Here we are! Another instructable, and it's not a helmet, it is another prop from fallout 3 and fallout new Vegas, it's the aer9 lazer rifle, probably one of the better lazer weapons from the game,
It was a bit of a challenge for me, it was also my first go at a prop weapon, I'm overall happy with it, but there's a lot of things I learned on this build and my next one should be even better, that's not to say this one isn't good, far from it, I fully enjoyed making it!
Step 1: Weapons of Mass Construction
The tools and bits list is a big one, and chances are I'm probably gonna miss a bunch of stuff, because like the fallout helmet, I used what I could get my hands on and modified house hold items to try get the lazer look !
Off cuts of wood, mdf (3/4 inch) (1/4 inch)
Off cut plastic
Threaded rod, ( 6 mm rod, about 2ft)
2mm foam board
Various paints, black, silver, olive drab, yellow, browns and clear coat spray paint
Bits and bobs ( loose nuts, bottle nossel screws , masking tape , plumbing parts small, glue, wood glue or pva, superglue, and other bits, if I've forgot anything I'll explain on the way.
( I'm not normally that messy in the pic, this was mid build! )
Sander ( orbital, belt, or just paper)
Brushes ( small to 2 inch)
And again, anything I've forgot I'll explain on the way, but I think that's most stuff, I don't have a massive setup so I do with what I have , right on with the build!
Step 2: Plans and Decaf,
Not really decaf, I just don't see the point, but on this build I sore the point of plans, I managed to get my hands on some 1:1 scale plans of the rifle, as with a lot of my other stuff, I search the web for things, and use it as reference for my builds, I printed out the plans on a4 and pieced them together, then measured the main build parts, the stock and chamber, where the battery pack sits,
For the stock shape I cut out the plans and drew round them so the shape was right, the main chamber I measured and used 3/4 mdf.
Step 3: Cutting Main Build, and Starting Regret!
So everything on the main build was marked out on the wood, main chamber was 3/4 inch mdf, the stock was the same, the extra detail was done in the 1/4 inch ply, cutting the stock first on the bandsaw , and the holes in the stock with a jigsaw,also the main chamber was cut 30inch long by 3inch, top and bottom the sides where cut smaller for the vents to be placed in,( vents where 1/4 ply) and the main chamber should be square, at 30inch
I added the stock to the chamber with pva and 4 screws, then I realized the size of this build and regretted it, for about 1 minute, then thought of the fun I was gonna have, it's all gravy!! ;)
Step 4: Adding Detail,
Where do I start with this!? Wow........
Battery compartment :-
It's made up from a baby formula bottle cut to fit in the gap and panel pinned and glued, the front circle is 3/4 mdf, the back circle is plastic 2 inch circle, screwed and glued, then bondo'd to form that cone to the back of the gun,
Front vent and rear:-
At the front I used 1/4 ply, pinned to the chamber and glued, then used whatever would make the recess on the inside sit right with me,
I started to free wheel here to be honest, I like plans but at the same time I want to make my gun by me for me, so if I'm a little loose it's because I may not have measured and eye balled it or played it by ear to see what worked, after all this is my first weapon build so I was figuring it out as I went, I used the foam to cut out the vents on the front and back and just superglued them in, the placement was marked out, but the vents I made up to fit as I went.
As in the pictures, you can see what I added and where, most of the detail was done in 1/4 ply and cut on a bandsaw to fit, then sanded or routed with a 45 bit, the grip was done in two bits of 3/4 inch and glued together, then sanded on the belt sander to make the rounded shape,
Step 5: Detail a Bit More and Sanding,
Well sanding first, a touch of wood filler to tidy up any small gaps and the main build was done, sort of, a quick coat of spray paint to seal bits and that's that for now,there's lots of little detail I couldn't and shouldn't do from wood, so I decided if use some foam stock 2mm I had and cut out the other bit and glue them on, this again was done by referencing the game gun pictures and eye balling sizes, this isn't 100% accurate but it's dam close, I knew when I started that with the material and tools I had this wasn't going to be spot on, but I'd try to make it as close as possible, again its a first build, kinda prototyping what I can do with what I have,
Step 6: Erm More Bits and Bobs,
After tidying up the foam detail and making sure it was all solid it gets another coat of spray, colour isn't important, it's more to seal the foam and stuff for paint later, speaking of paint I got excited for it and decided I would do the bulk of paint now, see where I stand and if it looked ok I would continue,
Starting with silver metal paint it got 2 coats, it looked ok after them so on I went, abit half cocked I did a bit of weathering and the olive drab on the main chamber and a few bits where corrected at this point,I added two perfect size bottle tops to the back stock and glued in place, happy to carry on I did!
