Introduction: Gary Sterley's 40k Space Marine

This is my Warhammer 40k Space Marine Costume. It is a Crimson Fist and was completed just in time for Halloween this year. This is my second ever costume build and I have been working on it since March of 2013.

I have a full build thread located on the RPF forum here: http://www.therpf.com/f24/sylgians-4...ne-wip-179602/ 
an another on Obscurus Crusade here: http://obscuruscrusade.com/forum/index.php?topic=1625.0

And you can find it on facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/garysterleystudios

This was my first time working in foam and also my first time working on something so large. The costume stands roughly 7ft tall and requires that I walk on stilts. The hardest part of the whole process was probably the Power Fist (the giant left hand). I designed it in google sketch-up and 3D printed all of the digits myself. It is fully articulated and I am extremely proud of it. Designing everything in 3D was a huge hurdle. I am not a 3D modeler. I have been trying to teach myself the software though, and this is the largest and most complicated thing I have ever designed. 

Total cost was roughly $1300 and it took up about 450 hours of fun (aka labor). 

Step 1: You Are Probably Too Short.

Odds are you're not 7ft tall. The completed costume, built to the scale I used, is 7ft tall. You are going to need stilts. I made mine out of PVC, wood and some old shoes.

Step 2: Pepakura Patterns and Foam

The suit is made of foam and uses pepakura patterns First you are going to need pepakura patterns. The ones I used can be found here:
http://www.therpf.com/f79/jfcustoms-foam-files-im-not-starwars-thread-please-get-me-back-home-148889/

The foam I used can be found here. You will need 6 sheets 1/2" thick foam, measuring 72"x48" each!
http://www.foambymail.com/MC2-.html

Print out the templates, transfer them to the foam and get cutting! Use a SHARP knife. Replace the blade often or sharpen it as you go. Work clean though. A little care now saves you clean up later.

Step 3: Assemble Your Foam!

Now that you have a pile of foam shapes cut out you will need to join the edges together to make your armor. It might be easier to do one piece at a time. You dont want to confuse pieces.

Use a hot glue gun to join the edges.This is going to take some time. I used over 100 sticks of hot glue once it was all said and done.... the big ones too. Refer back to the Pepakura files if you get confused during assembly. 

This is a major step and is going to take a looong time. Dont rush it, work as cleanly as you can. The glue can ooze out a lot if you use too much and will have to be removed later. It takes some time to get the hang of it, but you will get a feel of how much is enough as you go.

Step 4: Reinforce the Armor.

Foam is rather soft and bendable. Not a good thing when you are going to paint a piece. The paint will split if it bends too far. To eliminate the bending and make the armor rigid, I created internal skeletons of PEX tubing inside all of the larger pieces. The skeletons also serve as excellent attachment points for stringing the pieces together.

Step 5: Embellish Like Crazy!

Warhammer Space Marines have ornaments and detail EVERYWHERE. Pick yourself a chapter and start adding icons. When in doubt.... ADD SKULLS. I chose the Crimson Fists. For my details, I used some store bought halloween skulls, 3D printed detail pieces I made at home,  and cut the rest out of foam.

This is also a good time to distress the armor. I added many scratches, gouges and craters. I wanted my armor to look well used! I cut V shaped scratches with a hobby knife and even added some slagg burns with a soldering iron. Have fun with it!

Step 6: Arm Yourself.

Space Marines are going to need some weapons. Apparently, in the grim dark future.... there is only war. I 3D printed myself an animatronic Powerfist (that's a whole tutorial unto itself), and made a bolt pistol out of the same foam as the suit. There are many weapons available though and pepakura templates are widely available for them all. Have fun choosing!

Step 7: PAINT!

Now that everything is built you need to add color. First, you will need to seal all the parts with plasti-dip spray. It's a rubber coating and you will need a lot of it. You cannot spray rattle cans directly onto foam, it will melt the foam. I used around 10 cans of plasti-dip. It seals and protects the foam.

