Lightsabers & Blasters Jedi-Loreen's EL Lightsaber Blade Tutorial

Discussion in 'Costuming and Props' started by Jedi-Loreen, May 6, 2004.

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  1. Jedi-Loreen Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 2, 2002
    star 4
    Why would you want to do multiple strands? [face_thinking] For using different colors? That doesn't work too well, if the different colors are going to be lit at the same time.
  2. GeluKhanGharr Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 1
    Multi strand, or rather dual-strand would go the same way, just tie both wires within the flanges. The copper attached part would be common, only the cores would separate to a stereo plug.
  3. McKnett Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2005
    I'm laying 5 or 6 three foot strands of 2.3mm EL soldered to the same microphone plug in one tube. All the same color.
  4. Jedi-Loreen Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 2, 2002
    star 4
    Ok, I don't know why you would want to do it that way, when you could bend the strands using one piece. Why aren't you using the High Brightness wire?

    The more strands you use, the more connections you have that could fail. That's the way I see it. I've done multiple strands before, and don't really want to do it that way anymore.
  5. McKnett Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2005
    I'm just the novice blade builder, Ms. Master. I'm having a lot of fun with the handles and like being able to swap blades between them (call it accessorizing). As for the EL, I guess I really hadn't thought about it. I have bent some, but it seems easier to get the individual strands to cooperate. While I haven't had any trouble with the connections once the blade is complete (yes, broken connections during assembly when things are tight (knowing how you feel about that ;) ) it does seem like the copper tape would make this less likely.

    I have another blade to build - I'll try the single strand approach and see how it goes.
  6. LAN-ED-TUL Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2005
    star 4
    i have just purchased the 4khz inverter from strydur's customsabershop. i have bought a previous order of his 2 khz inverter and some miscelaneous things along with a blue el 40 inch blade kit. i just want to say, if i ever need el stuff, i now know where to go. his stuff is absolutely fantastic. he does great work.

    i have a previous saber to which i implanted a lightechindustries kit into it. but i much prefer the stoutness of strydur's blades. a lil bit harder to shove the el wire all up into, but lots studier blade once done.

    i have a new project im working on now, im taking a real graflex and using the graflex shops aluminum el/led core part, going to get his led kit, gotta save up for that, but for now, i'll use the 4 khz inverter im getting now, to make a ESB luke saber. i found the red button thumbscrews over at jedigear.com and got one for the tension knob for blade.

    it looks great on there. and with the switch i got a small lil switch that fits under the red button on top of the saber, the one by the ears, and pushing in on that button works the switch underneath. very nice. no extra knobs or nothing showing and sticking out here and there. everything hidden. i also want to put a sound board, which i got at wally world and promptly gutted for sound stuff. it was the color change anakin one. i figured out , before i ever read this forum, about the lil sensor deal. i disconnected it from the lil board with all the leds on it. and epoxied it to edge of sound board after resoldering the wires, the right ones, back to leads. it works just fine. and the speaker fits perfectly into thre bottom tube.

    i tested this in a blank old bottom graflex replica tube. i drilled some holes for sound in bottom. then stuck the speaker down in and slid the card in. then hoking up 3 double aaa bateries. powered it on. tapping the tube resulted in blade clash sounds like it should. and the sound volume was pretty loud too. i was surprised just how loud.

    my problem is now, im not sure if i'll have the room for a duece 9 el/led setup and the sound card. as someone mentioned before, i wont have the problem of making the el work with the sound without a seperate switch. cause the led blade kit im getting has the microcontroller with a place to wire in the sound card. he told me to hook the sound card switch to it. so when it powers up, so will the sound at the same time. but, i have to hook up a seperate power source for it.

    i think all will fit except for finding some way of getting 4.5 volts to power the sound board in there. 2 9 volts wont fit in side to side so they'll have to go in end to end. now there might be enough space above them laying in there for a triple A battery box, which would give me the 4.5 volts. i'll have to wait till i get strydur's 4 khz inverter here and hook up the monojack and see how much room is there for 1 9 volt with his inverter single 9 hookup. that should give me an idea then how much room is left. i will go down to radio shack and buy a triple a battery holder and see if that fits, maybe see what kind of other holders that are small enough to fit and produce 4.5 volts.

