I decided to switch out my materials of cardboard for sheet metal to attempt a metal Mandalorian helmet.  I got some thicker sheet metal more around 18 gauge instead of 20 gauge and then traced out my templates on the metal.

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Various resources on the Mandalorian Mercs forum showed me how cool a metal helmet could look.  I also found that a military helmet worked really well, instead of trying to create the metal dome with the ‘finger’ templates.

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My initial built was to cut the visor out of the helmet first, this was a poor choice and didn’t work well.  I used JB Weld to get the shape of the cheeks in place.

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This is what it looked like with the dome in place.  When many failed attempts with the JB Weld didn’t work I resorted to a flux 90 amp welder from Harbor Freight.  I started with the existing wire that came with the welder (0.30 wire).

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My beads were ugly to say the least.  I hadn’t touched a welder in over 10 years, back when I was in high school.  The wire wasn’t working well for me and as you can tell didn’t work so well with the helmet either.

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I got this far and then called it quits until I could produce more research on the subject and find a better way to get this helmet to work.

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Several months later, I attempted another metal helmet build.  I had some practice making metal knee plates, which turned out pretty good.  I had acquired another military helmet and done more research on the forums & Facebook, particularly around Dresdon’s posts.  I also upped my wire feed to 0.35 wire and that seemed to work a whole lot better on this thin metal.  Yes, I know my tacts are still pretty ugly.

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I learned that by brushing/grinding down the metal parts, especially the dome I was able to get a better contact with the welder.  The helmet was coming together better than my first attempt.

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I followed the templates a little closer to what they say to do with a inner surface underlying the visor part and I didn’t cut the visor out this time.

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After everything was in place, I then cut the visor out and started making my additions to the ear caps.  Components include inside of a pressurized paintball assembly, gear for a windshield wiper arm, some random part that looks kind of like an antenna on the right ear, a watch (which exploded when I welded it to the ear, good thing for safety glasses), and some misc plates here and there.  I weathered it with a little bit deeper scratches across the face.

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I painted it with my original colours (hunter orange and hunter green).  I also drilled some holes in the back for vents.  After the paint had dried over a few hours, I got the visor in there and added some acrylic touch up paints.

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Rust, yellows, and lighter greens where added to give the weathered effect.  I left it along over night and brought it along with me to a troop the next day.  I also brought my approved bucket to wear most of the time.

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The helmet is a little shorter in the front and I would have to use a balaclava to keep my chin from showing.  Some work needs to be done in the cheeks to give it a more distinct look.

Not super good pictures below, but you can see a full body shot of my metal helmet with my kit (that left knee keeps twisting on me when trooping).

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Overall it was a fun little project and when I have more motivation I’ll get in my garage and work on another one.  Practice makes perfect.

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(Last 3 photos by Midwestern Scout Dustin White at May the 4th Be With You 5K in Bismarck, ND)

It was later donated to a fundraiser for as a silent auction item.  A 12 year old at the time kid won it and the money he got it for was donated to a good cause.