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Armor : Rubies Jango Two Piece Conversion

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Dekan Korr

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: Rubies Jango Two Piece Conversion
« on: Oct 03, 2018, 12:49 AM »
Rubie's Jango Two Piece (J2P) Conversion

Lead Author: Dekan Korr
Contributors: Jaa'det Otxoa
Edited by: MMCC Education Team

First of all, special thanks to Jaa'det Otxoa and his J2P build thread, which I followed for my first build. During that first build, I learned a lot and by the time I finished, I had also developed a few ideas of my own, which are incorporated below. As I was implementing those ideas, they were just that. Ideas. Theories. Most of it worked, some did not, but I adjusted along the way and documented it. I could have left the mistakes out and done a "perfect" "this is how to do it" thread. But, that's not how these things work. Mistakes get made, measurements are off, etc. Learn from it, apply newly acquired knowledge and press on.

This is strictly going to be a rundown of the structural modifications I made, up to and including prepping for paint, but I won't be going into how I painted it. Also worth noting, I have a small head. The J2P is already kind of a small bucket, and some of the things I'm doing partially for aesthetic reasons may not be the best idea for everyone. Namely, using 6mm Sintra to make the visor area a little chunkier.

The bare minimum for a J2P is to darken or replace the visor and to fill the seams. This is not that build. This modification is intended to not only enhance the look of the helmet, but to make it sturdier, ultimately becoming a helmet that will stand up to a lot of trooping and even a little abuse. By the end, any parts of the helmet that would be prone to flexing no longer will, which will not only make the helmet more durable, but will increase the lifespan of its paint job.

Tools and Materials List

  • Rotary cutting tool (Dremel) with various speed cutters, cutting wheel and sanding attachments. Images provided below.
  • Heat gun
  • Sharpies that contrast with your sintra color
  • Craft knife with razor and saw blades
  • Sandpaper ranging from 60 to 400
  • Needle files
  • 3mm or 6mm Sintra - 2 square feet will be more than enough. Most people should use 3mm. I have a smallish head, and I overdo things, so I will be using 6mm.
  • 3mm Sintra - Enough to get six 1 5/8x3 inch pieces.
  • E6000 - (E6k) Liquid duct tape. If you don't have this, you're wrong.
  • Gorilla 5-minute Epoxy - Strong liquid duct tape. 2 tubes minimum. I love this stuff.
  • Lots of clamps
  • Lots of rare earth magnets. Specifically, I will be using 6 20x3mm and 6 12x3mm neodymium magnets to install the helmet. As many magnets as you can scrounge are recommended for clamping glued parts together.
  • 4 pieces of 1x4 board, approximately 5 to 6 inches long
  • More blue tape than I should
  • 3D printed ear caps but the stock ear caps that came with the helmet will work just fine
  • Bondo glazing putty
  • A darkened face shield like this one
  • Some decidedly not kid-friendly language when I jack something up or get ahead of myself. This won't be documented. Use your imagination.

Dremel Attachments

"Standard" Speed Cutter - this usually comes with the tool

Cutting wheel

1/2 inch sanding drum

Speed Cutters

A Note On Safety
The list above contains various implements used for cutting, generating heat and that can produce very fine particulates. Please use all appropriate safety gear: gloves, eye and respiratory protection. Please also use caution. A Dremel with a cutting wheel, even at low speed, can easily remove a finger. That would be very bad. If you have never used a Dremel before, best practice is to operate at low speed and very slowly/carefully. Increasing both the rotational speed and the speed at which you work can be done as you gain experience and become more comfortable.


If you are unfamiliar with this helmet, assemble it using the given instructions in the packaging before beginning the build. This will you a better idea of what you're working with. As an added bonus, you can put it on to see how it fits out of the box. If you haven't yet decided whether you're going to use 3mm or 6mm Sintra around the visor, this can give you some idea how much room you have to play with.

The J2P in its packaging...

...and once opened and assembled

As it is, it's not horrible if you fix the gap and replace the visor. But it's also not good. Let's make it great.

Initial External Clean Up

Once the helmet is disassembled again, work can begin. Removing the posts where the ear caps attach is as good a place to start as any. If using the stock ear caps, this step can be skipped.

