Lightsabers & Blasters EL lightsaber

Discussion in 'Costuming and Props' started by McLean, Jan 14, 2004.

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Moderators: Commander-DWH
  1. zhi-don_aquintas Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 17, 2002
    star 4
    as i said, i dont think pvc or plastic is going to work for the blade sleeve. i think im going to have to visit a place that sells metal and buy a length of aluminum tuding and hope we can find one with a hole that is close to the blade size.
  2. krillindb Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 5, 2002
    star 1
    I used PVC for my blade sleve. It works very well actually. No cracking or anything. I drilled a hole that a nut could fit into and left enough material on the inside of teh pvc that the nut wouldnt fall through. I simply placed a smaller piece of pvc ofer that and it fit perfectly into the hilt while holding the nut in place. Then i drilled a small hole big enough for the thumb screw to go through. That way I could secure the blade. It all works very well.
  3. Jedi-Loreen Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 2, 2002
    star 4
    Yeah, he knows that's how I did mine, in a very similar fashion. He's looking for something a bit more sustantial, though. He's got his heart set on metal. We've talked about getting some aluminum stock of the right outside diameter and having it drilled (milled?) out for the blades and inverter connectors. Then I'll have to drill and tap threads for various screws in the appropriate places.

    He wants to see what other people have come up with, too, to get more ideas.

    I'm his friend and partner at teaching our local lightsaber building classes.
  4. LukeSkiewalker Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2003
    star 4
    Oh [face_blush]. I didn't realize that. I just figured I would repost it in case he didn't read it. ;)
  5. Wes_Janson Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 17, 2004
    star 5
    What method is recomended for attaching the blade into the hilt ?
  6. Jaareth Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 23, 2004
    star 1
    dont know if anyone is interested...heres a link to a page im making of my M2 and my costume..currently only the lightsaber is posted..but it might answer some questions for people with them. :)

    http://www.geocities.com/kefremthemagus/JaarethNoanebb.html
  7. Wes_Janson Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 17, 2004
    star 5
    Cool looking pics.

    Does attaching the blade to the inner tube (through the mono plug, or whatever plug is used), then using a screw to hold the blade from sliing out work ? thats what I was thinking of doing.
  8. Jaareth Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 23, 2004
    star 1
    yes...you can see from the front view..the brass thumbscrew that presses down on the blade. It holds it very securely and wont come out once tightened down.

    In other news..i added my character history on the main page :)
  9. Wes_Janson Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 17, 2004
    star 5
    Yeah, I saw that. Looks like the plug goes in, and holds it, and the screw holds the metal ring at the bottom of the blade.

    Im going to do something similar, but Im using a Neon light as the blade, so maybe something slightly differnt.

    Im going to see if I can get a neon tube that has a lightbulb style adapter, then I can put a female connector in the hild, and have a basic thumb screw to keep it from loosening.
  10. Jaareth Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 23, 2004
    star 1
    hmmm...neon...im not sure how durable that will be..youll need glass..as i dont think much else can endure the heat from the neon lit up...and that will make it un-duelable wont it?
  11. zhi-don_aquintas Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 17, 2002
    star 4
    i have a parks saber also. they are the most durable and strong lightsaber that you can own. my only objection is the led indicator box. it was in the way on my rogue when i was dueling. park sabers, i know having dismatled mine, have an inner and an outer aluminum tube. the inner tube is the part that i need to fabricate, find, make, whatever. i just think plastic or pvc would be a little to weak to make that section out of. we are going to a metal store on saturday to see what we can find. i would ideally [like this really would happen] would like to find aluminum with an little less than a 1 1/2 inch diameter and one a little less than 1 1/4 diameter. the hole the center should fit an EL blade snugly but not too snug. if i can find this stuff then making the saber would be infinately easier.

    thanks lori for clearing up just who and what i am. i would never have done as well as i have without your help. thanks again partner.
  12. Wes_Janson Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 17, 2004
    star 5
    Yeah, I know neon glass is weak, but Im going for looks, not dualing.
  13. Darth_Reynn Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 16, 2004
    Hi everyone, this is my first time posting but I have been reading the board for some time now. After finding this board, I decided that I wanted to give building a lightsaber a try. First let me say that I got so many ideas from reading all the posts, so thanks to everyone who shared info on their projects.

    I did an experiment that I wanted to share with everyone. I ordered my driver and el wire from coolneon.com soldered it up and put the 9V battery on it, I was a little disappointed in the brightness(I am using aqua for my first saber). Well I read on the description of the driver that it accepts 9-14v so I began by rigging up the batterys in a series using a small battery box from Radio Shack. (a series is where you put the + side of the first battery to the - side of the second battery and use the negative of the first and + of the second to power whatever, it combines their voltage like two 9v become one 18v). So I used two 9V batteries to get 18V going into the driver (I got the pipsqueak driver from them), I let it run for an hour and a half (supervised of course)and the driver did not heat up at all, I don't know what it would mean to the life of the wire or the driver, but the brightness is much better. So if anyone tries this please know that there is the possibility the you could fry your driver or the EL wire. (ie please don't blame me if something goes wrong) I just wanted to share my experience with yall because I've gotten so many ideas from this forum.
  14. TheWizard Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Mar 15, 2004
    "How thick is the foam difuser in the FX Vader? Do you think it is possible to replace it with something thinner to make the saber brighter?"

