The costume is being worn by Michael Khan (me). My inspiration for the costume is the Cyborg design that appears in DC animated films. Overall, the design and construction of the costume was completed over the entire month of October. I finished the costume on October 29th after staying awake for almost 48 hours and just in time to go a Halloween event with our friends.
How I made the costume is a little bit complicated and is easier to explain piece by piece.
The mask is a combination of a children’s cop helmet and a plan white facemask that I cut to my specifications. To keep the helmet on I used the wire from a pair of dollar store earmuffs. After adding battery powered Christmas lights for the eye and forehead I placed another mask layer on top to hide the wiring. At that point, the distance between my face and the mask was too much so I repurposed the plastic binding from a pair of Frankenstein neck bolts (they wrap around your neck with the bolts on each side), to hold the mask tight to my face. I placed a microphone in the chin piece with wiring that ran to the voice modulation app (Soundcamp) on my Note 5 Smartphone, which was then connected to the speaker/light source in my chest.
My upper body was built using PVC foam and foam floor mats. I used cardboard pieces to prototype the size, shape and fit of the pieces before cutting the plastic pieces and shaping them with heat. I built a harness to hold the speaker against my chest and fit the rest of the pieces over it. The shoulders were added next using metal wire to hold them in place. I used 4 strands of sky blue EL wire for the lights on the upper body arms and legs. I weaved them into the costume and used gorilla tape to keep them in place.
For my right arm I built Cyborg’s gun that extended with the push of a button. To achieve this I used an old umbrella and built a rail out of a pipe I found at the dollar store. I built a safety stop into the arm so that the
gun would not fly off. The red lights on the gun are a combination of EL wire and bright purse light I found at Chapters. I purchased a laser glove from Ali Express that spun a blue and a red laser in a circular motion. I made the mistake of not specifying which hand I needed the last for so I had to rework the glove for my right hand and move the laser piece from the palm of my hand to the top of my hand so that it would fit in the cannon. When fog was in a room, it would appear as though a beam was coming out of my hand.
I created a sound effect glove on my left hand using a component from Electronics123. This was wired to the two speakers on my hips. I programmed the four buttons on my glove with robotic sounds for walking and shooting. I also included the old Internet dial up tone so that when anyone asked me a question I could play that as my computing sound (because I am old). Also on my left arm is a cylinder that I can push up around my hand and puppeteer three extendable claws. The claws were repurposed staplers from the dollar store with metal rods strategically placed to pull them in. When I let go of the rods the claws would snap back into place.
I wore three pieces of dry fit apparel under the costume. A long sleeve shirt, long pants and shorts that had blue EL wire woven into them. My legs were three pieces: the boot covers, knee pads and thigh covers. The sides of the thigh covers had place for two speakers, my smartphone and a 20,000 mAH power supply which I used to charge my friend’s phones if they needed it. I wore Monster boots for this occasion to give me a 5inch boost in height. I felt that Cyborg should be tall since he is an accomplished football player in the cartoon movie that I watched as part of the research portion of this project.
I used a variety of adhesives depending on the piece including Gorilla Glue, Gorilla Tape, hot glue and cement. The paint on the costume is a chrome base and a black chrome outer layer. I found the black chrome paint at Canadian Tire as part of kit for painting car rims. I wanted a gunmetal look because I found it more realistic looking than just straight chrome.
Overall I had a lot of fun building the costume. I created a huge mess that extended through the living room, kitchen and main entrance of our place. I was a hermit for the month of October but thanks to a lot of hard work and my wife’s extremely high level of patience, I was able to bring my vision to life. The costume a bit heaver but still functional enough for me to walk up stairs, sit in a cab and start an impromptu dance party at the bus stop after connecting my wife’s cellphone to my chest speaker.
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