Introduction: Keith's Bayard (Voltron)

About: I have been cosplay for around a year now and know that it is always helpful to have a guide, something I strive to produce for others

Throughout this instructable I'm going to walk you through the steps of making Keith's bayard from Voltron!! I tried to make the steps as simple as possible! Hope you enjoy!

Step 1: Supplies

Well first off you need to gather all your materials

  • I used 5mm foam for the main section
    • 2mm foam for the accents
    • 1mm foam for the details
  • Contact Cement
  • Box cutter (scissors + X-Acto knives also work)
  • Plasti Dip
  • Red, White, and Black gloss acrylic paint
  • Dowel rod
  • Blue LED's
  • Flexible sealant
  • Heat Gun (optional)
  • Dremel (optional)

Step 2: Make Your Pattern

  • Start by looking up a picture of Keith with his bayard for both a size and design reference
  • Then take a large piece of paper, or tape multiple pieces of printer paper together so that it is large enough to fit a rough sketch of the bayard. After you are happy with the size and shape (the exact size will differ from person to person based on height, mine is about 31.5 inches long) cut the design out of the paper. Make sure that your hand can comfortably hold the handle with plenty of room to spare. Also make sure that when holding the pattern that the sword does not drag on the floor. Remember to leave a space in the upper portion of the handle open if you want to add lights later!!
  • Next take your sketch and trace it onto poster board two times. Use a ruler or an item with a straightedge to make sure that the lines of the sword is straight. Then using the two patterns you have created, cut a line across the upper portion of the blade on one pattern and closer to the handle on the other.

Step 3: Cutting the Foam:

  • Using a Sharpie or a marker of some sort, trace each pattern onto the 5mm EVA foam.
  • Now taking the foam, place it on top of a cutting board or a surface that you do not mind cutting. Using your box cutter, cut out the pieces. Make sure that when you are cutting the foam the blade of the box cutter is not at an angle.
  • If you are adding lights, take the battery pack of the leds and place it next to the opening at the top of the handle on the inside (bumpy side) of the foam. Leaving a little room between the opening, trace the battery pack and draw a large connection to the the opening. Do this step on the other handle piece.
  • Now taking your dremel, drill these areas out so that the battery pack can fit in the area snuggly and you can pull the strand of lights through the opening.

Step 4: ​Gluing the Base Pieces Together:

  • When using contact cement, remember to do it outside! This type of glue also sticks on contact, so make sure to line up the parts you are gluing together well!
  • Start by moving to a well ventilated area, and putting the foam on something you do not mind getting glue on.
  • Apply a thin layer of contact cement of both the cuts you made in the blade area. Wait 10-15 minutes for the glue to become tacky and then attach the upper blade portion to the lower portion on each of the cut outs you made. You should now have two identical swords.
  • Now, on the inside (the bumpy side) of one of the swords, use your box cutter to create a little grove in the foam that the dowel rod will fit into. This will make the final product more sturdy.
  • Apply a thin layer of contact cement to the dowel, and the grove in the blade. Also apply a layer to the entire inside area of each sword. If you are using lights, do not get glue in the battery pack openings. Wait 10-15 minutes and then places the dowel to the inside of the blade and glue the two halves of the bayard together. Now you should have one large sword shape.

Step 5: ​Making a Pattern for the Accent and Detail Pieces:

  • Pull up the reference picture you used to make the sword pattern and get some white printer paper. Draw out the accent pieces on the paper make make sure they look good on the bayard.
  • Now take the paper again and make rectangles that fit along the edge of the handle so that the accent pieces on the handels connect to each other later.
  • Also make a pattern for the ‘arrow’ along the middle of the bayard at this time.
  • After you are pleased with these patterns, transfer them over to the poster board and cut them out.

Step 6: Cutting the Foam for the Accent Pieces:

  1. Cut out 4 of each accent piece that is on top of the handle, and two of each connecting rectangle.
    • The are accents are cut out of the 3 millimeter foam, and the small read accents on the handle out of 1 millimeter foam.
  2. Do not cut the red arrow out of foam, we will deal with that later.

Step 7: Dremeling the Sides:

  1. Move to an area that you will not mind getting very dirty quickly. Wear clothes that you do not mind getting dirty as well. It also helps to be sitting at a table. I normally do this in my garage.
  2. Using the dremel, sand down the sides of the blade so that they appear ‘sharp.’
  3. Next sand down the handle so that it is smooth and looks more natural and not as ‘hard-cut’.
  4. If you are adding lights do not dremel down this opening, leave it as it is.

Step 8: Cutting the Arrow Pattern:

  1. Using the arrow pattern you made earlier, line it up in the middle on one side of the blade.
  2. Carefully, using the box cutter make a small cut in the foam DO NOT MAKE IT VERY DEEP.
  3. Repeat this on the other side.

Step 9: Heat Gun the Bayard:

  1. Apply the heat to the entire bayard, the foam will turn a darker color when it has been heated.
  2. The cut arrow seams will start to open up, this is supposed to happen!

Step 10: Sealing the Blade (Optional):

  1. To the make the blade look cleaner, I mixed a flexible sealant with a little water and applied it to the cuts we made on the blade area.
  2. I smoothed the sealant out but dipping my finger in water and spreading the sealant around until it was as smooth as I wanted.
  3. To get the sealant out of the arrow cut, I slid a toothpick through the cut.

Step 11: Applying Plasti Dip:

  1. Return to a well ventilated area and place the bayard on a surface you do not mind ruining.
  2. Using the Plasti Dip (use white, it makes it a lot easier later) apply one layer to one side of the bayard. Let it sit for 20 minutes.
  3. Once dried, flip the bayard over and apply the Plasti Dip. Wait 20 minutes.
  4. Repeat this process until you have 2-3 coats of Dip on each side of the bayard.
  5. The entire bayard should now be white.

Step 12: Painting!

  1. If you Plasti Dipped your bayard white, there is not need to use white paint!
  2. Using black and red paint, plaint the areas that need to be colored. Be careful to not get outside of the arrow on the blade!
  3. If you did not use lights, paint the area that the area that is supposed to light up light blue and your done!

Step 13: Lights:

  1. Place the battery pack in the slot you made earlier and pull the lights through to the opening.
  2. Either paint or use a marker and color the bottom of the battery pack black.
  3. Using thin plastic, cut out two patterns that will fit over the opening for the lights.
  4. Using Tack glue or something similar, glue the plastic to each side of the bayard with the lights inside the opening.
  5. Wait for the glue to dry and you’re done!

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