Costume Info.

 

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Here is an item-by-item list of what was used to make up the standard Cap Trooper costumes, as well as specialist pieces and modifications for characters and special actor requirements.

 

 

HERO Grade

Hero grade items possess the highest quality and detail.  They are used for extreme close-ups or for when the specific prop has to actually be used or interacted with.  The principle actors usually use HERO items, such as Dog tags, Helmets or working Comms Packs.

"A" - Grade

"A" - grade items are still high quality and high in detail, but are not as good as HERO items.  "A" - grade items are used for close-to-camera shots because they have similar detail and appear identical to the HERO items.  "A" - grade items are sometimes used instead of HERO items when there is a risk of damage to the item but high detail is still required, such as Grenades or Helmets.

"B" - Grade

"B" - grade items are usually reserved for extras.  They have minimal detail and are usually made of cheaper materials than "A" - grade or HERO equivalents.  "B" - grade items are usually mass-produced and are used to merely suggest the presence of the item.  When close-up shots are required, "B" - grade items are substituted for more detailed "A" or HERO grade items, such as Armor, Morita rifles, Helmets, Neck Rings and Grenades.  "B" - grade items are also used when there may be a chance of damage to the prop.

STUNT Grade

As the name implies, STUNT grade items are produced to be used in action sequences or in situations when a standard prop may be damaged.  The STUNT items are usually made of rubber and have nearly identical detail to the actual prop - they are made to look as similar to the prop they are replacing as possible (if not identical).  These may be rubber Moritas, Grenades or even Comms Packs, because they will be treated roughly and the Props Dept. do not want to risk damaging a HERO or "A" - grade prop.

Note : some items do NOT have a grade because there is only one version made, such as Jackets, Caps etc.

 

  

 

 

 

 

This is the standard issue M-3 Tactical helmet.  It is made of fiberglass and is fitted with a black chin strap and moderate standard padding.  A total of 650 helmets were made for Troopers, of which around 25 of the best quality were taken aside and enhanced into "A" grade helmets - the rest remained "B" grade for background talent.  The selected "A" grade helmets were fitted with microphones, additional foam padding and were given ear screens (black or grey).  Originally, the helmets would have flip-down visors for displaying tactical data, but many problems were encountered with reflective light and not being able to see the actor's eyes, so the visors were scrapped.  However, most "A" grade helmets still have the visor mounts fitted inside.  The majority of helmets were one size, but a few were cut down in size, such as for Dizzy or the child actor in the beginning "I'm doing my part" scene.

"A" grade helmet

with mic & ear screens

Additional internal foam comfort padding

Helmet dome, painted RED for lazertag scene

Helmet Mic & grey ear screens

Visor mounting blocks, marked with arrows

Helmet Microphones (springs / metal tubes)

Brass Ear screens, painted black

Foam helmet spacers, used for padding

Child size "A" grade helmet with Mic & Visor

Here you can see the Mic, ear screens & Visor

Plastic Visor attached to mounting blocks

Visor mounting screws

 

In basic training and then later combat, Cap troopers wear the basic MI armor.  The armor comes in 3 sections (chest + sides, back, shoulders) and is made of foam rubber with a hardened rubber skin covering.  Sometimes fiberglass inserts were placed in the flexible armor sections to give them more form.  Special effects also modified armor sets for their own use, by inserting small exploding blood packs or explosives called 'squibs' to suggest bullet impacts or impalement.  Armor came in two sizes - adult/male and the female armor, which is noticeably smaller.  Armor was made in two grades, "A" and "B" grade.  "A" grade armor was worn by lead characters and close-up actors/extras, and was more detailed than the Background "B" grade armor.  The waist slots on "A" grade sets were drilled and cleaned out, and some sets were also given 2 strips of foam padding across the shoulders to make wearing the armor more comfortable, and to cover up the sometimes painful strapping rivets.

Adult size "A" grade armor Shoulder section with foam padding strips

Adult size "A" grade armor

Chest/waist section

Adult size "A" grade armor

Back section

Female size armor

Shoulder section

Female size armor

Chest/waist section

Female size armor

Back section

 

All Troopers, Officers and Military Officials wore Rank epaulets on their jackets.  Here is a listing of what ranks the epaulets represented.

Private

1 Lightening bolt

Corporal

2 Lightening bolts

Sergeant (Sgt.)

3 Lightening bolts

Staff Sergeant

1 Lightening bolt, 1 Bar

Technical Sergeant - 2 Lightening bolts, 2 Bars

Master Sergeant

3 Lightening Bolts, 3 Bars

Lieutenant (LT.)

