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Reach M6G Build

Discussion in 'New Recruits' started by JeffZugale, Jan 7, 2016.

  1. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Greetings, Spartans! I'm new to making stuff, just finished an Oscillation Overthruster made for an Xmas present, which you can see here: http://www.therpf.com/showthread.php?t=253309

    To finish it in time for Xmas, I had to put off working on my first Halo weapon, a Reach M6G. Here's how it's gone so far...

    2015-03-26 00.10.33.jpg

    Grabbed a bunch of reference from online, which I'm sure you'll recognize. I brought it into Illustrator and played with the scale; the stated dimensions on Halo Wikia matched the reference best with a version at .40 S&W (10.2mm) caliber rather than the game-canon .50 magnum (12.7mm) for both barrel diameter and cartridge size in magazine, so I'm building it at that size. It's a slightly more "human" scale, but still a very large pistol. In the shot above it's the one on the right.

    2015-06-27 14.53.17.jpg 2015-06-27 14.53.30.jpg 2015-06-27 1 50 17 PM.jpeg

    I made my own set of blueprints, because I like doing that, plus this was before I joined the site, heh... I parted out a frame from them, printed it out twice and spray-mounted it to 1/2" plywood. Then I drilled and cut with a jigsaw to a rough edge, then cleaned up with rasps and files by hand. One frame is for a one-off fully finished piece for me, the other is intended to make a master buck for molding and casting.

    2015-08-17 23.10.44.jpg 2015-08-17 23.11.14.jpg 2015-08-17 23.09.09.jpg 2015-08-17 23.12.33.jpg

    I decided to carve the muzzle block from a big block of balsa wood I had lying around. Carving the barrel slot was easy with my table-jigsaw, but the slot for the frame was a lot more difficult, requiring hand-sawing, a wood chisel and much hand-filed cleanup. Before I started carving, I realized the bump on the top of the frame would force me to cut too far into the block, so I just sliced it off level with the base of the action slide plane.

    2015-09-18 00.41.58.jpg 2015-09-18 00.42.54.jpg 2015-09-18 00.43.04.jpg

    Parting out some more from my blueprints, time to make the upper side pieces. Still with 1/2" (actually it's 15/32") plywood, I cut them out with the combo-saw and cleaned up that curved bout with sanding drums that go on a drill press. I made 2 sets, then with a belt sander took them down to 11/32" thickness to match the blueprints. At this point, I stopped working on them to get the Overthruster done in time for the holidays.

    2015-12-22 13.17.24.jpg 2015-12-22 13.17.32.jpg

    In between paint passes on the Overthruster I had a lot of wait time, so I put it to happy use carving out more of the barrel block. Turned out to be difficult to drill the large hole after already cutting the slot; careful attempts with a power drill going slow were chewing the balsa in a frightening way. I switched to turning a series of drill bits by hand and then filing. Once the hole was close to size, I wrapped 80-grit sandpaper around a 9/16" dowel to finish the work. Not shown here, I then hand-drilled a 1/2" hole for the steel tube I found for the barrel - the inside diameter is almost exactly the proper size for a .40.

    Hope you like it so far! I'll be working on it more tonight, update to follow soon.
    ODST Stryder likes this.
  2. NetherCraft

    NetherCraft New Member

    How do you cut that tight curve on the back of the handle? do you use a spiral blade?
  3. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    No, i cut it rough and then hand-rasped and filed it... aka "the hard, slow, old-fashioned way" :) All of the small curves on the frame done same.
  4. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Got some worktime last night, here's pics:

    2016-01-07 22.32.41.jpg 2016-01-07 22.33.00.jpg

    Slide body and tail block cut and belt-sanded to size, marked for carving. Still working with pieces of the same balsa block I used for the muzzle block. Below, after carving out notches and cuts with knife, saw and file, I stuck the slide parts on the frame with small dots of Tacky Glue just to see what it looks like. Coming out okay, but needs refinement.

