Pip-Boy 3000 Mk. IV Quantum Re-Paint

After wasting so much time simply wanting to assemble a complete costume like this, I am finally putting together my Fallout Vault Dweller cosplay to attend Fan-X in Salt Lake City this year. It has taken so much out of me just waiting for my mental health to improve, never mind all of the painting and creation practice with other props. I’m thrilled with the results so far that I just had to share all my progress pictures. Now with commentary!

This is my finished, Quantumized Pip-Boy 3000 Mark Four!

It all started with the prop itself that I had purchased with the Collector’s Edition of Fallout 4. I’ve had this Pip-Boy since Fallout 4 came out, and I had always intended to repaint it and include it into some form of cosplay. The dream is finally becoming a reality.

Paired with it is my ancient iPod Touch (4th generation, I believe). I started by scratching the crap out of the shiny new plastic; the original prop greatly lacked for wear and tear.

And then I started with my fantastic blue color. It is Vallejo Game Color Turquoise paint (which you can find here). I used the same color as the base for my plasma rifle Quantum recolor.

And then came the disassembly to color the whole thing properly. I actually disassembled it a few times because I made the mistake of assuming I could simply not paint some of the ugly brown. This ended up not being true; the prop’s assembly wasn’t good enough to conceal any of the khaki color.

And then came the delightful purple. I don’t know if this color quite matches with the deeper Quantum violet, but I wanted my Pip-Boy to be a bit brighter and more inviting… at least until I settled on the right grime. For this, I used Vallejo Violeta Azul (which you can find here).

And here’s the finished base color (you can still see exposed tan color in some spots). At this point, I grinded off the striped yellow “caution” bars from the buckle with my dremel tool; to be honest, they were kind of tacky and didn’t match what I had in mind for the finished look.

I then tried my hand at painting racing stripes… or, at least, some candy-yellow lines to add a bit of soda-jerk flavor to the device. Admittedly, it only kinda worked. But after all the weathering and details, you can hardly tell how poor the application is. 😀

And then I added stickers! I had purchased some Nuka-Cola Quantum stickers for my thermos some years ago that I had accidentally ordered as opaque instead of transparent. Not liking how they looked on my thermos, I removed them… but I kept them because I knew I could do something with them in the future. How right I was! It definitely has that kitchy 1950’s soda parlor appeal now.

The stickers aren’t perfect, but they definitely sell the “Quantum-ness” of the recolor. And in the end, that’s all I care!

And then it was time to make it DIRTY. I used a three-pack of Distress Oxide paints (the brand of which you can find here; they don’t sell the specific trio I used on Amazon, but they do at Joann’s Fabrics) to rust the crap out of the Pip-Boy.

Note to self: wait until the paint is completely dry before applying the matte sealer! I was finding that my Pip-Boy was still wet for at least two days afterwards because I didn’t wait long enough for the rust paint to dry. Oops. At least the finished product looks dirtier because of it.

I have since improved upon the paint job of my plasma rifle by adding highlights. I can’t wait until this all comes together. Tomorrow, I am starting the assembly of my leather armor. I’m planning on using actual aluminum and painted pig leather, riveting it all together, and finishing it up with the same distressed paints. I hope to update soon with progress on the armor!


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