Introduction: Han Solo Blaster

About: I mostly work in the media realm but I love working on hobby projects when I get a chance.

In this tutorial I'll teach you how to make a pretty good Han Solo blaster replica using a children's toy to start with.

Materials Needed:

Han Solo toy blaster
Drill bit (1/16 inch)
"Hole saw" drill bit (about 1/2 inch)
Paint (black/silver/brown)
Painters or masking tape

Step 1: Get Your Gun

I am making this Han Solo blaster for my Halloween costume. For that reason I want it to look real but it doesn't need to pass for an authentic movie replica. There are a lot of options online but I found the cheapest option to be the Han Solo toy blaster.

I ordered mine from Wal-Mart and they shipped it to my local store for free. I was worried it would be smaller, like for children's hands, but it was actually a great size, probably even the same as the movie version.

Step 2: Preparing the Barrel

The gun is bright orange and white, hardly realistic. On top of that, where the holes should be on the barrel, they are instead only indentation marks. To make this gun look more real I took a 1/16" drill bit and drilled out the holes along the outside of the barrel. This goes really quick since its thin plastic.

The front of the barrel (where the shot should come out of) is also covered. For this I had some "hole saw" bits lying around and found one that was about 1/2" wide which was a pretty good fit. I carefully drilled out the front of the barrel. When I did this the barrel came off and I thought I broke it, but then I realized it is made to. Probably would have been easier to pull it off in the first place before I drilled it out.

There were a few parts on the front of the barrel that the hole saw bit didn't quite get so I used a pair of pliers to just break off the extra plastic that was left.

Step 3: Painting Black

Now the gun is ready for the first coat of paint. I used black spray paint that also had primer in it to make sure it stuck to the plastic. I did this outside on a breezy day and it dried in just a few minutes so I was able to do both sides very quickly.

The first coat with primer had a flat finish and I wanted the gun to have a more polished metal look, so I then did another layer with black gloss spray paint. You can see in the picture how it has more of a shine to it.

Step 4: Painting Silver

There are multiple versions of Han Solo's blaster depending on what movie you are referring to but I was going for Han's blaster in The Empire Strikes Back.

I taped off the barrel with some basic masking tape I had. I made sure to attach it to my shirt or pants first to get rid of most of the stickiness (you don't want the tape to pull of your paint). According to my reference image, the silver should be on the cone shaped part of the barrel and the bigger part which bridges it to the main body of the gun. Any silver paint would probably do but I happened to have some that had a "hammered" look that we used for a previous project.

I sprayed the barrel from multiple angles and then let it dry.

Next, I used a piece of notebook paper and taped it into a funnel shape. I slowly cut off the tip of the paper until the resulting hole was the same size as one of the main bolt looking things on the plastic. I put the paper over the part and sprayed silver into the hole. This method was much quicker than trying to tape off the whole gun.

Step 5: Painting the Grip

Finally, I taped off the handle following the basic contours of the mold and painted it brown. If I had brown spray paint I would have used it but since I didn't I instead used acrylic paint.

Step 6: Finishing the Blaster

I wanted the gun to have a used and weathered look so I got out my black spray paint again and did some light spraying on the barrel to make it look used. I sprayed inside the barrel as well as on the outside, making sure it was darkest near the tip of the barrel and tapered off further down the barrel.

Besides looking quite authentic, this altogether only took me maybe 30 minutes of work (apart from letting the paint dry). Since I didn't have to buy anything besides the gun itself I ended up with a real looking Han Solo blaster for under $15.

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