Very Thin/Light Helmet

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Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby melodiousdirge » Thu Feb 27, 2014 1:49 pm

While a helmet probably isn't a bad idea on th eplaya in general... I'm not looking for personal safety. I want to build a high output LED headpiece. I made a very cool headpiece last year based on a leather motorcycle beanie, but the soft leather was not really stiff enough to support it, so unfortunately I didn't wind up wearing it much. I am hoping this year to base a bigger, badder, brighter headpiece off a helmet that can properly support the electronics and so on, but I don't want a big, heavy, clunky, sweaty mofo of a helmet - and so I ask for some wisdom from the community:

What is the thinnest, lightest commercially available helmet that will still stay put pretty solidly on my head? (Preferably without an unsightly and uncomfortable chin strap)

  • Hockey helmet - great because it will stay put without the chin strap cinched up, but a little bulkier than I was hoping for. Also, a new one is $60 or so, and a used one is likely to be somewhat nasty.
  • Jockey helmet - shows some promise but I've never worn one - will it hold itself in place without the chin strap choking me to death?
  • Snowboard Helmet - There are some pretty cool low profile ones, but they are still designed to shield against heavy impact, so a bit bulkier than need be. Seems the best candidate right now.
  • Outlaw motorcycle helmet - Lots of cool ones, but they tend to be expensive - not something I want to hack up and screw blinky crap to.
  • Airsoft/Paintball helmet - these mostly have face shields, or else they are modeled after real combat helmets that are bulkier than I need.
  • Home made - I'm hoping to avoid this, mostly because I know myself, and I know if I MAKE a helmet, I will wind up spending a lot more time on it than I need to and probably more money in the end than just buying one. If it is the only way though, I could make one. Anyone have any links I could use?

Does anyone have any ideas? I'm thinking something that covers about the same portion of my head as a snowboard or hockey helmet, but with a very thin padding layer. Ideally like 1/2"-3/4" thickness total between the outer layer and my scalp. Something designed to shield against small, sharp impacts and abrasion with minimal weight and bulk. Surely there is a sport that demands something like this, no?
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby melodiousdirge » Thu Feb 27, 2014 1:58 pm

This is perfect: http://timboscreations.blogspot.com/201 ... elmet.html

...but I'd still rather buy one off the shelf if possible.
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby VultureChow » Thu Feb 27, 2014 2:19 pm

Hard hat? Suspension system lets it breath nicely.
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby melodiousdirge » Thu Feb 27, 2014 2:36 pm

VultureChow wrote:Hard hat? Suspension system lets it breath nicely.


I had a friend do a hard hat last year and it worked out great, but the look i'm going for is to keep a really low profile on the mounting apparatus. A hard hat is quite bulky compared to what I'm imagining. Also I have to wear one for work, and they always give me a headache.
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby tahiti_treat » Thu Feb 27, 2014 2:37 pm

A rock climbing helmet maybe? Mine is pretty light.

Edit: oh, I just re-read your post and noticed you said you didn't want a chin strap. I don't think a climbing helmet would stay on without one. Hmmm.

Edit #2: something like this maybe? http://www.cosplaysupplies.com/store.ph ... 463-180463
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby Eric » Thu Feb 27, 2014 3:33 pm

Start searching costume suppliers online to find the type of helmet you want (kind of like tahiti_heat posted above, but stay away from "specialty" stores, they charge more. I found a similar one to the helmet on the cosplay site for $21 with under a minutes searching). You'll probably have to do some modifications for comfort, but you should be able to get a good base for cheap. The other option is paper maché, which would be way less involved that the Captain America mask, but it would still be more work than an off-the-shelf one.
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby burner von braun » Thu Feb 27, 2014 4:50 pm

You might consider using a souvenir batting helmet. Not a real baseball batting helmet, mind you, as they have an inch or so of padding inside a hard shell for actual protection. No, I'm referring to the cheapo souvenir plastic ones that will likely fit pretty close to your head. Add a little foam strategically inside so it stays on your head, though that may require some testing. They are made of thin plastic so you can easily cut off the bill, and make other modifications as needed. Different teams have different colors of plastic as a base color to start from.

