About two years ago, I picked up a Captain America shield blank from a user on TheRPF.com named Phebert. It was (and is) my intention to paint this shield up a nice anodized red and blue and gloss-coat it for use as a display piece in my house, rather than something I actually bring to conventions.
My other projects gradually took a lot of my time, and the weather usually wasn’t in a cooperative mood when I remembered that I wanted to finish this project – too cold, too hot, too humid, you get the idea. The paints I want to use on this thing are Duplicolor Metalcast paints, which are designed to be a transparent finish that will hopefully show the spun metallic texture of the aluminum shield.
Of course, before any painting can be done, all of the parts have to be prepped and organized! The original star I got with this shield was, for lack of a better word… poor. The lines did not etch cleanly, and it was a bit dimensionally weird. I contacted the seller, who was nice enough to provide me with a replacement star nearly a year after my initial purchase, but in the intervening time he had changed the way he handled the design – the new star he sent me was part of a disc! I guess the idea is that you just mask and paint the rest of the disc, and it makes it easier to adhere the star down to the front of the shield with JB-Weld. Unfortunately, the disc’s diameter did not match up with the rings that had already been etched into my shield, which made it more of a hassle than anything. I set about carefully excising the star from the disc.
It worked out alright, I think. The star is not exactly perfect – while trying to find the ‘dead center’ spot on the back, I scribed a few lines, and it became apparent that finding the middle was going to be a bit more of a challenge than I initially expected.
Okay, no big deal. Let’s try just eyeballing it instead! It was actually at this point that I decided that I was going to go ahead and physically rivet the star to the shield, rather than JB-Weld or some other attachment method. I know JB-Weld seems to be the adhesive of choice over at TheRPF, and I know that the screen-used shield does not have these rivets, but… screw it. I like my mechanical connections. I drilled the etched ‘fake’ rivet circles out on the star and used them to mark out where to put holes in the shield in what I thought would be roughly a centered position.
Took a bit of wrestling to get my cheap chinese drill bits to get through the shield, but when everything was said and done, I managed to get five rivet holes to line up.
I’m probably going to also put JB weld in the middle of the star and clamp the hell out of it when I rivet it on, but at least for now this gives me something to work with. Next will be the brackets for the back that the arm straps attach to.