Like many others out there, I decided I wanted to make my own Captain America helmet. I actually did this for Halloween, and have been wearing it to comic conventions for a while now, so it's actually DONE! Also, a little bit of history... I'd previously purchased a Disguise Deluxe Captain America First Avenger Costume. When it arrived, I was thoroughly disappointed with the entire costume, but specifically the mask! So with my small amount of knowledge, I decided I wanted to make a helmet as a means of taking the costume to the NEXT LEVEL...

Step 1: So, It Begins...

I began by researching on the helmet. Finding out what it looked like from all angles. Even though I did this research and it's based on actual images, I took creative liberties and made it my own design. So let me say this, my helmet is NOT a 100% ACCURATE COPY. I did many things the way I wanted to, or the best way I could (with my limited skill set), and NOT necessarily how they appear in the photos of the actual helmet. With that, I then created a shopping list and purchased the materials I felt I needed...

Step 2: Shopping List

  1. Captain America Half Mask from Target (or where ever you can find them for purchase)
  2. Child or Youth Skateboard Helmet (These typically have a smoother finish than bike helmets)
  3. Liquid Nails and Gorilla Glue (I used BOTH at different points to bond, seal, and fill gaps as I put the two pieces together)
  4. Blue Dupli-Color Automotive Grade Spray Paint (as close of a match to the blue of my costume as possible)
  5. White Primer Spray Paint (to even out the colors between the blue mask and the black helmet)
  6. Testors 1/4 oz bottle of brown brush paint (for leather accent pieces made into the mask mold)
  7. Testors 1/4 oz bottle of Aluminum brush paint (for clips and etc on the chin strap)
  8. White 3M Opaque Vinyl (option for applying the "A" and wings graphics)
  9. Blue Automotive Interior Trim Panel Striping (for the two ridge lines that run from front to back)
  10. Leather Strap & Various Leather Pieces (ear flaps and chin strap)
  11. Brown Shoe Polish (to even out the leather colors and cover any exposed glue/adhesive)
  12. Sand Paper, Paint Brushes, Thinner, Scissors, X-acto, etc (as needed)

Step 3: In The Middle, FABRICATION

Once I had everything I needed to start, I cut the rubber eye cushion out from the inside of the face mask. Cutting these support posts out was one of the more difficult portions of the project, but honestly the hardest part of the ENTIRE project was removing the dense foam padding from out of the inside of the FREAKING skateboard helmet! That one step nearly made me give up on the ENTIRE project! My advice is to just exercise LOTS of patience, and allow LOTS of time... I should point out that I left the elastic strap attached to the face mask for quite a while. As it was helpful in holding the mask and helmet together while fitting and bonding.

I estimated where I needed to cut the front lobe out of the skateboard helmet, and test fitted the mask over it. I did this a few times, only taking a slight bit off each time. This allowed me to "sneak up" on just the right size without going too far.

Once I had everything placed where I wanted and all was prepped, I spent countless hours bonding, gluing, and sanding until I had the finish looking as damn near perfect and smooth as I could. At that point, I sprayed the entire helmet primer white, then sanded it down again. I then used a computer graphics program to draw and print the graphics I could use to create stencils of the "A" and wings. That way they could be reversed out of the blue top coat (as the white primer would be exposed through he blue). I applied an even coat of the automotive blue. Once dry, I removed the stencils and realized that the blue had bled badly under and pretty much ruined the white graphics of the "A" and the wings. At this point, I decided to reprint them and stencil them onto white vinyl and cut them out. I basically made custom stickers out of them. I applied these over the previous white painted graphics. I then proceeded to paint the areas of the mask with the Testors brown that were molded to appear as leather.

To dress up the helmet dome and to also serve as a means of additional structural support, I applied the blue automotive trim as the ridges from front to back. I also inserted the original costume mask inside the helmet, making a cushioned liner inside. The strap from the original mask went under the jaw, which was NOT preferred. So, I cut it off and created a new strap and chin cup out of actual leather. I attached the strap to the rivets (which I had the foresight NOT to remove) that were the attachments for the original nylon strap of the skateboard helmet. I also used leather to customize the ear flaps of the liner mask, and to make them look more AUTHENTIC (I alternated between the smooth and the rough sides of the leather when I created my pattern). FYI, I didn't stitch the leather. I glued it all on the backsides, and along the edges to seal them. I then used the shoe polish to even out the leather colors, and to hide any exposed adhesive/glue. I stenciled off all the graphics and applied a final top coat of the automotive blue spray.

I then prepped the chin strap, and sanded and painted the original strap clips with the Testors aluminum paint.

Step 4: At Last! Final Helmet...

Finished helmet with a couple of different costumes...

