Please include your ACTUAL neck size. We add about 1.5" for comfort.
Photos of our large ribbed version:
Dawn made my Neckseal based on the neck pieces worn by Luke Skywalker
and Han Solo in "A New Hope" while wearing Stormtrooper disguises.
They're made to look like real rubber even up close, but they're actually
made of a shiny quilt-like material that is soft and allows air to circulate
around and through the Neckseal. Contains no plastic or rubber. Just
cushy-soft, cotton/poly ribs. I repeat: they contain no plastic, nor
rubber, nor vinyl, nor electrical cords, nor wire, nor any other icky
Each rib was individually sewn and they really add to the realism of
my Stormtrooper Armor.
Here's what other Troopers have said about them over the years:
Received your neckseal today! Freaking awesome man!! Can I
send people to you?
Your neck seal was EXCELLENT! ...the material used is so close to the
original neck seal Luke and Han used in Star Wars, I am simply amazed!
Great fit, great look, and EXACTLY what I was looking for! Thanks Chris.
- Jared C. Wood
FANTASTIC!... yours is the most comfortable and affordable! The stitching
quality is superb."
- Joe Nycz (TK-885)
"I absolutely loved the Neckseal!! It will add even more realism to anyone's
- Michael Smith
"It's the best neckseal I have seen. Word will definitely go around within my
trooper circles about these."
- Elvin Vega (TK-230)
French Style Ammo Pouch
For Voice Amps $40
For patrol missions on Tatooine, Sandtroopers are issued several specific items for outpost survival. Larger, heavy-duty weapons are necessary as well as leather pouches to carry their ammunition.
This French-issued black leather military ammo pouch is great for carrying your voice amp out of the way in a comfortable spot. It will fit any of the three most-used voice amps listed on my site. It measures 16" tall x 4.5" wide. It had been issued by the military so the weathering of the leather is realistic. Ammo pouches are used in "A New Hope" by Sandtroopers on Tatooine while on patrol in the Dune Sea and at Mos Eisley Space Port and I use one exactly like this to carry my own voice amp. This particular type ammo pouch was also seen in Kevin Rubio's film "Troops". Most French-style ammo pouches are tan. You can easily dye them using "Fiebing's USMC black" leather dye from Tandy Leather. Finish it with a spray on clearcoat called "Super Shene"
Here are my backpack projects. I made these for about $20 each. See this diagram for
reference. My new favorite backpack tip is the zip
tie. It saves weight and is much easier. Iíve used it to connect the
two main boxes together as well as several of the parts. Just drill a couple
holes and wrap the zip tie around the item. For those things you donít
want the zip tie to show, use screws coming from inside the box, facing
outward. Zip ties also work great for holding the plunger on. You donít
want to rely on glue ≠ trust me, youíre going to get knocked around and
things will fall off.
Here are some reference photos. Some are from the Marmit Sandtrooper
backpack, which is extremely accurate:
Here are several backpacks I've built from scratch.
Need replacement decals for your helmet? Download TK-1010's Vinyl
Decal Catalog Great prices too - he's got everything!
I glued two elastic straps under the hand armor. The bottom slides on
around my wrist and the top slides on around my palm.
I used rivets in modifying my armor. Get a common riveter (available
at the hardware store for about $10) and a box of aluminum rivets.
Start by drilling a hole, then rivet through the hole.
I've drilled out the "frown" on my helmet for increased ventilation and
to appear more screen-accurate. Click the box to see the process.
When I finally decided to make the leap and weather my Armor F/X kit
to look like the Sandtroopers in ANH, it looked like this:
I used craft paint (also called tempera paint) which can be found at
the craft store for about $1 a bottle. If you make mistakes, you can
just wipe it off with a damp cloth. The paint colors I used were basically
olive-brown, black, and rust. I mixed the colors and dabbed on the paint
with an old sock. Then dabbed it some more with a slightly damp sponge.
When applying paint to crevices, dab it on, force it into the cracks
with a paintbrush, then wipe off the high spots. When it's still slightly
wet, use crumpled paper to create "scratches" in the weathering. Like
You'll also need to replace your lenses with flat green ones. I got
a dark green face shield at RJSafety.com scroll
down for"HF4118-DRK - Dark Green Faceshield - $3.65". You can cut it
with scissors. Works great for Boba Fett's T-visor too.
FX kit after weathering
Here's my buddy, Glenn Berry's Sandtrooper Armor:
Armor kit after weathering
Well, after exhaustive research and many thanks to Cliff, Chris Williams (TK-289), and the RPF for photo references, measurements and ideas, I finally completed my first MG-15 coming in exactly at my goal of $20. It's made of PVC, plastic and metal. Several base guns will work. See RealisticToyGuns.com. You'll find production photos that I took along the way as well.