1 Lightening bolt cross 1 Bar

Captain

1 Lightening bolt cross 2 Bars

Major

1 Lightening bolt cross 3 Bars

General, 1st rank

'V' Lightening bolts, 1 Star

General, 2nd rank

'V' Lightening bolts, 2 Stars

General, 3rd rank

'V' Lightening bolts, 3 Stars

 

Colonel

1 Lightening bolt cross 3 Bars, 1 Star

 

All Cap Troopers wear this standard issue jacket for most combat and casual events.  Other than this a Dress Shirt is worn.  The jacket is light weight but hard wearing and has three main insignia badges, as well as two shoulder epaulets to mount the individual's Rank Epaulets.  The front of the jacket carries the Mobile Infantry insignia on the left side.  The left arm has another Mobile Infantry insignia for when the frontal badge is obscured, e.g. by armor etc.  The right arm has an issue badge displaying the Trooper's assigned division, e.g. a "6" for the Sixth Trooper Division.  The shoulders of the jacket are reinforced with padding packets to make wearing armor, backpacks, bearing weapons etc more comfortable for long periods.

The MI jacket

Chest MI 'wings' insignia

Left arm MI insignia

Right arm "6" Division

Shoulder Epaulet

Elbow protection

Shoulder padding

Trooper jacket tag

 

Similar to the MI jacket, all Cap Troopers wear the standard MI pants.  Made from the same hard-wearing material as the jacket, the MI pants have parallel waist adjusters, making each size of pants flexible and able to fit many different size actors.  The knees have additional internal padding as well as foot stirrups.  The MI pants are usually worn in conjunction with suspenders.

MI Pants

Front fastener

Knee padding

MI Suspenders

 

When in 'casual' uniform, Cap Troopers wear issue MI Caps (sometimes called Sergeant's Caps).  These are simple grey baseball-style hats worn to maintain the uniform code even when casual either at training grounds or when on station.  Troopers either wear the plain issue grey cap or a cap displaying the division that the Trooper is assigned to, similar to the jacket insignias, e.g. a "6" to represent he MI Sixth Division.

Cap from the Ticonderoga

MI Cap

MI insignia with "6" for the MI Sixth Division

MI Cap, side view

 

The standard gloves given to Troopers are simply NFL gloves with all of the badges and insignia carefully removed.

MI Gloves (top view)

MI Gloves (underside)

NFL gloves (with badges)

 

Similar to the MI Gloves, the Boots are modified off-the-shelf items.  In this case, each pair of boots is a modified pair of Addidas 1995 Winter Trekker hiking shoes with an additional leather shin piece.  The boots are fastened with initial friction grip fasteners and then Velcro to secure the straps.

MI Boots

MI Boots (back detail)

Tread detail

Velcro/Friction fasteners

Boot tongue & straps

Straps fastened

Addidas tread logo

Additional laces

 

Having been trained to use throwing knives in boot camp, Troopers are given a throwing knife as a last resort / close combat weapon ("Who needs a knife in a nuke fight?").  The throwing knives were really taken from an outline tracing of a paint stirring stick and were mass-produced.  In order to fit into the leg sheathe, and for safety, all Trooper knives were blanks, e.g. had square ends and no blade or point to them; they just simulated the presence of a knife.  The knife slides into a sheathe and is secured by a button fastener.  The knife is accompanied by two "flares", which are really just coloured glow sticks - one red and one green.  These slide into parallel compartments beside the knife and are held by a clip-down flap.

The whole leg sheathe hangs by a Velcro loop from either the Trooper's armor strapping, a duty belt, or from the adjuster loops on the MI pants on the right leg, and is further secured by two wrap-around Velcro straps.

Knife belt closed, with 2 flares & knife blank

Knife belt open showing flares & knife

Knife belt strap configuration

2 "Flare" glow sticks & throwing Knife blank

 

Each Trooper is issued with two tactical grenades to go on their armor.  Grenades were manufactured in three grades.  "B" grade grenades were for background use and were made of rubber in an undecorated green colour.  "A" grade grenades were again made of rubber but were given a hardened rubber skin and were coloured and the primer cap painted red.  These were used for close-up shots.  Finally, "Hero" grade grenades were made of solid resin, were painted and decorated to the highest standard, and were given actual sliding Red primer caps and an aluminum spoon.  Very few of these "Hero" grenades were made and were reserved for principle characters, so that the grenades in their pouches appeared to have some weight to them.  

