I am….Ironman!

Fiction becomes reality after MCC student creates costume in Fab Lab


MCC student Adam Ferrier partnered with the Fab Lab to create his own Ironman suit! Pictured is Ferrier at Grand Rapids’ 2021 Comic-Con (contributed photo).

Lance Klemple, Editor

Ironman has fascinated people for years with his cherry red and gold metallic super suit, but what once was fantastical has turned into reality. Aaron Ferrier partnering with Christopher Kaminsky, Fab Lab manager at Muskegon Community College’s Lakeshore Fab Lab, created a wearable Ironman suit for roughly $500.

“I did do some electrical work, mostly just LED lights and power it through a battery pack. But I am working on some more electrical operations right now, like adding a central motor for the helmet,” said Ferrier. The central motor will help with cooling inside while being worn, especially during longer periods.

The suit’s first test drive was at Comic-Con 2021 in Grand Rapids. Though once Ferrier put on the suit for the first time, he noticed some things weren’t working.

“Mostly flexibility issues. Most of the glue and tape I used to hold it together didn’t hold too well,” Ferrier said. “The helmet was too hot to wear for long periods of time and that’s why I am prioritizing getting the motor in there to open it up for ventilation.” He hopes to continue to improve the suit’s design as time goes on.

As for the design process, Ferrier indicated he purchased the files needed for the 3D printer at MCC’s Fab Lab to create the beginnings of the suit. But before he plunged into such a large-scale project for the first time, he worked on smaller props like Thor’s hammer and his Stormbreaker ax from the Marvel franchise. “Still not knowing very much [about 3D printing] but I got some props for practice and went from there.”

After Ferrier made these smaller props, he told Kaminsky about the Ironman suit project. “I told him he was crazy,” Kaminsky said with a laugh! “But I told him it would be a lot of work.” He talked about how much time and materials went into this project, and how often they had to redo parts if they weren’t working. “It was more of a process than people think. The printing was the easy part.” Both noted how painting the suit was one of the longest processes because of the drying time and matching up the right colors.

With all the tumultuous turns that went into the suit, Kaminsky prided Ferrier on his dedication, “I could just see how passionate Aaron was. Just seeing his attitude even if things didn’t work out, he has that engineering mind.”

Pride, passion, and ingenuity went into the creation of this Ironman suit and will continue to be an inspiration for others in our community to try their own projects out at the Fab Lab. Muskegon Community College students get a special discount at the Lakeshore Fab Lab. For more information on how to get started on your personal projects, click the link below: https://www.lakeshorefablab.com/