DOTA2 Glowing Radiance Sword




About: Possibly kidnapped by aliens and replaced with an exact duplicate of himself. Seeks to make the universe a better place.

A divine weapon that causes damage and a bright burning effect that lays waste to nearby enemies.
Passive Burn Damage
Bonus +65 Damage
Deals damage per second in a 700 radius.
Damage per Second: 50

This is my version of the legendary Radiance from the Valve game DOTA2. Inspired by the "burning effect" this sword glows when placed on its stand. It's made from acrylic and maple hardwood with orange and yellow LEDs built into the crossguard.

Step 1: Blade Design

My first step was to acquire the thickest acrylic sheet (.22") for the blade. Rip to 5" wide, and shape the tip and bottom where it will attach to the hilt. I tried working with the protective film in place, but it was too cumbersome so most work was with it removed being careful not to scratch it too much.

Step 2: Shape the Main Blade

I used a band saw to give the tip a slight taper. Then routed a 45 degree angle chamfer bit at the front and back to give the blade a "sharp" edge. This edge is where the light leaks and appears to glow.

Step 3: Blade Fuller

These "fullers" were cut 5" wide by 12" long. It was very difficult routing a 45 degree chamfer edge on these without burning the plastic or misshaping them. I tried making them identical since the blade would be transparent and irregularities would be visible.

Step 4: Light Test

After testing with 3 blue LEDs I decided to light the main blade and each fuller individually for maximum brightness.

Step 5: Handle Design

Using artistic license this part of the handle is from 3/4" maple on the bottom and 1/2" maple for the top. Routed a .66" slot for the blade to be sandwiched. This was mostly done freehand which is why it looks messy. Countersunk screws are used to secure the halves.

Step 6: LED Lights

I created a light bar with 3 parallel rows from individual LEDs. Each row would contain one orange and two yellow LEDs to simulate a golden glow. Used a 10V DC switching power supply to drive less than 20mA current through each row of 3 LEDs and a 240ohm resistor. This provided high brightness with low power.

Step 7: Handle Electrical Connection

The grip was from an old crib railing. A 1/4" hole was drilled down the center and small holes were drilled sideways. The positive and negatives wires routed through these holes and attach to the light bar with molex connectors. Solid copper wire wraps around the handle to make a conductive ring. This is what makes contact to the power supply when placed on its stand.

Step 8: Rune Design

Based on the low resolution image of the Radiance sword, I used my best guess and designed a pattern on graph paper. This was traced onto the fullers with overhead projector markers and etched by hand with an abrasive point Dremel rotary tool. A laser cutter would have made this much easier (and neater).

Holes were drilled for screws to hold the acrylic blades in place. The wood was sanded and painted gold. A 3/4" hole was drilled and the handle press fitted in place. This provided a tight enough fit so no other mechanical fasteners were needed.

Step 9: Sword Stand

Using scrap maple leftovers from a previous project, a simple stand was built. The base was routed with a beading bit. The blade mount has a slot to hold the blade upright. The hilt mount contains 2 gold plated contacts drilled from the rear. These have a bit of springiness to make good contact with the 2 copper rings on the grip. A 10V power supply was soldered and routed down the stand.

I hope you've enjoyed this instructable!

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    15 Discussions


    3 years ago

    Kind of confusing, but once I have all the materials I can probably do it! Awesome project!


    Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

    It's a friction fit. The handle is slightly larger than the hole. Good enough to hold but I wouldn't swing it around hard.


    Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for the reply! I try not to swing these kinds projects too hard because of just that kind of thing. This really is great work.


    4 years ago on Step 8

    ?hey how to make a rune scracth


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for all the votes! I'm happy to be a contest winner again.

    After a month of looking at the sword I'll make some comments: 1. Use only yellow LEDs: Its a little too much orange. 2. Keep little kid hands off the blade: the smallest smudge gets amplified and are pretty visible from side angles. And the acrylic really holds onto dust due to static charges.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    This looks AMAZING!

    It's definitely on the list of possible gifts I might make for some of my gamer friends.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    it Reminds me of Grand marshal's Claymore in wow :D


    5 years ago on Introduction

    EEK! The mere sight of this would have me quaking in my Seven-League Boots....Nice work!!


    5 years ago

    Very nice!