Mar Williams

Making the 303/Skytalks/denhac badges

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This year kicked my ass! I literally made myself sick, taking on too much. Every DEFCON I seem to take on a little more, so next year I’m cutting back. *cough yeah right*
I was so lucky to have the opportunity to do a huge chunk of official DEFCON art, from logo to signage, to stickers, shirts, a floor circle, and I even got to hide crypto for L0st’s badge challenge. It was a hoot and I’d gladly do it again. Here’s a bunch of the DEFCON 20 art.

But the best project was the 303 badges. Th3_D0n and I have been working on badges for the better part of a year. We had a few hitches, but it came together none the less. I have this habit of just assuming I can figure out any medium. More often than not, this bites me in the ass. I’d never actually made a silicone mold or played with polyurethane or well, modeled anything in 3d before. heh. Thankfully I had Trevor help me with the 3d part, and plenty of trial and error in making the cases. I learned a lot, and I’m excited to try my hand at similar projects. Halloween? Yup.

Fred pulling a Skytalks case from the mold

Th3_D0n did an amazing job on the boards. What did the boards do? Here’s the description and instructions.
Plus a ton of photos of the process of making the badge cases.

Each case had to be cast, cut, sanded, cleaned, stickered, painted, coated and assembled. It was a hell of a project, but worth the results! As always, there’s no way we could have pulled off this crazy plan without the help of so many 303 and denhac volunteers. I fear doing individual thanks or I’m going to miss someone, but Legion needs a shout for the chiptunes and Fred for staying up till 6am with me at denhac more than a few nights.

OK, so they weren't all neon green, glow in the dark, with blue pearlescent shimmer. I had to make a fancy one for myself. ;-)

Back of the badge. Laser cut and etched thanks to bartering use of the machines at Fred's work

Here’s a quick video of a couple songs and the alcohol sensor. It’s more impressive with more than one badge.

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