Hip ribbing, optimal worbla smoothing method

I finished the hip ribbing! Cue pictures of creepy duct tape amputee:

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This is a larger gauge surgical tubing than the kind I used for the arm before. To reiterate, in order make to these I cut a length of tubing in half lengthwise so the back side could lay flat on my body, and glued them together with superglue. Even though superglue is a brittle glue it works wonderfully for this; it seems to melt both sides of the rubber and weld them together, forming a very strong bond. Afterward the rubber is still very flexible. I’m going to be attaching these to the torso armor.

These were not as easy to make as they look. The angular loops require the surgical tubing to warp in such a way that they start to pucker on the inside of the curve if you’re not careful. I had to do a lot of gluing the tubing down to the mannequin to keep everything in place. Luckily superglue pops right off duct tape so I could easily get it off when I was done!

Other than that I’ve been smoothing out the unfinished worbla pieces. Gesso and I have made up and we’re friends again. I finally figured out the best way to get a smooth finish on worbla is a layer of gesso and then a coat of bondo with spot putty to fix small imperfections. You may recall this was the way I did it previously with the first bicep, except back then I was using bondo to repair the failure of the gesso. Turns out I was right the first time! It was still good to learn how these mediums interact with each other though:

Wood glue is nice for small things like the fingers of the glove, but it’s such a hard medium that it takes forever to sand and layering a hard medium under bondo is just asking for trouble because bondo sands much faster (you’ll get lumps if you sand past the bondo). It’s also great if you don’t intend to sand at all.

Gesso on its own takes way too long to layer up enough to sand smooth since it takes ages to dry and is not self leveling.

Bondo alone on worbla will peel off. Roughing it up with sandpaper does work but the worbla fur that’s created sticks up too far and just becomes a hassle when sanding.

Gesso before bondo allows the bondo to adhere properly and it sands at the same speed as bondo. Gesso can be applied very thick without cracking so I pile on as much as I can to make it easier in the bondo stage. Conveniently, the white gesso also acts as a warning layer so I can tell when I’ve sanded past the pink bondo.

~ by talaaya on May 26, 2014.

2 Responses to “Hip ribbing, optimal worbla smoothing method”

  1. This is going to be the best cosplay ever.

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