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B-wing Pilot Helmet, Chestbox and Greeblies Build
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Blue Banshee Leader (Alex Buirch)
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 7:39 am    Post subject: B-wing Pilot Helmet, Chestbox and Greeblies Build Reply with quote

I've mentioned my project a little bit every now and then and I figured that it was about time that I post up some pictures. I've been working on these for a little while now and progress is coming along pretty well, I think. Smile

So what have I been working on? I've been finishing up the helmet, which as I've mentioned before I have the movie mold of, but it needed some repairs and I'm making the top rear edge wider as seen in the movie helmets. It's nearly finished. I am having a little trouble getting the back edge as rounded as it should be because I don't have much room to work in, the plastic middle of the helmet "brick" is so close to the clay that there isn't much room... It may have to be sanded down a bit on the actual cast, but I suppose that's not a big deal.




I've also been working on a new chestbox that I plan to make some casts of (along with the helmet, of course). I'm rather pleased with how the chestbox is turning out so far. It's not done yet, obviously, and I still need to do some more shaping and a lot more sanding, but it's coming along. My goal is to have the chestbox (and helmet) finished by Christmas and hopefully I can try making a rubber mothermold in January.

I've added details from the three styles of chestboxes onto this one. I did this to make it easier to make the various versions of it... If someone wants the Nien Nunb/Ten Numb/Keyan Farlander style chestbox, all they have to do is fill in the two rectangular buttons, if someone wants the style seen on various RotJ B-wing pilots (with the two black boxes) or the style seen in the Star Wars Costumes book, which is also worn by Palso Thern, fill in the circular cut, the socket for the 50-pin computer connector and larger rectangular indentation. Pretty easy. Plus, in regards to the Costumes style, as long as the buyer paints within the indented area, the "buttons" will always come out perfect and will match up with another person's chestbox. I also made things intended because i wanted the chestbox to look like a real working piece of equipment and not a simple tossed-together movie prop, I wanted it to look like it might actually do something... Which is also why I added some details into the cut circle so that it looked like a circuit board or an air filter or something. Smile

I started with this...


And it now looks like this...




One thing I thought I'd note about the circular cut... It's not the greeblie from the Star Wars Costumes book. I discovered this while working on the chestbox and comparing sizes. The circular greeblie on the Star Wars Costumes book is actually smaller than the circle on the Nien/Ten/Keyan chestbox and is positioned off from the edge more and sits a little bit lower on the chestbox. The circle on the Nien/Ten/Keyan box is larger, is closer to the trench edge, and sits a little bit higher. So yeah, the Costumes greeblie isn't on the Nien/Ten/Keyan chestbox.

I've also been working on some other things. I've been working on models for the belt box and various greeblies so they can be 3D printed. I will have to print most of the greeblies and finish them by hand as it's too hard to make rounded edges in the 3D modeling program I'm using, and then I can cast them in resin, but that's okay because if I do it by hand I can make the edges nice and perfect.

The belt box (also usable for A-wing and Y-wing pilots) is finished and ready for printing and I'm looking into options for printing it. Getting it printed through an online store is way too expensive so I'm looking into getting it printed locally, trying to do it myself at a FedEx store that has a 3D printer a city away, and I've also been mulling over the idea of splitting the box into pieces where each side-- top, bottom, left, right and front-- would be glued together, which might be the cheaper route.

I wanted to make the belt box look like a working piece of equipment so I added a couple small details so it didn't just look like a blank, boring box. I also tried to make the connector on the top of the smaller box look like it might actually connect into something, so the inside of the greeblie has plug "teeth" and a piece that slides inside that looks like a circuit board or something.

The back of the box is removable. I cut three slits in the back cover thinking that if someone wanted to put something like an MP3 player and speaker inside the sounds would be able to come out from those slots.







I've also made the round BENDIX bulkhead-like connector, which I have no idea what to call it, that's seen in the Costumes book. (Ten Numb and Nien Nunb, and presumably Keyan Farlander, have an actual BENDIX bulkhead connector with threads on the outside on their flak vests). This piece also goes on the Y-wing pilot vest along with the BENDIX connector. I made a shallow circular indentation so that it would be easy to paint.


And the other B-wing pilot flak vest greeblie in the Costumes book...


Plus the version for Y-wing pilots...


I've made both versions of the circular greeblie that goes on the side of the B-wing pilot helmet, and one of the versions (the one below with the blue stripes) also goes onto the A-wing pilot flak vest.








And the button that goes into the center of those greeblies (for B-wing pilot helmets)... I wasn't entirely sure what the buttons look like other than that they're a circle and I'm pretty sure they're not the Yamaha greeblie from the Y-wing pilot helmet because they don't have the triangular protrusion, so I decided to have some fun with them. I made one that says "SONY" on it, kind of a play on the Yamaha greeblie, one that reads "ILM", or Industrial Light and Magic, one that has a cross on it (or an X, depending on how you look at it) and one that looks more like a techy greeblie with a vent on it. I may make a few more for fun. Very Happy



I'm working on some other greeblies as well but those are what I have finished so far.

