I helping out a friend with a Destiny cosplay and he really needed some futuristic looking ammo for his shot gun. So after a little bit of looking around i found these shells made from match stick containers designed for camping and I thought they look kinda similar to shotgun shells. So I bought a few and got to work.
Match Stick Containers
1/4 inch Washers
By the way these also work well for just about any sci-fi or post apocalyptic cosplay or costume!
Step 1: Prepare the Containers
Start by disassembling the containers by unscrewing the tops and removing the O-rings. Then cut off the small tab attached to the lid (Figure1). After repeating this for each of the lids, sand any jagged edges down (Figure 2). When completed, all the parts will look like the 3rd picture (Figure 3). Lastly, glue/epoxy the 1/4 inch washers down to tops of the lids (Figure 4). These will help recreate the look of the top of a shotgun shell.
Step 2: Painting
The body of the containers then receive a coat of red paint (Fig. 1) while the caps are painted metallic gold (Fig. 2). Also, don't forget to scuff these up a bit before painting, as the plastic is very smooth and the paint will not adhere well to the bare plastic.
Step 3: Weathering
(*Note i don't have much experience in weathering effects, this is a very basic technique a friend taught me. If you know a better technique feel free to use that method instead of this one!)
Up next take the shoe polish and begin applying it to the sides and bottom of the bodies (Fig.1). The same technique is used on the caps, with special attention paid to the letters stamped into the tops of the washers (Fig. 2). This will create the look of dirt/oil/grime accumulating in the little details of the shells. I used a mixture of Q-tips, tissue, and my bare hands to apply the polish. This technique mostly goes by feel, so just experiment to see what works best for you :)
The last two pictures show the difference between the weathered and unweathered versions of the lids. You can see how much of an effect the polish had in making these look more authentic.
Lastly, reassemble and you're done !