So you have decided to take the final step to embracing the force. Does your path follow the Light or the Dark side? (I hear the dark side has cookies).

What ever side you are on, what follows is how to make a Duel-Worthy Lightsabre. That means, you should be able to wield this sword and bash it against things and other lightsabers with little fear of actually breaking the lightsaber. You may end up breaking other things, but the lightsaber will remain intact.*

Total cost of this project is $60 to $1,000 USD. The wide range in cost all depends of how crazy you get with your design. The cost of lightsaber I built for this instructable is about $160.

The Video:

NOTE 1: This Instructable is very TEXT intensive.

NOTE 2: Most of the parts used in this tutorial came from The Custom Saber Shop (TCSS). I am not affiliated or employed with them. I am just a customer.

* The author of this instructable is not responsible for property damage, personal injury, amputation of limbs, decapitation, and/or death resulting from the building and use of the lightsaber prop. All legal responsibility or resulting civil action due to said property damage, personal injury, amputation of limbs, decapitation, and or death belongs solely to the builder. The author is also not responsible for anyone falling into the Dark Side. The author will also not be held responsible if an agent of the Dark side decides to fry you with lightning coming out of his/her fingertips*

Step 1: Gallery - My Past Creations

These were my past creations and experiments.
I used to own a 7x12 metal lathe. 
I sold the lathe
<p>I built a saber using a Rebel Star MHSV1 white LED and got some color discs because I was indecisive about the color I wanted my saber to be. However, once I finished all the wiring and tried it out, the light barely reached the end of my blade, and was very dim in daylight because of the color discs I used. I'm planning on scrapping my wiring and re-doing it with a Tri-Cree LED W/W/W from <a href="http://www.thecustomsabershop.com," rel="nofollow"> www.thecustomsabershop.com</a> , but I didn't want the same result. Would a Tr-Cree LED W/W/W be relatively bright (I know, not a very scientific measurement) when using colored discs? Also, would the wiring necessary for the Tri-Cree fit in my hilt? It's 7&quot; long with a 1&quot; diameter.</p><p>Also, your instructable was very helpful when assembling my saber because all the forums I've been on are so complicated. Awesome job! </p><p> and was very dim in daylight. </p>
<p>Hi,</p><p>Thanks for the compliment. I know this instructable is getting old and many improvements and innovations has happened since I first published it. I am glad that people still find it relevant.</p><p>On fitting it all in, since you are having to power three LEDs, battery requirements may change unless you already had a beefy battery in there to begin with. Also, if you run the diodes in series, you may need a buck puck which will take up even more space, unless you are running a sound board that can manage the LEDs power requirements (i'm not sure which one). Too many variables to know for sure, but I think it will be very cramp.</p><p>On brightness, if you manage to drive each LED at around 700 mA, you should be able to get about 630 lumens output. The general rule is that adding 1 color filter cuts the lumen output in half (but it really depends on the color filter used). So a little over 300 lumen output. </p><p>A single Rebel white would have put out about 300 lumen at 1A. Cut that in half with a filter. So I guess with three Cree LEDs you can expect to double your output. I think that is one of the more frustrating aspects of electronics, physics and light, that you have to triple your effort to get a double gain in results. </p>
On your led and tristar did you put the LEDs on the tri star or did they com one it.
<p>I got lucky and someone on the saber forum did a limited run of stars where the solder pads were next to each other so close that I was able to use a collimator designed for a single LED rebel on a star. He reflowed the LED dies on the star for me. limited run, never happened again. sorry. This just illustrates the value of being active in a forum or two. You find people with similar interest who have the means to accomplish something you need done.</p>
ok thanks just trying to get ideas before I build one.
