HALO 2 Master Chief Armor: Legs
The thigh armor started out as one flat piece, heat curved to meet on the inside of the thigh.
Once glued, I cut out the two details over each knee and backed them with additional styrene.
Since the Master Chief uses two machine pistols but has place to stow them, I decided to incorporate holsters into the boxes on the outside of each thigh.
Each holster box was hulled and filled with expanding foam for strength.
To hold the guns, I decided to mount a cell phone pivot to each gun and make an appropriate slot on each box.
You can see how the pivot slides into the groove.
After the thigh piece was painted, I used "Foamies" fun foam to make the black inner thigh. this worked really well as it allowed my thighs to meet without scraping plastic.
Here the gun (details to come) fits into its slot. I later attached a small piece of industrial strength Veldro to the gun and the holster box at the vents to keep the gun from swinging around. It worked great!
The lower legs (or greaves) were perhaps the most difficult things to build. The shins curved both to the front and to the sides which prevented me from just heat bending this piece. I set up some shallow ribs and glued three pieces together. I later filled the length with expanding foam for strength.
The back of the clves were glued on with a similar technique. I decided to hinge the two inner calf plates so I could get the pieces on my leg.
The knee plate support was added at this time.
The ankle part of the greaves was a complex set of shapes that I first tried to build like the upper part. This turned out to be very weak and a complete pain in the ass to work with. After battling one into shape with less than stellar results, I scrapped this plan for a simpler approach.
As a base, I heat formed a strip around my ankle, open at the front. The boots are 1980's issue army boots from my high school ROTC days.
I then glued the ankle shapes onto the base. These were also filled with foam for strength.
Here are all the parts together. The ankle piece holds much of the weight from the calf plates and keeps the entire structure in place.
The knee pads consist of two plates: an upper plate that will be mounted to the greaves and a lower plate which will mount to the upper plate. The lower plates were made out of one piece of thick plastic with the edges heat bent. the pattern for the lower plate can be seen below them.
The lower plates are made from one piece of plastic with the side heat bent to form the distinctive box shape..
Here are both plates together.
Here are the greaves, assembled and painted. I later covered the interior foam with black fun foam.
The toes involved some radical heat forming over the toes of my boots. I just kept heating and squishing it until it took shape.
The top was notch out as well as the toe area. I heat formed a curved piece to fit within the toe notch and filed "vents" into it.
While the plastic was still hot I gave the toes a few dings to simulate battle damage. Weathering will eventually bring out these details. A curved piece was later heat formed to fit within the upper notch.
The instep is covered by a U-shaped plate. For this I heat bent pieces, backed up the holes with plastic and mounted the plate to the heel plate (not pictured). I used aluminum screw posts to mount them to the heels which allowed them to move as my foot did. Unfortunately, it also meant I had to remove the plate BEFORE I put on the boots.
Here are all the boot parts together.
At this point I noticed some of the laces were still exposed. I took some Foamies sheets, heated them and stretched them over 4 wooden dowels. I made a tool with 5 vertically mounted slats to push the foam between the dowels. The result is a flexible, ribbed "plate" to cover the laces. I later used this to make a ribbed collar (like the Stormtroopers)
Here is the final painted and weathered leg assembly. The thighs were later attched to the belt with a nylon strap to keep them off the knees.