The Making of: NCR Ranger Cosplay

The Making of: NCR Ranger Cosplay

Tl;Dr: We crafted and still are making NCR Ranger Cosplays and Arkan cannot wait to make an updated version for himself since end of 2017!
Greetings everyone! Here we go for our NCR Ranger build! We will go like so: a small history for the cosplay, how individual parts were made and what have been improved since 2017. Our additions, thoughts and cool pictures! Let's go!
Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger Cosplay Full
A Bit of History
So I'm a huge Fallout Fan. And born on October 23th so I had no choices but to get Fallout New Vegas as it came out, right? Whatever the answer is I played the hell out of it back then. This is my kind of game and like anyone else I fell in love with the NCR Gear.
As I learned to craft, this cosplay went way up in my to-do list. And after making my Combat Armor from Fallout 4 I knew I could make the whole set and tackle all the challenges beginner me had thoughts of. But I only saw the tip of the iceberg, and it's a big iceberg.
Chest Armor

It was the first piece I made for this cosplay. I free handed it and it remains the base pattern we use to this day, plus a few inches added in some places. But I wanted it different, bloody and with the plate being useful and practical as well. So I decided that my Ranger saw one how his mate near Quarry Junction getting ripped in half right before him then got attacked by the same Deathclaw, and got scrapped along the chest with his pal's gut, his remaining somewhat safe. Good material.
The assembly process is quite easy. Some plates linked together with straps on the front and in the back that get sealed, painted and weathered. The stencils were awful since I used paper that were hard to lay on the bend foam for me to paint over but I managed!
Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger Chest Armor Cosplay
Now we make our own custom straps for an even quicker in-and-out armor. Also the change from average to (Recyclable) High Dentisy Foam makes all the difference. And the stencils are sturdier that a wall.
The neck piece was in my mind the biggest challenge on this armor but ended up pretty simple in the end. You have everything proudly displayed and can still move freely your head wearing a helmet. Speaking of which!
Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger First Helmet
I have no idea where to start and what I was doing. I started by extracting the game files to get the 3d model as my perfect reference and then built my pattern around some sketches. What stands out the most for this helmet is that I made it detacheable thanks to the power of hidden magnets. This eased the build tremendously since I could focus on each without having the other part involved.
Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger First Helmet
The shape is odd for the top but is heavily inspired from WW1&2 helmets and such so I could more reference and shape it the right way. The side casing was added and extruded through the inside of the helmet to fit all the electronics and switches. Switches that I faced and glued the wrong way but hey it worked!
The bottom shapes were easy to make. It was also one of the first project I used my first 3D Printer! The Filter Canister was a model I found on Thinguiverse and scaled to the size I wanted.
The lenses were acrylic sheets cut then painted with stained glass paint. It went as well as you would expect: your are lucky to have near vision, you get blinded by the reflection of the light on the thick glossy paint, it fogs up so much and you hope to know better next time you make some!
The red lenses run on a 9v battery and the lamps on a 2 3v button batteries so they requires a lot on this side but consume nearly nothing, so they can operaton for days before getting off.
Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger Full Cosplay
Now everything is holded with velkro as it is easier to glue on foam and will let you place it the right way since having glasses requests an odd angle when inserted. We make our own lenses from PETG sheet that we handstain and the canister is still 3D Printed but with our own made model, as everything we print is!

I really want to make an elite riot gear at some point as the lenses are green and the pattern is similar, but this has to wait!

