Written by 1:44 pm Cosplay, Movie Props, Star Wars

Upgrading Vader’s Helmet

Tools Needed

Materials Needed

As some of you know I’m a member of the 501st Legion, an international Star Wars costuming group that gives back to society through volunteerism, charity and fundraising. Check them out at 501st.com.

I cosplay as Darth Vader, and since we’re in a slow season I wanted to use this as an opportunity to make some upgrades to my helmet.

I plan on doing two things:

  1. Upgrade the power source for my fans. I currently run my two exhaust fans off a single 9V battery. These tend to die relatively quickly and can cause some major issues when they do because not only do they keep the interior of the mask cool, they also keep the lenses from fogging up. And I pity the person standing in my path when those things fog up!
  2. Install a digital clock so I can see the time. As someone who drives the same route to work every day but still uses a GPS to see what traffic is like, I’m one who wants to know how much time I’ve spent in costume and how much time I have left. Troops can be long and sometimes not in the kindest of environmental situations so knowing the time will help ease my sanity!

My helmet set up may be different than yours, so please use this as a directional guide, not an end all be all on how to do this!

I have a Darth Rosso finished, Kent Stone cast Vader.

So let’s get crackalackin.

The Power Source

I planned on powering the clock and the fans off of one power source.

I created a Y cable using a male DC barrel plug cord, splitting off to two 1.25mm connector cables (those plug directly into the components).

This Y cable will then run to a rechargeable battery pack on my belt.

The Clock

I picked up a dashboard clock off of Ebay, which was small enough to fit nicely in my helmet.

I needed to create a holder for it in Fusion 360 (I’ll be posting a video on how I did that later!).

Once the holder was created, I just popped in the clock, and then velcroid the holder in the center of my helmet right below my lenses.

This was a pretty straightforward project and I can’t wait to troop with this new setup!

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