Daft Punk helmet design tutorial

Designed in Siemens NX6

I was asked to make tutorial of design of DAFT PUNK helmet. Now i finished it and here it is, so you can make this helmet too. Model is free for download from this page.

This tutorial do not cover electronics and assembly details, just how to model plastic parts of helmet.

To start this tutorial, open new part.

I imported head model, but I made mistake and used large head instead normal so this whole helmet is oversized. To make it good it is best to measure your head and to make model according to those measures, that way helmet will fit you good.

So here is a head, and we can start.

Now add first sketch in vertical plane, as you can see measures are oversized. Ral head is about 10-15% smaller (if you are not 2m high and have 150 kg), anyway this is how sketch should look like, just edit numbers so your head fit inside this sketch.

Now second sketch:
Same as first sketch this one is little oversized, so be careful with dimensions.

Now we have two basic sketches, and now we will start making shape of this helmet. First make two extrusions based on these two sketches. From vertical sketch make normal extrusion, and from horizontal make it drafted for 5-15°.

Now use Insert>Mesh Surface>Through Curves command. This is fun part, as you can play with this command and get various shapes just by using different options in drop down menu. You can play a little with editing these extrusions to get different shapes of through curves surface.

Note that I didn't use tangent to second extrusion surface, after fey tryouts I found that this is best shape for this helmet.

Now we will trim this shape before adding thickness on it. I draw a line parael to X axes, from corner of shape, so I can use that line as axe for my datum plane. Through that line make a datum plane at angle of 13-15 ° from XY plane.

Make new datum pane parallel to one we just made, and on 15mm distance from it, and use it to trim shape we got with through curves command.

We can offset this shape to get first part of our model. This will be part of helmet that come right next to our head, so you need to offset it from your head to make place for comfort liners, and to make it in thickness of plastic you will use for this part. Use Insert>Offset/Scale>Thicken command.

Now we have to make openings for your nose and eyes. Make new sketch that look like this:

Part of sketch that come near face is optional, and it size and shape depend on type of stripes you will use for this helmet. Be careful to make enough room that you can put your head in this helmet!

After making this sketch, make extrusion of it and use intersection Boolean option with head shape made with thicken command.

We will start making outer shape of helmet. Use Thicken command again.

NOTE: for all thicken commands in this tutorial we will use Through Curves surface shape as base shape.

If you know how much space electronics equipment for this helmet will take then make outer offset to your calculations, and inner offset is smaller for thickness of plastic you will use to make this helmet.

We will trim this part 3 millimeters less then inner part but you can make it as you like.

New sketch, this define all outer shapes. We will call it Main Sketch in this tutorial

Now extrude part of outer lines of sketch that define shape of helmet

I use offset to surfaces that are almost tangent to gray colored shape so we do not have problems with Boolean functions on it.

And we use intersect command on it to make shape of helmet.

So far this is what we have:

New Thicken, this one is for back side of helmet.

New sketch with shape of back side of helmet:

Again intersection of these two parts to get what we need:

For now we have part that come near head, outer shape of helmet and back side of helmet. Before we make glass or transparent plastic part, we need to make outlets that will support transparent part of helmet.

New Thicken, this time first offset have to be for thickness of plastic smaller of outer shape, and second offset for same amount smaller then first offset.

This is what we get:

Now use lines of Main Sketch to make sheet extrusion

Add Thickness to this sheet. First offset is with how much material it will be joint to outer shape of helmet and second offset is how large outlet will be. I think that depend on type of connection you will use to join helmet and “glass”.

Now intersection of last two features:

Here you can see how this outlet look when finished:

Now “glass” (this will be some kind of transparent plastic, but I will call it “glass”) Thickness. It have to be same as outer shape of helmet.

Trimmed with same sheet we used to make outlet feature.

Now we need to make “ears” and colored lights to finish this tutorial.

One more time make Thickness, offset for this one depend on how you will make colored lights, so I made it only 1mm. you will have to make it in size of boxes you will put lights in. Dimensions of this Thickness is all up to your design!

I made it to touch outlet for “glass”, you can make it to touch “glass” or you can left space between…it's all up to your design.

We have to cut out center section of this part, make a sketch with rectangle, width of rectangle should be big enough so you can have good sight from this helmet, so I think minimal should be as width of outer corners of your eyes, or width of your temples.

Extrude this sketch and subtract feature you get from thickness feature you made earlier.

As this part of design is depending on your solution of light boxes, I will use sheet I used for outlets to trim it. You will use some other construction feature depending on your light box design!

Now we will make “ears” for this helmet.
To do it we need to make some planes and to make planes we need new sketch in XZ plane (in this case I know it is plane of maximum curve of this model so I will use this plane, in case you do not know where is maximum you will have to find it first and then to make sketch trough that plane). This time you have to use Intersection Curve command to add intersection line of sketch plane and outer helmet shape (gley dot-dash line). Now draw two lines one horizontal and one vertical, this lines will help you to find where the point of maximum distance of model from YZ plane is. Make vertical line tangent to intersection curve, and make horizontal line touch vertical line in intersection point of vertical and intersection curve. Now exit sketch.

