own Rebel Fleet Trooper
known as the RFT, and Rebel Blockade Runner Trooper, here's how
to make your own.
images from the original Star Wars movie.
home on ship or on a jungle planet.
wanted to add a villain to my Stormtrooper fan film, and
after much debate with my production staff, a decision
was made to have a familiar Rebel soldier as the faceless
enemy to our stormtrooper fan film.
have to admit, at first I was not fond of this idea. I
really never gave these troops a second thought. I was
not fond of the helmet, and the rest of their costume looks
like street clothes. Even the blaster they carried was
sort of 'ray-gun' looking, no where near as cool as the
first I wanted to have a grounded group of X-wing pilots
fighting the stormtroopers. Mainly because I liked the
X-wing helmet, and the rest of the costume was pretty easy
to recreate. Plot wise, this was a stretch, and to be honest,
would not be too believable.
I considered the Endor Commando costume. Again, this was
an obscure costume, and reference material is weak for
this one. Also, the helmet looked really hard to make.
The blaster would have to be a complete ground-up build.
Not something I was too fond of doing.
needed a trooper that was cheap, easy, and the helmet and
blasters would have to be quick and easy to make.
I looked at the original trilogy for inspiration, and the
Hoth soldiers were out. Wrong environment.
I watched Star Wars for the umpteenth time. And the scene
near the end with the RFT watching the Millennium Falcon approach
the hidden base, sealed it for me. These would be the enemy
troopers. Herbert M. also encouraged me to give the RFT a
reasons to see these trooper again. First, they were the first
combatants we ever saw in a Star Wars movie, and they were
slaughtered by the Stormtroopers. Second, since my goal
of the fan film was to correct some dumb ideas from Return
of the Jedi, mainly the stormtroopers being killed by the
rock throwing ewoks, I thought it would have a certain
amount of poetic justice seeing these Rebel Fleet Troopers
kick some stormtrooper butt.
the costume is easy to make. Really easy. It may not be 100%
accurate to the screen used costumes, but are pretty dang
consideration is cost. I can buy the vest, shirt, pants
and boots, for less than $80, and with about 3 hours worth
of sewing work, convert these parts to RFT uniforms.
The next section
is a collection of links for things you can easily and cheaply get
to complete your own RFT costume. Besides the hard part, the helmet,
you will also need boots, vest, pants and shirt,
all in the proper colors. No RFT is complete without his DH-17
blaster, complete with belt, buckle, and holster.
is a link
to some pretty good boots. These are East German officers
boots, and are used military surplus. Cost, about $15. Get
them big. Sadly, these seem sold out as of 7-21-06.
is a link
for the pants. The best option is to just get the SWAT gray
BDU pants. These are darker than they look.
will also need 3 US
Navy work shirts. Here is a link for some real
cheap ones. If you can't wear XL, then your local Army/Navy
store should have what you need. [an alternate source: http://www.sportsmansguide.com/cb/cb.asp?a=44575
] Also, these seem sold out by 7-21-06.
black vest is made from a BDU shirt/jacket. be sure to get
the 4 pocket straight bottom type. Here is a link
for some cheap ones.
is a link
to a the famous PVC Blaster Builders Club
for all your scratch made blaster needs. The Blaster is
easy to make from parts you can find at the hardware store.
Here is a link to show you how.
belt is any 2 inch wide plain brown brown belt. Add a Tandy
Leather 2x4 buckle and your good to go. Check out the local
hostler is seldom seen, so for the fan film I opted not
to use one, but a simple leather flap, sewn, with a snap
hook, should work fine.
helmet is by far the hardest part of the costume to find.
me for info about getting your own helmet based off a mold
taken from a real WWII US Navy Mark II helmet.
Locating and Modifying the Costume Parts:
modifications to the boots are needed. Some shoe polish
and your good to go. Click here
to get a pair for $15. Buy them larger than you need. You
can always wear a second pair of socks, but small shoes
are not good. Other costumes could benefitt from these boots
as well. X-wing pilot, Death Star Gunner, Imperial Officer,
WWII German Soldier, etc. Sold out as of 7-21-06.
alternate boot: http://shop.sportsmansguide.com/cb/cb.asp?a=235107
also sold out, as of 1-30-07.
It looks like www.sportsmansguide.com has sold out of the
boots. There are other sources, here is one http://www.tridentmilitary.com/Boots.htm
- I really
like these shirts. A great price, for a really nice shirt.
the shirt by adding a bib. This really makes the shirt look
less like street clothes as it hides the pockets and buttons.
take scissors and cut out the back section of 2 of the Navy
work shirts. Then sew them together to make a bib. And secure
to the base shirt using velcro, snaps or sewing it on.
to get a set of 3 for around $10. Sold out as of 10-1-06.
alternate source: http://www.sportsmansguide.com/cb/cb.asp?a=44575
Oct. 2, 2006: It appears that www.sportsmansguide.com is
sold out of these workshirts. These can be found at almost
any Army/Navy store, so check yours locally. I do have a
few available, so email
me if you need one.
The Original Shirt:
auction of an original shirt.
recently auctioned an original RFT shirt. Note the color
is a bit more gray than the more bluish Navy shirts, but
thats ok by me. On camera these read just fine.
how the bib is attached.
note the lack of buttons on the sleeves.
color appears to be a custom dye color, a medium slate gray.
was the selling price! Thats $5,093. Yikes!
Barre Army Navy Online Store
the Ultra-Force brand SWAT Gray BDU pants. You will have
to look on the Barre Army Navy store site
for them. Click here
to order a pair. Cost, about $19. Navigate: StoreFront--Military
Equipment & Clothing--Military Clothing--BDU pants-Ultra
Force--Grey BDU Pants
modifications are needed, just take a department store
the cargo pockets. This will fill the pockets out slightly.
are not a perfect match, but until something better comes
along, these work great. On film, the pants look to be
a custom dye job, most likley done to military khaki
pants to give them a gray tint. Thats too much work.