    2016-01-07 23.32.38.jpg 2016-01-07 23.32.54.jpg 2016-01-07 23.33.04.jpg 2016-01-07 23.33.31.jpg

    Also, I realized I made a pretty big mistake; I glued the sides on the frame in the wrong position vertically. They're too high; I should have measured twice before I cut the frame down and cut it right along the line where slide joins body. It's about 1/4" too far up as measured from the top of the grip frame opening. Solutions all involve cutting; I may switch to the other frame I already cut to try over, and come back to this frame later. Eh, it happens, it's not a huge deal at the moment.
  5. hopkins77


    Nice work, modeling with wood is much more difficult, so again, nice work!
    JeffZugale likes this.
  6. B1ondeange1


    nice, cant wait to see it in its finished stage its gonna look great :D
    JeffZugale likes this.
  7. MNCProps

    MNCProps Jr Member

    nice wood work
    JeffZugale likes this.
  8. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Thanks all! More work tonight, will post pix tomorrow.
  9. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Started carving the under-barrel laser sight out of a block of "2x2" pine, which is of course more like 1 5/8" square. It's wide enough, but not quite tall enough, so i had to cut a little piece to stick on the bottom. Very happy with my mini-table saw and belt sander purchases, because this went really quickly.

    2016-01-14 23.20.33.jpg 2016-01-14 23.20.45.jpg 2016-01-14 23.21.02.jpg

    A bit of good ol' Titebond II and my little clamps, and that should take care of it. I left some overlap to have extra for sand-down.

    2016-01-14 23.21.52.jpg 2016-01-14 23.24.51.jpg

    As I mentioned, I should have been more careful with measurements before I glued the side bits on frame 1; first pic below shows the incorrect setup on left, correct (but not glued) on the right. I trimmed down frame 2 and marked it for the side rail placement. Then, time to forget fear and just fix the problem. I used a chisel and hammer to break the glued-on rails off frame 1, cleaned up the sides on the belt sander and then cut it down to the same size as frame 2. Now they both match, yay! But I need to cut out 2 new side rails, boo.

    2016-01-14 22.31.26.jpg 2016-01-14 23.33.10.jpg 2016-01-14 23.39.11.jpg 2016-01-14 23.43.08.jpg

    That's it for this week, didn't have a lot of time to work. More next week!
  10. B1ondeange1


    sweet! enjoying seeing how this build is coming along! :D
    JeffZugale likes this.
  11. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Last Thursday night's progress! Not a lot, but at least I had fun... Here's the laser sight block belt-sanded to its proper front-to-back width ramp, then marked up for beveling and insets:

    2016-01-21 23.11.06.jpg 2016-01-21 23.11.12.jpg 2016-01-21 23.11.22.jpg

    Next, a 1/2" Forstner bit to start drilling out the rounded inset. I made a little dipstick to check the depth, because it was too shallow to mark the bit with tape.

    2016-01-21 23.16.25.jpg 2016-01-21 23.18.04.jpg

    And now the fun part - I'd never used my Dremel router table for routing, so here's where I learn how. I set it up with Dremel's square end mill and only took off 1/8" depth at a time. The first part seemed to work pretty well!

    2016-01-21 23.33.43.jpg

    So I put the fence on the table and proceeded to do all the insets and well... um. Not the best job, really. I guess for a router table n00b it's not the worst it could be, but it's far from pro work. :\

    2016-01-22 00.14.27.jpg 2016-01-22 00.14.35.jpg 2016-01-22 00.14.48.jpg

    Fortunately it's nothing I can't fix with hand tools and Plastic Wood, heh! I was also able to clean up the insets on the front and back which I'd previously done with table jigsaw and files. Much nicer now.

    Lesson learned: next time I'll measure more carefully and either put tape marks on the table for the stop points, or I'll clamp on something to hard-block the piece from going too far. Instead of trying to do it "by feel", oops. :)
  12. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Another short night, but here's the progress. Beveled all the edges and plastic-wooded the errors:

    2016-01-29 00.11.12.jpg 2016-01-29 00.11.23.jpg 2016-01-29 00.11.35.jpg

    2016-01-29 00.11.43.jpg 2016-01-29 00.11.52.jpg 2016-01-29 00.12.05.jpg

    Better! More routing to do on this but I think I'll get back to the main body for a while. Next week I'll start the big shroud over the top front muzzle block. I think I'm gonna make it out of 4 slabs of 1/2" MDF glued together.
  13. Ckesner

    Ckesner New Member

    But wait... where do I glue the tabs?!?
    Dirtdives likes this.
  14. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    LOL no glue tabs on wood!