To make this plane in one click you just select ending point of horizontal line, that way datum pane command will have both axes and point for new plane.

Make new plane on some distance (and parallel to) from previous one.

We will now use Main Sketch.  We will use it to make “ears”.

Now use outer ear line to make extrusion.

Trim extrusion with outer surface of helmet.

And with last plane we created.

Draft new feature from plane that is tangent to helmet outer surface (plane we got from sketch line)

Unite this feature to helmet.

Now make new extrusion of second “ear” curve from sketch we used in previous step. This extrusion will be From Extended, select plane that we use to trim previous feature, for end put any distance that get new extrusion out of helmet parts we have so far.

Now make offset of side of feature closer to helmet, this feature we will subtract from helmet so we get pocket, enter offset value you like.

Now subtract new feature from helmet.

So we now have pocket:

Draft that pocket a little,

To get this:

Now extrude circle form sketch, make it start on face of pocket and end it where you like.

Now draft that extrusion;

Unite it with helmet and we are almost finished with outer helmet shape;

Blend some of sharp edges a little;

I forgot to unite helmet with outlet, so I will do it now.

Make shell of helmet. I used 3mm, it is the plastic thickness I used for all parts of outer helmet shape.

Now we will cut part that represents lights. Make planes from axes that come trough center of circular shape of “ear”, how many and at what angle depend on your design of light boxes.

Use Split Body command to make different colored boxes.

I colored spitted parts.

Use Insert>Associative Copy>Instance Geometry to make mirror of all solid bodies we made so far.

And we are done with this tutorial!

I hope you had fun!

As fun is most important part of everything we do!

If you produce this helmet using this tutorial please send me images so I can add them to this post!

Thank YOU for staying with me till the end! !


  1. I need a Daft Punk helmet cad file. Is there anyway I can get one from you?

  2. you can downland CAD files on next post http://cad-unigraphics-projects.blogspot.com/2011/08/daft-punk-3d-model-free-cad-download.html

  3. i need an application to download either model what application do i need

  4. download SolidWorks eDrawings 2011, it is free viewer for 3D CAD files in .stp and .igs formats, you can open few more formats with it :)

  5. can i have the solid works version of your file?

  6. Sorry Eagon, I can't convert this model to SolidWorks format, NX can't do that, and I do not have SW installed to try to recreate it in SW...

  7. i am an beginer in nx, can u give any moderate drawings for practice.
    my id balaji.c.aero@gmail.com

    it will be helpfull for me

  8. Alright im going to machine out your model at a small 3inch scale and then use your tutorial next semester to make my own full scale thanks! can you make a tutorial on how to make a thomas bangalter helmet too?

    1. Hi Eagon, have you done it? Can you share some images?

  9. sorry EAGON i do not have time for that model right now. i had plans to make that one too, but too much other things to do :)

  10. Can you please tell me where i can download a head shape like the one you used?

    1. I can't believe i actually skipped whole year without answering...

      sorry, i can send it to you if you need it after such a long time.

  11. hello
    i m french and a work in cnc machin
    look my projet





    1. Nice video!
      did you made CAD model yourself or just work on CAM?

  12. hello Ivan
    i have topsolidcam7
    i work cao and cam

  13. I ripped of the Daft Punk Helmet pretty quick my sketches are not as nice as yours, but it turned out ok. pic.twitter.com/oydLHHAuSX

    1. nice model, looks great. what software you used to make this model?

    2. Unigraphics NX 7.5

    3. Nice!
      You are pro or student?

    4. I took Mechanical Engineering 3 year advanced course. I finished in 2007. I just play around with Unigraphics on my spare time to keep my cad skills sharp.

  14. Info on Jewelry design CAD software , Rhino and Flamingo,how do you like them?

    Solidworks Course

  15. http://youtu.be/GpiyT2DBLSM

    Thank you for link Tim!!

  16. http://youtu.be/GpiyT2DBLSM

    Thank you for link Tim!!

  17. Hey Ivan, I was wondering if you could tell me where I could find small, medium and large head models (preferably for Solidworks)

  18. Hey Ivan,

    I was wondering if you knew where I could get a head model like that? Preferably for SolidWorks and it would be great if there were small medium and large sizes

    1. Hello Jeremy, I got this from my friend, and he told me that he made this head models in NX. So i do not have any other format but NX part. I will try to convert this to parasolid or iges and to put them on my blog, but sometimes this kind of models become huge and useless if you convert them to parasolid, i will see how it will come out.

  19. This is a minor comment about the structure of the AEC (UK) BIM Protocols. The way in which the sections are numbered the same in all documents is very useful for cross referencing.

    It might be worthwhile putting a section called ‘Document Structure’ in the Introduction to explain why you have done this to ensure people don’t overlook it.

    1. Sorry but I have no idea what are you talking about?