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Roberts Space Industries ®
Submitted 2016-10-14 18:38:34
Comments / 14

Kinshadow’s 2016 CitizenCon Cosplay Build

Hey Cits and Civs, this is Kinshadow. You may know me from the random stuff I do in the community like the Guard Frequency Podcast (, my card games (, my pumpkins, my Valentine’s day cards, etc. If you happen to be an OG Star Citizen fan, you may also know me as that guy who used to dress up like a pirate and hunt Logante on Wingman’s Hangar. For this year’s CitizenCon, I decided I wanted to dress up like my old pirate self once more, but the old shiny trenchcoat just wasn’t going to cut it (it smells like mothballs and plastic). I had some time on my hands and I figured I could probably pull off some half-way decent cosplay if I put my mind to it. You can see the results below in the first two pics.

Since then, a bunch of people have asked me ‘how’ I built my helmet. So, I decided to make a howto post. Before I start, I’d like to point people to a great couple of resources for EVA foam crafting:
- My original helmet and shoulder templates from from Evil Ted Smith : He sells foam templates for a reasonable price or shows you how to make your own (which I do in this post). He also has GREAT videos on how to build all sorts of costumes.
- Humble Bundle just happens to be doing a cosplay foam crafting book sell!
- I scanned all the templates I used in this build. Feel free to use them and skip about half the steps in this build :D You can download them here:

Make sure you mouse-over each pic to see the text instructions


Here’s a Cellphone pic of the costume front and back

Here are much nicer pics done by

I decided that I should start off using a template so I wasn’t starting from ground-zero. I bought the Evil Ted basic Big Helmet template and cut it out of half-inch foam mats.

The template is simple, but it took me a couple tries to get the heating and gluing technique down right. Again, watch the Evil Ted helmet videos to get this part.

After some experimentation, I found that I really needed an armature for the face portion of the mask. Something to hold everything together while I figured out the pattern. Also, I needed a solution for the eyes since leaving them open wasn’t really an option. I ended up getting a airsoft mask off Amazon for ~$15. I then cut down my helmet to make the mask mate to it and glued them together.

I then covered the mask in aluminum foil and duct tape so I could sketch out the foam template I needed to make. I looked at in-game screenshots and went through a couple iterations lightly in ballpoint pen.

I then went back over the final pen marks in sharpy and colored it it with notes on thickness. And overlaps.

I only did half the helmet as I just needed to cut most of the patterns twice for both sides or simply reverse them to get the mirrored image

I then cut the wrap off the helmet and cut the patterned pieces out to create shapes. Where needed, I cut slits to flatten the pieces out. Again, Evil Ted talks about this process in his videos.

After cutting them out of the tape, I then transferred them to paper. I scanned these in so I could make copies without screwing up and you can download them here:

I then took the templates I generated and cut them out foam. For most pieces I tried both 5mm and 3mm foam so I could play with the thickness. Only the back 2 grills ended up being half-inch foam.

I then took all the pieces I made and taped them to the helmet to make sure I didn’t screw anything up in the process. This is also where I finalized the thickness I was going to use. I didn’t document which one I picked, but you can see them in the images.

For the grill, I took a rectangular half-inch piece and used a dremmel tool to make grooves in it similar to the game grill

This is the grill + nose piece added to the taped helmet before I glued everything on

Everything finally glued on

Everything finally glued on

I took two pipe insulation tubes and ran coat hangar wire through them and up into the foam of the helmet. I then covered each tube with some wiring tube to get a more mechanical feel.

I masked off the eyes and the inside face mask and covered the whole helmet in around 6 layers of spray-on Plastidip to protect it.

After thorough drying, I then masked the plastidip where I wanted the mask to kept black and spray-painted it with Rustoleum dark metalic paint

After thorough drying, I then masked the plastidip where I wanted the mask to kept black and spray-painted it with Rustoleum dark metalic paint

I went back through with some model paint and hit some detail spots. Mostly red areas.

Lastly, I dabbed the whole thing with clear floor varnish to give it another protective coat and some gleam.

Lastly, I dabbed the whole thing with clear floor varnish to give it another protective coat and some gleam.

For the front armor, I took a rectangular pieces of 5mm foam, plastidipped them and glued them on a wind-breaker

I added velcro to the middle piece so I could still access the zipped of the windbreaker

The shoulder pads are pretty much just the Evil Ted pattern. I cut some overlapping rectangular pieces of 3mm foam to kind look like the helmet top and glued them on top.

The font coat clasps are 5mm shapes I hand draw, cut, and painted.

I put velcro pads on the back so I could attach a LED matrix array

I used a Badgerstick arduino board that I got free at SXSW. It came with a small LED Charlieplexed array. You can get the schematics for the array on their website and the whole thing is open sourced.

I used the Badgerstick array schematic to just make a bigger version of the array using bigger LEDs. It was a bit sloppy, but it worked :D



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