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Unread 02-28-2012, 04:16 PM   #1
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Dhilokee's Avatar
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Gyarados Costume Construction - Advice Requested

So, I’m seriously in the concept stages of a gyarados costume. And not a gijinka, either.

I have this idea of building the head and top carapace section out of wire and paper mache, but considering how awkward it would be, and heavy, I think I’d need some sort of backpack style support structure for it. I can cannibalize a frame-stype hiking backpack for part of it, but the frame of the actual supports that would rise from it and support the head escape me.

How could I effectively build this thing so I wouldn’t be crushed to death after five minutes in it? In addition, the con this would be for has a “no masks” policy, so the idea is to have my face visible through the mouth, with a fabric flap I can put up for pictures. I’m not sure if this idea, or somehow making it so the whole mess can be shifted onto my back like a backpack would be a better idea.

For the record, the body will be made of fabric, and I’m going to need to figure out how to 1. give it the rounded body shape and 2. keep it in that coiled position. A hula hoop run through the bottom and disguised has been suggested, as has a “spine” of pvc running from the backpack rig.

Any advice or suggestions anyone has would be welcomed with open arms. This is my first try at something of this magnitude, and I don’t want to screw it up from the get-go. And seriously I have no idea what I am doing OR thinking with this.

Here, have my horrible 3-minute ms paint concept sketches:

While the body is made out of fabric, because anything else would just put me in the realms of undue self-inflicted suffering, the head and the first portion that is is attached to are going to need to be stiff.


I am almost thinking a cardboard and wire frame, with paper mache over the top, and... maybe sprayable expanding insulation foam to carve out some the the details? I just am not sure.

Like I said, I am pretty much flailing into this blind and planless. I would love any insights or ideas anyone may have to toss my way.

Last edited by Dhilokee : 02-28-2012 at 11:56 PM. Reason: FUUUUUU SPELLING
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Unread 03-11-2012, 02:02 PM   #2
Blue is where it's at :P
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Personally, I have never done anything with this, but ill give it a shot if ya like.
For the frame, i could sugest something more of a carapace that is not as heavy and flimsy as cardboard. Lets say...Paper mache? It seems ALOT more lighter than cardboard and also looks better i think. An even better idea would to take sheets of cardstock and mold them into the shape of the Gyarados's plates, then cover them in Bondo, which is a type of car body molding stuff that hardens and can actually be sanded. Then you could glue the fabric on it. But make sure you don't use plain letter paper, it'll fall apart when you add the bondo. :/
And your arms look a little obscured and lifeless in the costume, i would say. To fix this, you should make use of your arms, like use your arms in the gyarados's mouth to make it move if you want. Just a suggestion.
Oh and sorry bout the whole wait for a response thing, I was really busy and could get back to ya in time. :/
But I hope this helps ya! Good luck with this! And I hope to see an AWESOME result from your efforts!

---Vaporeon full body suit(Pokemon)--10%(planning)
Deadline: Matsuricon 2012 (August 24th-26th)
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Unread 03-12-2012, 11:11 AM   #3
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My, brain wants to say paper mache at least for the mid body and head(not the actual head piece but the piece that looks like is sitting on yuor head.) This Costume looks like it could be made into four pieces. Base (big piece just made together as a whole) two mid sections and head. These are just ideas you could paper mache beach balls one smaller than the other (think of a snowman) and they can fit slightly inside each other, the smallest part being at the top. You could I dont know put them together with something as easy as velcrow so its easy to get in and out. Just remember to try and make the head as light as possible. Id have to look at it more but heres a few things for you to brainstorm with.
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Unread 03-30-2012, 04:47 PM   #4
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Is this something you will be wearing all day? Or just for a short amound of time?
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Unread 04-08-2012, 03:01 PM   #5
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this is quite a lage scale suite i think the hola hoops are a good idea you might want to use a helmet like horse riding or those larger dome like oes not bike hlemet there not to comfey and use foam for the head like how quadsuits are built (see youtube for quadsuit)
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Unread 04-12-2012, 04:38 PM   #6
I need stuff!
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Paper mache i think will be way to heavy over all. I made a hallowed out head piece with paper mache and it was too damn heavy. and that was just a head piece.
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