Introduction: Wooden Legend of Zelda Link Hyrule Shield
My son wanted to dress as Link and have a shield to play with. All the replicas I could find were either too small, too cheaply made, or too expensive, so, being a dutiful and somewhat handy Dad, I made him one. All materials are made of 1/4" lauan plywood. At the time, I did not have a scroll saw, so i did all of this on a table saw. I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS PROCESS,but, in a pinch, it worked. Curves are especially difficult, but with patience, it got the job done.
Step 1: Step 1: Finding Your Inner Link
First thing's first. I scoured the internet for just the right base image to start from. After falling down the rabbit hole of screen caps, I finally found this image (based on the appearance from Occarina of Time), that not only showed me the whole shield, was scaleable enough to print out at a large enough size to trace out the base shape of the shield and create jigs of all the extra pieces. So that's what I did. I blew the image up to the size I needed and printed it out. (I posted the image in PowerPoint and broke it down on individual slides, printed, cut and pasted the whole thing together)
Step 2: Step 2: Cut It Out
I then transferred the stencils to the wood and proceeded to cut out all the shapes that form the shields basic construction. The upper squiggly shapes and the Tri-Force emblem were next (unfortunately, I don't have individual pictures of the trace/cut/paint for these items).Then, I spray painted the pieces the appropriate colors. The shield itself is a nice dark blue, with metallic rimmed accents, and a bright yellow for the Tri-Force triangles.
Step 3: Step 3: Phoenix Rising
Lacking a scroll saw, I decided it would be impossible to create the phoenix decoration with any precision and still keep my fingers. So I traced the image onto discarded cardboard, cut it out, and used that as a stencil with bright red paint.In hindsight, it would have been easier, and need less touching up, to create a stencil.
Step 4: Step 4: Strap It Up
A shield is only as good as the straps used to hold it. Now on a real shield, all the straps would be of worked leather. That's a touch impractical for a child, so I settled on a drawer pull and some stretch fabric. I drilled the holes for the pull first, aligning them in a way that the flat-headed screws would be hidden by the trimmings. The stretch fabric was applied using an end bracket that is usually used to square 2x4s or plywood roofing together. I found all the pieces at Lowe's (not a paid endorsement, just the closest shop).
Step 5: Step 5: Glue, Glue, Glue, and Wait... Then Glue Some More
I dry fit all the pieces together to ensure fit. Everything fit nice, so it was on to clamping and gluing. After the glue dried on the first round, it was time to add some additional accoutrements to give it a true to life feel. Looking at the original image, you can see there are rivets holding the trim on. I used 3/4" buttons painted in the same metallic color to replicate this feature. In retrospect, I would have drilled out holes in the trim pieces and sunk the buttons, but I had already glued everything when I got to this point, so I didn't want to risk messing up what I had, so I trimmed the button backings down and glued them on.
Step 6: Step 6: Wrap It Up
Finish by gluing on all the other bits and bobbles that make it look like the original picture. Then, present it to a happy child.
Side note: This was 3 years ago, and it has held up well through a lot of use.