<p>Love the suit, and the helmet. Great tips to make a custom one.</p><p>Im in the process of trying to make one, and am wondering how to get the size of the skateboard helmet just right. You mention cutting the front lobe, but with what? It seems like a hard material to cut.</p><p>Also where did you get the automotive interior trim panel? It seems like something very specific an automotive store would not have. </p>
Thanks!<br><br>I used a small hand saw to cut the helmet, but a dremel or some kind of small power saw might do the job just as well. Just be sure to secure it snugly with a vice or some similar device.<br><br>I got the automotive trim from Pep Boys. You can find it online too. In fact, I researched it online, found it, then found out where it was sold. AutoZone had it, but only in red. That's when I tried Pep Boys. They had lots of colors but for obvious reasons I specifically wanted blue.<br><br>
<p>Hey I was just wondering if you could give a few steps on how you made the First Avenger costume. Thanks!</p>
I can tell you that my version of the &quot;First Avenger suit&quot;, which I call the &quot;Super Soldier suit&quot;, has been an evolution. It's my own take on the &quot;First Avenger suit&quot;, and a more modern look than the movie. It's been my favorite of my Cap'n suits, so I've been hesitant of doing an Instructable on it.<br><br>It started off as an off the shelf suit, &quot;Disguise's Deluxe First Avenger&quot; suit. Honestly, it was a piece of crap! Basically a jumpsuit that zipped up the back. So, I cut off everything from below the chest (blue to white transition). I even took the zipper out of the back and the original strapping off of the front of the shirt. I bought my own pants (originally blue track style pants without any markings or logos). I've since upgraded to a pair of snowboard/rain gear pants. The pair I found is a dead on match in color for the blue upper shirt. There was however, a HUGE logo on the leg! So, I covered it with a Cap'n shield patch. You can really use whatever pants you like the best.<br><br>I made my own utility belt/holster and shoulder harness. The shoulder harness is a lifting harness that I found at Lowes/Home Depot. I connected the red straps, which are just suspenders cut to the appropriate length, with quick links. You can find those at Lowes/Home Depot as well. I use the clips from the suspenders to attach the harness to my utility belt/waistband. The utility belt is black webbing and inexpensive cell phone/camera pouches. The holster was on clearance at Wal-Mart. <br><br>The plastic elbow pads and knee pads are exactly that. I looked for blue ones, but that can be difficult. So, I painted them to match my helmet color. The plastic forearm guards are soccer shin guards that I painted the same red as my shield. I looked for the plainest ones that I could find. That way, there wouldn't be any names or logos that I'd need to conceal.<br><br>As far as boots go, maybe consider Palladium high top boots with a leather cuff topper. They are really comfortable! I used to wear them with this suit (I'm wearing them with the Stealth suit and my new Age of Ultron suit), but I changed to the custom red boots that I made for my Avengers suit. They were originally very sloppy! So, I bonded the boot covers to a pair of black rubber rain boots using Loctite for vinyl. I painted the fabric on the back half of the boot covers with red and maroon acrylic to match the latex front half.<br><br>For gloves, I bought football receiver gloves. Under armor makes some great ones. I bought a pair of brown Under Armor gloves for the retro look, but I've switched to the Under Armor Cap'n themed gloves that I'm currently using. These were kind of expensive, but they've held up well.<br><br>Once you've read through all of this, let me now if you have any questions. also, you can follow me on my &quot;Captain America Nashville&quot; Facebook page. I've got TONS of photos of all of my suits on there. All the best!<br>
<p>Ok you probably answered this in there and I'm just to dense to understand but how do you fill in the gaps from inside the skate board helmet? That's the only thing I'm having trouble with</p>
Hey Harmony! Which gaps are you referring to? If it's where the mask and the helmet meet, I used gorilla glue and liquid nails both inside and out. I did lots of sanding to smooth the out side. I didn't worry too much about smoothing the inside. Plus, I've since put a liner inside the helmet that conceals all of the seams and such. If you're referring to the vent holes, then I didn't fill them in. However you could use epoxy putty to do that. You can buy a tube at Home Depot/Lowe's. It'll just require sanding to get it smooth. I hope that helps but if it didn't, please don't hesitate to let me know. Good luck!
<p>hey i was wondering what size helmet to use i was gonna try this for my hawkeye costume cause i really liked the way yours came out i just dont know which size to get how did you figure it out?</p>
I used a child sized skateboard helmet. Because I knew once I removed the thick foam lining, it would fit me better.
<p>dont they come in different sizes at the child level?</p>
<p>Hello!<br><br>I love how you made the helmet man. Big Captain America fan!! :). In march I'm having my first Comic Con in the netherlands and I'm cosplaying as Cap himself. I wanna try to create the helmet and tehn I found you instructions.<br>I was just wondering, could I do it without remiving the inside of the mask and foam of the helmet? (so simply attach the mask to the helmet with the glue and spray it over in blue).<br>Thanx! :) </p>
