My 6 year old son loves space, has been inspired by Tim Peake and wants to become a Space Engineer. So buying him a space costume for Christmas seemed like an obvious option. However all of the astronaut costumes on the market don't seem to be very good, especially the helmets. So I made him one.
Step 1: Child's Space Helmet, Made From Two Hard Hats and Other Bits and Pieces.
You will need
2 identical hard hats, the type that builders wear.
an old camping mat, yoga mat or similar
something to cover the edges. I used Ikea Rabalder cable tidy tube. You could just as easily use another type of plastic tube and cut a slit along it's length, or maybe use car door edging.
a marker pen
double sided tape
Step 2: Start Cutting
Remove the internal strap assemblies (they might come in handy for another child's costume, watch this space) leaving 2 bare plastic shells.
Cut the brim off one shell and then cut it's scalp off. This first cut-up shell will form the bottom half of the helmet. I marked out where I would cut with a marker pen and then made a number of straight cuts into the helmet working my way round. This technique isn’t very tidy, but the cuts will be covered up later. Make sure that the scalp hole is slightly bigger than the child's head and wide enough for ears, then add a margin of 1 to 2 cm. As the helmet I made was to be a surprise I used a hat as a guide.
The second shell will form the top half of the helmet. Cut straight up from where the ends of the brim meet the helmet rim proper, and then cut along the top, this will form the face visor hole.
I used a tenon saw to do my cutting. A normal hacksaw will do the job perfectly, or if you would like to cut smoother rounded holes try using a cutting or saw drill bit.
Step 3: Join the Two Halfs
Drill holes around the inside of the shells at the strap assembly clip-in points, and two more pairs of holes at the front to make sure that the two halfs stay in alignment when joined. The holes should be discrete and within the rim so that the wire loops will not show in the next step.
Pass loops of wire through the holes exiting inside the helmet, and then twist to tighten. Trim and then curl the twisted loops back on themselves to prevent any children getting their heads cut on sharp ends of wire. For extra safety cover the curled-back-twisted ends with a blob of glue from a glue-gun.
Add two small cuts accross the rim 1 or 2 cm back from the visor hole, these will help the edging stay in place later-on.
Step 4: Line the Helmet
Line the helmet with cut-up pieces of camping mat, yoga mat or similar. Double sided tape is allot less hassle than glue. Stick duct tape around the edges to prevent peeling, then test fit your edging tube and cut it to length.
Step 5: Cover the Edges
Join the ends of edging tube together by stapling a short, thinner piece of tubing inside the two ends.
Fit the edging tube again and cut a deep slit all the way around where the edging tube meets the camping mat lining. Then push the edging tube into the slits, this will keep the edging in place.
Step 6: You're Done!
Stand-back and admire. Or perhaps add a visor, or an oxygen tube. A vent hole at the front to prevent the visor from steaming-up might be a good idea as well. Maybe even decorate it with lights, paint, stickers etc.