A Return Of The Jedi Luke Saber, with crystal chamber, thin neck, and detachable blade. Normally this kind of thing takes me about 4 to 6 months, this one took four, as I was under a deadline for Christmas. This instructable was written based on my step by step photodocumentary at http://www.slothfurnace.com
. You can see more prop builds and more description there.
Step 1: Initial Sketch
My initial sketch of the project, I *think* I can get it all in there. This will have a springloaded expandable crystal chamber reveal, and a detachable blade. As well as a thin neck, and as close to "movie accurate" dimensions as I can get. I usually start with a sketch, trying to visualize all the parts I will need to machine, the way they go together, the way they will move or work, etc. The challenge of these projects is to "hide my work" within the confines of the original dimensions of the prop. I will use the ribbed pommel as my chamber release knob, and attempt to hide the rest of the details inside the saber.
Step 2: Grip and chamber cover
For the ribbed grip section, I start with a 1.5 inch outside diameter tube of 6061 aircraft aluminum, with a one inch inside bore. With it chucked up in my lathe, I mark light tooling marks on the outside at 0.32 inch intervals so I know where my grooves will go.
When my marks are done, I begin to cut grooves.
I also leave a bit of material on the rear, so when I drill my template through that section, and cut it off, I will be left with proper holes in the grip section, and a piece of aluminum with corresponding holes I can use as a hole transfer template.