I've recently refinished much of this costume, and with thoughts of wearing it again in the future I'm curious as to others' opinions on how to improve it. After April's Calgary Comic Expo I've some touch-ups to do anyway so now's the time before I pack it away again.
This costume is mostly made of:
Legs, chest, back & exterior of arms: double-thickness cardboard (plus duct tape of course)
Codpiece: EVA foam
Arm structure: aluminum lengths, threaded rods, turntable bearings, nuts & bolts
Cannon: cardboard poster tubes, a plastic bucket, and aluminum framing into the center.
There is also a good amount of 2" Velcro & elastic being used.
I based my design on the g1 cartoon of the '80's. Here are a few reference pics:
This is how the costume looked on me on April 18th:
Side 2: http://i1276.photobucket.com/albums/...pst6dyvol9.jpg
The recent resurfacing of the costume involved adding a layer of PolyFilla, sanding, primer, spray paint, & 2 coats of Pledge floor wax to the silver parts. The cannon had PolyFilla finger-smeared onto it, sanded, and spray painted. The legs have not been resurfaced yet...I have to wonder how much they are even noticed though. I could remove the floor wax and put more time into a smoother finish, but at the same time kind of like the weathered effect it has now.
In general I know it would be an improvement to make all surfaces glossy for the metal effect, but am not sure if I can get the cannon that smooth for it to also look good, as gloss will expose all flaws more than flat paint. I'd then approach the legs with finger-smearing PolyFilla again, as that seems enough to cover minor texture like tape edges. The silver parts needed a heavy coat to cover the cardboard texture.
I went with a half-mask so make breathing & talking easier, but see that for appearance it is a weak point. I'm not sure on how to make a full mask well, plus also how to avoid making the existing fogging issue worse. There are spaces behind the mask & in the helmet for air movement, but I carry a hand fan for when I'm in warm rooms. Lifesaver! I did shave my beard the first time I wore this, but you know, unless I'm in a competition...
I see I could try making robotized gloves, though I haven't tried that before.
Another weakness in general is the upper legs being pants of course. I went with this for ventilation and ease of wear, and have just been trying to wear an ideal shade of grey dress pants. I'd like to improve this area, but think building upper legs would be quite cumbersome and prevent sitting as an option?
My head doesn't have to tilt down so much for posing; that is a lack of posing experience issue. =)
I could reduce the visibility of half of the black bands on my shirt.
I've looked for long-sleeve red shirts and this is the best I've found thus far. Any thoughts for improvement there? Zhor'Fughakee thought a black shirt may be good; I used red to match the character's coloring, but black might make my human nature less noticeable.
The codpiece parts are completely unaltered; this is because I felt they'd get messed up by the metal of my elbow joints. In particular I use the right-side codpiece to rest my arm on.
Please let me know your thoughts on this, and feel free to ignore any perspective I have in the name of improvement. =)
(I also need tips on posing, but that's another topic)