League: Dunkmaster Darius Baxeboard

Dunking fools? Yes please. Heres a fun little side project I did for Riot. You can see the axe leaning against the wall in this cool video they made (All Chat). It may also serve another, more mysterious purpose sometime in the future. OOOOOooooOoOoOoo.

In any case, here it is! The Dunkmaster Darius Battleaxe.

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First things first, I decided on a size (6’4″) and scaled the head to match, transferring this to paper as a template. I got this image from the Texture file, ripped directly from the game files.

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After cutting the shape out, I transferred it to 3/8ths inch Expanded PVC and cut a pair of them out for the main body. Due to its size, it simply had to be hollow.

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After cutting these sections out, I sandwiched a number of insulation foam sheet chunks in-between the two halves to give it some sturdiness and stability, as-well as an even level throughout. It worked pretty well! This is standard 1.5″ insulation foam, giving it a roughly 2″ thickness with the PVC sheets on top of it.

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Next up, I sealed it all together with very long strips of 2mm PVC, including the inner decapitation area. This whole process was very clean and the only sanding required really was on the damaged area and gap filling with some Apoxie sculpt and filler primer.

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All said and done, the base of the head weighed a whopping 2 pounds and was a little over 2.5′ across. Time to move on to the pole! Enter everyone’s favorite tool – the home depot plumbing section!

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I decided to use 2.5″ and 4″ ABS tubing, because it fit the size I needed, was the color I wanted, and was fairly rigid and didnt flex all that much. After buying a length of tubing, some fittings and a few end bits I got to work assembling it. IMG_20140903_175848 (Medium)

Tada! It probably took 5 minutes to get these bases together. The end cap I got fit snugly into the 4″ pipe, and had a circle directly centered in it that I aligned the smaller tube up with. This gave me a perfectly centered mount to slide the other pipe into and not have to worry at all about it being off. This saved me so much time and headache. God I hate centering circles.IMG_20140903_175913 (Medium)IMG_20140910_134723 (Medium)

A couple marks and a lot of bondoing later.. and I have a serviceable mount point for the “torn off” part of the hoop …stand. Now I just have to sand it for jesus, then make it look like its been ripped out of the ground by the Hand of Noxus. Enter my old friend the skill saw.IMG_20140910_135349 (Medium) IMG_20140910_172441 (Medium)

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I did all of this in one sitting and forgot to take pictures, sorry. I traced some break lines where I thought they should go, then simply ran the skill saw over them so the ABS was shredded like string cheese. I then took my trusty old heat gun and bent the ends out as if they had been torn from their earthly bonds by some tremendous angry noxian force. After this, I added additional cracks, gouges, seams and beveled every edge with my exacto-knife, giving it some life. The last part was the most important, as that extra detail really made it believable(in my opinion). After a thorough sanding to remove the gloss of the abs it was ready for paint. On to the backboard!

Now that everything is pretty.. lets cut it up!

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More pictures I forgot to take (can you tell I was extremely rushed?), but I traced and cut the locations of all the gashes and scratches in the model into the original paper template for both sides, then traced them in place on the actual prop so all my detailing would be exactly in the right spots and the right size, then I sat down with some music and cut deep and lasting gouges into my prop. I did all of this with a simple exacto knife, cutting through the thin PVC where I needed to, and building the valleys back up with Apoxie sculpt to fill the gaps. This was a long but satisfying process, and it turned out pretty well. Looks like Darius let Rengar at this thing.IMG_20140906_233950 (Medium)

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Nothing like a bit of filler primer to make things pop. This was the last step before the painting began, it was filler primed and sanded very smooth. This was to finish hiding any seams at the edges, aswell as any frayed bits inside the gouges.

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A couple coats of brilliant white, and a CHERRY APPLE RED square apears! Centering this square, then making it were actually quite a pain in the ass, but it was just a blue painters taped off area. I measured out the red edges and traced it on from the paper cutout I had earlier. Endlessly useful those things. After that.. It was time to lay down the garish red. The red I used is Rustoleums American Accents Gloss Apple Red, crazy bright stuff.