<p>hi im just starting out, and I have a few questions about the inner workings.</p><p>I've looked online, but luxeon seems to be out of stock of their main 140lm rebel leds. are their 420lm tri star led's too bright for a lightsaber, and do they require more power? if so, where else can i buy star leds?</p><p>Also, I'm very confused about how to wire a soundboard into the system. I have one of those sound-effects toy lightsabers from hasbro, but it seems that either the speaker or battery pack inside is fried and wont work. I know you gave a diagram on the connections of a hasbro soundboard, but i am still REALLY confused on specifically where i need to wire one thing to another. </p><p>Additionally, i've looked in the comments and have seen multiple posts about having both a lithium-ion rechargeable battery AND a AA or AAA battery case in the same saber. Do you need to have both in order for this to work?</p><p>Finally, do you have any specific way to keep all the parts inside the hilt from banging around when you twirl and swing the finished saber?</p><p>Thanks.</p>
<p>Hi,</p><p>Lots of questions. Many of these questions have probably been answered on the many forum dedicated to lightsaber creation. Places like FX-sabers, thecsutomsabershop, rebellegion, and ultrasabers just to name a few. With the upcoming Star Wars movie(s), these forums have become very active again. Become part of those communities. In addition, i highly recommend that you also learn as much about electronics as time will allow.</p><p>If you are using a hasbro board (that works) and a single High power LED, you can get away with a single power supply. Just run the sound board and the LED in parallel. You probably want to keep your voltage below 5 volts. A single li-ion puts out 3.7 volts, so that should be good. </p><p>For purchasing an LED, I am not affiliated with any store so I cannot tell you when inventory becomes available. I highly recommend that you contact the vendor and find out when they will get more.</p><p>On tri-rebels... Too bright??? no such thing. The green lightsaber I built for this instructable is tri-Rebel. 420 lumens was easily achieved. I found myself in the Grand Canyon one evening without any gear (tent, sleeping bag, flashlight.. weird back story). BUT I had my green lightsaber. I used it to light my way. Kept me from falling off the edge... True story.</p><p>On too much room inside the hilt, banging around and all that. Nope... If you built a lightsaber of the proper diameter and length (no wookie sabers) with sound board, batteries, speaker, switches, charging port, accent LEDS, heatsink, and yards of wire... and you have room in it for the parts to bang around, then you are a very gifted sabersmith.</p>
<p>Ok thanks. I have found a good site that has the parts in stock. However, I am still wondering something. If I choose to use a tri-led, do i have to buy a special optical lense for the lights to fit? If so, where? Also, how much power will i need with a tri-led compared to a single led?</p>
<p>Oh wait forget about that last part. I would need around 9.7 volts for the tri-led.</p>
<p>You will need a special lense. They sell optics for tri-rebel that are same dimensions as single LED lense.</p><p>On wiring it up, you can go series or parallel on the LED. In series, you will need to add up the forward voltage of each diode. That is roughly the voltage you will want out of your power source. If using a resistor to limit the current, a single resistor in series with the LEDs is all you need. In parallel, the diode forward voltage would be the same as a single but each diode needs its own resistor to limit the current. In parallel, you can get away with a single li-ion for example. Of course, there is always the trade-off, which is a shorter operational time since. Plus make sure the battery can put out a lot of current.</p><p>I recommend you google LED resistor calculator. Find a calculator that handles multiple LEDs. This will verify what I am telling you as accurate or not.</p><p>In series you will need three li-ion batteries or 11.1v. In Parallel, you will need a single 3.7v li-ion battery with a high discharge rate and a high mAh. Someone has asked this before and I did some research. The Panasonic 18650 seems to match the required specs.</p>
<p>oh, I don't think you specified the color of your lightsaber build. But based on the voltage you mentioned I am thinking it will either be green, some shade off light blue, or white. It can't be a deep blue or purple because you mentioned lumens and those shades are measured in mW. Red, orange, yellow and amber tends to have a lower forward voltage.</p>
<p>Yeah sorry i didn't mention that. I am planning on using an amber Tri rebel led, which happens to have a specially made narrow optic for it :). One final question: (sorry, i just really need to know all there is to know), with the Li-ion batteries, are you able to use, say, a AA battery holder with them? In other words, just replace a AA setup with some Li-ion batteries and just hook them up to a buckpluck? I would very much like to know how to handle and use these things without making them explode, thank you very much.</p>
<p>li-ion tend to be a little larger if they have a protection circuit. it's what i used and they made the AA battery holder crack. Maybe cut the springs shorter.</p>
