Introduction: Steam Punk Bike Helmet
Runner Up in the
Bicycle Contest 2016
I was challenged by a friend to decorate a bike helmet for fun...so I made a steam punk version!
Step 1: Begin With the Foam...
Ok, so I forgot to take a pic of the original bike helmet before I got started, so I took one after it was all done, just so you can see that it IS indeed a bike helmet on the inside. To start off, use any bike helmet that you would like. I just bought one from Walmart. Next get a bunch of craft foam sheets as well as some garage floor 1/2 EVA foam ..you can pick this up at Lowes or Home Depot and a BUNCH of razor blades. The amount will depend on how much detail you want to put into your bike helmet. The thicker foam isn't hard to cut, but the blades go dull VERY quickly, so you'll be going through like a lot. Obviously this type of thing does not come with a pattern, so I had to make my own. All I did was lay old newspaper on the helmet and draw out the strips that I wanted to use and taped them all in place so I knew if they'd match up. Then you transfer the newspaper "pattern" onto the craft foam...my foam was bright green. I used green for the majority of the helmet. I only used the thicker foam to create the middle raised strip. This took some time to line up and make the edges even. After cutting out all the foam pieces, you just hot glue them onto the helmet. Overlapping the edges is fine because it adds to the effect in the end. Anything that doesn't line up just right, you can fill in the gaps with the quick dry caulking. Just squeeze some onto your finger and wipe it into the holes to smooth out the edges. Just make sure it is smooth because it'll dry that way...and it's pretty quick. For the goggles, I bought some cheap eye protection goggles and covered it the same way with strips of foam that was hot glued into place. I traced the entire thing onto the foam first to help make sure it was the correct size. For the "bolts" I just added a thin strip of foam around the edge and then added drops of hot glue spaced out and let them dry. After all the foam was covering the helmet, I got a soldering iron and burned all the holes and details into the foam. Make sure you do this with a fan blowing or do it outside because the fumes are strong and most likely not good for you! Next if you have a heat gun, lightly run the gun over the entire foam section to "seal" the foam. If you don't have one, just use a layer of watered down elmer's glue...actually a few layers and let dry between coats. I would suggest getting a heat gun though. It's much faster and does the job really well. :) It'll help create the "leathery" texture for later on too. After all the sealing and detail work is done, I coated it with a layer of brown paint.
Step 2: Painting the "Leather"
Next I got some chair/upholstery buttons and added them as details on the main section of the helmet and also painted them to match. The I dry brushed some different shades of dark brown and light brown to give the "leather" look to the strips of foam. After all the painting dried, I cut a strip of fabric and coated it with some liquid latex...but using some layers of the watered down elmer's glue will do a very close to the same idea. You just want to seal the fabric so you can paint on it. Let it dry and then paint it in the same way you did the leather strips. Then hot glue that onto the goggles so that it fits the helmet size.
Step 3: Almost Done
I really wanted it to pop...so I painted some of the details with metallic paints to really bring them out. You can paint yours however you'd like.Then after all that was done, I watered down some black acrylic paint and sloppily painted over everything, then wiped off the excess with an old rag so that just the parts I wanted to shine would show through and everything had an "aged and dirty" look. Doing this touch also brings out the shadows and gives the helmet depth! Once that's dry, add a final spray sealer over the whole thing to protect your paint job and you're done!
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