Introduction: Boba Fett Cardboard Helmet

Picture of Boba Fett Cardboard Helmet

Here's a fun project for Halloween or just to create your own crazy Star Wars inspired creation. You can either download the files, print, trace and cut your own cardboard or visit my Esty shop and purchase the kit and I'll cut the pieces for you!

Note: Use gloves to avoid paper-cuts from laser cut cardboard (and hot glue). Sand the edges a bit for less risk of injury.

Materials needed:

  • PDF file or Cardboard kit from Etsy
  • Two 18" x 24" cardboard sheets (if using the files linked above) OR cut the pieces from a cereal box or case of beer for a super silly stormtrooper.
  • GLOVES! Laser cut edges are sharp! Use gloves especially if working the the laser cut kits and hot glue
  • Sandpaper
  • Hot glue
  • Wood Glue
  • Masking tape or packing tape
  • Metal straight edge ruler
  • Scissors or xacto knife
  • rolling pin or other cylinder for rolling (baseball bat, chair leg, paint roller, etc.)
  • chopstick or pencil for antenna

Step 1: Fold and Glue the Helmet's Top Dome

Picture of Fold and Glue the Helmet's Top Dome

Let's start with a few tips for gluing as you start on the helmet's main dome. Curl each of the prongs of the done around a rolling pin to loosen them up and begin to help them get into shape. I rolled all of the prongs along their length, and then rolled the part perpendicular to its longest edge. The first two images here show the result from the top and them bottom of this part.

Next glue each prongs to the adjacent prong. When gluing, apply the glue into the corrugated edges and either hold or tape the edges together as the glue dries/ cools. Gluing into the corrugated edges is my preference, but it also works well to hold the edges together and glue along the back. In this case, I did both.

Personally, I think wood glue gives the cleanest and most sturdy finish, but hot glue is faster. Hot glue can also be more forgiving as you can re-heat and re-glue if you're unsatisfied with your seam.

Step 2: Roll the Face/sides of the Helmet and Glue the Visor Into Place

Picture of Roll the Face/sides of the Helmet and Glue the Visor Into Place

Use your rolling pin perpendicular to the longest edge, roll the facemask part into shape. Take a little extra time to roll the curves on the front, as they're not going to fall into shape as easily as the back. When you're finished, glue the small tab in the back to create a complete circle. (I covered this area with masking tape as well, and I can cover it with bondo later, or just remove it once the rest of the helmet parts are holding this into place.

I'm going to attach the cardboard visor here, but you may want to stop and take a minute to create a plastic visor. I'll have to remove this later, but this will be the fastest way to get the helmet in shape, add in all of the parts, and create a sturdy helmet so I can go back and shape a visor later.

Step 3: Fold and Glue the Insets in the Face Mask

Picture of Fold and Glue the Insets in the Face Mask

Use your metal straight edge ruler to connect the vertices of the angles and fold along the ruler.Use the photos as your guide. These folds are tight and close to the edge, so they can be a little tricky. Create a little groove with the ruler by pressing it into the fold and mashing the corrugation. Then, bend the part against a table or your work surface while holding the ruler in place on the fold.

Glue the open edge first and the curved seam should fall into place.

Step 4: Create the Concave and Convex Rectangular Prisms

Picture of Create the Concave and Convex Rectangular Prisms

I am a teacher after all, so let's dig out a bit of geometric vocab and put these terms to good use.

There are three parts in this kit/ pattern that look like an iron cross before they're folded. Two of these shapes will form a rectangular prism and the third will form trapezoidal prism. USe the metal straightege ruler technique from the last step to fold the edges inward and glue the corners.

The trapazoidal prism forms the concave inset at the back of the helmet, so let's glue that in place right now. The other two will form convex features on the left and right side of the helmet.

Step 5: Attach the Dome and Insets to the Facemask

Picture of Attach the Dome and Insets to the Facemask

Slide the dome up through the inside of the hemet (watch out for the inset you just attached in the back). Allow the dome to sit just slightly inside the facemask to create a little ridge around the helmet. Glue in place working at the front, then back, then left, then right before adding glue or tape all the way around. This will ensure that the dome stays centered.