<p>So I've pretty much figured out what I have and what i need to do and get. There's just one more thing I'm trying to figure out, and that's the soundboard. Again, for the reason of budget, I am using the board from a hasbro toy, which includes hit and swing detection. </p><p>I've chosen, due to my setup, to run in series, however I don't know how much voltage I can put through the soundboard. </p><p>Since I'm using 4 Li-ion batteries in the same holder, do you know if there is any way to split the power going from the buckpuck to have some go through the soundboard and then to the led and the rest just go directly to the led? Or would that not work?</p>
<p>the sound hasbro board can handle 5v max probably. ideally, you would want to run it at 4.5v since I have fried my fair share of hasbro boards using just 4 AA batteries. </p><p>My suggestion and the cleanest setup would be to make a 5V regulator. All the 5v voltage regulators I have built output around 4.8v for some reason. I can drop the voltage even lower by adding a small 5mm LED on the output side of the regulator. The easiest way to make a 5V voltage reg is to us a L7805 and a couple of capacitors. They don't take up much room and they will regulate your power supply to something the hasbro board can handle. It will also limit the current to around 1.5 A max. If you want to play it even safer, build a 3V regulator using using a L7803. This will limit the current to an even safer 800 mA max. There are plenty of instructables on making both regulators. Split your power source + line two ways - one going to the buck puck, one going to the voltage regulator. Buck puck goes to LED, voltage regulator goes to sound board.</p><p>Learn as much electronics as you can and learn to read the datasheet of the parts you are dealing with. I cannot stress this enough. The buck puck you are using should have a data sheet. It would have told you if it outputs a lower voltage for other uses like microprocessors. Since I don't know what buck puck you are using, i cannot tell you what it can and cannot do. But my GUESS is that no, it will not. But if you want an informed answer on the component you are using, get your answer from the manufacturer who often is nice enough to provide a data sheet on their products.</p><p> I also bring up data sheets because you said you needed 9.7 volts, which made me guess a green, blue, white or purple lightsaber. You then surprised me with &quot;amber&quot; as your blade color. as as I mentioned in my guess of color, Amber, red, and yellow tend to have a lower voltage. If you read the data sheet carefully you will find that the typical amber forward voltage is 2.9v, so your voltage requirements is actually 8.7 volts.</p><p>Something about electronics I have been told many times by &quot;experts&quot; and pass on to you, it is not the voltage that will kill your parts, it the current. If you hook up your sound board in series with your LEDs, it will not be the 16v that will fry it, it will be the 2.1 Amps that surge through it the moment you turn it on that will make it go poof and release the magic smoke.</p><p>Last thing, because this is getting long. Why 4 Li-ion batteries. If you buy the kind that put out 3.6v, that's 14.4v. A fully charged Li-ion is typically above 4v which means at full charge, your power source is 16v. I think that is over-kill. Three Li-ion will get you 10.8v, fully charged more like 12v. I mentioned before that space inside a hilt is a premium. That extra battery is going eat that space. Also, if you're LED needs 8.7v and your hasbro board needs 4.5 v, what do you think happens to all that extra voltage? It gets turned to heat. This is especially true for voltage regulators. Just something else to think about.</p>
<p>Thank you for telling me this. I have chosen a 700mA buckpuck (the one you used) because the LED said maximum mA is 1000. I chose to play it safe so i don't overload the led. However, if you think it would be ok to use 1000, then i might go with that.</p><p>So basically, is this how you think i should wire this? (very rough idea)</p>
<p>ohhh ok I see that now. Thanks for the drawing, im a very visual guy. </p>
Where is good place to get a sound board and crystal focus.
<p>check plecter labs</p>
<p>Can you use the V4 Infinity Edge blade (the one Saberforge makes) in blade holders from the Custom Saber Shop?</p>
<p>According to the blade description &quot;-Thick walled frosted optical grade Polycarbonate tube 36&quot;x1.00&quot;</p><p>And CSS blade holders hold 1&quot; OD blades. So yes, they are a match.</p>
<p>Thankyou! </p>
<p>Can you use a blade holder without a hilt? They're out of stock and looks like that might not change.</p>