Step 7: Cuppa?
those reading still, well done for getting this far! I don't think I written this much since school! My spelling hasn't improved since then that's for sure! :), anyways you lot should go make a cuppa tea or coffee and get ready for the near end of this rather long instructable, I hope it's hasn't been a chore to read, but thank you for sticking with it!
Right well, I'd only gone and weathered half of what I had, so sod it I'd do it all, same as other build with my weathering, over the silver I use a gloss black and get in all the corners then I use a rag to remove as much black as possible, at the same time the wearing has to tell a story, why is weathered, where would the rust be, the trigger should be clean etc, it's total up to you! And I love doing this bit! Even of I did do it a bit soon,
At the bottom of the gun is a strut, from gun end to trigger, I used a 6mm threaded bar and a few small plumbing bit to make up the strut, screwed and glued into place then tweaked to make them look right, also adding the foam end at the business end of the gun,
Step 8: Yup, More Detail on a Budget!
Across the top of the game gun is a pipe, I thought for a while I would ask my boss to bend me some pipe and I'd do it that way, but the more I thought, I decided I'd find so clear tube, bend that into place and like the game gun, use clips to keep it in place, the business end attacked to a round bit( I used an old paint brush, cut of the handle and brushes which left me with the perfect size for it, carved out a 90 degree cut in the brush and superglue and bondo it in place, when painted up it looks correct) I used a rivet cut done to slip the pipe over, and the clips to keep it in place, at the other end is a spray paint cap drilled out and a rivet also to receive the other end of the pipe, then painted silver, then yellow, then weathered to match the gun.
I can't believe I'm only 8 steps in! It feels like I've been making this for ages, but I started it on a Saturday, and today is Thursday, when I start a build it's always in my head somewhere, trying to figure out how I'm going to make bits work or what I need to do, and my budget is so small I have to figure it as cheap as possible, one day I'll have my own amazing workshop and be able to cast bits and be 100% accurate, I can dream.............
Step 9: Battery Pack Bit
The main gun is pretty much finished, I need to make a battery pack to sit in the recess in the gun, for this I also want it to be hollow because I want to use this space to put real batteries in for the red LEDs that will be in the barrel to make the end glow red,
The gap is about 2 inch by 3 1/2, about the size of a spray can too, plus a bit extra, and that's my plan,
Using some leftover 3/4 inch I made the top of the circle by cutting it out on the bandsaw, then onto the circle I used 1/4 to make the detail on top, by cutting out the triangles on the 1/4 and screwing it to the 3/4 and sanding it round, then using a presstud to fit it to the gun so I can remove it if I need to change the battery, the battery fits into the spray can lid ,
Lick of paint and that's done too!
Step 10: Fat Lady Sings!
Well battery pack is dry , time to clip it in and call it a day..........
I'm not including the wiring or how I did the LEDs because to be honest I'm not happy with them, my friend joe saw gonna do the wiring coz he's a genius at that stuff!, but when I did a dry run before giving him the gun to do his magic, it was a pointless idea because I hadn't left enough gap for the end to glow properly.
So there we are! My first prop weapon, a fallout (3 and new Vegas) AER9 lazer rifle,
I'm happy with the out come, although I would do a lot of things different next time, but that's part of the fun of making,
It was about a week in the making ( 30+ hours, or round about) it's not to heavy too, it's about what a rifle should be i think, also it sits nice in your hands!
Thank you so much for reading or looking at the pics, or both, I hope you enjoyed watching the progress, I really enjoyed making it so thank you for taking the time to have a look, as always if you have any questions I'll do my best to answer them when I can, time for a brew!
Runner Up in the