View Full Version : tali from mass effect helmut

11-05-2010, 01:17 PM
I really want to start working on a tali costume, but I have never worked with resin or anything like that before and have no idea where to start! I mostly just need to figure out how to make the clearish part of her helmut. I would have to be somewhat flexible and not kill me when i have it on my face all day. Here is a link to a picture:http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20090210002944/masseffect/images/8/8f/Tali.

any help would be greatly appreciated!

11-05-2010, 01:53 PM
Reference image doesn't work.

If you're talking about a visor, it might be best to get something vacuum formed into the right shape.

As for first steps towards resin or fiberglassing, look up safety steps. Proper face mask/respirator , gloves, etc. Using it in a well ventilated area, not somewhere with pets/other people, or where you'll be when done working.

11-05-2010, 04:06 PM
There's a bunch of images on the site I believe she meant to link to:

Yeah, vacuum formed clear plastic is unfortunately probably gonna be the best way to go. With some of the thinner clear plastics, you can potentially get away with just heat forming it, but it will be fragile. To heat form the plastic, you would make a form, for example, carved out of wood, in the shape of the visor. Then you'd take a flat sheet of clear plastic (polystyrene, the one used to make the little plastic trays inside packages of oreo cookies and such), lay it overtop, and then apply heat, via something like a heat-coil, a blowtorch, or a heat gun, until the plastic sags around the form. (this is oversimplified, but you get the idea)

To get the purple color, you'd probably just spraypaint it with a translucent paint. If you used a stronger, vacuformed plastic, you may be able to find a custom glass-tint film that could be shrunk into place.

11-05-2010, 04:43 PM
I was thinking about it some more. It wouldn't give you that perfect bubble shape, but you could buy something like a safety visor (http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dtools&field-keywords=welding+visor&x=0&y=0). Most of those plastics, you won't be able to thermoform without some unfeasibly high temperatures, but you may find the look to be good enough for your budget. Another place to look might be with replacement motorcycle helmet visors. Again, they're gonna be polycarbonate, so same problem.

Paintball masks might be another source. But most of the ones I see have a notch at the bridge of the nose. Still, they are good to look at for design inspiration.

One other thing to keep in mind with this type of helmet. Since it's pretty well sealed off, you're going to need to do something about your breath. Just breathing into that bubble of a mask regularly would make it fog up to the point of blindness. Not to mention how uncomfortable it would be. The easy solution is to put in a flap of rubber or something that keeps the visor section completely separate from the nose and mouth. If I were doing this mask, I'd incorporate a respirator mask, like from the hardware store. It has special valves in it to direct your exhaled air differently than your inhaled air. You then just use a tube or something to direct that exhaled air someplace discrete; probably through that circle with the light in it in the center.

It's tough to buy a respirator without a set of filter canisters, and replacement canisters cost almost as much as a full mask, so if you don't need them, consider selling/giving them away. Of course, if you're actually gonna mess with the polyester resin, you're gonna need it, so no matter.

02-15-2011, 12:36 PM
Just wanted to add, maybe some fans inside and vents to let the air flow. I do it for my Mandalorian costume, and it prevents fogging in the T-visor.

02-15-2011, 10:20 PM
I would also recommend vacuum forming the visor. Coscom user ammnra demonstrates his process in making a Tali visor in this YouTube video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3CeN-Mi190) starting at about the 1:40 mark.

Although he doesn't get into details, this process is pretty similar to this tutorial by HCC (http://www.whatishcc.com/tutorials/vacubuild.php). You make a solid sculpture of the visor's shape for a positive mold, heat a piece of transparent acrylic, and vacuum form the acrylic over the mold. In ammnra's case, he used clear transparent plastic then tinted it, but there are also colored transparent plastics you could use.

02-23-2011, 09:54 PM
Small word of advice, when wearing a helmet all day seriously consider installing a small computer fan inside, it'll keep your visor from fogging up and your face from sweating- its practically a must for comfort.