I am in the process of building two full size sabers and my youngest daughter who is 8 years old and a star wars fan wanted one as well. She wanted the green saber that Luke has in ep.6 so I just had to start building:)
The goals for building this saber was:
- Make it smaller to fit a young padawan
- Make it rugged so it can be played with and not breaking
- Using mostly parts I had
- Make it as screen accurate as possible
I had the following to build from:
- 13mm OD clear acrylic tube
- 3D printer
- Spray paint
Ended up ordering LED's and a switch for the total of 5-6$
I found this nice model on Thingiverse: Star Wars - Lukes ROTJ Lightsaber by lilykill - Thingiverse
It was possible to scale it down to 75% and still have room for one 18650 cell and a rear end switch, and this seems to be a good size.
Made the following changes to the models before printing:
- Hilt printed as one piece (exsept rear end) with room for a 18650 battery and the 13mm acrylic tube
- Hilt rear end made with holes for a 12mm push switch and a micro USB connector for charging
- Control panel was added the switches and a larger slot for the PCB
- Front emitter tube enlarged to fit the 13mm tube
- Emitter replaced with a more accurate 2-piece model with cutout for the 13mm tube
Everything was scale down in the slicer before printing.
My models can be found and modified here: http://www.tinkercad.com/things/1z49kfzIgBL-lukes-saber-ep6-public/editv2
Note: Cutouts are too large and made to fit when scaled down to 75%!
After printing the parts was spray painted without sanding and the details painted with a brush.Some black acrylic paint was also smeared on the paint to give it a slight patina.
Saber parts before assembly: Hilt, rear end, emmiter tube+ring and emitter+ring: Saber parts
13mm acrylic tube was inserted in the hilt: Tube in hilt
Emitter tube was slided on to the tube with an easy press-fit: Emitter tube
Emitter was then slided on: Emitter
When the blade tube is inserted down into the hilt like this it should be almost impossible to break, but still don't look nice and is too thin. I 3D printed one additional tube with transparant PLA to slide on outside the tube to make it look better and act as a diffuser for the LED's: Diffuser tubes
Battery in hilt (not all the way in): Battery
The read end is pushed into the hilt and will be secured with a drop of glue when the electronics are installed: Rear end
One thing that was not possible to make with a 3D printer that looked good was the PCB on top of the control panel. So I made a proper PCB for this.
Started with a 0.8mm PCB cut to fit the control panel: PCB Before etching
Masked it with stripes cut from a sticker with a paper cutter: Masked PCB
Etched it with etching powder and water: Etched PCB
Finished PCB. The edges are a bit rough and would have been nicer it it was etcher for some minutes longer: Finished PCB
Installed on the saber: Installed PCB
Almost finished, just missing D-ring, LED's, connector and switch: Complete saber
When I get the rest of the parts and install LED's I will update with more pictures.