    Thursday 2/4 session, started on the over-barrel: Blueprint with overlay calling out specific parts; Chunk o' pine to carve down to shape. OOPS. while cutting on it, dropped the block and broke the back off of it.

    2016-02-04 22.01.41.jpg 2016-02-04 22.22.23.jpg 2016-02-04 22.58.00.jpg

    Ah well, no big deal. Mark it up and get cutting. Trusty 4-color pen helps me mark all the lines! I've discovered a problem with my table-jigsaw (more on that below), so these delicate cuts need old-fashioned coping saw work. It went faster than you might think, with a brand-new blade and ripsawing nice soft pine.

    2016-02-04 22.58.15.jpg 2016-02-04 23.04.36.jpg 2016-02-04 23.11.54.jpg

    A bit of belt-sander cleanup, and let's have a look at what we've got:

    2016-02-05 00.11.26.jpg 2016-02-05 00.11.48.jpg

    Definitely shaping up, though obviously a long way to go. Here's the story of parts so far, spread out:

    2016-02-05 00.13.25.jpg

    This week, finishing the over-barrel parts. I think I'll go to 1/8" plywood for the rest of the side pieces instead of the MDF I cut - don't worry, I'll find a use for that. I need a filler block for the back of the barrel assembly. Probably going to trim the frame under the barrel more to make it so I don't have to rout out the under-barrel as much to attach it.

    The saw: while I was cutting the MDF slabs I noticed that the saw was pulling them away from a straight cut. I'd seen this before but it wasn't pressing; now that I'm trying to get more precision cuts, it's a problem. I got out my square to check the blade alignment, and...

    2016-02-05 00.18.54a.jpg

    Yep, that sucker ain't even close to square. Thanks Jaime.

    It's not hard to adjust, thankfully, so it shall be fixed!
  15. soldier466


    I'm loving it! I've tried using wood a few times, I just don't have the tools for it. It looks great keep up the good work!
    JeffZugale likes this.
  16. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Thanks Soldier! For something with this much volume, I think wood will just go faster. I could also use various kinds of foam, but I want something reasonably solid. Learning from this first one, the second one that I'll make right after this will be done quite a bit differently, especially the front barrel sections. The balsa muzzle block isn't going to stand up well over time.
  17. soldier466


    I used Eva foam when I built mine (it was my very first build) and there are a few things I wish I could have done but it would mess with the integrity of the foam

    Sent from my ZX-2926D using Tapatalk
  18. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Only meager progress last night, I got home late from a frustrating work day. My frustration didn't end in the shop, because this is what I found when I tried to adjust the saw blade:

    2016-02-11 23.35.01.jpg

    It's probably not immediately obvious, but the whole bottom left structure where the saw bolts to the work plate is pretty much just crumbled away. Looks like stress fracturing, and there's more of it around the other bolt holes. It's DEAD, Jim. Clearly that saw isn't up to the kind of work that I do, as it only lasted 7 months of (to me) light weekender use. Gonna have to step up to a small band saw; recommendations welcome. I may make a project out of using the still-decent guts of the saw and an aluminum plate to resurrect it, but that's probably not as cost-effective as a new band saw.

    Happily, the $6 hand coping saw that I bought at the same time works just fine, so I did this tiny bit:

    2016-02-11 22.19.12.jpg 2016-02-11 23.53.32.jpg 2016-02-12 00.12.45.jpg

    Measured the overbarrel side plates on 1/8" hobby plywood, then cut them out with the coping saw and cleaned 'em up on the belt sander. I also sanded the muzzle block some more to get the vertical side angle better for putting on the side plates. Looking at how that goes with the plans, I think rather than attaching the plates to the block and trying to get them angled properly, I'll instead build the plates into a box that's angled properly and then build the front end assembly around that.