For weathering the stock, I sponged on layers of color: cream, then rust, gray.
The magazines were dry brushed with silver, misted with gold (for a brassy
appearance.) Down the midsection I dry brushed silver, then dabbed on rust
and gray, let some drip off, and sponged the rest. Down the barrel I used a
old sock and dabbed on silver, sponged on rust, drybrushed silver the edge
of the holes. Then
I covered most of the MG-15 with a clear coat.
Return of the Jedi Stormtrooper Helmet
This is a Cameron Oakley helmet and claims to have been cast from a screen-used ROTJ helmet. I added vinyl decals and weathering based on the ANH reference photos. Here's a few photos...
The Unfinished Helmet:
Finished (Clean) Helmet:
Weathered Helmet (Based
Stormtrooper Heavy Blaster (Lewis Gun)
Here are some amazing reference photos (special thanks to Cliff at the Mos Eisley Police Department)
Use these measurements for reference TOOLS & PARTS
I cut the stock from wood using a jigsaw. The barrel is PVC pipe and other pipe fittings. I cut the wood stock long and slid it into the barrel. Then I screwed it to the underneath of the barrel with 5 screws. Here are the finished photos: -
Here are the production photos:
12" Sandtrooper Look-Alike
I'm an action figure! For about $35, you can make a 12" Stormtrooper figure of yourself. There are Marmit Stormtrooper figures that are more movie-accurate, but they run about $80-$100. I took a 12" Hasbro Sandtrooper (available on ebay) and customized it to look like me. See photos for tutorial comments. Also, see Loosetoon for a Marmit conversion.
Stormtrooper Blaster (Kenner Conversion)
I picked up a few Kenner blasters and converted them adding a fixed folding stock, extending the barrel with a large Listerine bottle cap and painting them with a weathering technique that makes it look like metal.
Stormtrooper Armor & Supplies
For AP (screen-accurate) armor contact Mark. E-11 Blaster parts: Jim over at
TK560.com offers an awesome kit for building your own screen-accurate E-11
only $45! All you need is a PVC pipe for the main barrel.
The molds of the actual, screen-used costumes as seen in "Return of the
Jedi" were restored, by GF, to the original "A New Hope"
look. For the latest ANH (screen-accurate) armor and helmet info click here. The helmet is cast from molds of an original ANH stunt helmet.
Here's a comparison photo of both kits.
After vacuforming, before trimming:
ANH Armor Assembly Tips
One thing that helped in trimming was getting a pair of Tinner
Snips from Home Depot to trim the big pieces. I used a sharp utility knife for the smaller pieces. When using the knife, lightly score the plastic, bend and snap.
I assembled it, then lightly rubbed it with steel wool and painted it with Krylon gloss white.
Also, buy one of those lifesize cardboard Stormtrooper Standups on ebay. Brak's Buddy's got some great photos and info on making a clamshell of the abplate/rearplate as they did in the movie suits. They used rivets on your left side, but on the right, they just let the belt hold it together.
On the shins, my legs are skinny enough that I ABS-glued them at the top and left it unglued the rest of the way down. That way they kind of clam-open a little to allow my heel to fit in, they they spring closed once they're on. I believe that's how they were done in ANH (See the opening seen and look at the troopers calves from the back)
On the shoulders, I added a strip of black strap material with velcro as a bridge between the shoulder bell and the shoulder straps.
For the belt, get some thick leather and trim it to the height of the ammo belt, then paint it white. I got a 3" piece of 1/8" thick belt leather from Tandy
Leather, sealed it with 3 coats of Kilz2
sealer (white hardware store primer paint), then spray painted it flat white.
Rivet or Snap it to the abplate. Then rivet it to the ammo belt so everything stays put.
And yes, I know the knee plate is too high, I've since repositioned it. I've also redone the weathering so it's not so harsh. Love that removeable craft paint!
When suiting up, I put it on in this order:
3. boots (that's tricky, I have to tuck in the boots)
4. abplate/cod piece/belt/rear (all connected)
5. chest/back/shoulders (connected)
I picked up a few sets of leather MP-40 Norwegian Mag Pouches at Marstar. They only come in green, so I went to Tandy Leather for their "USMC black" leather dye, a 10-pack of wool daubers and "Super Shene" spray leather finish. The pouches are almost exactly accurate to the movie props used in ANH.
In ANH, the ammo pouch was attached to the backpack strap. This explains why no Sandtrooper without a backpack ever wore a shoulder pouch.
