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VileSlay

Dragon Armor (new 3D helm pics)

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this is the Dragon Helm. it is to go with a full suit of armor that the hero of a fantasy story I'm working on will eventually wear. the design is based off of a medieval knights helm. the way the visor opens is rather unique. the "upper jaw" of the dragon head lifts up the same way a typical visor would, but the lower remains in place, splits in the middle, and pivots outward on hinges to clear the face. since this is a magic armor, opening and closing the visor and the "lower jaw" work in concert, as is by some mechanism. I don't think there is a practical way to achieve that though. well here are the pics. I'm not crazy about the front view, BTW.





::edit:: changed name of thread since there is a lot of stuff on the armor as well.

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It would be rather simple to have the helmet open in the manner you described from a mechanical standpoint, without any magical properties. All you have to do is connect the movement of the upper visor to a device that will translate the energy/motion down to the lower portions of the mask. Probably the easiest way to do that would be a rod and gear assembly: The rotating hinge of the upper mask would have gear teeth on it, which would rotate teeth at the top of a rod, which would run down to the lower helmet, the motion of that rod would rotate more gears connecting to the two lower halves of the mask, which would then cause them to open.

The overall design is nice, and I like the idea of how you have the mask opening. If the hero wants to really impress his enemies, he should incorporate a low-tech flamethrower into the front of the helmet. :)

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MmM explained the mechanics much better than I could, so I'll give my opinion on it's appearence.

It's a very raptilianesque helm, ofcourse, it's supposed to look like that. The design really mimics the general shape of a dragon's head, which is very unique. The visor peices really look good, very good interpretation of a dragon's maw. I like the horns portuding from the visor as well. As an alternative, you could also put in fins in place of those horns if you wish for any variety of dragon helms to exist.

Btw that flamethrower idea is good, but I don't know how that mechanic would work without harming the wearer.

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@MmM: thanks for the suggestion on the mechanics. I was being kinda lazy when thinking about that and just went straight for the magic aspect. I'm gonna try to sketch that out. there will be no flamethrower though. the hero will have other means of projecting energy and a kickass sword to boot :D

@Inferno: I actually thought of putting fins where the hinges of the "lower jaw" are to kinda cover them up. the helm, and the armor it goes with, will be unique. it is the armor of an ancient hero, The Silver Dragon, that comes to what is thought to be the reincarnation of said hero.

I may make alterations to see how fins would look on the hinges and will be trying out sketches of how it would look open. stay tuned if you want to see more and thanks again for the compliments.

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started some designs on the armor that goes with the helm. it's still early and needs some fine tuning. I'm not crazy about the legs and I'm using a small sketchbook so detail is at a minimum. it's based on 15th century german gothic armor. it's just a front profile. I'm working on the side and back profiles.



::edit:: here is a side view thats seperated in to it's main components for ease of viewing.

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Nice stuff. Very jagged and pointy armor. That's cool though it gives the impression as if the armor has scales. By the way it was nice to see you draw the separate peices for the armor to see exactly how each individual piece looks like. I particularly dig the shoulders and gauntlets. Good work.

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here is a back view of the armor. I know the thread title is just dragon helm, but I got on a roll and thought I might as well post it all here for feedback. I'm gonna work more on the helm soon.

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I do like it, maybe a little difficult to draw movement for, but I like it none the less.

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Nice back side. Legs look a bit plain but thats only because it's a sketch. Again very nice.

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@Bank: thanks. movement wont be too difficult to draw. full suits of armor aren't terribly dynamic. even though this is a lighter, stronger metal than steel and he wont be wearing chain mail under (I have a special lil' something I'm not gonna reveal here to replace that) his mobility will be limited. this wont matter much because, just like a real knight, he will pretty much be a walking tank.

@Inferno: yeah, I was trying for the scaled look with the armor. it really helps very much that the armor is based it on is built using a lot of lames (strips of metal) that only need a little embelishment. I do want to work on the legs a little more. I was thinking of changing the sabatons (foot armor) a bit to more resemble claws and adding a spur on the back of the greaves that would serve to add to the claw motif and be functional for horse riding.

BTW, here are some roughs of the helmet open. I'm not crazy about the 3/4 view. I just can't nail the foreshortning on the left side "lower jaw".





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here's some more detailed stuff for the armor. I made some changes to the greaves (shin armor) adding detail to the back as well as a spur. the views are side and front on the top of the page and the back view on the bottom. I also did a more detailed top and side view of the gauntlets.

greaves



gauntlets

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Nice to see some pics with the visor opened. I actually thought the bottom two latches were one peice.

Also, both the gauntlets and greaves look fantastic. Nice embellishment on both peices.

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thanks for kudos Inferno. I think I said the "lower jaw" splits open in the first post. my original idea was for it to open downward, as if the mouth were opening but I thought that would be quite cheesy. I thought the split would be pretty unique.

here are some larger drawings of the cuirass (chest armor). the front pic I included one of the tassets (thigh protection) on the fauld (hip protection). in this larger form the front looks very plain. I'm planning on coming up with a pattern that would be etched in to the armor. I'm thinking of some kind of scale like motif for the lower lames, and something more flame-like for the top part.



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My apologies regarding the visor. I misunderstood the mechanics at first with both the top and bottom visor peices. Probably because I read the post very late at night at the time.

The cuirass is looking very good. From both angles it looks like it has a lot of thickness to it, and I'm guessing the raised levels in the armor give that appearence in the sketches. But besides that I'm sure the cuirass is very thick anyway. Whatever flame and scale design you come with I'm sure it will look good.

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Wow, you've really put a lot of thought into the construction/design and how everything goes together.

