How to Make a Boffer

About: Umm... yeah. Go here!

Don't hurt yourself. Use a boffer.

NOTE: Some techniques borrowed from Will Gray. Youtube: WillGray42

Step 1: Materials/Tools

You'll need
Some PVC 3/4
Some Pipe Insulation
Duct Tape
Coloured Duct Tape (Optional)
Electrical Tape

Pipe Cutters

Step 2: Cap the Ends of the Pipe With Tape.

Take a little square of tape and pull it tight over the end of the pipe.

Step 3: Pull the Insulation Over the Pipe

Make sure that the perforation in the insulation doesn't come undone. Leave about an inch on the end of extra foam.

Step 4: Make a Core for the Thrusting Tip

The core there so that the pipe doesn't poke through and gore someone. The tape on the end of the pipe keeps the core from sliding down into the pipe.

Step 5: Tape Up the Blade

Make sure it's smooth and has no wrinkles. Leave some anchors on the handle end so that the tape stays. Tightly wrap electrical tape around the base.

Step 6: Tape the Tip

Follow the pictures.

Step 7: Do All Previous Steps on the Pommel.

Go ahead and 'lectrical tape the rest of the handle.

Step 8: You Could Stop Here, But...

It looks like a baseball bat. Follow the pictures...

Step 9: Yay! We're Done!

Go hit your friends with your new toy!



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    32 Discussions


    3 years ago on Introduction

    I made a jet black ninja katana version with PVC after I saw this. Fantabulous job.


    4 years ago

    i think you should check out some amtgard boffer tech.

    General Eggs

    7 years ago on Introduction

    This is a great 'ible. Me and my friends are going to make these and have an all out war!


    7 years ago on Step 9

    I'm totally going to make this for summer vacation and "spar" with my brother.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    I like the tutorial and you do a good job by my standards. The blade taping is smooth and you did a decent job at capping the ends. There are few things I would do different (I think I'll make an instructable at some point), but overall, good job! A side note though: It looks like you're using 3/8" pipe insulation and most LARPS require at least 1/2" padding on a weapon. If you can find the green colored 5/8" pipe insulation (Usually at Menards) your boffer would be better accepted at LARPS, that is, assuming you're going to LARP. lol

    8 replies

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    My friends and I don't LARP. We like to practise swordplay. But I use the 3/8" pipe insulation because it cuts through the air a little bit better than thicker stuff.

    Anyways, this instructable was inspired by WillGray42 on YouTube, whenever I saw his video about how to make a boffer, I realised I was horribly wrong with the first batch I made. You should definitely check out his videos about techniques for sword fighting if you liked this instructable.

    Pryo ChainBrother_D

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

     Mm, as one of the Knights of Gray, I can honestly say that Will has some really good stuff.  He's been working with boffers for 14 years, so he has excellent guides both on how to make them and how to USE them.

    Also, very good 'ible!


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    I'll have to check that out. Way back when I first started making boffer type weapons we used 3/4" dowels with 3/8" padding and spiral wrapped grey duct tape. It wasn't for LARPs either. We just beat the tar out of each other. lol I promise I'll make an instructables some day. For now I've been putting a lot of work into a beta version of a LARP that some friends and I have been working on for a few years now. We hope to have it off the ground by spring-summer 2010. I'll make sure to update somewhere about it.


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    "For now I've been putting a lot of work into a beta version of a LARP that some friends and I have been working on for a few years now." Interesting, what is it about? What genre is it? Do you have a site up already?


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Well it's about you, the player. The way we have the Races and classes set up you can be just about anything you want to be with limited exceptions of course. For example you can't be an Orc Mage since mages are a little more scientific, but you can be an Orc Shaman which use spirits and Deity based magic.

    As for genre it's a solid Fantasy LARP with a little anachronism thrown in (i.e. Gnomes and anyone wanting to be an engineer can build in game constructs and such).

    The site isn't up yet and life has been hectic for everyone ofer the past several months. I got married in May _. We should have a meeting this weekend to go over spells and hash out a few things there. Spells, then Alchemy are the only game mechanic things we haven't 100% finalized yet.

    I'd love to show you the information we have and I hope to have a site up soon. I'll make sure try to contact you about it at some point. If you're getting notices of replies to this then I'll just get in contact with you that way or you can email me ( and I'll add you to the list of people to keep in the know.


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Well, when I make an instructables I'll make a few to show different styles and methods of construction I use to get different effects. I must say that my favorite method is the most time consuming an sensitive method. If you're not careful you'll make a wing shape and the blade will catch the air in a bad way.


    9 years ago on Step 9

    pretty cool i'm bout to go try it.
    I had these boffers called mashunga.
    after aboout 2 weeks of training with them they broke.
    which leads me to my question.
    does it break?
    i go for intense training and i wouldnt want to waste money.
    looks pretty sturdy but so did the other ones.

    2 replies

    From what I'v heard, boffers made yourself - depending on how they are built, of course, will outlast the Mashunga weapons by miles.