I made a Stargate Horus helmet before and while I was happy with the finished project (especially considering the budget) I always had it in the back of my mind to make a really good, screen accurate replica. As luck would have it a friend who builds and collects movie props just so happened to see my project and asked for my help in doing just that!

This instructable isn't about how to make the complete helmet but rather how to build all of the animatronics to make it move. This was much more complicated than my previous version and needed to be more robust and as such required new construction techniques. The methods presented here can be applied to any animatronic costume project and the entire head mechanism could be easily reproduced for use in other costumes that have a moving head. Although the finished helmet was to be a display piece it is wearable just like the movie helmets. The helmet has moving head, light up eyes (dimmable), opening eye iris and properly moving fans. Everything is radio control just like the original movie helmets. It was a really challenging and exciting project and I was thrilled to have the opportunity to work on it.

Here you can see the head mechanism moving-

Test video of the fan mechanism-

Here's the video of the finished animatronics-

Step 1: Tools and Materials


The main tools used to make this were my small Taig benchtop lathe with a milling attachment, benchtop drill press and a bandsaw.

The bandsaw I use is a DeWalt portable saw- I made a vertical stand for it so I could use it as a benchtop saw. I love this saw and it will cut through 1" thick Aluminum plate no problem.

For cleaning up fiberglass and resin castings I use a Makita mini belt sander- an absolutely wonderful tool that saves hours of work compared to hand sanding and grinding.

I also used a soldering iron for the wiring and to make battery packs and various sizes of drills and a 6/32 threading tap.


I usually purchase metals from an Aluminum recycling center near my home but Online Metals is a great supplier.

I buy fasteners in bulk from Bolt Depot. It's unbelievably less expensive than buying them in small quantity at my local hardware store.

For servos and Actobotics mechanical parts I used the following from Servocity-

2×Hitec HS-5085MG servos- Servos used to open and close eye iris

3×Hitec HS-645MG servos- Servos used for main head movements

2×Hitec HS-5585MH servos- Servos used for fan mechanisms on sides of helmet

2×Actobotics 1/2" bore pillow block- Bearing mounts used for eye iris cups

1×Actobotics 1/2" bore ball bearing hub mount- Bearing mount used to support head rotation servo

1×Actobotics 1/2" servo shaft attachment- Hitec servo shaft extension for head rotation servo

1×Actobotics 1/2" bore clamping hub- Clamping hub to mount onto 1/2" servo shaft extension

2×Actobotics 1/2" clamping hub- Clamping hubs to hold iris eye cups

1×Actobotics 6-32 x 1/4" ball links (12 ea/pkg)- Ball links for head and fan servo linkages

6-32 stainless steel threaded rod- 12" long threaded rod for making servo linkages

2×Actobotics Aluminum servo arms (single)- Heavy duty servo arms for head movement servos

2×Actobotics Aluminum servo arms (dual)- Heavy duty servo arms for fan movement servos

2-56 ball and socket linkage (pkg 6)- Ball links used to make eye iris servo linkages

1x 10-32 thread male rod end bearing- Bearing for the head neck joint

2x iris apertures measuring 37mm OD x 5mm thick- found them on eBay


For the radio I used a FlySky FS-t6 6 channel radio. For under $60 it's pretty hard to beat for a computer radio. If you wanted to make controlled using an Arduino while wearing it you could do that too!

For the eyes I used a Sparkfun FemtoBuck LED driver to power 2 super bright 3W high power red LEDs.

I used an Arduino Pro Mini to alter the radio signal into something the FemtoBuck could recognize.

Other materials used included lightweight fiberglass cloth, fiberglass resin, ProPoxy20 epoxy putty and a few small high strength magnets (purchased from a local hardware store.)

<p>nice project, information you shared is really helpful.</p>
<p>Thanks! If you ever need help with a project just let me know!</p>
i am a fan of all things stargate but you my friend are in elite status! this is truly awesome. great job!
<p>Thank you so much! Hopefully I'll have a couple more Stargate projects in the near future. :)</p>
Thank you very much. Great idea and perfect solution. This is awesome

About This Instructable




Bio: I'm a former bicycle industry designer turned professional jeweler. I like working with my hands and am happiest when I'm in the shop ... More »
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