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Author Topic: The hat and helmet modification thread  (Read 13536 times)
J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #75 on: July 25, 2018, 08:27:29 am »

Following on from my original pith helmet conversion:



Right click and view image to view image in full size (1197 pixels wide)

18v batteries, tin/copper battery box and 12v fan over-volted to provide a good head draught,

I have replaced the faux leather straps and liner for good and solid real leather chin straps and a leather inner liner.

New photos in next post

Wonderful pith helmet Uncle Bert. Have you considered Solid State cooling? A refrigerated hat! And the car is great too!

Uncle Bert's Galvanic Fan Helmet from last page
(Right click to zoom in)


It's great to see the thread developing, keep the hats coming!

~ ~ ~

I see I forgot to take pictures of the finished plume over the Airship Angel hat. I continued applying layers of polyurethane to the plume holder, until it became shiny, and used gold paint to cover the edge of the grey plastic "tee." The whole plume assembly is heavy enough that either you must wear the hat or prop it up from underneath to keep the plume straight, since the hat is very soft and not a helmet.








Nevertheless, keeping the plume holder straight seems to be a common problem, based on pictures of surviving helmets. The plume is exclusively a ceremonial artefact, worn only occasionally, and so it tends to be very fragile, unlike the Prussian spike which was taken into combat.

Original British Household Cavalry Life Guard Parade Helmet with White Plume


The American M1881 Dress Helmet had a particularly flimsy plume holder, which I doubt could withstand a fast gallop, much less battle. American craftsmen, not familiarized with European uniforms, would often invent their own hardware and their own uniform patterns (eg kilts for the New York Volunteer Brigades), resulting in odd, less than standard items - sort of like I did with my Steampunk costume  Tongue.

M1881 US Army, 4th Cavalry Dress Helmet





« Last Edit: July 25, 2018, 08:57:31 am by J. Wilhelm » Logged

J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #76 on: July 29, 2018, 11:13:11 am »

Ha! Found the picture.  In another thread, I had talked about a family member of mine on the Italian/Basuqe side being in the Army. He sent to France to study Artillery at the French Military Academy and after returning to Mexico was a Colonel during the Mexican Civil War. He was a professor and eventual director of the Mexican aviation academy


Well, I just found a photograph of someone wearing a Pickelhaube, and guess who it is?  Grin It seems I am justified in my madness  Grin

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Hurricane Annie
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« Reply #77 on: August 12, 2018, 06:51:12 am »



 He is very handsome in his helmet.  Fate works in mysterious ways. There are many curious Co incidences in life
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J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #78 on: August 12, 2018, 11:12:43 pm »



 He is very handsome in his helmet.  Fate works in mysterious ways. There are many curious Co incidences in life
He must have been very young in that picture with the Pickelhaube. The helmets were discontinued right after the start of the Mexican Civil War (Revolución) in 1910
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Hurricane Annie
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« Reply #79 on: August 13, 2018, 11:08:10 am »



 He is very handsome in his helmet.  Fate works in mysterious ways. There are many curious Co incidences in life
He must have been very young in that picture with the Pickelhaube. The helmets were discontinued right after the start of the Mexican Civil War (Revolución) in 1910

 Possibly in his early mid 20s, by the looks
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J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #80 on: August 16, 2018, 09:21:58 pm »



 He is very handsome in his helmet.  Fate works in mysterious ways. There are many curious Co incidences in life
He must have been very young in that picture with the Pickelhaube. The helmets were discontinued right after the start of the Mexican Civil War (Revolución) in 1910

 Possibly in his early mid 20s, by the looks

That blurry document above is from a Facebook page - an aviation history group (https://es-la.facebook.com/aviaciomilitarmexicana/photos/o.158859000857968/1471109229581846). It reads Gustavo Bazan-Cañamar was born in 1887, so at age 18 it would be 1905, where he'd be old enough to be conscripted into the army.

President Porfirio Diaz' tenure was very long (he was a dictator). And according to a Pickelhauben website (EDIT: Apparently the website was taken off-line) the spike helmets were only worn for a very brief period, bewteen 1905 and 1910 as part of formal dress uniforms (not battle - The Prussians, other Germans plus Chilean and Peruvian forces did get to wear them in battle). So he'd be in the precise period to wear that helmet as a cadet.

The revolution started in 1910, but it reads in that 5 year span before the war he was sent to France to study artillery (which I knew from my family's accounts).

Mexican Pickelhauben - made in Prussia for the Mexican Army (1905-1910)
You can see the Mexican coat of arms, an eagle perched on a cactus eating a snake
Aztec myth of origin, the Nahua Mexica people should settle at a place where an eagle was found eating a snake.
They found it on an island in the midle of Lake Texcoco on June 20, 1325 - renamed it Tenochtitlan.
The Spanish renamed it "Mexico-Tenochtitlan" or "The City of Mexico" in 1521
« Last Edit: August 16, 2018, 10:19:26 pm by J. Wilhelm » Logged
J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #81 on: September 19, 2019, 07:13:56 am »

Bumping the thread up in the hope that Uncle Bert gives a hand to Mr. MadasaSteamFish with his "hat ventilation methods."

