ALIENS Pulse Rifle - finally finished, but first, a story

Discussion in 'Replica Props' started by Gigatron, Mar 29, 2012.

  1. Gigatron

    Gigatron Sr Member

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    Hey guys,

    Years ago, there was a board run for casts of the MiM Pulse Rifle. I was lucky enough to get in on the run, at the time. Now, back then, I had never built a multi-part resin kit. I had no idea how much resin could warp, what the best glues to to use were, or much else, regarding resin. Making things even more complicated, I had never seen a close-up of an actual pulse rifle, so my only guide, was my memory of the movie.

    So, I built it as best I could, as-is, with a lot of 5-minute, 2-part epoxy. And, for a while, it held together, just fine and looked pretty cool on the shelf. Then a few years went buy and the epoxy started to give and pieces colapsed or fell off. The grenade launcher seperated from the thompson (there were 3/4" gaps between the shroud and the GL, on either side). I tried patching it with bits of strene and more epoxy. It would hold a few weeks and fall off again.

    And for a year or two, I just let it sit like that, never really knowing how to fix it, resigned to have a busted pulse rifle.

    Well, a few months ago, I got the itch to repair it. What an undertaking. First, pulling it all apart, scraping off all the old glue and looking at pictures of other folks' builds. I was in for one heck of a project. Turns out, the shrouds were really bowed, outwards. I spent nights heating the shrouds with a heat gun, while resting weights on top, hoping to even them out. Then I had to sculpt new contours so that they would line up with the thompson body.

    Once I was relatively happy with the shroud shape, I had to figure out how I was going to keep the GL from falling off again. Strolling around the local hardware store, I found some aluminum bar stock (1" x 3'), with pre-drilled holes. So, I drilled the stock to the thompsonand then to the top of the GL. Nice solid connection and dang near invisible.

    Then I had an idea to add electronics - a static ammo counter display. I found a 2-digit, 7 segment display on amazon (2 displays for $6), then picked up 2 micro switches ($3) and an AA battery holder ($1.20) from Radio Shack. Wiring the display was easy. Planning the pins and soldering took less than 10 minutes. The hard part was figuring out how I was going to wire this setup. After dry fitting all the parts, I realized that using a hardwired system was never going to work. It was easy, but the wires would get tangled and crushed with every change. So, I devised a wireless/contact system. Using 3M 9703 electrically conductive adhesive tape and aluminum foil, I created contact points on inside of the shroud and on the magazine, which had been fitted with the battery holder. A microswitch is located under the main trigger, between the two scews, on the back plate. So I can turn the switch on, slap in the magaine and it will automatically light up with a nice "95" on the counter.

    One of my concerns when considering the rebuild was holding the shroud together with nothing more than cyanoacrylate (CA, or crazy glue, if you will). Thankfully, I had several lengths of small-diameter brass tubing from other projects. I drilled a series of holes around the shroud and used lengths of tubing, as pins. So now, everything is held together with glue and pins - it should never, ever fall apart, again.

    Now a little more info on the odds and ends on the PR. The stock, barrel vent and front triangle are steel, from a run on the RPF, soon after the kit run was offered. The sling is an MNoble, from a run on the Aliens Legacy forum, from years back. The paint is Aervoe camoflauge FS595, milspec Olive Drab. The black is Krylon Satin Black. The ejector ports are finished with Talon Aluminum buffing powder. The GL pump does slide and technically, the shoulder stock extends, but I bolted it in place.

    If you've read all that, good for you :cool

    Now on to the pictures

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Weathering may come at a later time, I haven't decided.

    Enjoy,
    Fred
     
  2. Rikarus

    Rikarus Well-Known Member

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    nice looking PR brotha!
     
  3. Clutch

    Clutch Master Member

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    and photography!:thumbsup
     
  4. shanes4doorsi

    shanes4doorsi New Member

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    looking good
     
  5. PHArchivist

    PHArchivist Master Member

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    Negative...

    One way or another you seem to have achieved a "slightly worn" look to your pant job. I hink it is perfect.

    Frankly, I don't believe Colonial Marines would or should allow a precision instrument to become beat to hell.

    Leave it as is... Excellent work.
     
  6. Gigatron

    Gigatron Sr Member

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    Thanks, guys :cool


    That was the easy part, :lol



    I'm kinda with you on this. When I first built it, way back when, I went for a heavily weathered look. And while it looked like what I saw on screen, it just sort of took away from the "bad-*" factor.

    This time, I'm just going to leave it. Plus painted on weathering, never really looks right. If you're going to weather it, you need to base coat it in aluminum, paint over it, then remove the top coat.

    The weathering on this one just comes from playing with the grenade launcer. The pump sliding along the cage, wore away some of the paint, in a natural pattern. I just gave it a light dusting with aluminum powder, to hide the white resin :cool.

    If I could ever afford armor from Spat, with my PR and my MR Tacker, I could go as a colonial marine for halloween.

    -Fred
     
  7. DeLorean12

    DeLorean12 Active Member

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    Hey Gigatron! That is one awesome Pulse Rifle! I was wondering if you could show me what exactly I would need to make my own Pulse Rifle counter? (Without the adhesive tape or aluminum)
    I'm just trying to find a way to simply light a specific number like you have down with your counter.
    Thanks!
     
  8. MAKE BELIEVE

    MAKE BELIEVE Sr Member

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    Great job. Congrats on your PR
     
  9. TK9477

    TK9477 New Member

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    That is real good
     
  10. ob1al

    ob1al Sr Member

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    Nice job - looks great man!
     
  11. Zenwalker

    Zenwalker Sr Member

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    Nice work.:thumbsup
     
  12. gyoung2993

    gyoung2993 Sr Member

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    Very nice, please leave it the way it is......lol.....jk......weathering is great ,but some tend to overdue weathering......I think its absolutely perfect ,the way you painted it, congrats, to you sir...for finishing a long project ,Im sure....love it......
     
  13. clancampbell

    clancampbell Sr Member

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    An excellent job, love the paint and the led counter!

    Rich
     
  14. jc23

    jc23 New Member

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    game over man, game over !
     
  15. vdubdan

    vdubdan New Member

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    That is awesome.
     
  16. planet

    planet Well-Known Member

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    Cool have one in the works myself !
     
  17. TwoPointZero

    TwoPointZero New Member

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  18. IROCthisZ28

    IROCthisZ28 Active Member

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    Read that whole thing and it gave me some ideas for some builds I'm going to do. Leave paint as is it.looks great!!!
     
  19. gyoung2993

    gyoung2993 Sr Member

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    you did a heck of a bang up job, I wish I knew you had trouble with your shrouds ,though ,I could of sent you thin strips of aluminum to help support your shrouds, that are very light weight and are bendable pieces if needed to curve with the shroud, would have given it more strength and durability....well crap...I read the post and started searching and run across a few pieces ,that would have worked...well if anyone else has that problem , I think that is an idea that some may want to try...lowes if filled with these thin flat aluminum plates ,that you would have to bend yourself but would never bend ,without some force behind it that would work for such structual strength.......just thought I would throw my idea out there , that may help others in the same situation as the delimma you encountered......
     

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