ANH Han Solo Belt Disk

Discussion in 'Star Wars Costumes and Props' started by phillbarron, Sep 11, 2018.

  1. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    So, I was idly looking for vintage relays and anything else which might have some kind of white electrical box type thing in it when I somehow started looking at vintage electric cigar lighters.

    As you do.

    And I found these ...

    images (1).jpeg 1348724-1.jpeg 3e5b16458ae7f982ad204aef0474b4c2--cigar-lighters-cigars.jpg s-l300 (1).jpg

    Which, to me, look surprisingly familiar. I know none of these is the exact one, but is anyone else seeing the belt disk greeblie?
     
  2. CWOODREPLICAS

    CWOODREPLICAS Member

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    Certainly is good for thought.

    Theres been several different proposals over the years, my favourite being a ‘tobacco’ grinder, which often has a different use for a certain herb...

    my guess is it was either a machined component, judging by its seeming ‘newness’ and ease of manufacturability. It’d take someone on a lathe and mill all of 30 mins to machine that up. I can imagine the department being ‘we need somemore ‘bits’ on there. Send it to Dave to see what he has and can do’

    just my two cents
     
  3. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    I saw the bud buster one, but that didn't look right to me. The metal seems too thick and the indents on those are teeth on the flip side, whereas the disk on Han's belt seems to have holes in it.

    Also, in the close up photos of the ROTJ costume on display there's a split across the centre of the disk. I'm not sure metal splits like that. I don't know, mind you, it's not something I'm an expert on, but it just looks too brittle - almost as if it's plastic sprayed silver.

    That's assuming the belt displayed as screen used actually was in any of the films at all. I get the impression they sometimes knock up multiple ones for travelling display/museum purposes.
     
  4. CWOODREPLICAS

    CWOODREPLICAS Member

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    That split could be a massive scratch/dent, OR thin metal snapping. Its certainly possible for metal to fail this way, though do admit its hard to do.

    Alternatively, might not be a split at all! just a cut.

    If we look at the material, it looks to be some sort of Aluminium. However it could also be nickle plated brass or such. This info puts it into several possible categories of items, including old lighters as you say above. However, im not sure they give the depth were looking for? Its such an obscure part, it could be anything!

    J
     
  5. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    True. Just this week I've gone from thinking it's a template from a spaghetti maker to a microphone from an old radio/telephone to a wheel from a model car (larger back wheel for ANH, smaller front wheel for ESB/ROTJ) to a cigar igniter. This thread is a good example of why I should't be allowed near a computer when I'm tired.
     
  6. kurtyboy

    kurtyboy Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I have both a speaker, and a light meter and I can't decide which is better for ANH. The speaker definitely for RotJ though.

    Custom machibed for ANH? Not likely. ESB/Rot? Possibly.
     
  7. Hovito loincloth

    Hovito loincloth Well-Known Member

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    Looks like a carbon granule microphone for the 746 series Post Office telephones common in the '70s
     
  8. CWOODREPLICAS

    CWOODREPLICAS Member

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    Don't see why it couldn't have been machined. There is evidence they machined things, some of which had multiple operations (see V2). The operations suggest they had machinery and attachments to mill or drill radial cuts, so to make one of these wouldn't take long at all. Wouldn't surprise me if someone was asked to whip something quickly up.
     
  9. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    Have you got any photos of those? Curious to see what you've you've found.

    That was my first assumption why I saw it, but I couldn't find one which matched. Most of the ones I saw tended to be convex or had no raised ring/lip around them.

    I thought it might be an aeroplane one perhaps?

    It's not impossible, but since it doesn't fulfil a function in the films and could therefore have been any shape it seems more likely they'd just have grabbed something handy and slapped it on.

    For ESB on they needed to replicate the shape so may well have custom machined it.

    That's just me speculating about the inner workings of someone's mind 40 years ago though.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I also thought it might be a socket for a breeze plug.
     
  10. CWOODREPLICAS

    CWOODREPLICAS Member

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    It could also be that something they used, fell off, was damaged etc and someone was asked to quickly make something up. I don't think its a stretch to say it was machined.
     
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  11. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    360054336_01d6ac500a_o.jpg

    I wonder if that chunk at the nine o'clock position was missing at the beginning of filming or if it's damage?
     
  12. Dann

    Dann Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    No way would they have spent time to machine something like that for ANH.

    And as far as the V2 goes, pretty sure they turned the shape on a wood lathe, made a mold and cast it in aluminum along with the Shared Stunt (V3). I'm not sure about the pommel cubes (if someone knows for sure I'd really like to know this), it's possible a mill was used in conjunction with a rotary table (ala the Hero), but things were a little sloppy for ANH, so whatever was fastest and cheapest was done more often than what looks pretty.

