How do I make a corflute shield?

ADOS - available anywhere you would buy hardware guff - Bunnings, Warehouse, Mitre 10 etc.

For the most recent shield I made, I used Ados spray glue.

Usually spray glue is a pain in the ass, because most of it goes around what you’re spraying and hits something erlse.

But for shields, it’s awesome because they’re big wide things and hard to miss with the spray. You get a nice even coat very quickly and easily.

Right next to the ADOS F2, you’ll see less-famous brands of Contact Adhesive. A quick check of the ingredients will confirm that they are pretty much the same stuff, although at a lower price.

Also, you only need a thin coating on both surfaces. Wait until they are both tacky before applying, and remember you typically can’t change anything once you’ve put the surfaces together.

Lastly, I used to buy larger quantaties (i.e. > 1 litre) because of the cost saving. But for me it was a false economy as the glue would go stale long before I could use it all up.

I raided town today and got some supplies: ADOS spray, a pair of $2.99 dogcollars (with fake “studs”, but they were easily popped off with a knife), 5mm EVA foam for the rim and face (expensive - ouch - and is that thick enough?). Then I started thinking about shapes and sizes. The SCA said “shoulder-to-shoulder by chin-to-crotch”, which seemed a bit narrow, so instead I went with a straight 21" width and the 3:1 pattern used here (that’s an excellent page BTW, even if they’re using wood; check out the scabbard project…) To get an idea of how that worked in practice, I made a carboard mockup:

Which also let me get an idea of where the straps should go so as not to expose my shoulder. Having tried it on and tried a few blocks, its nice and maneuverable. Though I worry whether its long enough…

One problem is that the dimensions (530 x 650 mm) are just a bit too big to fit both ways on my corflute sheets, which means I’ll need to do it in two parts in order to cross my corrugations. But that doesn’t seem too difficult.

Tomorrow I’ll start cutting and gluing. Which means hopefully I’ll have something in time for combat practice on Sunday.

Ryan, can you tell me more about the construction of shields using just the Foam? I find cornflute hard to find so this sounds like an interesting option.

Sure. I use two layers of foam. I didn’t use camping mat, I used a harder PE45 foam that is sometimes used to make hilts on swords, so unfortunately you may find that hard to come by too - mine was from Dunlop Foams.

My construction technique was similar to Bryn’s, which he outlined here.

I cut the shield shape out in two pieces of foam, with one slightly wider than the other (especially in the widest places, where it may need to be a couple of centimeters wider) so that when I curved them together their edges would be closer to flush (because the outer sheet has further to go around the curve, it needs to be wider).

Unlike Bryn’s mine were boss shields, which meant I needed a central grip. So I cut a circle out in both pieces of foam, for the hand to go into, and I didn’t need to use a central sheet of fabric as Bryn did to act as support for his straps.

I prepared a fibreglass rod to run vertically through the shield (between the two sheets of foam) to act as the core for the grip when it runs through the holes in the foam. To prepare the rod, I put duct tape over each end of it, taking pieces and wrapping them around the end of the rod and then sticking them to themselves, so there were rectangles of tape at each end of the rod. This will prevent the rod coming through the shield’s foam, and also stop the rod from turning inside the shield. I also added a handle to the rod, lining it up to be where the holes in the shield would be. My handle was a short section of PVC pipe, glued to some small strips of foam that were glued to the rod.

I glued the rod to one of the foam shield shapes, running it vertically up the shield shape and fitting the handle into the hole. Then I glued the two foam shield shapes together. To produce a curve, bent the inside piece of foam into a curve and glued the top piece of foam onto the curved shape. Bryn did this with a former, I just did it over my knee. I started the gluing at the bottom point of the heater shield, and gradually made my way up, glueing about a quarter of the shield at a time and ensuring that the edges and the holes of the two pieces roughly met up.

Once the glue was dry I cut off any major mismatches in the edges of the two pieces, then the shield was ready for its center boss and edging. I used Derek’s foam shield boss pattern, and glued the boss to the outside of the hole in the shield. It’s actually best to make the boss first, so that you know what size the hole should be - it should be the size of the inside measurement of the boss. I decorated the edge of the boss with a ring of foam cut to 4mm thickness.

