workshop

Make your own Star Wars Lightsaber 

If you are a Star Wars fan and want to make your own lightsaber, it may be just a project you want to take on as a fan or an important addition to your cosplay, then this article is for you. This article on making your own lightsaber is an opportunity for all you fans and cosplayers to make your own lightsaber. 

Materials 

LED strip 

Dowel rod 

Teensy board  

Prop Shield

Battery Holder

4 NiHm rechargeable batteries

charger

1.5" speaker (only available in 4 pack)

Micro Buttons

 Rocker Switch

9v battery connector

Step 1

To make a lightsaber you first need to make the hilt, for this you will need to measure all the elements that were going to be fixed inside it. Once the elements were measured we can move on to digitally modelling it, this was done with the help of a software called fusion 360. To make the 3d model we have to construct simple geometric shapes for the component that need to go on the inside and then move on with the basic cylinder, then embellishments were added on the outside, this adds details. 

You don’t need to be a pro to be able to 3D model, It may take some time but you can slowly figure out how to develop shapes as you use it. You can then send it to a slicing software, finally getting it 3D printed. The print itself might take you 24 hours so it is better if you start working on this project a few days in advance. 

Step 2

For the second step we will need a dowel rod and wrap a long LED strip around it, wrap it around at similar intervals between them so that the distribution of light is even later, there will be some changes needed to be made while building the blade but for now knowing the position is beneficial as it will give you an idea pf the placements. The wires should then be connected to a controller, the controller is a 3.2 teensy board and is a small Arduino compatible board which has a lot of features making it a perfect element for this project. The board is then mounted over a prop shield, the prop shielded that is being used has an audio amp, motion sensor and LED driver in it. Since the prop shield already has an audio amp it can be connected directly to the speaker to power it. The speaker being used is a 3watt 4ohm speaker, and while it does not create a loud amount of sound for the size of the project it is a fair sound.

There also are a couple of controls you need to be aware of. You will need to attach two buttons, one for turning the blade on and off and the other one to change the colours. And the rest are plugs that are plugged directly to teensy. 

Step 3

The whole thing will be battery powered, the batteries needed will be 4 AA batteries, the batteries that are being used should be NiMH, the battery holder that will be used as a 9 volt battery adapter on it so it can be plugged right in. The last thing to add into the device is the on and off switch which can be added later after you are done compiling all the elements. 

Before mounting everything it is better if we give it a test run to make sure that everything is working. 

Step 4

Now let's move on to make the blade. The out part of the blade is made of an acrylic tube, you will need to spay paint the dowel white and the wrap it with LED and then you will need to make sure that the dowel rod should be at the centre of the tube, you can use some CA glue to stick the LED strip onto the dowel, Next, you will need a vellum sheet, roll it and slide it into the acrylic tube. 

If the dowel with LED strip does not give the effect you want it to give, you can use a LED strip where the lights are closer to each other, you will have to take of the sticker and then place them against each other, the you will need to roll then inside a later of foam which will then be fitted inside the tube. 

Step 5

Once you are done with that you can move on to mounting the elements. You will need to use some extension wires to make sure that the elements reach the holes made for the switch. You will then need to wire everything together. After everything is wired up you can test it out one last time to make sure that everything is working fine. Once everything is slid in and attached securely the lightsaber is finally ready. 

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