    This week's takeaways: 1. you get what you pay for, 2. I need to get serious about dust collection... my shop is a mess!!
  19. Chiefwannabe


    This will be amazing when its done!!!
    really awesome bro!!!
    JeffZugale likes this.
  20. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Hey, sorry for posting late! I did work last Thursday but have been very busy especially over the weekend so this is first chance I've had to upload.

    Right, back to it: As I said, building a box for the overbarrel sides. Cut a piece of 1/4" MDF to the proper size, belt-sanded the sides to the marked angle, and then on this flat piece, stuck it to the left side piece. Of course, then I remembered I'd better mark all the cuts and drill points, so I did that. Did them on the right side *before* gluing it on, then with razor saw did the rear cut. Disc sander took care of the rounded front, and then I marked center and drilled in a bit with 1/16" pin vise.

    2016-02-18 22.43.03.jpg 2016-02-18 22.45.50.jpg 2016-02-18 22.52.17.jpg 2016-02-18 22.57.40.jpg

    I've decided I don't want to cut far into the underbarrel to mount it, so here I've marked the frame to cut away enough so I can rout it 1/16" deep and glue it on. To handle the back piece of the box (above), I also measured a notch in the top of the frame, that small rectangle on the left top.

    2016-02-18 23.28.24.jpg

    Frame in the vise and held together by hand, here's what it looks like. Also with the parts laid out.

    2016-02-18 23.54.28.jpg 2016-02-18 23.54.34.jpg 2016-02-18 23.56.27.jpg

    Next time, I'm going to turn it like this and glue it together...

    2016-02-18 23.57.59.jpg

    ...and then sand down the side rails, plus lots of routing. Stay tuned...
  21. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    I actually got two whole hours to work last night! Amazing.

    As planned, I started by gluing the angled side-plate box for the overbarrel onto the barrel block. At first I tried a couple of ways of taping it down to the scrap MDF piece, but that didn't work. I decided to make a jig by sticking some more scrap MDF blocks on with CA glue. That held the angle box in place. Then I slid the barrel block in from the front. Again I tried tape to hold it in place but still not satisfactory. Happily I noticed my 1-2-3 blocks; one of them is plenty heavy enough to hold the block steady. I then squeezed some Titebond 2 down into the gaps, spread it a bit with a toothpick, let gravity pull it in, and set it aside to dry.

    2016-02-25 22.06.09.jpg 2016-02-25 22.15.07.jpg 2016-02-25 22.15.20.jpg 2016-02-25 22.21.22.jpg 2016-02-25 22.27.45.jpg 2016-02-25 22.39.25.jpg

    Meanwhile, I turned to the frame and side rails. Clamped them together dry to see how it worked; with this set of frame and rails it's almost exactly the right width, so the rails don't need thickness sanded down. What luck! Got out my ruler and the plans and marked up that assembly for the various cuts, carves and sanding they'll need.

    2016-02-25 22.49.07.jpg 2016-02-25 23.10.32.jpg 2016-02-25 23.10.39.jpg

    Time to rout out the underbarrel. Found center, marked the width, set the depth and stop line on the routing table... and realized that since I'd shaped the sides already, I wouldn't be able to rout along the straight lines parallel to centerline, oops. Solution: tape a piece of wood on the side that will hold it parallel. I also used a piece of MDF on the fence (not shown) so I could smoothly skip the big shaper gap.

    2016-02-25 23.23.31.jpg 2016-02-25 23.32.12.jpg 2016-02-25 23.42.42.jpg

    Results: MUCH better than last time. A bit of planning and thinking ahead pays off! And while I did all that, the barrel block dried nicely.

    2016-02-25 23.49.35.jpg 2016-02-26 00.12.31.jpg 2016-02-26 00.12.57.jpg

    Held together with clamps and hand, by golly it's really starting to look like the thing it's supposed to be!