So far things seem to be going smoothly. As I mentioned, I'm hoping to try to make molds for the chestbox and helmet by January for all goes well.

...And, on a slightly related note, I was thinking about this earlier but, it's hard to believe that I've been working on various versions of my B-wing pilot costume and studying every little detail on pictures for six years now. Man, doesn't seem like it's been that long... Laughing
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GhostRider01 (Luis Alejandro Mendoza)
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Awesome work Alex! Awing
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ywingfighter (Frank)
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 12:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looking forward to your project! I working on the helmet visor and I think I had it ready after christmas!
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Blue Banshee Leader (Alex Buirch)
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2014 10:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. I always enjoy working on B-wing pilot stuff... I don't know why, but I really enjoy it, even more so than I did working on my Jedi (or my other non-Star Wars costumes). Smile

Awesome work, Frank. The visor is looking good so far, too!
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HazardThree (Jon Paulson)
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2014 8:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Alex, Rob (paleosilex) has a bunch of those greeblies already made for the A-wing box. There's a lot of crossover, and I know he's already casting the disk and the bendix thingee.
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Blue Banshee Leader (Alex Buirch)
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2014 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, alrighty, I saw that. Or at least the disc thing, anyway. It's looking pretty good. But it never hurts to have a couple versions. And I'm not sure what dimensions he has for the disc greeblie so I'm not sure if it would fit on the helmet or not... I have the helmet so I have the dimensions for the piece. And I was able to make the second version where it has the four holes drilled into it (or the screws are missing or something), as appears on one of the B-wing pilot helmets from another picture I've seen. Smile

And, well, I figure that if I'm selling the helmet with the greeblie sets, I kind of need to include the disc greeblie... It's kind of an important part of it. Heh heh. Razz

Anywho, on the B-wing/Y-wing flak vest pieces I realized that I forgot to add the ring bases around the circular bolt things... I'll get that fixed up, that'll be pretty easy. I might try adding a little more detail on them as well.

Then it's on to some more greeblies! Not sure which I'll work on next. I'm having fun. Razz
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paleosilex (Robert Nelson)
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 12, 2014 12:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was looking at your box. I like the overall dimensions. The greeblies I have are for the screen version. The channel, lower left corner and the right side. I am not sure about the others. The pictures are not lit well. and the only issue is that darned round one that we had talked about, and the two other versions of the channel greebly. I also have the connector greebly that is on the vest.

The box is straight forward with the only depressions (cut outs) are the ones on the auction pictures. No other cut outs are shown on the three versions I have seen. All the details are paint except for the circuit pieces. The colors in the cutouts are stickers.

I like the helmet. I may try and buy one off of you! Much improved over the first version. I think the circular disk on the helmet is identical to the one I have molded and cast. Its 2" diameter. On the helmet pictures it has a single screw through the large opening and then smaller ones that actually attach it to the helmet.

The circuit board for the vest looks good. I have it modeled, but haven't printed it yet. I plan on doing the same with it as I did for the A-wing circuit board.

We should discuss sometime the change in the arm pocket design. The pictures I have seen show a different pocket and there is no compad pocket or tools.

I plan on redoing my costume as well.

It is looking really good! Keep up the good work.

Rob (paleosilex)
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Blue Banshee Leader (Alex Buirch)
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 12, 2014 9:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I realize that the orange/red button design things aren't cut in, but like I said, I wanted this to look more like a working piece of equipment, and I felt that intending them slightly helped with that look. And makes it easier to paint in, at least for me. They're easy enough to fill in, anyway, so not a big deal one way or the other. Versatility and stuff. Smile

The gray rectangle and blue button things on the Nien/Ten/Keyan chestbox I'm still not sure about. I keep flip-flopping on it. In most of the pictures it looks like it's cut in, at least the gray area, as there's a shadow along the inner edge and a light reflection off the top edge. Still, I'm not sure why the costumers would go to all of the trouble of cutting it in like that, but I'm not sure why they would bother to simulate shadow and highlights artificially, either. But I don't know. Cutting it in is possible, though, as they obviously cut into the chestbox to attach the big computer connector, so they could have done the gray area at the same time. And it's also possible that there was more than one chestbox mold... There were at least two different B-wing pilot helmet molds (three counting one from a Ten Numb pre-production picture), both of which were shown in the Costumes book and another picture or two. It's not too hard to believe that there could have been two chestbox molds, too. There are a couple other bits of evidence that lead me to believe that the gray area for the Ten/Nien/Keyan box was intended in but I wont go into it now, I've rambled enough. Heh. Razz

But, like I said, I only intended them a tiny bit, about the width of card stock, so the indentations are easy to fill in.