Add the insets by gluing the long straight edges first and then close up the curved seam.

Step 6: Attach Convex Features to the Sides

Picture of Attach Convex Features to the Sides

Glue around the edges and press this rectangular prism onto the side of the helmet. Line up the middle of the prism with the middle ridge in the dome.

Step 7: Fold an Glue Range Finder (antenna) Parts

Picture of Fold an Glue Range Finder (antenna) Parts

Use the metal straightedge technique to fold the base of the range finder as shown in the first image in this step. Then glue the shape together as shown in the second image. Both photos are taken from the inside to make it a bit easier to see exactly where I put my metal ruler and creased the cardboard. (I used recycled cardboard from another project here, so there are some wood finish stains on it. Boba Fett doesn't mind.)

To fold the end of the range finder, use the PDF template attached to this instructable to draw your fold lines (image 4) and fold them with your metal ruler (image 5). Because this is a smaller stand alone part, I prefer to create this part from poster-board or mat-board as it folds and finishes better than corrugated cardboard (image 3). Glue along the inside to avoid sloppy seams, and use image 6 and 7 as your guide.

I attached a chopstick (image 3), but I'm sure you could roll some cardboard around a pencil for a pure cardboard finish.

Step 8: Finishing

Picture of Finishing

To attach the range finder, line up the base of the antenna with the top of the rectangular prism on the left side (left if you are facing the helmet, right side if you are wearing the helmet.) See Image 1 and 2 in this step.

Slide your chopstick and range finder end in, and you're done!

UNLESS...

You want to get serious about finishing, which, you do.

Here's what you'll need for finishing:

  • Bondo Brand fiberglass resin
  • Tap Plastic's Magic sculpt
  • Plastic measuring cups for mixing
  • Craft sticks, also for mixing
  • cheap 1.5" - 2" brushes
  • sandpaper - 80, 100, 120, 180, 220 grit

I start with a coat of fiberglass resin. (Image 3) Get your mix right! Bondo brand is the one I've had the most success with (and I've messed up a lot.) Watch a few videos on fiberglassing and how to measure and mix. This brand is pretty forgiving, but don't get careless here. I've ruined a lot of hard work by getting sloppy with the finishing.

Then mix a little ball of magic sculpt. This stuff is WAAAAAAY better than bondo, IMO. It allows for plenty of work time, easy to sculpt, etc. Put some in each of the cracks and around the visor. (we'll cut the visor out after we've sanded and applied lots of coats of resign. (Image 4)

Hit it with another coat of resin and get to sanding with your 80 grit. Take down all the rough edges. If you hit cardboard, stop, you went a little too far. NBD, resin, sand, resin, sand, with increasingly fine sandpaper as you go (Images 5 - 7). When you're happy with the finish, paint. I've sent this one off to a young padawan who isn't as concerned with finish as he is with bounth hunting, so I didn't go as far into detail as I would for myself, nor did I spend much time of the facemask, but this should give you the info you need to see how it's done.

Go get 'em, but NO DISINTEGRATIONS!

Comments

ThomasE87 (author)2017-01-24

i need help making it the correct size when i transfer the files to gimp, (im using 8.5x11 printer paper by the way for the templates)

JasonP4 (author)ThomasE872017-01-24

Open it in gimp at the full size, don't scale anything cut the parts out and lay them out on new 8.5 x 11 documents.

Perhaps someone on this thread who has already done that is interested in posting your templates? Happy to post anything you send me.

ArcticMoet made it! (author)2016-09-11

Okay, so I didn't have a large printer or a projector, but I had Photoshop, which let me print the templates in actual size across several 8" x 11" pieces of paper. Which I then had to cut out and piece together, then paste onto cardboard to cut out.

ArcticMoet (author)ArcticMoet2016-09-11

With no craft or hobby store within a 1000 miles (literally) I had to rely on industrial supply, so there were a lot of substitutes. Mainly I had to use acrylic caulking, which worked out really well for the dents in the helmet but since it's toxic until it dries you have to be careful and use gloves and a well ventillated area to work with it. A little water smooths it out nicely though and it paints up good. Overall I'm happy with it.