    I got to get an even closer look at how the blades for the FX Vader are made because we shortened two of them buy about 3 inches a couple of days ago, my friend bought two and has attached them together to make a Darth Maul saber, as they were they were too long so we shortened them.

    The center is a strip of clear plastic red lighting LEDs each with a diffuser, they're held together in a thin strip of flexible circuitboard that looks like a ladder with each LED on a 'rung', down each side both front and back are the lines/wires that connect to the LEDs.
    The 'ladder' of LEDs is then housed in a long piece of round foam tubing to hold the LEDs in the dead center and to also diffuse the light, if you were to replace the foam with thinner stuff you wouldn't get any brighness increase and you'd lose the effect of one long cylinder of light because you'd see the darker spots inbetween the LEDs.
    The foam tube then goes into the polycarbonate (I think) blade but inbetween the foam and the clear blade is yet another thin white plastic tube as a 3rd 'layer' of diffusion.



    ANYWAY back to what this thread is about, EL sabers, I just did some searching for some EL paper to buy to make my own saber (I'd prefer paper over wire, my FX Luke saber looks amazing with it's EL paper) and I found this site:

    http://www.beingseen.com/

    Specifically the EL Flatlight, check out the page 5 link.
    On the sales paget they have "EL SABER BLADE KIT" but the price is absolutely hideous, there is a section for "even wider EL flatlight" which has 3 inch wide EL
    paper which would be suitable for a blade, the price doesn't seem too bad either.
  15. TheWizard Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Mar 15, 2004
    I just figured something out with the Master Replicas FX sabers, after snapping a wire going to the main switch (no problem, I'll get the soldering iron out in a mo) I found I couldn't turn it off, switching it to OFF did nothing but switching it to ON did the power-up sequence, it appears the switch is just a state changer not an actual power switch so when batteries are in it they're being slowly drained all the time.

    Can't believe I didn't figure that out before...
  16. TheGreyJedi Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2004
    I've just recently stumbled across this forum, and am quite intrigued. I'd determined that I'm going to make my own EL saber!

    However, I do have some questions.

    Jedi_Loreen: Is there much size difference between the mini 9V inverter and the 12V inverter offered by El Wire Cheap? I want a really bright blade, and I'd like to use the more powerful inverter. Of course, I COULD go really old school and have the cord to the belt mounted power pack that, from what I've heard, is the way the old old old old sabers were. That could be all hooey.

    TheWizard: With the EL tape, do you know how the tape is put into the polycarbonate tube? Is it just slid right down the middle or is it coiled around an inner tube?
  17. Wes_Janson Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Mar 17, 2004
    star 5
    Yeah, setups like that are annoying. Whatever kind of setup I use in mine will simply turn the power on or off.


    My dilema is that Im wanting to use the circut guts of an old toy saber, and I'd have to setup the saber so it gets triggerd (for the sound effects) at the sabe time as the switch for the blade itself.

    What I'll proably do is put the two switches sidebyside and rig it so they get hot by a single main switch on the outside.




    Also, is there any circutry you can buy that has saber sound effects, along with some kind of movement sensor so you can get the sound effects of just swinging it real easily ?




    Also, how does this sound.

    I have a peice of quartz crystal, would it look good to maybe have it in the hilt of the saber, and make a 90 degree slice maybe an inch high at most showing the crystal. Maybe also adding in a single Led bulb the color of the blade behind the crystal, maybe some defuseing material as well, so when I ignite the saber, you see a focusing crstal lit up./>/>
  18. TheWizard Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Mar 15, 2004
    The EL paper isn't held in by anything other than it's own springyness, the center of the tube is just air, it's like a thin sheet of plastic that naturally wants to be flat so when you curl it inside a tube it stays put.

    I just found this website when google searching for "el lightsaber": http://www.zapwizard.com/Lightsaber/Version2/
    It's cool to see how people come up with new ways of making these things (bet it weighs a ton when you swing it around with that metal rod down the center!)
  19. SupremeJedilordLuke Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2004
    hey everyone this is the first time im posting here

    i found a page on this board with the help of another search engine some time ago.i cant find it now.it had a few replies as to how to build it from scratch.can anyone help me -can someone please teach me or direct me to the page


    Thanx

  20. TheGreyJedi Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2004
    So was it coiled up like a spring or just bent around so it made a long tube of EL Paper. I was pondering the idea in the midst of insomniatic sleeplessness and the tube seems to be the logical choice there.
  21. TheWizard Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Mar 15, 2004
    No spring emulation, it's a strip that's approximately 2.5 inches wide by 33 inches long that bends round to form a tube.
  22. TheGreyJedi Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2004
    Does anyone know the thickness of the High Brightness EL wire? I can't find it on the site. And does anyone know where I can get EL tape?
  23. TheGreyJedi Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2004
    Nevermind on that last post, I just didn't look around enough for the diameter. Which is 2.5mm just so we all can see and know. I wish I could find EL tape, but I'm just too lazy at this point, and the High Bright Long Life wire from Coolight.com should do just fine. I find it amazing how inexpensive the blades are to build, at least compared to buying them from someone else. The hilts, on the other hand, are another subject entirely.
  24. unknownjedi Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 18, 2004
    i dont know if someone has posted this or not but anyways..........what type of inverter should i use to fit it into a saber. I saw that they had several at elwirecheap.com.
  25. TheGreyJedi Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2004
    9 volt inverter, just have to make sure it's small enough to fit into the hilt.
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