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Author Topic: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber  (Read 6533 times)

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Offline slothfurnace

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Hello all, it's been a long time, but I thought I'd post something I built over the weekend.

Entropy Specs: Steel Russrep Obi ANH Emitter pieces, Modified TCSS Blade holder, Canon model Y Flash handle, Slothfurnace ROTJH&S Clamp card, modified TCSS pommel. Plecter Labs Prizm V5, Single 18650 battery, dual 120 LED NeoPixel Mini RGB LED Strips.



This saber won't have much of a build log for it, as it came together very fast. I had purchased a Nano Biscotte V4 and Prizm V5 boards from Plecter Labs in hopes that the NeoPixel strip support would solve a problem I had been wrestling with for another build.



While I waited for the boards to come, I pulled out the parts bins, and began seeing what I had to work with for just a test saber. It didn't have to be fancy. But it had to work and hold the NeoPixel LED blade setup and the sound board, and a speaker.



I was fiddling with some parts, seeing what looked nice together, and accidentally got a Russrep Obi ANH emitter shell stuck on the end of a TCSS blade holder. From there, I found that blade holder would fit into one end of my Canon Model Y flash, with some effort. After that I stuck the un-used piece of the Russrep Obi ANH Emitter on to the clamp end of the flash, and noticed the diameter and finish were very close to the same. I then machined various pieces to fit.



After I got all the pieces to fit, with some custom machined metal parts, I liked it so much I decided to weather it. The darkening I applied to the aluminum neck and other areas of this saber turned out nice, and it was a new method. I spun the pieces in the lathe against a fingernail buffer till it got hot enough to friction oxidize the surface.



The two brass pieces shown coming through the extension socket holes on the flash are actually one piece of hexagonal brass bar I machined a slot in, so that the two nubs left over fit through the existing holes in the flash gun. It is sitting on top of a custom pcb section with my activation and aux tactile switches. I plan to weather that brass color down to a more aged brown, or replace it with copper.



I cut down one of my ROTJH&S Clamp cards for the clamp, and machined and threaded a spot for a vintage brass thumbscrew to keep the pommel in place on the balance pipe.



Here is the plug section of the blade that interfaces with the blade socket. Center is data, three Anodes, and three cathodes. I applied the same friction oxide surface treatment that I did to the saber to this piece.



The pommel section is made up of the Canon flash clamp end, a Russrep obi ANH emitter center section in steel, and a modified TCSS pommel.



The pommel disassembled for access to the microSD card. The speaker is embedded in the aluminum cylinder that twist-locks into the Canon flash handle. It is connected through wires I've wrapped with thin style paracord. I've removed the TCSS pommel here as well to show the Russrep Balance pipe emitter piece I am using for a pommel neck.



The recharge port is still sort of a work in progress, I want to remove that nut and replace it with something more custom.



For a test saber, this turned out nice, and in only a few hours of work. Now I can get some testing of the Prizm plus NeoPixel LED blade done, and so far I think it fits the bill for the Damascus Inlay saber Exegesis I have been working on.


Offline Excelsior

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2017, 02:47:09 PM »
Very nice combination of machined and found parts! How does the Neopixel blade look with regard to overall brightness compared to a standard tri-cree XP-E2 or a classic string blade? What kind of diffusion did you use?

Offline Darth Chasm

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2017, 05:06:52 PM »
Very nice. Great OT feel to the aesthetic.

Offline Darth PJs

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2017, 09:31:37 PM »
Awesome build!

Offline slothfurnace

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2017, 08:05:38 AM »
Very nice combination of machined and found parts! How does the Neopixel blade look with regard to overall brightness compared to a standard tri-cree XP-E2 or a classic string blade? What kind of diffusion did you use?

The neopixel blade is very evenly lit from base to blade end.  It has flawless animation for extend and retract, and the blaster bolt impact features are pretty nice.

The brightness might be a tad dimmer to equal brightness at the base compared to the tri-cree method, but way brighter at the end of the blade compared to the tri-cree just based on the fact that the same amount of light is consistently emitted from base to end.

Neopixels compared to old school LED strings that I used to make?  My old strings do outshine the neopixels, but the tradeoff is as many colors as you want to define, and 14 loaded on the prizm at a time you can scroll through.

