How to Make a Transformers Decepticons: "Soundwave" Costume




Introduction: How to Make a Transformers Decepticons: "Soundwave" Costume

I'm a kid in a candy store when it comes to creating things. I love learning different versions o...

One of the coolest transformers from the G1 generation, Soundwave was the man.. er.. Bot! 
I made this costume for one of my friends in order for him to join in our Transformers lineup.

*A very special shout-out to instructable members: dannyeurena and Incxtc for their previous Transformers tutorials as theirs were the the foundation for my Transformers creations. I used some of his ideas, referenced the Masterpiece Transformers figure, and added some of my own flare to it.

Here are their amazing tutorials:


*this costume is very time consuming

*This costume is very hot

*this costume will create a very big mess


-lots of cardboard

- lots of hot glue

-masking tape

-clear plexiglass

-old shoes

-shoe laces

-comic cardboard

-wood planks

-Various soda caps

-black gloves

-black leggings

- black long sleeve tshirt

Let’s get started!

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Step 1: Feet

1.Take your shoes and remove the laces (save laces for later). it is good to use low tops for these shoes. Cut further along the tongue of the shoe, because you need to be able to get a drill all the way to the toe part of the shoe.  (pic 1)

2. Then, take your exacto knife and cut across the width of foot sole where the ball of your foot is.. The easiest way I found out is to bend your foot forward a bit with the shoe on, and that way you can see where the shoe naturally bends.  This is because when you walk, your shoe needs to “give” a bit so that it can bend while walking. (pic 2)

3. Now, get your 2x4 and use a saw (or get it cut) into the following 2 shapes. (pic 3)

4. Take 4 slender pieces of wood ( about 1 inch thick, and however long your two pieces are)and drill them underneath so that you are even more elevated. (pic 4)

5.Place your shoe on the two pieces so that the “cut” of the shoe sole is right in between the two pieces of wood. (pic 5)

6. Due to the notion that the two pieces of wood are on either side of the cut in the shoe sole, your robot foot should naturally bend when you walk, (pic 6)

7. At this point, take out the pad inside the shoe.  Take your screws and drill inside the shoe directly into the wood. I used 3 screws for the front of the shoe and 4 for the back piece.   Replace pad into your shoe so that your foot is not directly on the screws. replace the shoe laces.

Step 2: Foot Casing

  1. Now, start covering the shoe with cardboard.
  2. Start with the front and the back of the shoe (pic 1)
  3. Add the sides of the back portion (pic 2)
  4. Add a little more cardboard to the front flap, and then add the top of the shoe (pic 3)
  5. Add the sides of the front (pic 4)
  6. cover the wood sole
  7. Once assembled, put some foam on the bottom of the shoe to help with traction and also noise.
  8. it’s really just trial and error..

Step 3: Thighs

1. The thighs are basically boxes. They are just angled in and there is a little section cut out if you are a dude for your :;ahem:;..

2. Poke a hole on the sides (hip side). Take a metal circle washer and glue it on either side of the hole.  get some string or more shoe lace and thread it through. about 4 -5 inches should do.

- The washer is so that the thread will be supported by the washer, and not the cardboard (which can easily rip through with wear/tear)..

3. To wear the thighs, you need a belt around your waist. put on the thighs and then use the string to tie them to the belt. This way, they do not fall when you are walking around.

Step 4: Legs

Now that you have your feet done, you want to be in them to measure where your knees are. You need to be able to bend at the knee when you walk also.. Granted, you wont be able to do jumping jacks, but you should be able to move decently.

1. Basically you are making a rectangle around your calf. make sure it is a little wider than your robot foot.

2. Once done, just start adding little details such as curves, or boxes to give it more detail. remember to put a “lid” on the top of these legs. i just made cut out a trapezoid where your leg can slide in.

3. Now take some of your thin strips of wood and glue them inside the leg piece.. it should be right about where your ankle is and just a little below the top of the shoe. The reason for this is that it will prevent your leg from being super loose inside that big box of a leg. Also, gluing the strip a little lower will allow the leg to be off the floor and not dragging.

on the MP figure of soundwave, he has these little details on the sides of his legs. I used a pvc pip and just and made some little squares. 

Step 5: Waist + Pelvis


For Soundwave, we started off with a snug box around the waist. we cut out circles on the sides so that the box could slip underneath the armpits. It should end where your waistline does. 

we made holes on the front and back and attached washers to either side. Then, we used show laces that acted like suspenders. 