First Version of Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger Duster
Alright this was and still the longest bit. Kao's and I can get a sets of armor done within a day, but this... It asked for so much hours researching ye old wild west duster coats reference and epoque pattern and vague sewing instructions. I ended up making a draft with all of these finds that served me as my own NCR Ranger Cosplay Coat for a time, all made with a heavy cotton gabardin. The hardest part to figure out were the shoulder and back flaps.
The first versions of these were all gabardin that I later handpainted before moving onto embroidery and military cotton canvas. It is a little more than 2 years worth of evolving and I think we have our best version so far. Pockets are to be added and it is comming soon!
Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger Duster Cosplay
The whole current duster weight an average of 4kg, and if you add the embroidery and weathering it goes to a 5kg coat. Quite great to wear as it is lined and so strong and durable!
Really all the challenge was to get the patterns right. The sleeves are a NIGHTMARE and sewing through an inche's thick of heavy canvas requires a lot of precision and patience.
Arkan Cosplay Widepockets jeans pants
This is the easiest part. By far. It's a simple task: get pieces of strong jean together, make large pockets and finish it within a day. Weather it the next if needed and it's good to go on the third. I love it. It's quick to make efficiently and so comfortable to wear. I could make these all day.
They started as a 4 identical pannels pieces sewn together and holding with a string on my 49kg frame my body was. Then I moved to learning how to make patterns and drafting something good. Then great. Then our own Widepockets collection ready to be sold. The jean's fabric quality is something I am very cautious about (like any materials we use for a project). I want it strong, the right tone, thick, comfortable and all cotton. It takes time in shops but in the end it makes 80% of the whole build a thousand times better and also look and feel nicer.
I made a version of these jeans with large pocket because conventions requires a lot of hidden stuff somewhere and there is never enough space when you are in need. They are discreet enough if you don't stuff them with hundred of things and they remain practical when in a hurry or emergency. The back does not have some however, because I feel uncomfortable with the feeling of those and you only break or lose stuf when you use them in the end anyway.
Forearm Plates
They're easy pieces. Although made in a rush 3 hours before the first convention they were good looking enough! First version were simple foam squares bended and weathered with an elastic straps barely holding in place.
Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger Forearm Plating test Fit
I revisited them once I got to sell them to people, my quality standards being so much higher for the customer than for myself. They are shaped in a different way and strapped with discreet elastic straps and two 3 meters long rags to wrap around each arm. They are the best to make since they often end unique piece once you get the weathering done! All the ones we made and make look alike but are way different from one to another! That part of our business though so nothing new here!
Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger Forearm Platting Cosplay
One improvement for this piece would be leather strapping. I love working on leather so much and it seems like the right thing to do next.
Gloves (and their plating)
They first were made with tracing around my hand over a piece of black stretchy fabric and sewn together. The finger were squished so much, some with weird shapes, some too short or too long, its fabric thick enough to get sweat everywhere it could. And I glued to plates on top with superglue while wearing them for the best placement. The best feeling to get them done and worn around, I tell you!
I learned how to handle weird shapes like these for patterns but it is still a headaches sometimes for new cosplay and asymetric designs (more on that on our Cyberpunk Bounty Hunter!). We use a far greater fabric for these now and they expand much more. No more fingers itching! And the plates are stampled with velkro as well as the top of the gloves so you can get them out if they start to feel uncomforatble. A long day spend overheating at convention is my main concern when designing cosplays and having practical and appreciable options like these are always a thing to look out for!
Arkan Cosplay NCR Ranger Full Cosplay
I've done quite a few of these, Kao's being tasked with larger sewing duties, and I find it rewarding to get them done. Really clear your mind to get the right parts assembled and handsewn in some places!
What's next on this one set then?
Well I've made the Ranger Sequoia and I can't tell you how proud I am of this one. Took so much hours and headache 3D modeling, printing and painting! But now I'm all set and Kao's like them enough so I can give them to her so I can make something else instead! We've also made their holster and engraved the very first one. Story goes like this: "Can you make a holster for the R.S? -Yes, and we can work on leather and engrave it! -Awesome, I'll take both!" and that's how we got to work on leather and fall in love with the material. It's expensive foam, really!
Arkan COsplay First Ranger Sequoia
  Arkan COsplay First Ranger Sequoia Leather Holster
Next thing I'd really like to finish someday is the Anti Material Riffle from Fallout New Vegas. Our Ranger really crave it, though I do not own our last version so I'd have to redo an entire cosplay just for this bit. Sounds about right?
Having more pouches and miscs all over would be neat. I'm thinking leather and fabric pouches for a steel flask and some map and magazines? And a Holster for a melee weapon. Hey, if you want one of these just send us a message though, because that'll be a dream I could fulfill since I don't take much time for myself!
I think that's it for this build! We hope you liked the pictures and story behing it! I'll see you soon for our Nick Valentine's build next! Have a wonderful day!

Lescargotgraphe picture of Arkan in Full first NCR Ranger Cosplay at Toulouse Game Show 2017
Picture by Lescargographe at the TGS 2017


  • Arkan

    @Haydn Patterns are self drafted from personnal bodice and completed with old dusters references (there are more avaible online now and these type of pattern are easier to come by nowadays!). As for the price, it is an information that we will keep to ourselves as a business and I’m sure you’ll understand why! Once you’ve got a pattern you should be able to identify how much materials you need, should it be fabric or leather, as well as other supplies!

    I hope this helps!

  • Haydn

    Hey there. I’m thinking of making my own NCR Veteran Ranger cosplay but I think my biggest challenge is going to be the duster. How much did it cost to make and do you have any instructions or templates?

  • Elena Seller

    Ver nice blog ncr ranger coat

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