<p>yes, you can get an adapter to connect the blade holder to a chrome sink pipe. That is the method I used for the lightsaber build in this instructable. It actually give you more room inside plus you can make your own design on the hilt. I think the part is called a &quot;sink tube adapter&quot;.</p>
<p>Also, what web store you going to? I went to the custom saber shop and they have hilt bodies in stock.</p>
<p>It has always been my childhood dream to construct a lightsaber. I am glad you can help me achieve this dream of mine. I have found all the parts I need online, but I have a few questions that I would love your help answering. Firstly, I am getting a Luxeon Rebel Tri-Star LED from http://www.luxeonstar.com/SinkPAD_c_4699-1-1.html. I found a 20mm Triple Optics For Rebel LEDs, but I do not know what beam I should choose (Narrow, Wide, Medium, or Elliptical). On to my next question: I am planning on getting a Canadian TrustFire Protected 3.7V 900mAh 14500 Lithium Battery with a Nitecore D2 universal smart charger, and was wondering if it was a good choice. And if so, what should I use to encompass the batteries inside of the lightsaber hilt. I was thinking of using a 4AA Battery Holder with a JST connector to hold three of the batteries which power each of the three LEDS, and just to negelect the 4th slot. Thank you so much for your time, I really appreciate it!</p>
<p>Hi,</p><p>On optics, use narrow or medium. I prefer narrow.</p><p>On power supply, a protected lithium battery is a perfect choice. I use the same. As for holding the battery, i use AA battery holders as well. It's a good fit. Are you going to charge the batteries through a charging port? None of my hilts have charging ports, but I think it is a great idea and would be really convenient. I'm hoping to find time to make a new lightsaber for the upcoming Star Wars moving coming out December 18, 2015. If I find the time to make one, i will install a charging port and update this instructable with lots of pictures.</p>
<p>I finally finished my Lightsaber! It is powered by four 1.5v AAA batteries, a 2.7 Ohm 10 Watt resistor, an amber Luxeon Rebel, and PLENTY of wires! I thought you might like to see some pictures! </p>
<p>WOW!!! I mean... WOW!!!</p><p>Great lightsaber. So bright. Is that yellow or amber? What ever color it is, i really like it. Great craftsmanship. Thank you for sharing.</p>
<p>Thanks! It is an Amber rebel. I plan on making a second saber as well! This one will have 3 or 4 white LEDs on a single star. But I can't figure out how to wire the tri-star LEDs. Could you please advise? Thanks again so much for your help, I could have never done it without your aid and inspiration! </p>
<p>My green one is tri-rebel on a star. It is wired in series which means I needed 10 volts. This was the reason why I used a buck puck. I connected 3 li-ion batteries in series which gives just over 12v when fully charged. the buck takes care of voltage and amperage regulation. You don't have to do it that way though, it is also possible to wire them in series and just supply 3.7 volts with a resistor on each led. But you will need a battery that can put out a lot of current that way.</p>
<p>I meant in PARALLEL. Wire three Cree or Rebels in parallel and use one 18650 li-ion to power all three at 3.7 volts with a 1 ohm 1 watt resistor on each LED.</p><p>I'm thinking I need to redo my green lightsaber...</p>
<p>Thanks for all the help and information! I will be using this specific LED from TCSS. http://www.thecustomsabershop.com/Custom-Tri-Cree-LED-P1035.aspx If I am correct, I believe each white LED puts out 266 lumens at 1000mA. When you multiply this by 3 you get 798 lumens. Just below 800! Any recommendations to specifically run this LED (Battery choices, wiring tips, etc.) would be greatly appreciated!</p>
<p>I would wire them in parallel. 1 ohm 1 watt resistor one each LED. According to the LED calculator I found on line that will run each LED at 700 mA. This is important since drawing too much power from the battery may cause it to burst. Three LEDs parallel equals 2100 mA draw on the battery. That should last 1 hour for a good 18650. </p><p>Now, at 700 mA, the LED will be emiting 209 lumen based on the Cree XP datasheet. So, three LEDS would be 627 lumens. that's still dangerously bright to look at directly. </p><p>Here is the datasheet link.</p><p><a href="http://www.cree.com/~/media/Files/Cree/LED%20Components%20and%20Modules/XLamp/Data%20and%20Binning/XLampXPE2.pdf" rel="nofollow">http://www.cree.com/~/media/Files/Cree/LED%20Compo...</a></p>
<p>Is one 3.7v 18650 2600 mAh good enough to power a white tri-cree?</p>