Front half before

Back half before

The Dremel with cutting wheel attachment works well to remove the posts, and the "stump" that is left behind can be removed with the sanding drum if needed. The sanding drum can also be used to remove the raised portion above the brow ridge if desired.

Front half after 1

Front half after 2

Back half after

The posts holding the visor in place need to be removed. Once removed, the visor will be used as a template for both the Sintra that will be reinforcing the visor area and the replacement visor cut from the Hobart shield. In order to not damage the visor too badly, precision is key here. The Dremel with standard bit at a low speed works well to remove the tops of the posts. This will be slow going, but will allow you to remove the visor intact so that it can be set aside to be used as a template later.

Stock visor

A closer look at the posts

Once the visor is out, the little knobby remnants of the posts also need to be removed. The Dremel and standard bit work well for this, and can be run at a higher speed if you're comfortable doing so. The posts need to be completely removed to provide as close a fit as possible for installing the visor reinforcement in the next stage.

Knobby remnants

Next, using the stock visor as a template, mark and cut out a piece of 3mm or 6mm Sintra for the visor area using whichever tools you are most comfortable with. It is advised to extend the vertical portion slightly. When installed, it will extend beyond the bottom of the helmet, but can be sanded down in the final stages for a cleaner final appearance.

Visor reinforcement

If using 6mm, heat it until it is floppy. Not simply pliable, legitimately floppy. It will be shaped by pressing it into the visor area and it needs to conform to it as perfectly as possible. 3mm Sintra is a little easier to shape at a lower temperature than 6mm, so "pliable" will be sufficient. Once shaped, tape it into place.

Shaped and taped

Then, flip it over and tape it down on the front as well. The edges of the helmet should be as flat as possible against the Sintra. Shaping should have it pretty close, but this is to mark the corners of the T. The visor will be installed using magnets, so identifying where the corners of the T will be is an important step.

Taped and marked 1

Taped and marked 2

Once it's marked, remove it and using 20x3mm neodymium magnets as templates, mark circles in both corners of the "T". A little further down, do the same with 12x3mm magnets. Once marked, the holes can be cut out using the Dremel and one of the speed cutter attachments pictured above.

Marking the holes with the magnets

Holes for the magnets cut out

Once that is done, thoroughly sand the surface of the sintra to rough it up and then do the same to the interior of the helmet around the visor area. Then, mix enough Gorilla 5-minute epoxy to cover the visor area in the helmet. Using clamps where possible, secure the Sintra into the visor area. Where clamps won't reach, stacked neodymium magnets can be used. 2-3 magnets per side will provide enough pulling power to tightly clamp the corners of the T. Nothing else can be done while the epoxy is curing, so set this part aside for now.


If desired, the keyslots can be cut out, otherwise painting them black should be sufficient to provide the illusion of venting on the helmet. If cutting them out, the Dremel and standard bit work well for this. Again, work slowly. The initial results may be a little sloppy, but they can be fine tuned with sand paper or a needle file.

Now it's time to reinforce the back of the helmet. In Jaadet's build, he used an embroidery hoop. Here, Sintra will be used, the idea being to balance the weight of the Sintra used on the front half. You will likely install padding before you're done, and that may provide a snug enough fit, but a more even weight distribution will help the helmet not droop forward while you're wearing it. The piece used for this build was approximately 4x14 inches.

You will need to make a notch for the keyslots and fan batteries in the back, so cut out a 6 inch wide notch and leave about an inch at the bottom. There's going to be quite a bit of slop along the bottom edge, but due to the helmet's flare, it'll be easier to sand it down at the end than it will be to try to guess how to cut it to match up. The 6 inch notch will allow roughly 2 inches on either side of the keyslots for USB batteries, which will be sufficient for a pair of 3000mWh batteries. Primary and a spare for longer troops.

Note: The picture below does not reflect the 6 inch wide battery/keyslot notch because I wasn't thinking about battery placement when I initially did this and had to do it after the fact. That was not fun. This is one of the not-kid-friendly mistake moments mentioned above. I made the mistake so you don't have to. You're welcome.

Next, heat it up and rough shape it to the back half of the helmet.