The grenades are worn on the lower strap band on the chest armor section, on the Trooper's right side, above the knife belt.  The grenade pouch is fastened to the armor by a simple pair of sliding clips.

 

2 "A" grade rubber grenades with hard rubber skin finish

 

Empty grenade pouches

2 "A" / 'Hero' grade Resin grenades with sliding red plunger cap

 

Red sliding primer cap on a resin grenade (spoon removed)

 

Detail of the slot for an aluminum spoon

Rib detail on a solid resin grenade

2 "B" grade grenades

Rico's 'Hero' resin Tanker Bug grenade

 

In order to keep a plentiful supply of ammunition for their weapons, each Trooper carries two addition rifle Clips on their armor.  The clips came in several varieties and grades.  There were two main types - the "A" grade 'Live Fire' clips, which were REAL mini-14 machine gun ammo clips with fiberglass decorative casings and were used in the Live Fire Morita rifles, and the "B" grade or stunt versions, which were simply foam rubber, similar to the Trooper grenades.

The rubber grenades were sometimes painted and decorated to resemble the "A" grade clips for when they were needed for close-up shots, but normally they were just left the green colour as with the grenades.  "A" grade clips were real machine gun clips and were used in all scenes where live fire was needed.  Various grades of clip coverings were made for the Live Fire clips, showing various degrees of detail and design, as well as an additional "Extra capacity" casing for when an unusual amount of ammunition was required and a regular clip would not suffice.

The two Morita Clips are worn on the lower strap band on the chest armor section, on the Trooper's left side, in front of the water bottle.   The clips fasten to the armor with a simple Velcro fastener.

 

"A" grade metal Clip for Live Fire Morita

2 "B" grade / stunt rubber Morita Clips

 

2 "B" grade / stunt rubber Morita Clips

2 Clips in pouches

 

2 Clips in pouches

 

Clip in pouch (open)

 

Clip pouch (empty)

 

"A" grade clip size comparison - Reg / Extra capacity clip size

 

"A" grade Clip casing

 

"B" grade Clip casing

 

"B" grade Clip casing

Extra capacity Clip

 

 

Every Trooper carries a small rations pouch containing a sealed supply of nutritional rations, which was in actual fact a lemon cake  bar.  The pouch fastens with a simple yet ingenious elastic clip, which extends to hook over a loop when the flap is pulled down.  No rations were believed to have been consumed during production (by humans or Arachnids).  

The rations pack is worn on the shoulder section of the Trooper's armor, usually on the left side between the two rivet plates.  The pouch fastens to the armor strap by two parallel sliding clips on the reverse side.

 

1 Rations pack containing Lemon cake

Rations pack (open) containing lemon cake

Rations pack (open, empty)

Parallel Sliding clip fasteners

Sealed lemon cake rations

(yummy)

 

The Trooper water bottles can be referred to as 'working props' if you will, because it was not uncommon for performers to fill the bottles to drink between takes.  The bottle itself is a common mass-produced water bottle which is held inside a pouch secured by a quick clip.

The water bottle is worn on the Trooper's armor on the left side, behind the two Morita Clips.  The pouch attaches to the armor strap by a large fold-over Velcro section on the back of the pouch.

 

MI Water bottle in pouch

 

Water pouch (open) with water bottle

Water bottle pouch

(open, empty)

Water bottle pouch, with Velcro fastening strip

MI Water Bottle

(water not included)

 

The Trooper Neck ring, or neck guard, was not incorporated into every uniform.  It is usually worn in conjunction with the MI jacket, e.g. whenever the Troopers simply wear their armor on top of their black tee-shirts (without jackets), the neck ring is not present.  The neck ring was manufactured in two grades.  The "A" grade was for close-up shots and for principle actors and characters.  It incorporated an additional cotton lining around the neck, sometimes called the "comfort collar".  The "A" grade rings were also usually put together with more care and accuracy than the "B" grade versions, which were produced in far greater numbers for extras and background performers.  The "B" grade neck ring is nearly identical to the "A", with the exception of the lack of the cotton "comfort collar" finish to the top of the material as seen on the "A" grade rings.

 

"A" grade neck ring (front)

"A" grade neck ring (back)

"A" grade neck ring (inside - undone) 

"A" grade neck ring (strap/collar detail) 

 

"B" grade neck ring (front)

"B" grade neck ring (back)

"B" grade neck ring (inside - undone) 

"B" grade neck ring (strap/collar detail) 

 

 

 

 

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Photos provided courtesy of

 

www.trooperpx.com

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