Dev's Energy Sword Attempt

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Little by little, I've been attempting to make the plasma sword since last year (having a kid puts projects like this off a bit ;) )

ANYwho - Here's what I did and the problems I'm facing - Any advice would be greatly appreciated....
(I hope the photobucket pics come across for everyone)

The plan: 2 pieces of clear plexi sandwiching an inner sheet of UV-blue refractive plexi. This lit up by two 3" CCFL tubes in by the handle and EL wire around the circumference.
(The thought was that the light would bounce around inside it)

Part 1:
First I created an image of the sword which is as accurate of a depiction as I could from the Halo 2 manual. It contains marked areas where a significant change is made in the contour of the circumference of the sword.


Using a laptop with a connected projector/Display unit, I projected an image onto a large sheet of paper and traced the outline of a single (upper) segment of the blade. From this tracing I cut out the template to use on the plexiglass. (*Note: The blue on the plexi is just a procetive sticker-like covering - it peals right off to show the clear.)


Here you see the template on the plexi, before any cuts are made.


I am temporarily leaving the ‘base’ of the blades (where the handle goes) as a straight cut, until I create the handle, and confirm how it will be attached.
I also noticed that I will be able to cut 2 blades from a single sheet of plexi that I picked up.


Using a RotoZip tool I cut through the .25” plexi roughly around the traced pattern.
I then sanded the edges to the correct proportions.

I then used a butane torch to get the edges a glass-like finish

For the inner UV piece (has protective covering on it) I cut the inserts for the CCFL tube (and trimmed the tubes as well)


The inner (UV) layer is slightly smaller than the 2 upper & lower clear plexi, so I could run the EL wire

Here I ran the EL roughly by taping it, but I don't think it's bright enough....

I was thinking that a staggered EL Wire insert might work (A-La Sean's sword) but I'm not sure it'll work in my case...


Any advice guys?
(Besides: Start Over) :p
Dude, thats looking really good! Nice to see lots of pictures too instead of the, Ill update soon with pics....

Anyhoo, looks really cool. I havnt delved into the weapon making aside from a crappy foam pistol.
About your 'not bright enough' issue, you'd be very surprised how much brighter the sword will be once you frost the plexi from the outside, it traps and refracts the light within the plexi.

Looking good though. Can wait to see it done!
D. Awesome work so far. Keep it up. Can't wait to see the final prop in action. Yes, it's true. Kids will make you re-arrange your prop-making endeavors, but ya gotta love 'em (kids that is).
Thanks all - Hopefully get some work done tonight too

The plexi I got from Ebay from this person - EStreetPlastics
The 1/4" x 12" x 36" runs abot $10 per sheet (I got 2 blades per sheet)
I'm not sure if they still do UV - you can ask them

I used a rotozip to cut it - carefull: they are quick to jump across the plexi out of contriol. Use a steady, good grip & eye protection

The lights I got from
$2.99 per tube
(Trim the block ends off with a rotozip and diamond cut wheels - Here for $4.99)

And the EL wire from Ebay - Approx $12-$15 or so

Oh, Im using GOOP Glue Adhesive as it dries clear and fast (Sean what do you use to glue the blades together?)
Andrew L said:
Thanks fo the supplies. Where do you get the RotoZip and what exactly is that tube and how does it work. I notice yours are much longer.

The saw itself can be purchased at any hardware store - Here's 2 links from Homedepot:

Link 1 -- You need a seperate battery for this one - approx $40 for 2 batteries - good if you want the full set of tools
Link 2 - Just the saw

The tube is a Cold Cathode UV tube, originally for modding a PC case - They come in varying sizes - This one & mine are 4-inch in length. You can hook it up to a 9volt battery & a switch

(putting a smaller switch in later)
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