Dec 4, 2017 | By Tess

Artist Melissa Ng (aka Lumecluster) has unveiled her latest 3D printed creation and Marvel universe fans are sure to love it. The project, which was actually commissioned by Marvel for its Becoming series, is a 3D printed Ironheart costume designed specifically for cosplayer Lexi Momo.

Ironheart, as comic book enthusiasts will know, is actually Riri Williams, a young (black and female) scientist prodigy who is poised to take up the Iron Man mantle from Tony Stark. The character marks a promising move towards diversity in the superhero franchise world.

To celebrate the Ironheart character, Melissa was invited to design and 3D print a custom Riri Williams cosplay outfit for Lexi Momo. The results, as we can see, are pretty great.

Of course, we are not looking at a full-on Ironheart costume, as the make consists of a helmet, gauntlets, and an arc reactor harness. The limited scope of the costume, explains Lumecluster on her blog, was partly due to budget restrictions and partly a creative choice.

That is, Melissa conceived of the Ironheart cosplay as being representative of the armor while it is being created by Riri Williams in her lab. She writes, “I decided to go with the idea that Riri Williams was just in the beginning phases of building her Ironheart suit, which would explain why she doesn’t have her entire armor yet.”

In creating the actual costume, Melissa drew inspiration from the Ironheart and Iron Man suits from the comics as well as real armor from the 16th and 17th centuries. She also integrated an eye-catching circuit-inspired pattern into the pieces to give them a more sleek and technological look.

Melissa also opted to mount the 3D printed arc reactor (lit up with LEDs!) onto a harness, as Riri Williams would not have had the radioactive device embedded into her own chest (as Tony Stark does). Wires were added to give the outfit a realistic DIY-vibe.

In actually manufacturing the parts, Melissa used a variety of materials and processes. As the maker explains, she used her Form 2 3D printer and clear resin to create the costume’s helmet comb, arc reactor, and vambrace (which she then molded and cast using a semi-rigid resin).

Larger parts, such as the helmet, arc reactor base, and gauntlet pieces, were 3D printed using her LulzBot Taz 6 3D printer. The helmet was first 3D printed using colorFabb's nGen filament and then cast in a semi-rigid resin, while the gauntlet pieces were made from Taulman 3D's PCTPE, a very strong, semi-rigid 3D printing material. Lumecluster says the material is strong enough that Lexi Momo could probably punch a wall without harming herself.

Next, came the painting and airbrushing, which Melissa Ng says is her favorite step “because you can finally start seeing it all really come to life.” The last step before the final assembly was then to install the LEDs into the gauntlets, arc reactor, and helmet.

For this, Melissa simply used fairy LEDs, which she diffused by squeezing hot glue drops onto silicone and then placing the light into the semi-cooled glue. “After the hot glue is completely cooled, I rub or spray on a little white paint so it’s slightly opaque, which improves the diffusion even more,” she added.

(Images: Lumecluster)

The completed Ironheart costume is pretty impressive and has the added bonus of being functionally wearable. We bet Lexi Momo will use every opportunity to don her new custom-made Ironheart gear.

One slight downside to the project is that because it was commissioned by Marvel, Melissa has not released the 3D files for the Ironheart costume, meaning that it cannot be recreated by makers easily. Still, if you want to see more of the making process, you can check out the video below:



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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kris wrote at 12/5/2017 10:37:39 AM:

great use of printer's, she almost created iron man costume

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