Thanks! Good luck with your first con. Hope it goes smoothly for you. As for the helmet, it's totally up to you how you want to build it. However, you REALLY should remove the foam. If not, it may not sit properly on your head and face. If you don't remove them, it may also make the helmet look overly large on your head. All the best!
<p>dude, this is cool. We actually met at a comic-con in louisville last year. I was Tony Stark and thoroughly impressed with your costume. props, man, props.</p>
Thanks man! It means a lot to have a fellow cosplayer leave positive comments. Not to mention one I've personally met! All the best, and hope to see you again.
<p>same here.</p>
<p>I've since upgraded that particular suit and created a Stealth Suit (see photos). I'll be upgrading the shield and possibly doing an Age of Ultron Cap suit too.</p>
<p>so I see.. best of luck to you!</p>
Hey there man. I am looking to make my own captain america helmet but I'll be doing the winter soldier style. Any chance we can email or message about your steps I'd like to know abit more in depth on how you did this. As I have yet to find any other helmet that looks as Bad ass as yours lol :)
Hey Joshua. I have no issue at all about discussing a helmet build with you, and I truly appreciate the compliment. I've even started to collect the pieces and parts to do another, but haven't had the time or desire to start it yet. Just let me know what you need.
Well my funds won't allow me to start any time soon. But I am just curious as to how you got the mask and helmet together and such like if there were cutting involved or anything like that? My email is twistedsky87@yahoo.com if you wanna talk more there! :-)
excellent use of the ready made mask and helmet... save alot of time... i would make one your way if I have the money to buy all the things...
I don't know if you remember, but we actually met at a comic con in Louisville. I was a tony stark. We got that big old group picture with the rest of the avengers?
<p>That's REALLY cool! It was a BLAST meeting you! we almost had the entire team assembled in Louisville! I'll look through my photos when I get a chance.</p>
<p>looks great! I have been struggling with making a captain helmet for a while now, and will probalbly be copying your method.</p><p>quick question though, not about the helmet, but how did you make your winter solder uniform, as that looks awesome too!</p>
<p>Thanks Zad! The helmet was actually MUCH easier than I thought. Wish I'd taken more photos &quot;in process&quot;, but I wasn't really sure it would work. Anyway, hindsight is 20/20.</p><p>The Winter Soldier suit was my custom design, and is a cross between the movie and comic book designs. It is based on a navy blue flight suit with a sort of half shirt at the top. That's what the graphics are applied to. I made the utility belt and shoulder harness out of both leather belt materials and the crappy utility belt that came with that same Disguise Deluxe First Avenger costume that I mentioned/showed in the helmet Instructable. That costume STUNK, but the pieces and parts I pulled from it have been VERY helpful. The chest and shoulder graphics are still giving me some issues, but I'm hoping to get them figured out soon. It's actually photographs darker than it really is. I've included a couple more for you. Maybe I should do an Instructable on it too?</p>
<p>Awesome! I can't wait to see your other projects!</p>
<p>Thanks! Not as difficult as I thought. Just took my sweet time.</p>
Quick question! O was wkndering wxactly how you put it together...Did you put the toy mask OVER the helmet, or the other way around? If either, did you just glue them in? I know you mentioned you cut the front of the helmet, but im wondering how you actually made it look like the real deal after the cut? Sorry of youve answered this already, but im going to be building this and the Sheild and suit for the premeir of Civil War.
No worries at all. After cutting and fitting, the mask went slightly over the helmet. I leveled them out using layers of gorilla glue and liquid nails, both inside and out. Obviously sanding between steps to try to keep things as smooth as possible. I didn't worry about sanding the inside of the helmet too much, as I knew I'd line it and cover most of the imperfections. Good luck with your build, and don't hesitate to ask any other questions.
<p>the skate helmet you purchased was it an adult size or youth size that fit once the padding was removed? I have the mask and the helmet (adult size) I'm about to start this project but the adult skate helmet look like it will be too big.</p>
It was actually a child sized helmet. I realized that once I removed the foam from inside the helmet that a child sized helmet would fit better than an adult sized helmet.
How do I get the glue to hold? I've been using gorilla glue but it refuses to hold.
Gorilla glue works best when clamped, and when both surfaces have been pre-moistened.
<p>is yours kind of wide i made this but it seems a little wide </p>
Mine is actually very snug. Again, I kept cutting and fitting until it felt like it fit as well as I could possibly manage.
That's understandable, as it can get quite expensive getting into making one of these suits. Maybe consider doing a piece or a part at a time. Less DAUNTING of a task that way too. Besides, you can always make multiple suits and use the components over again (like I do with both my shield and my helmet). I think I covered most of the assembly in my instructable on making the helmet, but yes there was quite a bit of cutting involved.. Cutting the eye pieces out of the mask, cutting the cushioning out of the helmet, cutting the helmet to size to allow for the addition of the mask to the helmet, etc.
<p>Great project...not so great instructable</p>

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