1. Now that you have your waist and thighs, you can determine how large you need your pelvis to be. It is 4 pieces (2 sides, crotch, and butt). (pic 2)
  • Picture is not of Soundwaves pelvis, but concept is the same

2. It really just depends on the transformer. I just added some random details based on the pictures i found.

Soundwave has the words Play on his crotch, a record and stop button, and a fast  forward and reverse button. I just used some craft foam for this. (pic 3)

3. Once completed, you can attach this to the waist through the use of velcro and fabric.

Step 6: Chest

The chest is a box that fits over the waist. 

Remember to cut out room for your shoulder to fit over. 

we put some extra room in front in the event i ever wanted to attempt to make a tape deck that could open and close. 

There is also a flap at the top of the suit that can open and close with velcro, so that you head can pop through. 

Step 7: Shoulders

The shoulders are just boxes that go around the arm holes of the chest. I advise gluing in the right shoulder directly to the chest piece because the shoulder cannon will attach to it. If it was not attached, it would probably be too heavy to support correctly.

The left shoulder can be detached. I used a piece of elastic to to secure it into the chest, which allowed the wearer to be able to put his arm up and down. The reason for this is that i wanted him to be able to actually touch the eject button that is located on the top left of his chest. 

For details, i cut out portions of the shoulder, and glued more cardboard from the inside out. i took off the first layer of cardboard of some pieces to expose the ridges for other details. 

Dont forget to cut out a large square in the front of the chest for the plexiglass

I cut a slit on the bottom of the chest to push in the plexiglass. 

Step 8: Shoulder Cannon

You are essentially creating a tube.

Cut out two circles, which will be your "caps" to the tube

Take a sheet of cardboard and wrap it around 1circle to create the tube.

Take your other circle and poke holes into it to add the little details.
I had a plastic bullet bandolier so i nipped the tips of the bullets and used those.
Glue in the last cap, but insert it inside the tube a little bit. 

I then took some poster board and wrapped it around the tube ti give it a smooth look.

Step 9: Biceps and Forearms

for the biceps, cut out the 4 pieces listed below in figure 7. Glue all the portions together and seal them. You can attach the biceps to the inside of the shoulder by adding a little velcro and elastic. (pic 1)

1. For your robot forearm, you are making a box to wrap around your actual forearm. (pic2)
  • Remember that soundwave's arms are not just squares though and have a point on the sides.

2, Cut the top elbow-side corners off so that you will be able to bend at your elbows

3. Then you make caps (one for your wrist, one for your elbow) for both ends of the box. Cut a square within the elbow lower cap for your arm to fit through. this should be somewhat snug around your forearm. (pic 3)

5. For the cap around your wrist, You need to take a strip of cardboard (about 1 inch wide) and wrap it around the girth of your hand. take the ring and place it on the top cap and cut out the circle. Now take that ring and glue it inside the circle. once complete, glue that wrist cap inside.

Step 10: Hands

For the hands, get your black glove and the thin comic book cardboard. I meticulously cut out 3 different pieces for the 3 different sections of your finger (2 for the thumb). Then i made a simple cover for the back of your hand (use regular cardboard covered with comic board.. It acts as a sturdy support when you are trying to take off your gloves) , and a few little covers for the palm.

Indymogul does a brief tutorial on how to make them. (link below)

Step 11: Face + Helmet


Take a piece of cardboard and fold it around your face.
Bend and glue the bottom of the cardboard together (red side) so that it will be angle around your jaw/chin.
take a triangle of cardboard and bend it in half.
Glue it to the top for a nose guard (green).
Once constructed, LIGHTLY bondo the mask.
Take some elastic (orange) and poke it through the corners.

1. To do the helmet, begin by making the crown illustrated in my previous tutorial, “how to build a Darkseid costume” (pic 1)

Do this with the mask on because the mask increases the size of your head. (pic 2)
  • Pics 2-4 are not soundwave's, but concept is the same. 

2. Once that is done, stark thickening it up by adding the details. 

3. add some acetate or yellowish see-through film for eyes.

Step 12: Finished!

Details and decals
-there is a nike looking symbol on the MP figure of sound wave
-there is a "REC" on soundwave's right leg
- For the symbol, i printed a picture of the decepticons symbol on a name tag and turned it into a sticker.

That should be it!. Soundwave Superior! Eject Rumble, Laserbeak, Ravage, Ratbat, Frenzy.

Links to my other Transformers costumes:


Megatron gun-mode


For ongoing projects, Please feel free to check out Spicy Panda Creations via Facebook.

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    3 Discussions


    10 months ago on Step 6

    i made the tape deck. im so proud :)


    Reply 10 months ago

    Now that’s awesome!!! Looking good!!