And being September, only half a month away from Oktoberfest and 5 or so weeks from Allhallowtide, I'm wondering if there are any hat projects among us...
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yereverluvinunclebert
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« Reply #82 on: September 20, 2019, 12:04:52 am »

A 12 volt computer fan, some brass screws, two x 9v batteries in series giving 18volts will power a laptop fan at 140% normal power (goes straight up to 11 and beyond). Two 9v connectors and a small tin can to hold the batteries. Drill some holes in the can and the helmet, feed the wiring through. You need some sort of grille to prevent your fly away hair from entering the environs of the fan (hair and spinning fans mix very well) - I used a plastic-coated wire spider web from a halloween toy to prevent my golden locks from entering the spinning blades but you'll need to find something as useful that acts as a barrier. Sports car chrome radiator grille material might be applicable. The fan needs to draw air from somewhere, preferably some already extant ventilation holes. The battery can was soldered to some bent brass bracelets, drilled to accept holes for round-headed brass screws to attach it to the helmet. Some string can be wrapped tightly around the cables or you can cut some sport laces and thread the cables through, giving the cables a retro-electrical wrapped look. I wore my pith helmet a minute ago, it has a certain cache and it is really useful in the summer.  Grin

To make the hat truly wearable and give it more credibility, pad it with real leather, leather and more leather. Then some leather.

« Last Edit: September 20, 2019, 12:08:03 am by yereverluvinunclebert » Logged

Steampunk Widgets and Icons of Some Worldwide Repute
Lizzie Cogsworthy
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« Reply #83 on: October 12, 2019, 04:06:52 pm »

Mr. Wilhelm, might I suggest that if you still want a metallic look to your finiel, at in my experience the hammered metal spray paints one can find in the hardware store are a most excellant choice? The hammered golds and coppers are quite realistic, far more so than the plain metallics you've used.

Also, if you want to make the leather belt/band darker, or perhaps red? Sugar-free Koolaid makes for a fantastically durable and intense dye. Mix with a bit of hot water until liquid, soak, and then dry and rinse with cold water. I knew a man who dyed a belt red with it, and he said he haid to boil it to get the color to loosen even in the slightest.

Just remove the preservative coat from the leather with distilled alcohol or turpentine first, then rinse in soapy water.

Regards,

Alizabel D. Cogsworthy.
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J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #84 on: October 13, 2019, 02:04:25 am »

Mr. Wilhelm, might I suggest that if you still want a metallic look to your finiel, at in my experience the hammered metal spray paints one can find in the hardware store are a most excellant choice? The hammered golds and coppers are quite realistic, far more so than the plain metallics you've used.

Also, if you want to make the leather belt/band darker, or perhaps red? Sugar-free Koolaid makes for a fantastically durable and intense dye. Mix with a bit of hot water until liquid, soak, and then dry and rinse with cold water. I knew a man who dyed a belt red with it, and he said he haid to boil it to get the color to loosen even in the slightest.

Just remove the preservative coat from the leather with distilled alcohol or turpentine first, then rinse in soapy water.

Regards,

Alizabel D. Cogsworthy.

Thank you for the suggestions Ms. Cogsworthy. Perhaps for the end of the year. Said hat has served me well even for practical winter and fall wear last year. It saw service last this March at South by Southwest, but just missed Oktoberfest, because temperatures were much too high (35 C / 95 F in October 1!!). The weather just changed last week to a cool 7 C / 45 F quite abruptly, so I had to wear it yesterday. The hat is an ideal ice breaker on the street.

After all this time, the belt is feeling a tad soft, as the polyurethane (PU) foam tends to soften with wear. Same is happening for the hat itself which is made from the same material, so I try not to crush it too much (it develops creases while stored in my backpack). I may try to replace the belt soon with a real leather one, though the old one doesn't really show any wear, it's just very soft. I've toyed with the idea of making a second hat from a real leather version of the trapper hat. Chinese websites do sell real leather hats, but the design is a bit different, (none in black) and at least twice as expensive. It may be worth my while, though. Real life just gets in the way of my projects.

I gave up on the paints when I first made it because, it looked too artificial and I was wasting too much time trying to get the correct "texture" out of the extremely porous surfaces. I'm glad I never tried to paint the cabochon. That would have been a costly mistake. A multi layer primer might take care of those issues. If I try the Rustoleum brand paint, like you suggest, it could be matched to the eagle, perhaps, with some sort of antique look. Just getting a finial without having to turn one yourself is an issue. So I just settled for a natural wood finish.

I remain at your service,

J. Wilhelm.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2019, 02:30:18 am by J. Wilhelm » Logged
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