Jetpack and Backplate
Having read a number of build threads regarding Mandalorian jetpacks, I was mindful of the weight they can add to the overall costume. I decided to go with a fan-built kit that I could both mod and fill as I wanted, so when I found a jetpack kit on eBay that came with options, I was thrilled. Now, I have heard plenty of warnings regarding the quality of items purchased through eBay, but the gentleman I purchased from at gatorsshop is a 501st member, so I felt comfortable making the commitment. At $169 + $25 shipping, I got a stunning open-backed jetpack with plenty of extras that allow me to customize it the way I want.
It came to me carefully packaged, and with some minor finishing needed. First, I trimmed the overage of molding material from the edge of the packs body, and then proceeded to trim the exhaust cones to more closely fit the animated style pack.
After sanding the cones and rocket, I drilled small holes into the cones and pointed tops as well as through the interior of the pack and screwed them in place. I added a coat of superglue to the outside pieces and on the screw threads and then covered them with green stuff for extra security. Once everything was set, I cut a piece of 3mm Sintra that fit the dimensions of the back. After cutting holes in the Sintra with the aid of a heat gun and an Xacto knife (slightly heating the Sintra makes it a breeze to cut) I threaded through my snaps for the harness (raided the Mister’s old Army gear). After placing the Sintra into the back, I used packing tape to secure it to the sides, and then applied Bondo to the sides and entire back to secure it. For those of you who have never used Bondo, experience has taught me to mix small portions and minimize the setting accelerant you use. It dries extremely quickly, and you need to put it on smoothly to save yourself from hours of intensive sanding. Be prepared to immediately clean any objects you use to mix or spread the Bondo and do this in a well ventilated area that will not be damaged by drips or spills. I had the polyfill already, the Bondo was $16 at Advanced Auto Parts, and the piece of Sintra was about $2.50. In fact, I recommend skipping the Bondo all together and going with Magic Sculpt which is a two-part clay-like putty that dries rock hard in a few hours and is set overnight. The best part… It’s water smoothable! Dipping your fingers into a bowl of water and lightly smoothing them over the putty can help save you hours of sanding later on.
Finally, I sanded with three different grains of sanding blocks, smoothed on some more Bondo, sanded again, filled any gaps with white household caulk ($3.50), and gave it a base coat of white Krylon spraypaint for plastic( $5.39). p>