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@Inferno: LOL I know how that late night thread reading goes. RE: thickness of the armor; it's actually not as thick as a typical armor since it's made of a mithril-like metal. I'm thinking of calling it white silver since I don't want to use tolkiens metal, even though AFAIK it's in the public domain since he never trademarked it. the illusion of thickness I guess is due to the dishing, creasing and fluting that create the scaled look.

@MmM: yeah, I'm really in to medieval and renaissance arms and armor. I did a lot of research in to how suits of plate armor are made. I looked at several examples of historical pieces and even found some web sites of guys who build their own suits. I'm no expert but if there are any questions you might have about components or construction I can do my best to answer them. BTW, I would love to have this suit made, but the cost is very prohibitive.

got a couple of more detail pieces here. the arms and the whole leg. I haven't nailed down the sabatons (foot armor) yet so for now they are omitted.



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Dude... seriously, the arm plates and leg armor are perfect. I'm really impressed by them, especially the greives. Very dragonesque, and I notice the talon spurs above the heels in which you stated before you would use as a mechanism on horseback. Just awesome, keep it up.

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thanks again for the kudos Inferno. I've been working on this for a long time now and lately I've been going completely madhouse on this with all the research and experimentation. who says obsession is a bad thing? I think I may dig up some of my older designs and post them. some of them go back at least ten years.

just to add another element to the armor is the part that has been frustrating the crap out of me: the sabatons. sabatons are articulated armor for the foot that are placed over boots. I've been looking for a way to continue the dragon theme and make clawed feet. I was trying all kind of things, but they all looked pretty lame. I finally found a real world design that was close to what I was looking for. after some modifications I think I finally come up with the design for the sabatons.

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Very nice sabatons. I like all the views but one question. Did you draw the toes on the bottom most view to the left a bit longer than usual? If I were to be nit picky about it I would say that if the toes are too long, the wearer might actually trip while walking.

But it looks fantastic, the scaly appearence is well done.

All these pics make me want to upload some of my own work. I'm just cautious about it..

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Inferno said:

Did you draw the toes on the bottom most view to the left a bit longer than usual?


good question. the toes of the sabatons do extend beyond the human toes. it's kinda light, but I actually have in the top two drawings a guide to where the human foot would be. I did draw the splits on that drawing a lil' too long, but it's not that far off. many historical examples of sabaton from the 15th century do this as well, usually as a long pointed toe or a spike. I based this off of a design for ringwraiths from LotR.

I'm not sure how they would work, practically speaking, but I like the look. I was actually thinking of making the toes retractable. after all this is a magic armor in a fantasy story, so it's not like I have to be 100% realistic ;)

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I thought I would take a shot at making a 3d version of the dragon helm. I made a head from packing paper and aluminum foil and hot-glued it to a piece of cardboard. I then built up a rough version of the helm using super sculpy. I have yet to bake it because it's still rough and I'd like to figure out how I can make it articulated. well here it is, what do you think?





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Very nice, make the corners/edges sharper and you'll have it perfect.

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Wow I wasn't expecting a sculpt. Awesome. Like Bank said if the edges can be a little sharper that would be good but otherwise excellent.

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thanks guys. I'm actually making some improvements and trying to figure out how I can bake it and assemble it to be articulated. obviously I want the visor to lift and the opening of the lower jaw. also the whole from half is supposed to lift up in order to remove the helmet, much like the examples seen on this page.

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Very nice sculpt, the form is very close to your original illustration.

If you want to make something articulated, my advice is to sculpt it in pieces. You can sculpt a figure in its entirety and then cut it up, but that's more troublesome. Having it articulated as you've described it previously (both lower and upper jaws moving in tandem) will likely be difficult to accomplish on a small scale, although it could certainly be done. My recommendation for the visor would be to have a peg on each side of the head, and a hole on each side of the visor (of vice versa, pegs in the visor and holes in the helmet). I believe little LEGO knights use that kind of a joint on their helmets. The lower jaws you could do with either wire or tiny door-type hinges.

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what I was thinking of doing is baking the horns seperate from the visor. they would probably require longer baking because of their thickness. I would then drill holes in the visor, bevor (the chin part), the helm, and the horns. I would then put pegs in the horns and glue them on. for the lower jaw part I was thinking of getting little hinges. my girl has some for this model house that she's building.

actually I am gonna break it down and start from scratch before I bake it. the sculpy was from an old scuplture I mad but never bake that had been sitting around for a couple of years. there are most prob a ton of air bubbles in the pieces. I want to get my hands on a pasta machine (I used an empty beer bottle to roll out) to make the pieces even in thickness. unfortunately money is very tight.

one other note: I am considering making a sculpt of the full armor. I don't know if I'm up for it yet though. I'm not the most skilled scupltor.

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I didn't know Super Sculpey lasted that long. I always assumed it would eventually dry out if left sitting for a long time--I'm surprised it was still workable after a couple of years. But, then again, I've never used Sculpey, so what the hell do I know?

I've seen other sculptors do horns and other projections the way you've described (separate than stick 'em on posts on the figure); sounds like a solid approach to me.

The only way to improve is practice and experimentation. A full suit of armor may seem daunting at first, but I imagine when you break it down into smaller sections it'll feel more do-able. You've done a good job on the helmet so far, so I have confidence that you'd be able to do a complete suit.

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I've done more work on the sculpey helm. it's still rough and still unbaked, but it's got articulation now. not only am I able to pen the visor, but I can also lift the bevor (chin piece). I didn't take a picture of that because its too heavy to open and leave unsupported. I still have to get small hinges for the lower jaw. what do you guys think so far?











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Looks like you did an excellent job articulating the visor to me. I admire the symmetry you've accomplished with this piece; it can be quite tricky to do.

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Damn. The work is very similar to the sketches you made. And the visor can already open. Good job and keep up the good work.

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