    scott
  7. GeluKhanGharr Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 1
    Hey Scott,

    Just get a voltage regulator instead of the battery holder. I power my EL at 18 volts and run the sound off of the same two 9 volts batteries. radio Shack has a nice voltage regulator that brings anything up to 40 volts down to 5 for under $2. I power my EL through a reed relay directly off of the batteries, with the relay controled by the LED wires from the sound card. So all I have is one switch, the momentary kind that activates the sound module powered through the regulator at 5 volts, and the sound module in turn activates (through the former LED wires)the reed relay that closes the circuit for the 18 volts to the inverter. Sweet, no?
  8. GeluKhanGharr Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 1
    Oh, yeah, one more thing about sound modules from butchered Hasbros - they are activated by a momentary switch. If you use an on/off switch instead - the kind of switch your controler would provide - your sound will switch off at the first clash. The switch has to be momentary, not permanent. Your module would work nice with a MR sound board, but that's mucho money.
  9. Luke_SkyMarcher Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2005
    I did forget to post that I had figured out how to get the diffuser in by sanding it - thanks, though:)

    A friend of mine has a daughter who had a 13th birthday yesterday. She had me make a yellow lightsaber, with a byb style 2 handle. She (her daughter) was so suprised, because she had no idea I was making them!
  10. NJOSaberSmith Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Oct 9, 2005
    I've built 3 so far using blade kits from TCSS and improvised hilts. It's really worth the aggrivation, burns, shocks, pricked fingers, shattered dremel disks....when a child gazes in total wonderment at their new 'saber. I totally butchered my latest one and feel bad for having rushed it. But I got a call on my phone from my friend's son saying thanks and wow and how he needed to change the battery already. I told him to keep it away from his dad and it would last longer!
    -Erik
  11. McKnett Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2005
    Jedi-Loreen

    Just FYI...one of my multi-strand blades was used on a pinata Saturday - the pinata was decimated and the blade still lights (I know, I'm just lucky...but I'll take it :)) I haven't had time to build the single strand blade - too busy sewing costumes.

    I'll have to post some pictures of the blades and handles (along with the the young Jedi and his brother the Imperial Navy Admiral in full costume just for the fun of it)

    By the way, thanks for all your efforts here - you've made it easy!
  12. Strydur Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 9, 2005
    star 2
    Glad to hear everyones sabers are turning out nice. It feels really good to see the smiles on your kids faces and to know you built it. My son took a saber to school as part of his halloween costume and everyone just flocks to it.

    How many of you have tried the 4k at 18v? I still havent tried it myself[face_worried]
  13. GeluKhanGharr Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 1
    I have built several hilts and have had nice response to them, but I'd like the input of the experts. So, could you have a look here and tell me what you think? I need speciffic pointers - that was good, and that was bad. Numbers 3 and 4 are non-functional, just to hang on the belt, but all the rest are EL. Numbers 5 and 11 also have sound modules from butchered Hasbros. Someone bought one of my hilts and told me they like it better than a parks. Now that was a compliment! I called that picture betterthanparks.jpg. Your opinion on that would be nice too. I think they exagerated. I've seen Jeff's sabers. They are awsome.

    And talking about kids - that's how I got started, my son wanted a Yoda saber for Halloween. But he likes the purple blade better, so he calls himself Yoda-Windu. I made him a 24 inch blade, but that was too heavy for him, so now he has a 12 inch blade. It is a blast to see him doing an impression of Yoda in his fight with Dooku. See the pic of that hilt too. The hilt has evolved since I took the picture, and it is now an almost exact replica. When I get my .45 and have all the dimensions I'll make it even better. Strydur's custom emitter was better than I've dreamed it could be done. The force is strong with this one.
  14. Amanita Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 12, 2003
    star 2
    With a little help from my dad, I completed my first saber and 2 EL blades.
    I used a BYB hilt, I think it was a style 2 or 3.
    However, I found that it balances better with a 24" blade instead of the 36" kit that I bought from Strydur. A heavier weight at the pommel end would help with this.
    The saber helped me win one costume contest, and wowed patrons at another event. Sadly, I didn't win that contest, since it was audience voting, and they only voted for sexy costumes and for some guy who tore his shirt and pulled down his pants- a total sleaze-fest that I was disgusted with and embarrassed by.