Anyhow, the arm pocket is an odd thing, but I've seen the same pocket on other suits, but the RotJ ones were just modified a little bit from what I can tell. I've been seeing if I can dig up a pattern for what I think the pocket is and then modifying it should be a snap.

One thing that I think will be up for interpretation is the shade of red on the coveralls. In the Costumes book they appear much darker, but in RotJ they're more of a brighter red, and they're brighter in backstage pictures, too. I have to wonder how much time has changed the color of the things that appear in Costumes... I mean, even the flak vests appear brown in the book and they're definitely not brown.
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paleosilex (Robert Nelson)
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2014 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm sure the color of the suit will be quite a discussion. What we have seen, in the ILM photos, is that the suits were white and then dyed. They were a cotton twill as well.
The red is very problematic. As far as I have found, Red Kap is the only one with red. I agree that it is not a match. I think as costumers and judges, we need to consider the availability of the supplies. Do we want uniformity or a bunch of different shades. I am not sure what the answer is. That being said, I like your color and the color I have. Has anybody found another red? I'd love to see it if they have.
As to the A-wing color, it won't be found commercially and the spruce green in my opinion is too dark. I have a new suit that leans toward olive but is much closer to the screen than the spruce. I'm not sure how the costume standards would handle it.

Rob N. (paleosilex)
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2014 1:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the standards are just going to have to be "red" and pretty much left at that. Especially considering different Star Wars references have different shades... In the movie they're a brighter red, in the Costumes book they're a dark red, in one scene in RotJ one pilot has a more pinkish-red flightsuit ("imperial red", I think it's called), the Character Encyclopedia has a neon red (though those are badly Photoshopped pictures and aren't great for reference)... Personally, I think as long as it's not neon red anything should probably be fine.

As for places to buy red coveralls... Dickies also sells red coveralls, which are what I have currently. I'm going to be replacing mine because mine are getting worn and threadbare, but they do have them. I found another place in England that also sells red coveralls... I'm going to buy a couple pair next month and see if they look as good as they do in the pictures they have. I did get a swatch of their material and it looks like a pretty good match, but I want to make sure. So I'm going to buy a couple pair next month and when I get 'em I can review 'em. Smile
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paleosilex (Robert Nelson)
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2014 2:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dickies??? hmm... I'd have to see them. The place in England is very interesting. I'd love to see the website or a picture of the suit. It is probably the most accurate (the movies were filmed in England ya know). Definitely keep me in the loop!

BTW..I'd love to show you the A-wing color I'm looking at and get your opinion on it.

Rob N. (paleosilex)
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Blue Banshee Leader (Alex Buirch)
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2014 10:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dickies is what I have now, like I said. The red is pretty good but it does have a pinkish hue. I think it's called "imperial red", or "royal red" or something like that. I'd prefer a more pure red but it's not a bad choice... Really, I think I'm the only person who notices it. Heh. And I have to admit that Dickies was actually the only place that would allow me to get some extra material. They sent me two extra yards of material when I asked before, so they are a pretty helpful company. Smile

I suppose that technically the most accurate route would be to buy coveralls from the raceware company that LucasFilms bought their coveralls from and dye them... But who wants to do that? I can't remember the name of the company but they're still in business, and I was poking around their website a few weeks ago. I guess if someone wanted to be really strict about it there would be that route. Heh. Razz

What color were you thinking of for the A-wing pilot?
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paleosilex (Robert Nelson)
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2014 9:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was checking out some raceway stuff from England. You are so correct that the colors seem much more accurate with the B-wing. I was wondering if the darker gray was a good choice for the Y-Wing?

As to the A-Wing....


This is what I have. It feels like silk. Nice and light weight. Pockets are easy to remove. Yes, I'll need to cover the zipper. That being said. What about the color?

Rob N.
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Blue Banshee Leader (Alex Buirch)
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2014 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We really need a crack knuckles emote. Heh heh! Kidding. Razz

I'd say that the coveralls look pretty good, though perhaps a little yellowish/brownish. It looks to me like A-wing pilot coveralls are a little more on the dark green or forest green side than the olive green, but it's not a bad color for it.

As for a Y-wing pilot, I'd say a lighter gray would be best. While the picture below isn't the best picture, I usually think that it's pretty good for judging color because this picture wouldn't have been taken too long after RotJ was filmed (so the coveralls wouldn't have been damaged by time too much) and it's taken outdoors in the sunlight, so there's no weird lighting altering the colors. I wish we had an A-wing pilot picture like this.


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paleosilex (Robert Nelson)
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 14, 2014 5:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I love the picture. Those are screen costumes? Note the lack of compads, gators and tools on the b-wings. The color of the b-wings is very interesting. I'm still looking at the England companies. I never even thought of a race mechanic coverall. Thanks for that tidbit!
I see what you're trying to do with the box. That circular doohicky is what I modeled off of the pictures I saw. Granted they weren't the best of that part, but hell if I know what it is.

Rob N.
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