<p>OK, this one will be long...</p><p>I spoke to the head of engineering about this. He has over 3 decades experience in electronics engineering, so i hold him in good authority to know these things. But we can do the math ourselves just to see how it will work.</p><p>I pulled the specs of a 18650 Li-Ion battery from batteryspace.com. One of their generic ones.</p><p>Battery: 3.7 v with a capacity of 2200 mAh, max discharge of 4.3 Amps.</p><p>I then pulled the specs of a neutral white Luxeon Rebel from LEDSupply.com</p><p>One Rebel LED: Forward current of 700 mA, forward voltage of 3.51 volts max.</p><p>In parallel, the three Rebels will draw 2.1 Amps. Compare this to the batteries max of 4.3 Amps and we see that the battery will not explode when you turn the saber on.</p><p>Since the Rebels will be wired in parallel, voltage will be at the LED's forward voltage of 3.51 max, just below the batteries 3.7 v nominal voltage. So again, we are good there.</p><p>Next question is capacity and run time. The battery's nominal capacity is 2200 mAh, which means in one hour the battery can put out 2.2 amps before it is totally drained. It just so happens our three LEDS in parallel will consume 2.1 amps. So your lightsaber can stay continuously ON for 1 hour before the battery is exhausted. </p><p>The head of engineering I consulted confirmed the math above is correct. Basically, it's almost like the 18650 and tri-Rebels were made for each other.</p>
<p>OOPS! i just caught that you said &quot;TRI-CREE&quot;. My mistake. The math still holds IF you current limit the CREE LEDs to 700 mA. Drive the Cree LEDS to it's full 1000 mA and your run time will be about 40 minutes if your lucky.</p>
<p>Hilt dimensions really depends on what you are trying to make, what you have available to you, what you are willing to order, and from where you are planning to order from. The first big question is where are you? - for example, if you are in Europe or Asia, i cannot recommend for you to drop by Home Depot and purchase a 1.5 inch chrome sink tube for $9.97. That advise would not make sense to you. There have been a multitude of websites created that sell ready made lightsaber parts since this Instructable was created six years ago. My go-to place is still The Custom Saber Shop though. There and my local hardware store.</p><p>Other resources include: <a href="http://www.ultrasabers.com/" rel="nofollow">http://www.ultrasabers.com/<br></a><a href="https://www.saberforge.com/" rel="nofollow">https://www.saberforge.com/</a><br><a href="http://www.ledsupply.com/" rel="nofollow">http://www.ledsupply.com/</a></p><p>I am not affiliated with any of the above companies. I may have just purchased something from them in the past or have seen their products somewhere. </p><p>Feel free to ask more questions.</p>
<p>I wanted to congratulate you and ask that diameter, section and tube thickness is asked because I want to buy and have no idea of the diameter measurements and stuff</p>
<p>I have a few questions about this. Firstly, would you recommend having just one LED for the light source or multiple LEDs? And second, where can you purchase the &quot;Corbin film&quot;? </p>
Actually, scratch the Corbin film question, (just looked a second time) but my other question was what exactly is the heat sink used for?
I meant Buck puck not heatsink...
<p>the buck puck is not totally necessary if you are properly match the battery pack, a resistor and the LED. In my application the buck puck is just a more reliable, more stable LED driver since it uses electronics to feed just the right amount of current into the LED compared to a resistor which is passively limiting current. LEDs are very current sensitive. Even if you give the LED the exact voltage it needs, if not enough current, it will be dim or if the voltage is low, but the supply can pump out a lot of current, the LED will fry. The buck puck regulates all of this. </p><p>But again, not necessary. Today's Li-Ion batteries, paired with the latest sound module like the Petit Crouton, Nano Biscotti, Obsidian USB, Prism, Naigon's Igniter, and a proper resistor should prevent your LED from giving up the magic smoke.</p><p>Thanks for the great question.</p><p>Oh, i know you figured out the answer to the original question, BUT...<br>I am a GUY. 1 LED vs multiple LEDs? I only put 3 in mine because that is all I can cram in there. If I can cram a dozen in the hilt, trust me, I would. and my blade would blaze like a green supernova.</p>
<p>Thanks alot for the guide, it was very helpful! Had fun building my first lightsaber and I'm sure there will be more ;)</p>
<p>That looks beautiful. Great workmanship. Truly a work of art.</p>
<p>hi man nice i love it but i dont get the LED where to get and what is that can u help me with that LED cuz i dont know where to get them so can u tell which one did u use for the red colour lightsaber LED and from where did u get it </p>

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Bio: I like to tinker and create things. When I have time, i make stuff. The stuff could be as simple as my patent pending spoon-on-a-stick ... More »
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