Cut off the loops on the back as close to the pouch as you can. Superglue the ends together and screw or rivet it to the back of back of the ammo pouch. Then rivet the other end to the top of your backpack strap.
The only prep I did to the leather was wipe it clean if it was dusty. Just paint on the leather dye, it dries fairly quickly. After it dries, hold it in the sunlight. If you see green showing through, it may need another coat.
Open the flaps and lay out flat, spread out, face down. Cover the back with dye and let dry. Then do the front, starting in the crevices between the pockets. This is done easier by bending it back to spread open the crevices. When dry, spray on the Leather Shene just like you are spray painting. The shene coat is essential, otherwise the dye rubs off easily and all over everything.
The finished product:
Mini Trooper Costume by Andy
So you already have your own Stormtrooper costume, but your kids are stuck passing out the candy. Follow Andy's easy tutorial to make the coolest kid-sized trooper armor in the galaxy. Your child will be able to move easily, with no hard edges to pinch!
I've attached a pic of the type of foam sheets I used, and the glue. Almost all the armor was from 3mm thick (a few detail strips were 2mm) white foam sheets. The bigger 11x14 sheets are best because some pieces are large. The glue is called Omni-Stick, and works beautifully for gluing the foam. It's somewhat thick and gets tacky fast, but I still pressed the pieces together with a board and weights to get a tight, smooth attachment. I also used a bunch of velcro, and some black elastic strips to hold certain parts together with some flexibility. The whole idea with this costume is that she could wear it with comfort and flexibility, allowing her to still run around and have fun without worrying about pinching herself or wrecking her costume. (Although the shoes and white foam armor picked up dirt pretty easily, as you can see from the pics.) My idea is if the costume is uncomfortable or fragile, it's not worth wearing! :-)
I started with the arms, since they were the simplest pieces. The hardest part was making the patterns, custom fit to my daughter. I cut and taped paper until I had a good fit, and then cut that shape out of the foam sheet. The 3D stripes on the armor are just thin strips of foam glued onto the surface (with square holes cut for that forearm piece). I glued on velcro strips to make it easy to get the armor pieces on and off. The glove was just a tight-fitting knit glove we found, and I glued the armor piece onto the back. (Unfortunately the glue had soaked through the glove and was itching her hand, so I ended up putting another 2mm piece on the INSIDE. There is probably a better way to do this.) The arm pieces were snug enough to stay in place on her arms all by themselves.
The legs were similar, but a bit more complicated because I wanted to add a little secondary curve for her calves and thighs (so it didn't look like a straight tube). I did this by making the two velcro edges - on the back of the piece - slightly curved. That way when velcroed together, they make a slight bulge for her calves. (You can see the slightly rounded back contour on the pics.) The strip around the top edge of the lower leg piece has to be a bit LONGER around than the actual leg piece, because of the thickness of the armor. Also, I made sure to cut the left lower leg piece to include the kneepad shape, and added a hexagon "ring" piece on top to give it some 3D. For the right knee I just made a separate strip and glued it on at the two ends only, leaving it a little loose in the center for flexibility. Note the elastic strips that go up from the thighs to the belt's side flaps. The thigh pieces had to be somewhat loose for flexibility, and would fall down if not for that elastic.
This is not as complicated as I first thought - basically the front and back torso pieces are flat and kind of featurless. The tricky part, again, was making a pattern to fit her and fit the angle of her shoulders. Many sheets of paper died to give me this information. Note the front has a top and bottom piece, purely for looks, not for shape. On the back I just added some simple shapes for the "0 1 1" design. On the shoulder straps, I just used 2mm strips with many little tiny strips glued onto them. I used elastic around the waist for flexibility, and the little white tab on the elastic was just for looks. Believe it or not, the hardest part of the whole costume was the shoulder piece - it has a very pronounced double curve to make that bowl shape. Note the shape of the pattern I used. The seam was fortunately covered up by the 3D strip on the outside, but holding the seam together while the glue dried was very tough. I suggest finding some sort of bowl that you can tape the foam onto tightly while the glue dries. Note also the elastic band around the bottom of the shoulder piece, to hold it down to her arm. The elastic at the top to attach it to the front torso is glued a few inches down from the top edge, so that when she raises her arms there is some play there.
Again there are some interesting curve shapes with these pieces. Also, the front and back "bibs" go up extra far, so when she bends over they don't pop out form under the torso. I even added an elastic strip at the top of the front "bib" that velcros to the inside of the torso front, to help hold those two pieces together. Again, more strips glued on for the 3D shapes. For the below-the-belt front and back, I cheated and made them separate (and not go down too far) to allow her greater freedom when sitting down. That's also why the thigh pieces don't come up as far, too. Note the side view pics - they show the angles everything was glued together at, to better conform to her body. Not doing this means the "bib" will pop out or the below-the-belt pieces will stick out funny. Note the velcro under the side flaps for the thigh piece elastic strips.
