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Unread 09-17-2009, 03:32 PM   #1
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Paper Mache and Spackling?

I'm working on a helmet and I already have the shape I want and now I want to make it hard and strong because its pretty flimsy with just cardboard. So I was thinking if I used paper mache on it then when its dry add spackling and sand it to make it smooth.

Is that a good idea?
If not can you give me a better idea?
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Unread 09-17-2009, 08:25 PM   #2
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Someone here posted this link for Paper Armor: http://www.jiajem.com/armor.html

It could be helpful for you.
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Unread 09-17-2009, 10:14 PM   #3
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I've used spackling on my Freeze Pride prop...and it didn't do crap for toughening it up. The thing breaks at one bump. HOWEVER, when I used it it was on it's own on top of the foam shield. Since you'll have papier mache, it'll do it's job to smooth it out with more strength than by itself, but to keep the spackle itself from getting too easily banged up you may want to put some other kind of sealant or paint or the like overtop. Personally, I'd just sand papier mache smooth and add some gesso overtop. It's not too hard to do.
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Unread 09-17-2009, 11:19 PM   #4
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I did this for my Li Xingke and Diva sword. Also I made mascot heads for Edward, Ami and Yumi. I like how it comes out it probably would have came out tons better if I hadn't rushed. I'm gonna do the same thing for a few costumes I'm working on now. It's easy and cheap. I used a liquid starch for my paper mache cause it dries hard as a rock. Then I used Red Devil lightweight spackling. Mainly to get a smooth surface. It dries fast but I usually leave it over night or all day so I know it's dry and hard. You have to be careful when sanding it so you don't crack it before you paint and seal it. Once you seal it then it should be good and shouldn't crack. You can seal it before you paint it so you know for sure it won't crack. I didn't really have the time to seal it before painting.
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Unread 09-18-2009, 09:53 PM   #5
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I tried this for my Tira's Ringblade and it was an epic failure. I'd suggest avoiding it. If you have a power sander, I'd suggest bondo. It's a pain to sand by hand, but a power sander does wonders. Then a superfine sandpaper grain by hand for final smoothing.

Additionally, you can create Paperclay which I hear is very strong and smooth.
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Unread 09-19-2009, 05:25 AM   #6
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I would recommend buying some LaDoll Premier clay (which you can find here, in the red and white package


I've found it's a lot tougher than the Creative paperclay, dries faster and with fewer cracks. (It also costs more so you have to figure that into it.)
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Unread 09-19-2009, 11:58 AM   #7
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I'm actually making a helmet too XD

Covering the helmet in paper mache, or something to make it more durable (I used paperclay) is a great idea.

I've found that after sanding the spackling paste down, I can strengthen it with gesso on top so it doesn't dent as easily. I used spray gesso (gesso in a spray can) to get it to look as smooth as possible and avoid any brush strokes.

Definitely put a few layers on there, sanding lightly in between each one.
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Unread 09-19-2009, 09:39 PM   #8
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Thank you all very much!
I've gotten a few good ideas on what to do now.

Hopefully, you'll see them in the future!!

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