SARATOGA SPRINGS, UTAH –
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A man in Saratoga Springs has made a stormtrooper, suit from scratch that is almost ready for battle in a galaxy far, far away.
The latest Star Wars movie was a box office hit and a must-see movie for many in Utah. This even inspired unusual creativity.
"I'm just a Star Wars fan," said Nils Rasmusson, a computer software engineer with many hobbies. "I love the clothes and the dark side characters in particular."
Rasmusson has always been a Star Wars fan, and decided to make a Stormtrooper suit with a friend.
"It's just a fun nerd idea we had and we decided to give it a try," he said.
He always enjoyed doing things, but really expanded his hobby when he bought his first 3D printer five years ago.
"This is out of my usual stuff," he said, pointing to the suit. "I have a 3D print channel and a DIY channel."
He has become a printer expert and shares DIY ideas on YouTube.
"I kind of incorporated everything I learned in 3D and DIY printing into this project," said Rasmusson.
Over the course of nine months, he printed the suit and mounted it.
“I had to find out – how do you put all these pieces together? There are no tutorials or instructions on that, "he said.
Only the helmet consists of 19 different parts manufactured in the printer.
Rasmusson said he used five printers, humming for about 400 to 600 hours, to make the costume with plastic filament.
It's even bulletproof. Your friend works for a company that protects cars.
"Stormtroopers don't do well in the movies. One shot and they're dead," he said. "So could we give them some protection?"
The helmet, shin guard and backplate are bulletproof. It would have been very expensive to protect the whole suit.
When tested, the bulletproof helmet did its job, but took a real beating on the firing range. Then Rasmusson cut off a slice of his face with a jet of water to see how it worked inside.
Most of the time, he did a great job, except for the eye shield, which wasn't bulletproof to begin with.
"He really did his job very well to stop all bullets," he said.
Bullets trapped in the suit by the bulletproof coating caused bulges in the fabric.
"I would be a little afraid to wear it and get shot," Rasmusson said. “That would be pretty scary, but it worked. I was quite impressed.
He is sure it is the first time anyone has made a bulletproof costume with a 3D printer. He knows there are requests for this kind of process in the military.
However, it is difficult to use.
“It's hard. These are very hard plastic pieces, so it's not a comfortable costume to wear, ”he said.
Next time, he said, he might try a softer fabric.
"It's an adventure just trying to put it together and looking decent in the end," Rasmusson said.