It sounds like a cool project melodiousdirge, good luck!
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby melodiousdirge » Thu Feb 27, 2014 5:18 pm

burner von braun wrote:You might consider using a souvenir batting helmet. Not a real baseball batting helmet, mind you, as they have an inch or so of padding inside a hard shell for actual protection. No, I'm referring to the cheapo souvenir plastic ones that will likely fit pretty close to your head. Add a little foam strategically inside so it stays on your head, though that may require some testing. They are made of thin plastic so you can easily cut off the bill, and make other modifications as needed. Different teams have different colors of plastic as a base color to start from.

It sounds like a cool project melodiousdirge, good luck!


That's not a half bad idea. Thanks for the tip, I'll look into that. Hopefully this one actually gets done... I've begun tracking my projects in an ever growing excel sheet. Not enough time for all!
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby tatonka » Thu Feb 27, 2014 5:24 pm

i have a lacrosse helmut I use on my motorcycle ,very illegal but very light and comfy . Was 3.00 at goodwill . it has a chin strap and goes over your ears , you have to take the face guard off tho ( real easy )
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby tatonka » Thu Feb 27, 2014 7:49 pm

here is a pic of it

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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby melodiousdirge » Fri Feb 28, 2014 8:37 am

tatonka wrote:here is a pic of it


Damn, that doesn't even look non-spec in that picture. Good find!

I am still open to suggestions but after the captain america conversation and discovering pepakura (How the fuck did I not know about this!?!?) and particularly foam pepakura, and especially the vast forums dedicated to fans replicating comic book props, I am leaning the way of DIY - something like this unit:

http://www.therpf.com/f78/captain-ameri ... le-152770/

So sweet! I was thinking I was going to need to make a mold of my head, get out the fiberglass, fab something up... etc. But this looks like without too much work I can slap together a perfect helmet to house my electronics. Will update this thread with progress!

For the curious - Intro to pepakura: http://www.instructables.com/id/What-is ... -to-start/
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby MoBo » Fri Feb 28, 2014 12:32 pm

If it were me I'd use a surplus M1 "Steel Pot" helmet liner. The Liner is the light fiberglass part with the suspension. You don't need the Steel outer shell, as it is heavy and probably not needed unless there is a lot of shrapnel on the playa this year.
The Liner is pretty comfortable and air can circulate around your head keeping it cool. I had to wear one for a couple years until the Kevlar became SI.
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby unjonharley » Fri Feb 28, 2014 3:36 pm

Party Favor shops have all sorts of plastic hat/helmets/cap.. They are for one party use..You can reinforce then Weight about 3-4 ounces. St Pattys day is coming up.. WallyWorld will have some green durbby ..
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Re: Very Thin/Light Helmet

Postby melodiousdirge » Sun Mar 02, 2014 12:19 pm

Hi again all. Thanks for all the ideas. I am running down the path of the replica captain america cowl. I should have mentioned that I get a bit obsessive with projects like this, and if I find a better way, even when it's more difficult or expensive, I have a hard time going with a cheap or easy alternative. So... *sigh* looks like I'm making it myself. The plus side of it is the pepakura is something I've never done before and it's actually pretty damn fun and either it's really easy or I have a knack. My gf snapped a photo of me with the stupid thing on my head last night. I have been coating it in glue, and then wearing it while the glue dries, so that it hardens to an exact fit of my dome:

Image

I may or may not keep the mask portion of it. I kind of like the roman warrior look of the eye pieces but you can tell the cutouts don't fit my eyes too well. I'll be tweaking and adjusting as I go and if it turns into too much of a fiasco I'll just trim it down so it stops at my brow.
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