I could not find any kid-sized replica helmets, so I made my own. I started with a costume 3/4 mask, which went basically halfway around the sides. I also found a kid's Police helmet similar to the one in the picture, except with a clear riot shield and white hinge pieces on the sides (more on this below). I removed the shield and stickers, and cut off the straps and the brim. I made sure to leave a little strip of brim to fit inside the black stripe above the eyes of the mask, to help hold the two together. I also cut the top of the mask off, above that black stripe. Then I drilled some holes in the helmet and used a nail to go through the helmet hinge piece (worked great for the ear shape), the mask, and the helmet, bending it over on the inside. You can use screws for this too - I was having trouble finding a glue that held the mask to the helmet well enough (lots of strain on it) so I just did the screw/nail. The back of the police helmet was cut too high and looked funny, so I just made a "skirt" of foam sheet and glued it around the back. It didn't have the classic shape, but worked well enough for me. Then I added some padding to the inside to help hold it on her head without a strap (I don't like tight chin straps, so I doubt she does). The trick with this is to A) make sure there is just enough padding on top so her eyes line up with the eye holes, and B) put some padding on the back UNDER the curve of her head, so it tries to pull the helmet down rather than just sitting on top of her head. I also replaced the mask's eye lenses, because they were too dark for nighttime trick-or-treating, and so bulged out that they were blurry and bothered her. I cut new lenses out of the riot shield - if you DO get the helmet with the green shield, so much the better!
I found some Faded Glory shoes that seemed perfect, except they were suede and not smooth leather, and not white. I dyed them white, and just ignored the suede. :-) I looked for white boots more like the real thing, but never found anything I liked. Plus, not having to tuck them up under the leg pieces made the leg patterns simpler.
I used two small saline solution bottles with the tops cut off and fit them together. I added two strips of foam and some velcro to attach it to the back of the belt. I wanted it to be able to come off so she could sit down in a car seat or chair.
I made her a pouch for two reasons - so she could go trick-or-treating withough a costume-killing plastic bag :-) and so that if she wanted, she could holster her blaster. It's simply a long rectangle of heavy black canvas stitched together on the sides, with enough for a flap left over on one side. The strap is just a common black web strap. I just made sure to make the pouch wide and long enough to fit her blaster in. (Which, by the way, is just a store-bought toy.)
Pretty simple - just heavy black tights and a black turtleneck, and black socks!
Hyper-firm blasters from Sci-Fire.com. These are not real, they're rubber! Contact John for more info. Lewis Gun: E-11 (Sterling): MG-34:
Beautifully screen-accurate blasters made of lightweight Hyper-firm rubber from
Sci-Fire. The tiniest detail on these is so clear you'll swear it's the real
thing. I own the MG-34, the Lewis Gun and I've seen the E-11 up close in person.
Exquisite and indestructable. Great for letting fan kids hold a blaster without
fear of breaking it. Made exactly like Hollywood stunt guns by a well-known Hollywood
prop-maker. Also available were Boba Fett's blasters and Tusken Gaffi Sticks
of which I've seen and handled in person - they are amazing.
$19.99 Bad Robots T-Shirt
Power Converters not included.
These droids aren't bad, just drawn that way. Art by Chris F. Bartlett. Printed on 4.5oz, 100% soft spun cotton, fitted t-shirts. Sporty v-necks for the girls. Not your father's boxy tees.
Stormtrooper Voice Amp
I use the compact Aker voice amp for all my costumes. It's perfect for the stormtrooper amplified voice effect as it's LOUD and clear. You'd mount it inside your chest armor or on your belt or in an ammo pouch. It has an input for the mic and a second input for an MP3 player so you can speak AND play sound effects at the same time. It's fantastic. For the static burst sound, you can just say "clk-shht" and it's very convincing. Comes with a charger so it's all self-contained. Perfect for crowds since you can hear it across the street!
From TK Electronics.
I've also used the Xtreme Gadget voice amp, although it only has the single mic input and it's twice as big as the Aker. XtremeGadget.com.
Another amp is the Hisonic "waist band amplifier" (about $59 shipped). Comes with battery-charging capability and two microphones (one headset and one lapel mic) plus, It's a little smaller than the Xtreme Gadget.
