Introduction: Wire Mesh Airsoft Mask
This instructable will teach you how to make your own wire mesh mask for cheap. This mask covers your entire face as well as your ears to give you maximum protection from those stinging airsoft bbs. There are lots of air soft masks on the market and there are some downsides to making your own but if you just don't want to spend the cash then this is where you need to be. The biggest downside to this design is the edges are majorly pokey. From my experience once you get the mask on, you're pretty safe but the process can definitely be painful. Now, if this really is an issue for you, you could endeavor to bend each pokey wire back but I just didn't want to take the time. The only other downside is the masks quality depends on your metal bending skill and the amount of time you put into it, so how good your mask looks is up to you. However there are a lot of benefits to the mask as well. First, it's light, like crazy light. Second, it breathes super well which helps reduce fogging which is a big issue in airsoft. Third, you get to custom design it to fit your face perfectly so no wrong size issues. Overall I would say this mask is the best DIY option and if you're ready to make it then read on.
What you will need
1. Wire: This wire doesn't need to be a specific gauge, it just needs to keep it's shape when bent and you're going to need about 2 yards of it.
2. Wire mesh: The only requirement for this mesh is the holes have to be smaller than an airsoft bb which is 6 mm in diameter. Also you'll need about a square yard of the stuff.
3. Goggles: This mask is designed to cover your entire face except for your eyes so you're going to need to buy your goggles separately. I recommend hunting goggles because they are shatter resistant and don't fog easily.
4. Printing paper
5. rubber bands: two of them
1. optional A clamp: Whether or not you'll need this tool depends how hard your wire is to bend, but I found it very useful
4. Scotch tape
Step 1: Make the Pattern
The first step to making your mask is to make a pattern to bend your wire to and the first step to making that pattern is taping two pieces of paper together. Next draw the general shape of your mask. Now cut that shape out. Put this shape up to your face and ask a friend to see if its covering all your face well. If the paper is too big trim it down a bit and if its too small make one that's bigger. Once you've got your pattern to the right size, place your goggles on it near the top were your eyes would be. Trace around the goggles and cut that shape out. I would even recommend making the hole a little bigger to account for any wire bending error. Now draw the wire onto your pattern and if you want you can even run string along the wire drawing so you can see exactly how much wire you'll need. Do take a bit extra though because its always better to be safe than sorry. Put your goggles on and hold your pattern up to your face. If there's just a small gap between your goggles and your mask then you're right where you need to be. Great, you finished your pattern let's bend some wire!
Step 2: Build the Mask
This next step is definitely difficult because you need to turn a straight piece of wire into a mask frame. As you can tell my frame is much less then perfect but as long as it fits it works. First bend your wire so it follows the pattern you made earlier exactly. Then you need to bend it so it fits your head. All the advice I can give you for this step is don't give up even if its tough. Once you've made your frame cut out a piece of mesh that's the shape of your pattern. Put it over your frame and secure it using the wires from the left over mesh. Once you've tied it all down cut out the holes for the eyes. Now for extra reinforcement tie some of the scraps to the mask. Now trim the mesh so it's the shape you want. Lastly tie your rubber bands to the back of your mask's frame and there you go you''re done! To put on your mask first put on your goggles and then slip the mask on. If you have any questions ask them in the comments below and I hope your mask protects you in some awesome airsoft battles. If you have any epic airsoft stories please tell me in the comments I would love to hear them.