If using the dimensions given above, you will need to trim it down enough to make room for the pieces that will be backing area under the earcaps. The two halves are held together with painter's tape, and only long enough to check that the shaping is close enough for now. It'll get refined later if necessary.



Notch with room for batteries. (Post-assembly. You really should cut the notch like this, though.)

This part is done for now. It's roughly the right size and shape and it fits. It'll get refined later when the whole thing goes together.

Straightening the Cheeks

This part is optional, but greatly enhances the look of the helmet. Neither Boba nor Jango had curved cheeks. Or Deathwatch. Or... you get the point.

This will be done with 6mm Sintra again because I have lots of it. Anything solid and relatively rigid will work, though.

It can make things a bit easier if you have the wizardofflight helmet templates, because then you can mark and precut the Sintra for the cheeks, but if not, it is not the end of the world. Power tools solve a lot of problems.

For this you will need two pieces of Sintra (or whatever material you have handy), roughly 5x4 inches each and two sets of braces made from scrap 1x4. For each set of braces, the end of one side is curved to match the profile of the cheek, and the other one will be in the back, so it doesn't matter what shape it is.

Now. I'm not going to lie. You don't have enough hands for this to be easy. But based on the materials list above, you have tape, and that's almost like having extra hands, and it will almost make this easier.

First, make a tape roll with blue painter's tape (sticky side out, obviously) and use it to attach one of the Sintra pieces to the square-ended wooden brace. Then set it aside to mix the epoxy.

To mitigate making a huge mess of things, after roughing up the inside of the cheek, mix the Gorilla on the cheek itself and then spread it. Then, take the two brace pieces (curved one on the outside against the cheek, and the square one with Sintra taped to it goes on the inside, lining the top edge of the Sintra up with the top of the cheek, and the edge closest to the vertical portion of the T gets aligned with the front bottom corner of the cheek. There will be slop. Lots of it. Don't worry about it. Removing material = easy. Adding material after the fact = not so much.

Left cheek, outside view

Ignore the fact that the 2 halves are actually assembled at this point. This led to one of those not-kid-friendly moments.

Then repeat the process for the other cheek. And you get a picture from the inside this time.

Right cheek, inside view

Continue to ignore the assembled helmet. Because...

Once the Gorilla epoxy was cured, the clamps came off and I realized there was no way to get the Dremel in to actually trim the brace pieces down. The cheeks were nice and straight, though.

Flatter than the earth!

Because you didn't actually assemble the two halves yet, you will have a much easier time sanding down the cheek braces. Dremel and sanding drum here again.

Cheek straightener/reinforcer thingie sanded down

Note: the hole in the visor makes it easier to pick the helmet up once it's together.


Put the two halves together using the posts and accompanying slots between the two halves and then use painter's tape to hold the whole thing together. If you are using the stock ear caps, the range finder should go in now, because you won't be able to get it in after the fact. As a reminder, I did not use the stock ear caps, so there are no pictures of this.

All the tape...

Overkill here is a plus. You want this held together as tightly as possible. 4 strips on the top, and 3 full passes right above the brow ridge.

All of the tape!

Once satisfied it's secure, cut out two pieces of Sintra wide enough to fill the flat portion of the ear area at the bottom of the helmet and tall enough to go up to the tab. Again, slop is good because it can be sanded down later. Rough up all surfaces for good adhesion and then Gorilla and clamp them into place.

Do the same thing on the other side, too.

And now on to the seam between the two halves. Cut out 6 pieces of 3mm Sintra. They need to be 1 5/8 inches wide to fit between the posts that join the two halves, and to give enough surface area for good adhesion, they should be 2 1/2 to 3 inches long.

Seam reinforcement

Now, because there are curves involved, they have to be formed, so heat them up and then use the spot on the inside of the helmet where they go to form them. You can either do them one at a time, gluing them into place as you form them, or mark them in the order they were formed and then glue them all at once. The latter is recommended.

First one formed

E6k (E6000) is sufficient for this. There will be 6 of them, so that should provide enough coverage to not have to go crazy and Gorilla these, too. 20x3mm magnets are holding them in place. Some of them in the image are stacked because they may have been accidentally glued together and I couldn't get them apart. The magnets are really just there to provide enough force to keep the Sintra from drifting out of place.