After the plasti-dip is dry, rattle cans are used to apply the desired colors. I used two shades of blue to add depth. A dark base coat and I highlighted the edges with the lighter shade. I then airbrushed all the recesses, seams and scratches with black and drybrushed silver where the armor was scratched or worn (mostly along the edges).  

Step 8: Go Out and Enjoy Your Amazing Space Marine Costume

Suit up! I took my completed suit out for the first time on Halloween this year and it was a huge hit. The kids LOVED it. I also had a chance to take some photos that look like they are from a grim, dark future.... Thanks to a demolition project down the street.  FOR THE EMPEROR! 

Recent Video: http://youtu.be/YsRPEkVRaDY

For FULL build details of my costume please follow this link!
the RPF http://www.therpf.com/f24/sylgians-40k-space-marine-wip-179602/
or the Obscurus Crusade http://obscuruscrusade.com/forum/index.php?topic=1625.0

You can also find loads more pics on my Facebook at: http://www.Facebook.com/garysterleystudios
Stop by and give me a Like :)

Comments

author
bf90rono (author)2017-06-12

I think there´s some serious problems with the geneseed of this space
marine cosplayers, seems everyone is born with midget arms.

author
chechos84 (author)2017-05-01

Bad-Ass! :)

author
Volum3 (author)2017-01-20

Hey Gary! Your build inspired me to start building my own costume (

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gLRxPymP8AY

). Great work.

author
Aralute (author)2016-09-26

that is some serious talent !

author
WillE13 (author)2016-05-07

How tall Are you?

author
clydezjr (author)2016-01-20

Firstly, amazing work! Secondly, do you have a template file for the 3D printing you did? Loking for the brackets for the feet/leg section.

author
Blockbreaker0501 (author)2016-01-13

Warhammer 40k!

author
Dustpelt (author)2015-08-12

i am too short, i'm like 5'6". but that is so cool!! how long did it take??? i do know that that is not any space marine armor; that is the imperium space armor from the titan comics.

author
MortenJ3 (author)Dustpelt2015-12-08

it's mark 7 aquila armor which is some of the most common Space Marine Power armor. he has painted it with the paint scheme of a chapter called Crimson fists

author
tylerlowel00 (author)2015-11-24

How much did this project cost in the end

author
jaydog06122000 (author)2015-09-26

could you use standard eva foam mats or is that to small

author
mlduffy (author)2015-09-25

author
OwenD3 (author)2015-09-16

I love it. I know I'm a bit late to the party but what kind of pvc is that? Ive looked around but cant find anything about how strong it is.

author
MarcoL13 (author)OwenD32015-09-16

At the first Step there is a Link for the Material

author
MarcoL13 (author)2015-09-16

Thats the best Tutorial so Far, and I will use half of the Points here for my self, because I will use another Material with the Foam together, but this Tutorial will Help me a lot with my own Project, Thank you for your wonderfull and Inspiring Work.

author
angryrobot17 (author)2015-08-26

Any idea on how to make the head? Preferably a terminator?

author
BuckeyeENG (author)angryrobot172015-09-10

Hey angryrobot17, A while back I found another prop builder who did a terminator helmet. While it's not the same method he does have a link to the pepakura files. If you do some hunting you can find all of them for the whole armor suit. see this link;

http://protagonist4hire.blogspot.com/2012/01/prop-...

The pepakura file link is in the first paragraph

author
SeanA4 (author)2015-06-14

I know this is a bit of an older posting, but really want to say thanks for all the tips and step by steps. Started to work on my own, doing Space Wolves, using very similar methods to yours. Had a few suggestions from friends, such as using fiberglass cloth and drywall stilts (they have articulated bottoms). In any case, thanks for all this, and hope mine can be even half as good as yours!

author
lukeb10 (author)2015-05-21

did the plasti-dip spray make the armor hard or is the armor still soft like the foam?

author
Lwils (author)2015-03-21

What kind of caulk did you use to fill the seams?

author
martiin.sylvestre (author)2015-02-21

looking for the pep files....

author
lj.schulz (author)2015-02-16

G'Day.....quick question, do have or know where i can find Gears of War pdo's, Ive tried RFP and both 405 and 501.