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After a lot of tape, and a number of sacrificial paper towels…

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Bam. Its a basketball hoop. I was getting pretty close to my deadline at this point, as this was one of the fastest projects I’ve done to date, so the rest of it is more or less a blur with very little documentation.. but2014-09-11 17.01.43 (Medium)

The baxeboard is attached to the ABS handle by inset screws inside the tube that screw into a thick piece of PVC set inside the actual head of the axe. There is also hidden apoxie sculpt giving the area it meets a bit more umph. I then used thee same 3/8ths pvc and a heat gun to create these straps, painted them silver and dusted them with black until you could barely tell. These were glued onto the tube, glued to the axe head and then, finally, screwed in place. It is surprisingly sturdy, and could be swung around pretty safely.IMG_20140911_151928 (Medium)I used acrylic black in the gouges, giving them a bit more depth. Then dusted the whole prop very heavily with a matte black spray paint. This gave it the dirty look I wanted. After doing this a few times with some browns and other bits, I sealed it all in with a matte clearcoat.

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I have no pictures at ALL of the hoop parts construction, but I built the box it would mount to out of 2mm PVC, then glued a number of chunks of half inch PVC blocks inside it to sturdy it up a lot, and give me a spot to mount the hoop into. I really wanted to hoop removable, for some reason. I bought a pair of 12″ diameter brass rings (amazon) and then cut out two thin strips of 2mm PVC, using the rings to create lined hoops out of the strips. There is a combination of superglue and dreams holding those rings to the PVC. After this was done and painted (same red and dusting as the rest), I mounted it to the backboard with two 4″ bolts that screw all the way into the meat of the backboard. Its not sturdy enough to actually dunk, but it worked pretty damn well. The hoop can be removed by simply removing the bolts.

Next up, the BLOOD AND GORE. This was done the night before I had to deliver the finished prop (TIGHT TIMETABLE YO), at 3AM and there are no pictures. This is a process I wish I had photographed, as it was my first attempt at making and painting blood, and I learned alot. I made up a batch of “blood” using Red paint, a combination of dark red dyes, elmers glue, a little green, and a lot of trial and error. There are a lot of scraps covered in blood laying around my shop. The process of making FX blood paint is out there online, but the most important part of it for me was the elmers glue, it added that thickness I wanted and enabled me to layer the blood a bit for a more gory effect. I would have spent a ton of time on this testing before actually going for it, but since I was delivering the prop in 6 hours.. I had to commit and just do it. After finishing this I delivered it in the morning, but snapped a few pictures in the parking garage before handing it off to its new owners (Riot).

Hope you enjoy, this was a fun project!

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Next up, Trundles Ice Mace!

 

 

 

Imperius: Gauntlets of Valor

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Next up, the gauntlets! Or at least the upper section.

I started as usual, with the base model from the game. After unfolding it and making some templates for the pieces that worked, BS’ing the pieces that didn’t, I transferred it all to plastic and cut out the base. For some reason I didn’t start taking pictures until the lowest level shell was done and everything was cut out, so here it is.

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After this, I cut out some trim (pictured), mounted it all in place, and heat shaped the lower sections to the open ended shape they are in the cinematic. These are very strange gauntlets.

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With that section mostly complete, it was time to start on the detailed top section. Using a template made from the pep file I created, I forced together the awkward shape of the top sections using a heat gun and lots of superglue/sanding.

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After that, I designed the detail that would go on the outside, planning to cut it out and build it up layer by layer. This was a tedious process, but ended up with some pretty good results! The first layer went down, and a bit of apoxie scult was used to fill the gap. Then, sanding.

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Then, another layer (designed from the previous template), went down ontop of the first, to add those cool looking levels. A coat of primer and some more sanding, because why not.