Barre Army Navy Online Store
vest is made from a black
BDU shirt. $24 Get the Ultra-force version.
You will have to look on the Barre Army Navy store
site for them. Click here
to order a pair. Cost, about $23. Click on MILITARY
EQUIPMENT & CLOTHING, then click on MILITARY
CLOTHING then click on BDU SHIRTS- ULTRA FORCE.
remove the sleeves, leaving 1/2 inch of the material remaining.
this under to make a nice hem.
the collar, and sew the seam shut. Otherwise it will fray.
can use the sleeves as pocket material and make a cargo
pocket on the base of the back if you like. Some of the
movie vest had these back pockets.
has the Black BDU shirts for $10! WOW! and I've
heard that these BDU tops show up from time to time at local
Army-Navy stores for as little as $2.50. You may not have
a good selection of sizes, but if you just need them for
a vest, a medium will fit most folks fine.
Custom made helmet, email me details.
It was a challenge
to try and find this odd-ball looking helmet from any source,
so I decided to custom make one.
- I made
my vacuum form mold of the helmet from an actual WWII era
US Navy Mk II talker helmet.
- A custom
communication box, chin cup, and swoop molds were made and
these are fastened to the base helmet with rivets and screws.
front mock visor is painted Krylon Smoke Gray,
and riveted into place. [an option would be to vac-form
smoked acrylic for the visor, and have this in the 'down'
position.] Makes for a more sinister look. Or use black
HIPs to form a sold black vesion.
- A foam
'star' headliner is added, and an elastic chin strap finishes
off the helmet.
an upgrade to the foam liner, a hard hat liner can be added
for a better fit when wearing the helmet.
- A wire
radio antennae is fitted to the communication box as an
option. These were hard to see on film and not 100% necessary.
you can't vac-form your own helmet, while I still have some,
you can order a kit or finished helmet online here: http://www.tk560.com/catalog.html.
updated the comm box and chin cup to be more form fitting.
Scratch build blaster using resin bits, and hardware store
Proposed Hasbro Nerf Blaster, version 1 available 3-07.
Hasbro Nerf Blaster, version 2 available 3-07.
them from scratch, using this link
as a guide [Less than $50], or buy them from www.masterreplicas.com
scope is made from 1 inch to 3/4 inch copper pipe reducers
and a real pair of scope mounts.
grip and end cap are available from me. Email
for details. Cost $15 plus shipping.
Replicas sells a fine version of this blaster. http://www.masterreplicas.com.
has announced a Nerf version of this blaster. Availability,
March. 2007. It will need some work to be accurate, but
a good trooping alternative. http://www.entertainmentearth.com/
resin parts availalbe here.
retail chains are reporting these, and here are the product
codes: Target DPCI: 087-06-1330 and Toys R Us SKU: 078430
these are 2 cover variations, including the blue and silver,
and a green and yellow!
has them ready to order.
Creations has a comparison of the Hasbro DH-15 vs the Master
Some belt boxes add some nice details to the costume.
2 inch wide natural brown leather belt will do.
your local thrift stores for the belt. You may get lucky
and find one with the buckle. $1-2 range.
modifications are needed other than a 2x4 inch metal buckle.
Get one from Tandy
the belt had a holster for the blaster and sometimes 2 metal
boxes. If you need the metal boxes, I have some left over
from the fan film production. Click here
to order a pair. Various ways to make the holster exsist,
but I think the Sunrider
Base has a good take on what they should look like.
One with and one without foil.
The box kit is pretty basic.
about anyone can wear this costume. Even though we never
saw women wear it, there is no reason female Fleet Troopers
would not exsist in the Star Wars universe.
in all, an easy costume to compliment your Rebel universe
the Hasbro Nerf blasters now availalbe, and with a bit of
paint, and minor modifications, a cheap blaster is now a
the pockets have been stuffed with bubble wrap, or old department
store bags to give them some body.
vest buttons and cuffs on the sleeves are optional. The
originals did not have any.
can dye your US Navy workshirts with a bit of black dye
diluted to give your shirt a nice off gray, just like the
the East German jackboots are getting harder and harder
to find. A couple of years ago, these were available for
$15. Now they are hard to find for less than $60!
- I have
a few spare black BDU shirts, in smaller sizes available,
me if you need one.
Fleet Trooper Helmets [Limited Supply]
Vacuum formed versions of the RFT helmet,
straight from the fan film!
is a shot of the Rebel Fleet Trooper helmet. Sometimes
called 'Rebel Blockade Runner'. This is based on a mold taken from
an actual WWII US Navy Mark II 'Talker' helmet, and 3 custom made
vac-form molds. The communication box, the rear swoop, and the chin
cup. If you want to know more, email
me. We made these for the fan film. Now, for a limited time, you
can get one. These were to be used in the fan film, but due to budget
over-runs, we can only have a limited the number of Fleet Troopers.
Here is your chance to get one of the extra helmets from the production.
what you need to finish the Fleet Trooper costume, these were made
to be used for the fan film, originally and when these extra helmets
are gone, they are gone. Fewer than 20 were made.
Kit, with instructions, and visor mounting hardware.
here for more info
I have a very limited supply of these parts. We made some for use
in our fan film, and these for the most part are spares left over
from that production.
Here is the
online guide for building your
own from a kit.
StudioCreations - How to site. Great references,
and a great tutorial!
- Another great reference site for the Fleet Trooper.
Base - a great group of Rebel costumers with loads of knowledge
regarding this costume.
- the home of the Rebel Alliance costumers.