Neopixels and Plecter Labs Prizm board will be my favorite setup going forward.

Offline EXAR KUN

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2017, 11:23:45 AM »
This is a great saber! Emitter is awesome and the shape of the buttons is unique and cool.

Straight out of a movie we didn't get yet!



Offline Excelsior

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2017, 12:03:35 PM »

The neopixel blade is very evenly lit from base to blade end.  It has flawless animation for extend and retract, and the blaster bolt impact features are pretty nice.

The brightness might be a tad dimmer to equal brightness at the base compared to the tri-cree method, but way brighter at the end of the blade compared to the tri-cree just based on the fact that the same amount of light is consistently emitted from base to end.

Neopixels compared to old school LED strings that I used to make?  My old strings do outshine the neopixels, but the tradeoff is as many colors as you want to define, and 14 loaded on the prizm at a time you can scroll through.

Neopixels and Plecter Labs Prizm board will be my favorite setup going forward.


That's great to hear--thanks. You should make a video of it! I love the flawless animation of the Neopixel strips, but in the videos I've seen so far, the ignition/retraction seems to be very slow. Is this something you are able to speed up with the NBv4 or Prizm v5?

The color changing is a great feature, for sure. But I am all about brightness. If the blade overall is as bright as the base of a tri-cree blade, that's pretty good. Is there any noticeable corn cob effect? How hard is it to diffuse? I had a Hyperblade for years and never could find a way to totally eliminate the corn cob, even with multiple layers and styles of diffusion.




Offline EXAR KUN

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2017, 12:26:35 PM »

The neopixel blade is very evenly lit from base to blade end.  It has flawless animation for extend and retract, and the blaster bolt impact features are pretty nice.

The brightness might be a tad dimmer to equal brightness at the base compared to the tri-cree method, but way brighter at the end of the blade compared to the tri-cree just based on the fact that the same amount of light is consistently emitted from base to end.

Neopixels compared to old school LED strings that I used to make?  My old strings do outshine the neopixels, but the tradeoff is as many colors as you want to define, and 14 loaded on the prizm at a time you can scroll through.

Neopixels and Plecter Labs Prizm board will be my favorite setup going forward.


That's great to hear--thanks. You should make a video of it! I love the flawless animation of the Neopixel strips, but in the videos I've seen so far, the ignition/retraction seems to be very slow. Is this something you are able to speed up with the NBv4 or Prizm v5?

The color changing is a great feature, for sure. But I am all about brightness. If the blade overall is as bright as the base of a tri-cree blade, that's pretty good. Is there any noticeable corn cob effect? How hard is it to diffuse? I had a Hyperblade for years and never could find a way to totally eliminate the corn cob, even with multiple layers and styles of diffusion.

You are able to change the scroll speed of ignition and retraction. What you 've seen so far are just default settings  :azn:



Offline Excelsior

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2017, 03:45:48 PM »

The neopixel blade is very evenly lit from base to blade end.  It has flawless animation for extend and retract, and the blaster bolt impact features are pretty nice.

The brightness might be a tad dimmer to equal brightness at the base compared to the tri-cree method, but way brighter at the end of the blade compared to the tri-cree just based on the fact that the same amount of light is consistently emitted from base to end.

Neopixels compared to old school LED strings that I used to make?  My old strings do outshine the neopixels, but the tradeoff is as many colors as you want to define, and 14 loaded on the prizm at a time you can scroll through.

Neopixels and Plecter Labs Prizm board will be my favorite setup going forward.


That's great to hear--thanks. You should make a video of it! I love the flawless animation of the Neopixel strips, but in the videos I've seen so far, the ignition/retraction seems to be very slow. Is this something you are able to speed up with the NBv4 or Prizm v5?

The color changing is a great feature, for sure. But I am all about brightness. If the blade overall is as bright as the base of a tri-cree blade, that's pretty good. Is there any noticeable corn cob effect? How hard is it to diffuse? I had a Hyperblade for years and never could find a way to totally eliminate the corn cob, even with multiple layers and styles of diffusion.