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Now it is time for the inner detailing! I couldn’t bring myself to use pre bought stuff on this, and sat down and drew out the inner detailing on one of the scraps of the previous templates. I then traced this template first onto some 1mm PVC (4x), then onto the gauntlets themselves, to use as a guide for placement.

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Then, I cut out and individually hand sanded one set of detailing, attaching it carefully to the gauntlets with super glue. Holy shit that took a long time.

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After this process, I did not want to do it all again for a second gauntlet. I decided to try my sneaky tactic of Vac pulling then filling with resin to make a pair of these gauntlets. After building a water clay base for the hollow gauntlet to sit on, I made a series of vac pulls until I got one that had enough detail. It almost had enough detail on the outside to use! That little vac table I built is pretty nice!

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After making two pulls from this “mold” using Smooth-cast 60D semi rigid, I was ready to throw it all together and see how it looked!

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“Silence!”

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Anyways, I will come back to the paint job on this, as I plan to paint everything at more or less the same time, once I figure out how I want it done. I had to hit it with the gold though, because hell yeah. I tried many types of gold on this, and settled with a bit more yellow gold for the base. Handplates will happen later.

Next up, the Helmet!

Imperius: Shoulder Guards

Ahhh Imperius, you wide bastard. These bad boys were fun to make, and where my first foray into making an actual silicone mold. Without further ado!

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Using the models I ripped from D3, I made a properly sized template out of pep for the base, and after transferring it to plastic and a lot of heat shaping (of which there are no pictures), I made these!

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God these were ugly and unwieldy, and cleaning them up was a nightmare because of the low res of the model and the thickness of the PVC (3mm). I decided to focus all my energy on making one shoulder to mold instead of all 4 big chunks.

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I started by patterning out the detailing on each side, and cutting it out of 2mm PVC. This was a mostly trial and error process involving a lot of cursing and measuring.

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After this, I added the outer trim detailing, and built up the top using Apoxie Sculpt. Lots of sanding here, as usual. LEARN TO LOVE THE SANDING.

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To finish it off, I used another piece of 3mm PVC and sanded it into the curvy beveled shape in the cross bit. For some reason I do not have pictures of this hand sanding process, but it was all done with the random orbit sander. After this, it was finish sanding and.. mold making!

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Sloppy first run, this whole thing ended up being garbage and I had to redo it. Valuable lessoned learned, namely take your time, and FILL ALL YOUR SEAMS. After another try, my one peice mold was complete.. and it was time to start casting. Because I am still poor, this was a 1 part mold when it likely should have been something else. I had to slush cast it of sorts, and each cast took about 40 minutes to make.. but in the end..

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Victory.

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Using the cool ideas of Henrik Pilerude, I made ball joint mounts for the shoulders to set into, a quick and dirty collar section for the shoulders, mounted it all together and wala. I also made the 3rd inner piece out of the base frome earlier and some pvc/apoxie sculpt for the detailing, then made vac pulls of it to use for both sides. I dont have many pictures from this period as it is around the time I got promoted and the hours started taking their toll on me, sorry. I will probably expand on the shoulder mounts later.

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Behold, this nerd! Next up, the Bracers!

Imperius: Breastplate (continued!)

Hey all, I’m not dead, just lazy! I haven’t been keeping this page current with my progress, shame on me! Time to start the long process of fixing that. Here is part 2 of the breastplate boogaloo.

Imperius has a thing for the Sun, it seems. . I wasn’t sure how exactly to build this, so I just started from the lowest level and went to work! I roughed out the shape below after a bit of trial and error, and cut the first layer out of 2mm PVC.

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And two more layers, designed by bullshit and guesswork.

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from this point, I glued these pieces together, then filled every gap with Apoxie sculpt to create the bevels and sanded it for ages. After much pondering on how to get this thing I have created to curve so splendidly, I made my choice and cut this thing I had just completed right in half.