    2016-02-26 00.40.53.jpg 2016-02-26 00.41.39.jpg

    Next week: rout out bits on top block and more on underbarrel, glue top block onto barrel block, carve the side rails. Maybe get some work on the back part of the barrel block where it tapers inward.
  22. Dirtdives


    I feel like this is an episode of "This Old HALO House" hosted by Bob Villa. Love it!!! FANTASTIC workmanship. Are you planing on any special effects? Lights/sound?
    peterthethinker and JeffZugale like this.
  23. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Thx Dirtdives! No FX on this one, it's pretty much gonna be a solid object. In the future I plan to build one that's designed for more fun stuff like that.

    Got in some bonus shop time this weekend! First I marked and drilled end holes for the side slots on the underbarrel. Then I drilled the larger 3/8" holes at the front end of the slots, as well as the one on the front which I'd already marked for center. Tested with dowels for fit and they look good. The ones on the side won't stick out anywhere near that far.

    2016-02-28 16.18.20.jpg 2016-02-28 16.18.26.jpg 2016-02-28 17.02.27.jpg

    That gave me an idea for how to better glue on the top block - dowel pins! Marked a line, drilled some holes, stuck in some 3/16" dowels, and voila, a well-placed top block. Not glued down yet, still need to rout it out.

    2016-02-28 16.39.17.jpg 2016-02-28 16.45.13.jpg 2016-02-28 16.45.59.jpg 2016-02-28 17.02.38.jpg

    I tried to drill out a 1/2" hole for the overbarrel targeting tube, but unfortunately the bit wandered some and it's off center. Next session I'll have to fix that, after I true up the outer sides of the block and rout out the front bit. I'll just glue in a piece of 1/2" dowel and fill any gaps with PlasticWood. Instead of drilling in such a large hole I'll likely make a 1/8" hole in both block and dowel and use a steel IKEA shelf support pin as connecting support. More to come...
  24. JeffZugale

    JeffZugale New Member

    Thursday shop night, Friday post pix!

    First thing to do: fill the very poorly-drilled top block hole. There it is in its ugly glory! A glob of Titebond II goes in. I got a pack of 1/2" dowel pins from the Home Depot near work and just stuck one in there. Good to go, set it aside and keep going.

    2016-03-03 TopGlue.jpg

    On to the router table; the underbarrel's top slot needed to be another 1/16" deeper. Again because of the angled sides, I needed to stick on a piece of scrap to make the cuts parallel to centerline rather than sides. Then, the side slots needed their deeper slots cut. That was tricky, one side isn't that great. Still a router n00b. Last two shots are before and after.

    2016-03-03 21.44.07.jpg 2016-03-03 21.44.16.jpg 2016-03-03 21.44.21.jpg 2016-03-03 21.47.41.jpg

    OK that'll work. Next the top block needs some work to angle the sides properly. Here's where we learn that I'm getting impatient to get this thing done, because I did a pretty sloppy job of it. None of it is straight anymore... Ah well, that's why we have Bondo. :\

    2016-03-03 22.20.58.jpg 2016-03-03 22.21.03.jpg

    Back to the underbarrel, there are notches on top and bottom at the front, so marked 'em up and routed. Bottom one's not great, but again, Plastic Wood will fix it.

    2016-03-03 22.21.18.jpg 2016-03-03 22.21.22.jpg

    And now to put in the round parts on side and front. 3/8" dowels with 1/4" holes carefully drilled into them. Not shown: Plastic Wood-ed the side slots to fill the drill holes at their aft ends.

    2016-03-03 23.30.17.jpg 2016-03-03 23.30.24.jpg 2016-03-03 23.30.51.jpg

    Finally, the glue's now dry on the top block, so I sawed off the big dowel and Plastic Wooded the gaps. Here's another look at where we're at!

    2016-03-03 23.31.17.jpg 2016-03-03 23.41.33.jpg

    Not enough time to carve the side rails, so that will wait for next week. That might take the whole session; if not I'll get started on the back part of the overbarrel. Stay tuned!
  25. Minishdude1


    Nice woodworking! I know you said its made outta plywood but hows the weight?

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