For decoration, I cut strips of foam that were half the width (4mm) and run one first around the outside of the shield to conceal the joining of the two sheets of foam, and then another one onto the face of the edge of the shield, overlapping onto the first strip.

I painted straight onto the foam with ordinary water-based paints.

Man, this stuff is hard to describe without pictures.

It depends on your technique. And there are two very different schools of thought on this :smiley:

If you straighten your arm / rotate the shield, so the price sticker is down, the shield will probably reach below the knee. With a bit of a lean, that’s ground level, so the shield is long enough.

However, if you try to block ankle shots with what is currently the bottom corner, you’ll find it too short.

Dunlop Foams can be be pricey for those on a budget, as many larpers (myself included) are. If you want an alternative for solid foams try the campmat available at the Warehouse. For some undisclosed reason the different coloured foams are actually different densities - the dark green is about the same as PE45 (and about 1/3 the cost), though the black (very very dark grey) is a little more dense and just as good for this sort of thing, if not better. The bonus is that it is in fact exactly the same type of foam :wink:

Thanks for the spiel Ryan, I’m going to put that to good use :smiley:

I can never find the black camping mat, the vast majority I see at the Warehouse are green and blue. I’ve found grey once.

If you’re just going to paint the foam directly, I’d recommend getting black or grey foam. The paint will inevitably deteriorate or scratch, and if it’s coloured foam underneath it will come through and look awful.

However, if you’re taking Bryn’s approach of sticking a latex skin to the shield then it doesn’t matter what colour foam is underneath.

If any one needs corflute give me a yell im fairly sure i can get hold of some…

I am certainly looking for some :slight_smile: i have a couple of shield projects on the burner.

Actualy I could do with some too…think it would make fantastic samurai armour.

Plain old corrugated cardboard works surprisingly well if you cover it in fabric and paint it. That way it’s waterproof :smiley:

My Wolfgang shield is just cardboard. You can still see the corrugation lines, and it’s nowhere near as flash as some of the nicer ones around. But it’s essentially made from free / recycled materials + paint

[quote=“Ryan Paddy”]I can never find the black camping mat, the vast majority I see at the Warehouse are green and blue. I’ve found grey once.

If you’re just going to paint the foam directly, I’d recommend getting black or grey foam. The paint will inevitably deteriorate or scratch, and if it’s coloured foam underneath it will come through and look awful.[/quote]

Yeah it can take a bit of hunting - I found I had to go to the warehouse at the top of Westfield at the bottom of Queen St to get the first few…

Only one I would say to give up on is the yellow. It’s the softest, and is amazingly bad to work with - as David will similarly testify :wink:

As anyone who does not yet have a shield I too would like to get my hands on some cornflute.

My one problem with camp foam is that I do not believe they make them wide enough for the shield that I like. That is a Viking round shield of approximately 90cm wide.

I have coreflute. Lots of it. Can everyone who wants some put their hand up here and we can organise a time to do a pickup. It’s in 2.4m x 1.2m sheets, so you’ll need to cut it down to size first unless you have a trailer.

All my stuff is the smaller stuff… I could make myself a door shield 0-o

puts hand up

Stage 2: the corflute sandwich is complete, the edge is taped, and the straps and back padding is installed.

(Damn, took the photo at an angle, so it seems misshapen…)

Now all I have to do is pad the front and edges with more blue campmat, then cover and paint it.

I foolishly didn’t cross my corrugations in the first two layers, so had to add a third. And cutting the holes for the straps through three layers of corflute took bloody ages.

The Warehouse was having a special on campmats, so I have a roll for about $10 (vs $38 for 5mm grey EDA foam from para rubber. Which I now need to find a good use for). I’ll also need to get some non-spray ADOS to do the edges, and use either that or hot glue to stick the straps down on the face. Possibly I will also need to carve out some space for them in the campmat so they don’t make an obvious bump.

It looks good.

If you wrap cover the foam in a scrap of fabric, it looks less modern.

Next photo please - the pretty painted front :smiley: I recommend not using spray paint, because it costs too much. $3.99 test pots go further.

Derek, while we have you and your vast experience here, how did you make those scutum for mordavia?