I’ve always had great respect and interest in the armed forces. My father was a tank commander during the Persian Gulf War, so when I tried to come up with an idea for my costume, I thought of him. And, since I really like to impress him, and make him proud, I wanted to make myself into a tank. I’ve also always loved Transformers, so when a buddy of mine showed me a video of a similar costume that transformed, I thought, “I can do better.” So far, this has been the biggest and most challenging costume I’ve made, too. Also, the only tank Transformer so far is Brute, who is a Decepticon, but I wanted to be an Autobot. And since the movie Fury is coming out soon, and follows a tank crew during World War II, I decided to name my character FURY.
Most of my costume is made of high-density polypropylene, or corrugated plastic. We had a bunch of signs at work that we weren’t using anymore, so used them for the plastic. To attach it onto myself, I used elastic straps and plastic clips. I didn’t use any glue, since there aren’t many that are recommended for the type of plastic I used, so I drilled holes and used machine screws and nuts. Underneath the armor I wore a knockoff Morphsuit, that way none of my skin was showing, and there wasn’t a logo on it anywhere. It also keeps me warm in the cool weather.
I’ve only worn it to a couple of costume parties so far, but the reactions I got were exactly what I hoped for. People were really impressed, even though it was hard to walk around in. My co-workers have yet to see it in person, but they’re impressed by pictures. I’m volunteering at a kids’ event at my church called Trunk-or-Treat, so hopefully the kids there will like it just as much. My wife said she was proud of me, even though it kept me up way too late for several nights.
If it’s not obvious in the pictures, the jaw on my costume moves when I talk, especially when I use my deep, robotic voice and annunciate my words a lot. It was all kind of hard to move, and the helmet is tight on my face, but I’m happy with the way it turned out.