You are able to change the scroll speed of ignition and retraction. What you 've seen so far are just default settings  :azn:

That's what I was hoping to hear! These things must look insane then once they're all tuned up and ready to rock.

Offline slothfurnace

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2017, 05:00:34 PM »


That's what I was hoping to hear! These things must look insane then once they're all tuned up and ready to rock.

Here is a video of it in action: Slothfurnace's Entropy

And a photo of the evenness of the blade:


Offline Obi_1

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #10 on: June 14, 2017, 01:53:59 PM »
A great saber from a real master! Wlecome in the merry team of neopixel saber builders.

As to the question of ignition/retraction speed: we use slow animation simply because it demonstrates the capabilities of neopixels better. Fast ignition/retraction is easy, but you will not see a big difference to Cree or segmented LED strings IMHO. And a slow ignition is more dramatic, think about Vader's appearance in R1  :evil:

Offline slothfurnace

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #11 on: June 14, 2017, 08:34:51 PM »

The neopixel blade is very evenly lit from base to blade end.  It has flawless animation for extend and retract, and the blaster bolt impact features are pretty nice.

The brightness might be a tad dimmer to equal brightness at the base compared to the tri-cree method, but way brighter at the end of the blade compared to the tri-cree just based on the fact that the same amount of light is consistently emitted from base to end.

Neopixels compared to old school LED strings that I used to make?  My old strings do outshine the neopixels, but the tradeoff is as many colors as you want to define, and 14 loaded on the prizm at a time you can scroll through.

Neopixels and Plecter Labs Prizm board will be my favorite setup going forward.


That's great to hear--thanks. You should make a video of it! I love the flawless animation of the Neopixel strips, but in the videos I've seen so far, the ignition/retraction seems to be very slow. Is this something you are able to speed up with the NBv4 or Prizm v5?

The color changing is a great feature, for sure. But I am all about brightness. If the blade overall is as bright as the base of a tri-cree blade, that's pretty good. Is there any noticeable corn cob effect? How hard is it to diffuse? I had a Hyperblade for years and never could find a way to totally eliminate the corn cob, even with multiple layers and styles of diffusion.

Excelsior, please see my above post for the video.

I, too, dislike the slow animation, and have sped it up to match the ignition sound more accurately.  I feel the speed I have it on now is appropriate to the font I have chosen.

I do not notice any corncob effect.

Offline Grigoris

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #12 on: June 14, 2017, 09:33:08 PM »
The Canon Y flash handle is an incredible piece for a saber. So glad you used it. The clamp is the coolest out there among vintage parts. I'm surprised more sabers don't use them, although they do seem to be hard to find. I'll have to post some pics of my vintage y flash build.

Offline slothfurnace

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #13 on: June 15, 2017, 07:23:51 PM »
The Canon Y flash handle is an incredible piece for a saber. So glad you used it. The clamp is the coolest out there among vintage parts. I'm surprised more sabers don't use them, although they do seem to be hard to find. I'll have to post some pics of my vintage y flash build.

Please do, I really dig this flash.  I have another model Y canon flash, and am considering building a second Entropy. Perhaps with a coupler so it could go dual bladed.

Offline Excelsior

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Re: Slothfurnace's Entropy: A Prizm V5/NeoPixel blade test saber
« Reply #14 on: June 15, 2017, 10:31:52 PM »
Excelsior, please see my above post for the video.

I, too, dislike the slow animation, and have sped it up to match the ignition sound more accurately.  I feel the speed I have it on now is appropriate to the font I have chosen.

I do not notice any corncob effect.


Thanks for the video! It was great seeing it in action. I'm glad to hear you don't have any noticeable corn cob effect. What type of diffusion did you use? I'm planning to build up my Roman Mk.1 with a Neopixel blade in the next month or so, and I'm trying to get some ideas. I figure I'll probably end up using some type of foam wrap inside of a TCSS diffuser tube, inside of a TCSS trans-white blade. My only concern is overheating the LEDs--I imagine they get pretty hot, especially using white for FOC.

I do like a slower ignition like Vader in ESB and Rogue One, but not too slow, if that makes sense. For other sabers, like a Luke ROTJ, having a fast ignition is just part of the saber's character. So again, I'm glad this is one of the parameters that can be tuned.