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After more filling, sanding, and cursing, the finished cleaned up master was ready for my dumb idea!

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I made Vacuform pulls of both halves of the chest piece, and cut out the Vac formed halves.

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Perfecto! Oh wait, nevermind, you cant bend a hollow object without horrifying warping. I scrapped that idea for another one, and filled both halves of the vac pull with that same cheap fiberglass resin I used for the Spears sun. I didnt get any photos of this process as I pulled the resin out of the “molds” before it had fully cured, and quickly bent the 90% cured resin to shape with a heat gun and my hands, then screwed it into place and worked on the next. After it finished curing on the chestplate, I was able to photograph my dark work.

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Turned out better then it should have, honestly. Also at some point I removed the collars (they are removable), and added detail trim to all 3 of them. After a bunch of cleanup and filling and finish work, it was time for the primer and sanding phase.

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Primed, sanded, bolted down, reinforced in the back with apoxie sculpt (to fill the space between the chest and the resin)

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Filled, sanded, and done! The detailing was a mixed bag of scrapbook flourishes and plastic. Things you can find at Michaels. I am still figuring out what process I want to use (and paint type, weathering etc) for the paint job, so it will stay grey for awhile longer. There will be many more addon pieces for this, backplates and abs etc, plus a mount on the back for the wing mounts. Still, the big work is done!

Stay tuned for the Shoulders!

Imperius : Breastplate WiP

This is probably the only build I’m going to be able to do this year.. so I’m going all out on it. Cinematic version or bust.

After ripping the games model (as a base) and breaking down the armor into parts, I started making the breastplate today.

After what felt like way too long of a time planning and tinkering with templates, I figured out what I wanted and cut the template out. Turned out being only 4 pieces in the end.

And then the test taping! Much cleanup and work will go into this tomorrow.

Glad to finally be working on this again.

This chest has a lot of layers, as seen here:

I started by sealing up the top and reinforcing the hell out of the inside/outside of the first collar using fiberglass and rondo – That first layer is going NOWHERE.
I then started tinkering with adding the 2nd layer of collars.

Then the third

Then the bottom first layer and back segment.

I will be designing the sun on the front tonight and tomorrow.. then I have to actually make it. After that its a whole hell of a lot of trim and cleaning – but I’m happy with the direction its going so far!

The screws are incredibly temporary, needed a reliable way to keep the plates in place while I templated out the next bit while still being able to remove them entirely.

Solarion : Spear of Valor (Diablo 3)

In preparation for my upcoming Archangel Imperius build, I am making the spear he uses throughout Diablo 3.

This is what I was trying to build.

This is the goal

This is what I actually built.

(For higher resolution and more images of finished build check the gallery to the right!)


Below is a rough outline of the steps I took to create this spear!

Using my scaled ingame model as a reference, I made some templates and cut the basic shape of the main blades out of 3/4ths inch thick Expanded PVC (Sintra). Found a scrap of the stuff big enough to host the blades for $8, score.

The next step was to take this and get sanding. After marking a line down the center of the plastic where I wanted the edge to be and blocking off the areas where the edge stopped (I used painters tape as a physical barrier ontop of the lines you see.. this is extremely helpful in stopping accidental deviations) I began my dark and prolonged work with the belt sander and orbital.

These blades are a little over 2′ long. This spear will be large.

A little crooked, but not bad for a first pass.

Edge takes shape, this process took about 40 minutes per blade. Thankfully I only had to do this step once. This plastic was harder then I expected.. perhaps it was not sintra after all.

First pass complete! Looking pretty smooth.

Drew up a template for the inner blades and started working on the circular plate the sun shape sits on. I ended up making a vac pull of a small food plate I found and cutting the plastic version to the size I wanted.

Using photoshop, I drew up a pattern for the star shape that sits ontop of either side of the blade. That thing is going to be a pain to make.