    But other than that, I'm going to continue with the sabers, although I really must see about getting a few parts custom built.
  15. GeluKhanGharr Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 1
    Here's my little Yoda, tired from trik-or-treating
    [image=http://www.saloncatalina.com/images/tired%20from%20trickortreating.JPG]
  16. Strydur Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 9, 2005
    star 2
  17. Luke_SkyMarcher Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2005
    cool hilts! you were one of those who had creativity enough to make your own designs... I have yet to gather the courage (or the money:p) for that. One thing you might want to do is try to have as little extraneous objects as possible. I personally don't mind having a switchbox in the middle of my hilt, but some people think it gets in the way. Also, "enlarging" a drill bit with duct tape to put the tube on, and spinning it on a drill while running sandpaper (I like about 110) over it can give a great look. Just be careful you don't go to long, or you'l start seeing brass underneath:eek: Your hilts do look great, though. Keep up the good work!

    -Luke
  18. GeluKhanGharr Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 1
    Thanks Luke! I did it, I sanded a tube like you suggested and it looks awsome. As for switch boxes, I agree, they are bulky and get in the way, but it's really hard to find room for switches when you install a sound module. I'll keep trying.
  19. ntyatecafe Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Hi all!

    I must say, great tutorial Jedi-Loreen! After reading it, the madness took hold and I now find myself with various components in route so I can try my own hand at it! :)

    Just a quick question, and I apologize if it has been mentioned before (I looked but didn't see it). Is the Classic Pipsqueek driver 2khz? I couldn't seem to find that anywhere. Is there a more recommended driver any of you blade-building (and wielding) masters would suggest?

    Thanks all!
  20. Jedi-Loreen Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 2, 2002
    star 4
    Yes, the Pipsqueak inverter I recommended is 2khz, though I think there is another one with a different frequency.

    Strydur now has a 4khz inverter at his site that is supposed to be 35% brighter, but I haven't tried one of those yet.
  21. JEDI-DAD2 Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    The 4Khz inverters are really bright.
  22. ntyatecafe Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Thanks for the response...I can't wait to try it out!

    One more question (since I can't find a thread on hilts that isn't locked)... What are some of the ways y'all (yes, I'm from the south) connect the mono plug (female) inside the hilt? How do you attach it on the inside?
  23. master-Corran-horn Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2005
    star 1
    Ntyatecafe, if you look back through the thread, you will find diagrams that show how. Also Stryder's website has those in his tutorials,[face_thinking] I think. I'm from the south also, Jedi-Loreen brought it to my attention just now to show it in my bio.(Thanks Loreen;) ) But I've just about done away with "ya'll" from my vocabulary. It seems it sounds just like the start of a derogatory comment in my wife's native language lol. I had forgotten about that. She used to look very funny when everyone said that around her. Where we live now, (still in Al.) we don't really hear it anymore anyway.
  24. Jedi-Loreen Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 2, 2002
    star 4
    I think a lot of people, especially the new ones, don't even know that they have a profile. :rolleyes: There's nothing in there but their User Ids and post counts and log in dates. [face_whistling]
  25. master-Corran-horn Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2005
    star 1
    :eek: Hey I just checked your bio, and it didn't mention California.[face_whistling] It says USA just like mine used to.:D Hummmmmmmmmm, I wonder who brought that to my attention.:p


    Oh yeah, I've been meaning to ask, what does that watched users mean? And I found that drooling face you mentioned=P~ it's right above hypnotized [face_hypnotized]
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