Cheers

author
Jobar007 (author)2013-11-08

Your powerfist is exactly what I was thinking should be done for one. I'm glad to see that someone made it a reality. I, for one, would like to see an Instructable on that if you documented it!

author
gsterley (author)Jobar0072013-11-08

For now you can follow the link to my build thread on the RPF.com. I have detailed progress pictures there as well as video updates on my youtube channel.

http://www.youtube.com/user/gsterley/videos

author
gsterley (author)gsterley2013-11-08

I will try and post an instrucatable on the Power fist itself soon!

author
bookmunkie (author)gsterley2013-11-12

That's the part I want to see. I will be waiting with bated breath.

author
gsterley (author)bookmunkie2015-02-05

The power fist instructable is now up!

author
Sykomonkey (author)gsterley2014-07-14

This would be of GREAT help. Thanks agian for sharing all the info you have on the Crusade Forums. Very helpful even as such!

author
FLYzilla2008 (author)gsterley2014-02-12

can't wait for the Power Fist Instrucatable. Great job on the Space Marine.

author
buffy.irwin.7 (author)2014-11-14

do you have any video that you can add so we can see it actually moving around ?

author
gsterley (author)buffy.irwin.72015-02-05

There is a good deal of footage on my youtube channel with me walking around at cons. Just search for Gary Sterley on Youtube :)

author
GarrettM3 (author)2015-01-16

Also does anyone know we're I can get a spray to coat the foam so it does not obsorb paint?

author
SammyManny5 (author)GarrettM32015-02-05

Plasti-Dip, just don't use the spray kind, it'll eat the foam.

author
gsterley (author)SammyManny52015-02-05

This is true of traditional spray paint. However, the spray on plasti-dip will not melt your EVA foam.

author
GarrettM3 (author)2015-01-16

I am 14 and I wish to follow these steps to make black Templar armor. Do you know how much this would cost for all of the materials?

author
sean.cthulhureed (author)2015-01-12

Hi there, Love the suit!
I'm making a suit myself using this method and I'm following you on the rpf. I was you changed your design for the stills and I was just wondering what foam you used for the front section?

Thanks for any help :)

author
jackmaster (author)2014-11-20

I love warhammer 40k

author
ninjanathan (author)2014-11-08

me and my brotherinlaws like warhammer and wear going to do this

author
GrimButler (author)2014-10-21

this is amazing

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tysonvw (author)2014-10-15

liked! also liked the comment below ;)

author
Bvbbuh (author)2014-10-09

Wow... I am so amazed dat I could suck farts out of a seat cushion

author
kcortesi (author)2014-10-07

wow I am speechless! This is just amazing! You are so talented. My son just asked me: "Please tell me you can make that for me?" Lol!

author
Victor805 (author)2014-10-04

Holy cow, that's impressive, no more heresy.

author
deus ex (author)2014-08-29

the heretics won't know what hit em'

author
ncanfield (author)2014-06-13

Congrats on your win at Miami. It was awesome seeing it on heroes of cosplay.

author
cameron33 (author)2014-06-10

I was watching heroes of cosplay I saw the same exact costume on tv

author
amulder1 (author)2014-06-10

Wow amazing! The looks on some off the faces in the clip are just priceless!

author
syke25 (author)2014-06-08

Do you still have the files for this. I checked the rpf and I'm having a lot of trouble getting the files to work. Any suggestions?

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ALECIALLEY (author)2014-05-22

Very NICE

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the ultimate smaug (author)2014-05-08

there is no chance in hell that I could make it but that is awesome! !!