Before tackling the star, I traced and cut out 4 of these from 1/4th inch expanded PVC (Sintra), this is the first finished one after sanding it to shape. Since these sit flush against the blade in the cinematic, the blades only needed to have an edge on the top side, I did almost all of this work with a handhend random orbit sander (best tool ever). The blade is about 4″ long.

I like where this is going very much.


I decided my initial idea of building a support frame with styrene and filling in with apoxie sculpt somehow seemed like too much work, so instead I thought I would try something new. I cut the star out of 1/4th inch Sintra and got to work.


Using a combination of a dremel and orbital, I sanded down the edges of the star into fine points. This was not very easy, and I made a lot of mistakes on the inner sections.. I filled these with Apoxie Sculpt and sanded that down by hand, and it turned out as good as I was hoping. This alone took a little over an hour and a half of sanding.


I cut out the center circle, and made some teeth for the inner circle out of the same 1/4th Sintra and sanded them down to shape using mostly a belt sander and curse words. How I held onto those little .5″ long diamonds and sanded them to shape I may never understand.


Since I have yet to cast anything or use silicone molds.. ever.. and I was NOT going to make a second one of those stars, I decided to try something a little different with what I did have available to me.

Using 1mm Styrene sheets at high heat I made a pull of both masters. The thin styrene and high heat made the inside of the pulls grab a huge amount of detail. I cut the shapes out of the sheet and filled them with cheap fiberglass resin from home depot (the $26 a gallon stuff.. terrible)
Maybe one day I’ll be able to afford smooth-on.


Even I was a little surprised at how well it worked. Two perfect sets of resin casts, this is where the fun starts.

After some cleanup and a few coats of wetsanded plastic primer.. they are looking pretty smooth indeed.


I found a cheap ($5) 6′ long vinyl coated pine closet rod at Dixiline that will work perfectly for the spearshafts base. I cut a channel for the shaft in the base of the blades, and after lining it all up.. glued it in place with hot glue like a pleb. I then added two long carriage bolts going from either side into the shaft for added stability.


All of the sanding required to make the circular shaft flush with the blades (1.25″ width shaft sanded down to .75″ width) made that spot fairly weak.. so I fixed that with a pair of thin steel plates on either side of the blade going down the shaft. This thing isnt going ANYWHERE.


I added the rays of light and a border to the main blade sections, and started mapping out how to attach all this together.

After a lot of primer and finish sanding, I finally was able to assemble the head and take a look.

Going to work on the spears shaft now. Will update soon.

Airsoft Bolt Pistol

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Decided to remake my v1 bolt pistol to add the ability to fire and see how much I improved. The finished product is shown above, here is a quick log of how I got there.

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I started with an average quality electric g36c airsoft gun, shown below next to my old v1 bolt pistol.

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I promptly cut the gun down to the size I needed it, removing all of the addons and extras, while preserving the electronics and inner workings.

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builtupTime for the serious modifications. I cut a channel in the magazine and removed the fake clip and the bb feed. This gave me room for the extra madness I wanted to add to the magazine. I also cut a PVC pipe to shape and fit it snugly on the top of the gun, I fed all the wiring and electronics into this tube and made a spot for the battery to sit. I also built the sides of the gun up using styrene for sale signs and mounted them in place. I did not do very good documentation of this step sadly.. but it only took a few hours.

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Sealing everything up with more styrene, I also reinforced the cutoff barrel with plumbers putty in a small pvc pipe chunk and sanded it flush. This made the cut in half barrel flush with the front of the gun and much much more sturdy.

At this point I had to make sure it still worked, and I made this small embarrassing video.

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More cleanup and sealing. I added styrene to the bottom of the magazine and filled the small space between the bb feed and the outside of the magazine with cut in half copper piping to give the illusion of bolt rounds. After that it was a simple job of designing and adding styrene detailing and a paintjob. All in all, this 2nd gun was completed start to finish in 3 days. Here it is next to the v1 pistol.

done