for your time


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