I got lucky while trying to make a simple Lightsaber for a Cosplay. But now i got bigger ideas, and it's so cheap and easy that anyone can really do it. If you cant afford an $50-100 lightsaber, then, read on!
Step 1: First Step: Modding
For me, i Bought a Toy Light saber. For children, it was small. Totaly made of plastic and real real simple. However, the hilt Looked nice. And it was all that i wanted. It's the one from the image.
I didnt know that these toys had 11 Bright blue leds inside of them!
You can also see the tools i used.
Here is the Layout.
- Lightsaber toy (costed $7)
- Durex tape
- Thin Plastic Hose (the thinest kind. It has to be transparent.)
- Scisors (Get a small one for precision)
- Some colored plastic (Mine was worthless, it is just in case you want to experiment.)
If not, your first step is to Actually make a Hilt that you want to use.
Step 2: Step 2: the Inner Works
Look the picture.
See how it is Simple? This toy already comes with a Speaker , a On/Off switch (with 1 button for the light, and another for the sound.) the wiring for the leds and batteris is already done. It's so simple that you can actually Port it to another hilt if you want to (but i suggest some knowhow then...)
Se, the wiring for the leds, go up a Colored thick straw that goes inside the blade. That was supposed to make it "cheerfull" for kids. But what it actually does is that it kills the light of the leds. Making them MUCH less brighter. So, what you want to do here, is to remove those straws. The only part of the led that is glued is the base. So, cut around it and you're already home free.
If you plan to build this from scrap, then you should try a simple system like this. Everything this toy do is done with 1 simple Switch and 6 Points of wireing. You should also take notice that you'll have to solder together your own leds. But the next pictures should show you how.
Step 3: Step 3: the Blade
If you wat a Longer Blade, you'll have to find something as large as the original blade from the toy. A Thiner one you make it too loose. and a Thicker one would be too heavy. Even with the batteries on the Toy is plastic. It is very light. You cant add much weight on the front.
Also take notices that a any replacement ( like Acrilic) shouldnt be 100Â¨% clear. As it wont difuse the light of the blade properly.
Now, if you're making yourself one, you have a similar deal to handle. You NEED a blade that fits with your Hilt. If you're starting from scratch, i would suggest not using AA batteries. But 9 volt batteries. So you'll be able to add more Leds to your blade. Making it shinier and longer. However, it will cost you more overall.
Now check the pictures: You see the colored Starws? See how opaque they are? That's what's wrong. You need here a 100% clear Transparent Hose. Just as thin as these tubes.
Why? Because the main feature of these tubes is not to "color" the light of the blade. But to shield it. So it will resist impact. The Rubber hose (like the one you may have in your garden) is perfect for that! The fact that you can get one for as low as 50 cent and 100% transparent is a very nice bonus.
Step 4: Step 4: the Glow
Up so far it hasnt be hard, right? Did you noticed that we didnt use much on the eletric part of this? That's just it. You can if you want (if it is for safety, please do!) but you dont have to. You simple add the wires to the stuff and it's "Go time".
Which leads us to this final step. If you have been Modding a Lightsaber toy, your job is as quick as done. You have replaced anything inside your toy that have been blocking the light for a Common transparent hose. Now the light will be tons better and will difuse MUCH better too.
You can simply stick it back into the blade (the original or your custom one) and close it up. From there on you can go and mod your hilt. Paint it, add some more parts, maybe some rubber on the grip would be nice too.
If you check the photos, you'll see that it's not a good idea to try and change the color of the leds by simple covering them with another kind of plastic. the light of the leds is too strong. If add a LOT of plastic you can change the color somewhat. But you will kill the power of the leds, making them shine a LOT less. So you can have the leds changed if you like. But it's the only way i know toc hange the color of the toy.
If you're making yourself one, the same rule apply. That's why an Acrilic Tube may not be Ok. You cant paint it, you cant cover it with anything. If you do, you wil lose power and gain little effect. Pick your color first.
Step 5: Step 5: Final
For the Hilt:
3/4 Pvc tube
Whatever extras you want to put in.
And for the blade:
11 Bright leds will give you a good 40cm Blade. 20 Bright leds should give you a nice 80cm one
** You can buy Leds in Bulk easily. 100 leds shouldnt cost you more than $10. You can buy those really "extra powerfull" ones for $1 each if you want.
3 AA batteries are enough. But 4 AA Batteries or a 9v Battery (or 2) can lead you a long way.
If you buy one of these real simple Korean replicas, you can mod your way trough them and make something worth to bring to your homve movies and convetions. I assure you.
These toys range from $4 to $10 at most. Anything over that should be a ripoff.
The mod i used here allow me to do some really strong swinging with no problems and some weak beating too. Try not to hit it too hard. But there is no objections to clashing your saber onto another!
Either way, you can pull a Custom Lightsaber as low as $10 (or lower!) and a really great custom one as low as $30. Full with powerfull light, sound and usable for battle and movies!