DIY Baby (author)ArcticMoet2016-12-09

That is what I call resourceful!

JasonP4 (author)ArcticMoet2016-10-26

Looks amazing! Thank you so much for sharing your work and these tips. Great job!

ThomasE87 (author)2016-10-25

since i only have 8" x 11" paper, any ideas on how to print this to scale?

JasonP4 (author)ThomasE872016-10-25

Open the PDF in photoshop or Gimp and transfer each piece to an 8.5" x 11" document and print it out. Don't change the scale unless you want to make it larger or smaller.

joker402 made it! (author)2015-12-10

great instructable, great templates! I made the helmet for myself, but it was too small for my head and glasses, so I guess the kids get it!

I used spackle to round out the dome and smooth out the cheek insets.

Spray painted with flat grey primer and then used gloss black on the front and satin green for the back / sides / top stripe.

I would definitely make again, though I think before doing that I will probably put the templates to wood so i can just crank them out over and over.

Thanks for putting this together...think i will be doing the robot helmet as well!

DemarW (author)joker4022016-02-26

Hey bro would you sell the helmet you made? How much if so ill buy it

JasonP4 (author)DemarW2016-02-27

I gave this one to my nephew.

DemarW (author)joker4022016-02-26

Hey would you sell a mando helmet please contact me dewill1030@gmail.com or write back I'm interested in buying a mandalorian helmet

JasonP4 (author)joker4022016-02-20

Wow! nice job. I just added some tips for finishing as well. I used spackle my first time and I left a lot of spackle crumbs on the dance floor at a halloween party. Now I use fiberglass resin. Thanks for sharing these photos!!

carl.hambro.9 (author)2015-12-20

How should I go about printing out the PDF files to scale?

JasonP4 (author)carl.hambro.92016-02-20

Here's a trick: use an LCD projector to project the PDF onto 18" x 28" cardboard sheets or paper templates. This is also a quick and easy way to scale for a perfect fit.

RichárdK73 (author)2016-02-12

How do I fold and glue the end of the antenna? I don't understand it. Everything is ready I only need that one part and then I can star to cover it with ape mache.

So how do I do it? :D

JasonP4 (author)RichárdK732016-02-20

Just uploaded some new images and content to help you out. Check out step 7. Also, the PDF templates have some fold lines to guide you.

JasonP4 (author)RichárdK732016-02-20

Just uploaded some new images and content to help you out. Check out step 7. Also, the PDF templates have some fold lines to guide you.

LeonPearce (author)2016-01-24

Thanks!

Builders Shed (author)2015-10-27

Great!

btw, pls make a darth vader helmet too!

MandalorianMaker (author)2015-10-09

Here is my custom mandalorian executioner helmet and another one I am working on. These are WoF files btw.

JasonP4 (author)MandalorianMaker2015-10-09

What's WoF?

MandalorianMaker (author)JasonP42015-10-09

WoF is Wizard of Flight. He's a template maker that specializes in mandalorian armor templates. They are good templates and easy pepakura wise.

JasonP4 (author)MandalorianMaker2015-10-12

Wow, much more detail. Thanks for sharing that. I might have to update this file with some of those ideas.

MandalorianMaker (author)JasonP42015-10-12

Cool, I'll wish you luck.

virusdm (author)2015-10-09

Where is the file? It might be because I am on mobile but I can't find it

JasonP4 (author)virusdm2015-10-12

Had to make a few edits, the PDF files are back up now.

ZackJ1 (author)2015-10-11

Im not seeing the link to the PDF files

JasonP4 (author)ZackJ12015-10-12

Had to make a few edits, the PDF files are back up now.

MandalorianMaker (author)2015-10-09

Dude, you get awesomer everyday

JasonP4 (author)MandalorianMaker2015-10-09

Haha! Thanks! I figured you'd like this one.

MandalorianMaker (author)JasonP42015-10-10

You should try a Republic Commando helmet next, they look super awesome, and I dont think they should be harder than the stormtrooper helmet to design. I very well could be wrong, but it would be a cool build.

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Bio: Science Teacher. Maker. True-Believer.
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