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NorthEast Ultrasabers vs. Park Sabers

Discussion in 'FanForce' started by quigonschuel, Jul 20, 2012.

  1. quigonschuel Jedi Master

    How has everyone's experiences with these 2 sabersmiths been, customer service wise?

    I have not dealt with Park Sabers as of yet, but I have found Ultrasabers to respond VERY slowly to PM's or emails I have sent them with basic questions. I have heard and seen some disturbing things online as well about their work; bad wiring work, copious amounts of glue holding LED assemblies together, etc.

    I just want to make sure I made a good choice...
  2. JDuffPhoto Jedi Knight

    I'm currently fixing an Ultrasaber for one of our members. Not really that impressed with their wiring once i opened it up. This one overheated and left part of the resistor fused with the plastic battery holder, burn marks along the shrink tube covering the switch, poor design for the LED holder and nothing securely holding the LED holder/lens in place within the hilt. There isn't much of a heatsink and no thermal tape holding the LED to the heatsink. There are drilled and tapped holes to screw the LED star in place, but they weren't being used.

    I'm happy with my Ultrasaber, but it was purchased a few years ago prior to the drama that took place and the reports of poor construction.

    I haven't dealt with Park sabers, but from what I hear, they have a good reputation and I now that there are members of the NorthRidge who have them and are happy with them. I am an advocate for "build it yourself" sabers and I use parts from the Custom Saber Shop. Using their site, you can design and build it yourself, or I would be very willing to help out with constructing one if you aren't familiar with wiring. At this point, I would say stunt sabers only, as the cost of sound boards are not cheap and I have only successfully built one (my personal saber) with a fully working board in it. Stunt sabers are very easy to assemble and the cost is comparable to Ultrasabers higher end hilts. The real difference is, you can design your saber, you will know all there is to know about your saber, and if it breaks and you will know exactly how to fix it...and if not, I will.
  3. JDuffPhoto Jedi Knight

    That said, if you're looking for a Qui-Gon styled saber, unfortunately, the Custom Saber Shop doesn't carry those parts and only certain sabersmiths (VadersVault, JQ Sabers, and to a lesser extent, Parks and Ultrasabers) would have them or something relatively close. VV has had a run in progress for the most accurately detailed working version of Qui-Gon's saber. Of course, you will pay for what you get, and with VV, you will get alot.
  4. quigonschuel Jedi Master

    I have already purchased The Consular from Ultrasabers - it will be arriving Wednesday, but not in time for the library gig. It was affordable as affordable goes, I guess. It's got the Obsidian sound board in it, and as such it needed the LiIon Setup with Buck Puck (charger and batteries included). Once I get it I will look at the guts and see what I got. This will most likely be my starter lightsaber.

    I WILL definitely look into Vaders Vault for the next saber purchase, along with the other aforementioned sources.
  5. BPStoyle Jedi Master

    I own one Parksaber and while it is gorgeous I likely won't be getting another anytime soon. It's a nice product. I can't argue that. It functions well. They are smaller with thinner blades. Depending on the character this will likely mean a more accurate hilt overall. It can actually be brighter in some situations than an Ultrasaber. For having a great looking saber that one can pose for photos with in any lighting conditions, this is very very nice.

    It's also very very expensive. The base models are just shy of $300, not including shipping. Not including batteries (expensive camera batteries, not your standard AA/AAA fare, and the saber WILL eat the batteries up if you leave them in the saber when not in use). Most are closer to the $400-600 range. Now, to be fair, this is a nice product and I get that since they are not exactly mass produced they will cost more, but it's a decent investment. There is also no chance for sound.

    For what I do with the North Ridge, my Parks has mostly become my belt hanger saber. It got a little beat up in my house fire last spring so I don't mind if it ever would fall off the belt hook (since Original Trilogy folks didn't have the benefits of the Covertec Clip). :p The saber also activates by the moisture in my hand...and I play a character that wears one glove. Limits what I can do with the saber. Additionally, while the saber (reportedly) can be dueled with, it's built with a string of LEDs which tend to break quicker than hollow bladed sabers. For what we do with the dueling shows, this may not be the best of options. Granted, it's a removable blade, so if the blade would ever break, it could be replaced.

    Shipping time is another big factor. Parks takes "up to 12 weeks" but in all honesty you need to stay on them to make sure it gets out in that time. I was respectful and diligent and got my saber in 14 weeks. Then it had to be sent back due to a wiring issue.

    I would recommend them over someplace like SaberForge, but not necessarily over Ultrasabers, depending on what your needs are for the end use of the lightsaber you want to get.
  6. JDuffPhoto Jedi Knight

    I would be very interested in seeing the obsidian saber. The soundboard has me curious with the features, but the fact that it doesn't have any setting to fade the blade on or off deters me from buying one at the moment. I am curious about the USB feature and how customizable the saber is.
  7. JediXXL Jedi Master

    I have had at one time or another 10 different Parks Sabers, and Still have one. They are extremely durable and you can fight with them.
    At one time they were the pinnacle of technology, but sadly the new styled projection LED units blow them out of the water...

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