Pat offers this review:
"It is very LOUD. Putting this on my belt I can only turn up volume to 75% before I get feed back. Even behind my [trooper] chest plate 30% volume is more than loud enough. You have to add the static burst on your own. The Hisonic comes with a nice head band mic that has a formable wire frame that you can mold to wrap around the back of your head and the mic has a seperate formable wire to place the foam covered mic at your best spot. The amp/speaker unit holds 6 AA batteries and will allow you to recharge with an ac adapter. I thought this would make the unit some what bulky and hard to place. I found that the unit fits nicely behind the upper chest plate and I can use the enclosed strap to mount it to my chest from around the back and under the arms or around the stomach area. The strap is black with black plastic slips so it's easy to hide."
The speaker can be worn behind the chest plate since it comes with a neck strap (Stormtrooper) or placed in the thigh or waist utility pouch (Boba Fett).
There's a great new tutorial for electro-binoculars or macrobinoculars that look amazingly close to screen-accurate over atCostumeBot.com
The following binocs were made by me by converting a Radica Sub Assault game.
Here are some photos of the original model of Simrad binoculars used in the movies.
Original Sub Assault game:
After the conversion
Version 2 production photos
Version 2 was done using the "Mustard" method. It was painted in this order:
1. gray primer
3. dabs of mustard, where I want "metal" to show through
4. then white
5. then brush off the mustard with toothbrush and water
5. weathering using craft paint
The Robe pictured here will fit an average 8 year-old or younger. Made with great attention to detail, the sleeves and bottom hem are frayed to look just like the movie. The comfortable and easy to wear cotton, blanket-type robe opens in front and has a velcro closure. Great for lifesize display too.
The Hood is a separate piece made of all the same materials and has a velcro closure for easy fastening. The hood opening is bendable and can be formed to any shape or size.
52" overall height
42" from wrist to wrist
46" from neck to bottom hem
32" wide chest
Please note: no facemask, lighted eyes, ammo belts or weapons are included. However, you can find all of these items also on ebay. See my site for much more info on making your own Jawa costume.
My first Burlap Jawa (Tip: Do not use Burlap)
Riley Replica's Jawa:
Here's my diagram for
how we made the Jawa cloak and hood. We used burlap, but it's way too hot and
itchy. I used "monks
cloth" available at any fabric store.
It looks very thin in the store.
You'll need to wash it to get that nice
blanket texture because it shrinks and bulks up. If you can't
find it in brown, get beige or white and dye it with brown liquid RIT dye. This
I've seen for both comfort and drape.The same material works for Tusken Raiders.
seen here on Justin's
Jawa. you can just use a blanket and dye it brown.
Check out The Jawa section of the growing Tusken Raider Makers forum. Jawa
Use black cotton jersey gloves from the hardware store ($2). Jawa fur is from the craft store, cut from a black feather boa. I stitched the fur in the shape of a "U" on the back of each glove:
Ammo Belts can be found on ebay for about $25. Search for "Swedish Bandoliers" or "Leather Ammo Belt":
Finished Jawa Blasters:
I started with a toy gun called a "Parris pirate gun." They can be found on ebay for about $10. Then I added a shower curtain rod flange (the end of the rod that attaches to the wall) and connected it to the smaller barrel using a plastic electrical nut/bolt like connector. I used large PVC pipe for the barrel (it's got to fit just inside the shower rod flange).
For the Jawa's eyes, get them on ebay for about $6. Search for "Jawa eyes" Take
any cheap Halloween face mask, paint it black and mount the LED eyes on the cheeks
of the mask (below the eyes). See
Diagram here. Use hotglue or other adhesive,
(some people wrap the mask with fake black fur, hotgluing the fur to the mask.
This creates a deeper, indescernible appearance). In the movies they used black ski
masks which would get pretty hot depending on your climate. Adding clear
hemispheres over the LEDs will enlarge their glowing appearance. You can use
toy containers from any grocery store toy machine (You know the ones, 25 cents
MG-34 Measurements MG-15 Measurements Anakin's Mechanical Hand
I just finished my "Anakin's Mechanical Hand." You wear it over your hand and it has real lifelike movement. You can even use it to hold a lightsaber or pick up objects. I realize it isn't COMPLETELY accurate. I used the AOTC Visual Dictionary photo as reference.
I started with this "Awesome Arm" toy from uncomyngifts.com.
I didn't have to modify it structurally at all. I primered it gray and painted it gold. I added wires and small springs from an electronic surplus-type store (about $1).
Poke the ends of the colored wires into the hollow of the fingertips and run them the length of each finger. In between each joint, I twist-tied down the colored wires to the finger with a smaller wire, then randomly stuffed the colored wires into the hollow of the back of the hand. I used super-gel (super glue in gel form) to glue the springs down in between each joint.