When I was developing my Inquisitor costume, my friend Juan showed interest in Delphan Gruss in the Inquisitor rulebook from Specialist Games. Previously, Jack had expressed a few ideas he had for an Ad Mech style costume, so with a few references in hand, I just started building. One of the big reasons I want to do one of these costumes is somewhat selfish and petty, but I'll say it. Every other Techpriest costume I have seen has been somewhat lacking. Even the Ad Mech stuff for the now-defunct film Damnatus was, in my opinion, substandard and lacking passion. So here's my try.
THIS IS BUILD CURRENTLY IN PROGRESS
Good patterns are sometimes hard to come by; there's nothing wrong with subcontracting.
The robes I will be using will be custom made for me by an online company specializing in custom Renaissance clothing. I will have more on this later, but the plan is currently to have a red hooded cloak with an off-white mantle.
Every good Cult Mechanicus follower disdains flesh to some degree. I decided to have an "augmentic" hand with this costume.
I decided to use patterns based on ones from Automail plans. The material I am using is black craft foam. It's easily cut with scissors, and you can use superglue on it. Since I was not able to print the patterns at the time, I looked at the basic pattern shapes, measured my digits, and sketched my own. Once I had my templates, I traced and cut them out of the craft foam. I then spent several hours trimming each "ring" to fit. The back of the hand was just cut to fit over my hand.
1/4" strip elastic was cut and glued to each "ring." This holds the fingers together, and help hold the gauntlet on my fingers.
I made a mistake though, and I only found out when the gauntlet was fairly complete. The finger parts are fairly tight on my hand, which is fine with a bare hand, but in costume, the plan was to have a felt glove under the gauntlet, hiding all my weak flesh. My plan, as of now, is to obtain a very thin black glove. If I find this to not be feasible, I will rebuild the gauntlet from scratch, learning from my mistakes.
Regardless if I redo the gauntlets, I am going to apply plasticard to the back of the craft foam using Liquid Nails. With the plastic there, it will be fairly simple to add "werky bits" and greeblies.
Now, what Techpriest relies on soft, fleshy, organic eyes?
Originally, I was just going to use a pair of safety goggles as a base and build around them. I was reminded of my Scout goggles and shuddered. The plastic of these goggles is very flexible and does not take paint well at all. I disassembled the goggles, pulling the hard plastic lens out of the rubber frame. This outline was then traced onto some foamboard and cut out. Using more foamboard, I made a template that fit the shape of my forehead and glued it to the lens shape. Triangular sides were added for temporary support. This assembly gave me some idea of where to proceed.
The next step was to trace the outline of the front and forehead of the goggles onto plasticard and cut them out. Holes were cut into the front of the goggles, just big enough to slip a pair of PVC pipe reducers into. Sides were added with thinner, more flexible plasticard, curving them down the cheek area, following the shape of the goggle front. After several cycles of fitting and trimming, the goggle shell was complete.
For the optical units, I used 1½" to ½" reducers. I drilled six 1/8" holes evenly around the inside. I also cut short stubs of ½" pipe and glued them to the out face of the reducer. These stubs were given a little more character with a stepped drill bit. Small red LEDs were pushed into each hole in the reducer, and superglued in place. Using a wire wrap tool, I wired the LEDs together. To get the brightness I wanted, with the current and voltage needed to run 12 LEDs, I used two 9V batteries in series. With the LEDs wired up, I used a copious amount of hot glue to secure everthing in place. The optical units were set into place and glued, and a fairly long length of wire attached between the battery pack and the LEDs.
With the optical units in place, I added a few strips of thin plasticard around the rims of the PVC reducers, and a few lengthwise. The goal is to give the illusion of mechanical parts. With this done, I realized that the goggles looked flat and boring. I dug around my bits boxes and found several gears from a printer. With a little test fitting and cutting, I built an arrangement in the bridge of the goggles, which I think gives the illusion of werky-ness. The large gear in the center also provided an opportunity to add another Ad Mech symbol, using a Halloween skull ring. Below you can see a quick test fit with my respirator and a towel to get some idea of how the goggles look.
I wanted to diffuse the LEDs as much as possible, so using hotglue and some plastic rings cut from Arizona Tea caps, I made inserts to cover the LEDS. The LEDs are much for diffuse in real-life than they look in the photos below. As for paint, I used a spraypaint designed to resemble wrought iron. It worked pretty well, but to give it a more 40k look, I drybrushed it lightly with a dark gray. The optical units werepainted with pewter Liquid Leaf, and the "werky" bits were painted silver and gold. The Ad Mech symbol is just white and black.
With all the work an adept of the Cult Mechanicus must perform, it helps to have a few extra hands.
The current plan for my servoharness is to build a center section that I can mount in the center of my back, and to attach mechadendrites to.