Seam reinforcement complete

And now, finally, check the piece that's going to reinforce the back. If it needs adjustment, now is the time to do it. It should conform to the shape of the helmet, since it will help the back hold its shape as well as balancing the weight. If it's close enough, slather it in E6k and secure it in the back with clamps. Again, before installing it, make the notch bigger if there is any chance you are going to be installing fans and need someplace to put the batteries. Cutting through 6mm of Sintra with a craft knife while not cutting through the helmet itself and then prying it off of the E6k was neither easy nor fun. Very not kid-friendly moment.

Once the visor is fully cut out (which comes later), the cheeks will have a tendency to spread, so that gets addressed next. First, tape a piece of 3mm sintra at the bottom of the visor area inside the helmet. This is only temporary, and it's to help shape the piece that will be used for the brace. You will want the brace as close to the visor as you can get it while still leaving room for the visor itself to actually be installed.

3mm Sintra spacer

Next, cut out a roughly 6x1inch piece of Sintra that I did not document with photos.. Then, heat it up until it was nice and floppy. You'll want this shaped as close as possible to the visor so that it also serves as a third retention point (in addition to the magnets installed higher up). Press it against the 3mm piece that's taped in and form it as best you can to the gap between the two pieces reinforcing the cheeks. It will be installing right at the bottom of the bucket, and there are parts that will have to be sanded down a bit, but it's all part of the plan. I also couldn't take a picture while wearing gloves, so you'll have to settle for one after the plastic had cooled.


After removing the 3mm Sintra, there may be more room there than intended, but it's probably close enough. If really necessary, feel free to tweak it. If the piece is too long like in the photo, it can be trimmed.

Close enough.

Prior to gluing, make sure all the appropriate surfaces have been roughed and then Gorilla it into place, securing it with clamps.

Trimmed, glued and clamped.

And finally, once all of that Gorilla had set, the cut out the visor and sand all of the slop down flush. Sanding should include rounding the edges of the brace installed between the cheeks since it's an edge your nose may come into contact with. Please don't cut your nose with your helmet. The visor was cut out with a hobby knife saw blade, preliminary sanding was done with the Dremel to get it close and then finished off with 60 and then 150 wrapped around a piece of 6mm Sintra.

Edges sanded flush.

Visor cut out.

It's wet because all of that sanding made a mess, so I took it inside and washed it out in the kitchen sink. Don't tell my wife.

Final assembly touches

This next part is pretty straightforward.

First, sand as much of the factory paint off as you can using 200 grit and finish it with 400 grit.

Next, install the earcaps. If using the stock caps, you can simply use the posts with a little bit of E6k to secure them. If using custom caps, install them however you see fit. Not backwards or upside down, though. That would look silly.

Finally, the magnets go into the holes cut in the visor backing. Gorilla 5-minute epoxy will work to secure them, to include gluing pairs of them together for each slot if you used 6mm Sintra in the visor area.

Magnets installed

Visor installed

Making it paint-worthy

Bondo Round 1:

Give the seam, ears and around the visor a generous pasting of Bondo glazing putty.

Bondo round 1

Once cured, sand it down with 200 grit and then give it a couple coats of filler primer. The original garbage visor can be used as a template to create a temporary visor out of cardstock or something similar to be a stand in visor so as not to spray a bunch of extra primer inside the helmet. This will probably be the first of several rounds of bondo, sanding, priming and more sanding, so you don't need to be particularly careful spraying. Going kind of heavy can help to get down into any gaps that may have been left behind after the first pass with glazing putty.

Filler primer round 1

Then sand the filler primer down with 200 grit.
This process will probably be repeated 3 or 4 times. More Bondo, sand, more filler primer, sand, more Bondo…

Bondo round 2. Subsequent rounds were similar.

Until you eventually arrive at something like this:

Just a hair short of being perfect, and therefore close enough. So slap some paint on it and call it done.

« Last Edit: Jul 23, 2019, 09:04 AM by Raestin Ke'Varek » Logged
If it's worth doing, it's worth overdoing. By orders of magnitude. || Thingiverse

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