The year-end function for the company I work for was Comic-con themed. Since I recently bought a 3D printer (Anet A8), I was looking for something that I could print to instead of buying/hiring a costume. Fortunately, Thingiverse user “youngs66” made an (incredible design)[https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1753445] of the Star Lord helmet from the popular movie Guardians of the Galaxy. After I saw this design, I thought it’ll be a good test for my printer and it’ll be an awesome project to work on! I started printing the parts approximately 3 weeks prior to the party and in around 2 weeks I had printed the parts. I had thought the hardest part was over — I was quite incorrect in my assumption!
I had the parts printed on my Anet A8 printer. I used a layer height of 0.1mm for the small pieces and 0.2mm for the larger ones (I was running out of time and was willing to sacrifice a small drop in quality). I was brave and left some prints over night and fortunately they came out ok. I was lucky that I didn’t have any major failed prints!
After reading a few (articles)[https://hackaday.com/2017/11/15/visual-3d-print-finishing-guide/] online regarding smoothing 3D prints before painting them. Many of them recommended XTC-3D. So I ordered myself a box and was ready to make my prints look shiny! After sanding down with 220 grit sanding paper, I coated the parts using the resin.
Sand down parts until they feel smooth:
After the XTC-3D cured:
Once the XTC-3D resin cured, it was time to take off the shine from the prints and smoothen any rough areas. I used 220 grit wet sand paper for this.
I first sprayed all the parts with Black Rust-Oleum Primer+Paint.
I masked off the parts accordingly
I used Pratley Quickset Clear Two-part Epoxy and Super Glue to stick the parts together. Since I needed to fill in some gaps and didn’t have time to do the proper way (using wood filler, sanding, and spraying again), I used the clear epoxy. The smaller parts on the sides of the mask (pipe fittings) I used super glue. I also used Painters Tape to hold the parts together whilst the epoxy dries(15 minutes to set, 30 minutes for 75% strength and after 24 hours for 100% strength).
The model included an LED ring for the eye socket. I had 5mm LEDs however they were too large, so I purchased some 3mm red LEDs and soldered them in parallel. Time to do some calculations!
I then soldered the LEDs in parallel, this meant the current drawn is multiplied by the number of LEDs connected. So each LED draws 25mA, I had 24 in total connected in parallel. That means all the LEDs draw a total of 600mA. If I had a battery that had a capacity of 600mA, it would theoretically be able to light up the LEDs for an hour.
I found a design for Star Lord’s belt buckle, so I printed it! :)
I used blue PLA+ for Baby Groot (I had just bought PLA+ and was getting good quality prints using it). To paint him:
Unfortunately, my 3D printer was giving me some trouble the week of the party, and had just found a gun holster that would work for the plasma guns Star Lord uses! Fortunately, a friend of mine helped me print the guns using his Creality CR-10!
I thoroughly enjoyed myself working on this project! I’m looking forward to many more 3D printing adventures :) I hope this article can inspire or help anyone that was thinking about doing this!