Picture of MA37 Assault Rifle
As my first ever instructable, I will be listing the steps I have gone through to produce a foam model "Halo Reach" Assault Rifle.
Being only a student, I had relatively limited access to the tools available in mass industry, so these instructions should serve as an inspiration for those with only the average set of household tools, the most expensive of which being a 30,000 rpm cutting tool (Available for around £30)

The tools and materials required are as follows:

Block of modelling foam (70cm x 26cm x 5cm)
High speed cutting tool (As above)
Hand drill with various drill bits
Clamp (I had a pivoting one)
Thin, strong wire (I used an old guitar string - Thinnest type)
Variable ower supply (I have read a 20v, 3A transformer will work, though I do not advise this unless you are thoroughly familiar with electonics)
Small coping saw (Optional but very useful to save time)
Foam sanding block (Like a soap bar sized cuboid with sandpaper wrapped around - Alternatively just use sandpaper)
About 10cm x 5cm of clear acrylic
Blue 9-12v LED
Acrylic paints and brush (Black, White, Yellow, Silver)

Oh yes, and about 40 hours of free time, maybe less if this guide helps!

Let us begin.......

Step 1: Preperation

Picture of Preperation
Assault Rifle.png
Firstly you will need to print off a scale version of these plans for the template (Credits to bungie.net) :


Also there is a high res render of the rifle for later reference which you may want to print off too.
Cut out the full sized profile of the side template and stick it to your foam block. The barell will overhang, so cut off that bit at a suitable point (You should now have the rifle minus the barell stuck to your foam)

On to the next step.......
Vehementi10 months ago

Heya! This is awesome, a great prop.

One question, is it possible to make the Magazine detachable to give it that extra feel to it or is it more hassle than it's worth?

Shadow Of Intent (author)  Vehementi10 months ago

Thanks! It depends what you make it from really. I could have easily cut off the protruding part that forms bottom of the magazine and used a long kitchen knife to cut a rectangle that went in 5-10cm inside the model, then a horizontal cut to release the top of that polystyrene "block", then glued the two pieces back together. The horizontal cut line could be easily covered up with the foam details that go above the magazine on each side.

I've also seen it done with moulded fibreglass models, but since that is hollow , you'd need to spend more time making a box for the mag to slide into. I've seen a couple that used magnets to hold the mag in place, and presumably give an audible "click". Whatever you decide to make it from, a detachable magazine should only add an hour or two to the total build time, so it can't hurt to include it. You could even turn it into something useful like a 4x AA battery holder to power the backlight.

fireemt1 year ago
Did you brush or spray paint it on?
Shadow Of Intent (author)  fireemt1 year ago
All brushed on. Definitely could have benefitted from being sealed with PVA beforehand, but it wasn't too bad for a first attempt
Plo Koon1 year ago

Haha that's awesome.

X ALL the Y - Kill ALL the Covies!.jpg
This is amazing.....
tony199302 years ago
I would suggest drilling a hole in the aluminum tubing about where the wire comes out and feeding it through to the magazine well in the back for the 9v or maybe you could install a battery pack with a on/off switch
Shadow Of Intent (author)  tony199302 years ago
I'd actually doldered a small SPDT switch to the front of the 9v battery holderso it can be turned on and off without removing the battery. I didn't feel it was reallt worth the time to make an internal battery pack, since this was a low-ish quality first attempt.
jimmbobdave2 years ago
Amazing instructable, I just hope mine will turn out similar
fire bat3 years ago
yes... but will it blend?
Shadow Of Intent (author)  fire bat3 years ago
Most certainly! Did you know Costa coffee uses Blend-Tec Blenders?
Creator754 years ago
...that's freaki'n amazing...lololololololol
Shadow Of Intent (author)  Creator754 years ago
Thanks! Although I have to admit it pales when compared with one from 405th:

ddib14 years ago
What kind of foam were you using?
Shadow Of Intent (author)  ddib14 years ago
All I know for sure is that it wasnt Polyurethane (PU) foam. It was pretty rigid, like a cross between PU and expanded polystyrene. A quick google seems to show the closest match (Appearance-wise) is Extruded Polystyrene: http://i01.i.aliimg.com/photo/v0/261262675/XPS_Extruded_Polystyrene_or_Styrofoam_Core_Material.jpg

It doesn't break off in tiny chunks like expanded polystyrene, and is much stronger!
I looked it up and i found some Extruded Polystyrene :) Gonna go buy some this weekend but my only question is, does it matter if it is pink or blue? Coz the one i found was pink and is 5 cm the exact thickness that you need or do you need more?

Thanks in advance! ;)

Shadow Of Intent (author)  ddib14 years ago
Colour is no problem! It makes no difference after painting, and the only thing i was worried about was whether LEDs might glow through the foam (The did slightly before painting, but after, it there was no light shining through).

I actually have a spare piece of the foam, so I can tell you it measured 69 x 27 x 5 cm despite my model being about 79 cm long and 7cm wide. This is because I used offcuts for the barrel and the rectangles at the rear, so you dont have to be able to completely fit the model "inside" the dimensions of the foam.

So, in short, pink foam is just as good, and for most weapons 5cm should be good too!
Lildevil9634 years ago
tht zombie thing does it really say break glass in case of zombie attack
Shadow Of Intent (author)  Lildevil9634 years ago
Link to the instructable:
Shadow Of Intent (author)  Lildevil9634 years ago
No... I never got round to making the letters for it. I made some words and even some humerous picture instructions to print off on a vinyl cutter or laser cutter, but I've been too busy recently to do so. I'll update with a picture if I ever finish it.

Seeing as I'm about to upload another Halo related instructable, I will make one for the crowbar case too.
William9304 years ago
Where did you get the rifle plans? i want to use this method for making the magnum
Shadow Of Intent (author)  William9304 years ago
The only ones I ever found were the Assault rifle plans in a certain bungie.net forum thread. As far as I'm aware, no other orthographic projections exist, so your best bet is either:

1. Finding the magnum file in Halo PC and opening/exporting it to something like 3DS max, and rendering it as an orthographic projection....... effort much =(.

2. Taking close up screenshots in game, and editing around the outline, then 'shopping on a backgroung using dimensions from halowikia. (Easiest method)

Sorry I can't be of much more help =/
thanks i thinks ill search the forums. I'm going to try to make the ma37, but i think ill make the magnum first because i don't have enough polystyrene. thanks for the cool instructable
Shadow Of Intent (author) 4 years ago
Thanks =D
scoochmaroo4 years ago
Nice work - looks good!