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  13. CWOODREPLICAS

    CWOODREPLICAS Member

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    I don’t see any reason to rule it out.

    Very surprised if they turned the shape on a wood lathe, Made a mold and cast it. Having experience in engineering practices, this would have cost a hell of a lot more than machinist time and required more tools and equipment (and skill), especially with the complex motor system and bored internals. I completely understand the fastest and cheapest metho, so probably is that there were purchased components, but machining wouldn’t take long or cost much. Nothing about that disk is complex at all or has any time consuming cuts. Pretty sure pinewood would have had a shop also for metal work, and if they went to all the effort to fabricate buckles, then this disk doesn’t seem unlikely either. I feel jumping and saying it was definitely not machined is a bit hasty.

    I know they did it for the V3, but that was a whole different board game.

    That chunk missing does suggest however a non-metallic material. Perhaps wood? That could splinter off like that. Or a resin?
     
  14. CWOODREPLICAS

    CWOODREPLICAS Member

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    Had a quick look at the Lightsaber guide and it seems to suggest the Shared Stunts were cast. Didn’t know that about the V2 (only V3)! Surprised there arent more imperfections however. Even after post processing there are some imperfections.

    Anyway, I still think there’s a possibility that it was machined. Heck, if they went to the trouble to cast Aluminium, machine it down to a nice finish and then mill the pommels on an indexible head, a small circular coin looking thing wouldn’t be beyond them.
     
  15. Dann

    Dann Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    That's not what we're saying. Sure, they may have been capable of machining that little greeblie, but a little belt disc detail part isn't a front and center Hero prop like a lightsaber hilt. The folks who built the props would not have taken the time to setup a machine to make a part that insignificant.


    And about the V2 and 3, I meant to say turned from wood, not necessarily on a "wood lathe". Isn't there a picture somewhere of the wooden master used to make the mold, alongside the mold itself?
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2018
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  16. CWOODREPLICAS

    CWOODREPLICAS Member

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    Im still not 100% convinced. Going to the effort to fabricate all the buckles and such its certainly not beyond them.

    V2 and V3 yeah apparently it was a wooden master, cast and then cleaned up, which does surprise me, but who knows!
     
  17. Lichtbringer

    Lichtbringer Sr Member

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    Hmm, not sure. It would have been maybe 10 minutes for them to make one - remember, many of the time consuming stuff we do when making replicas is due to the fact that we want them the same as the original (as possible).
    Something the makers had no need for. Maybe one came into the shop, showing one of the above mentioned parts, saying "i like the look. It´s just easy bendeable stamped thin sheet metal and i need it more sturdy to bolt it to the belt, please make me something". They just could have chucked a piece of alu, eyeballed the dimensions, and 10 minutes later the job was done.
     
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  18. halliwax

    halliwax Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Someone say V2?!?!

    5ca997c6a85d01332aba37727414ddc4.jpg

    From our understanding today the v2 and v3 are sisters from the same mold

    The v2 being built first had much more clean up time on the lathe and mill

    And even then when you examine it closely it is very scary machine work..

    The v3 on the other hand is so poorly machined it’s no wonder it was never seen in ANH.. I am willing to bet it was not used because they couldnt fit the same electric motor inside it like the V2..

    When casting the v3, the mold shifted, probably because they were in a rush, and you can see a huge seam line in it, especially in the ring section


    The pommels were cleaned up on the lathe then milled on a end mill with a rotoray table mounted 90*. You can still see milling marks on both boosters today

    The V2’s pommel cubes are sketchy.. but look at the V3’s they pretty much didn’t give a sh%t about it, some big some small, nothing even close to being symmetrical, total rush job

    Even the ring above the cubes on the v3 is so out of whack it’s like they had it in the chuck of the lathe not even anywhere close to being centered. Which is probably the most time consuming part of machining. “True-ing” everything

    this proves to me it was a “yo Gary, these two laser swords need to be done tomorrow, this one is almost finish (v2) , go bang out another one”

    Now that I’ve completely highjacked this thread, there was a lot of other greeblies machined for the film

    Imperial officer cap buttons, the pocket tools for the jumpsuits

    And 6 100% aluminum r2d2’s that we’re all 100% machined from scratch.. with rumors of costing 30,000 a piece..

    A lot of r2d2 leg parts can be seen through out the film, especially inside the Xwings

    Heck even Vader’s chest box has machined parts on it(though I’m no expert But remember reading it could have been record player parts?! Idk)

    C3po’s arms in ANH were also 100% aluminum and built from scratch.. along with all of his greeblies on the suit

    I can see them banging out this Han Solo belt greeblie in 30 mins, no problem


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    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018
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  19. CWOODREPLICAS

    CWOODREPLICAS Member

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    Completely forgot about all the cap buttons, pocket tools, R2D2 bits, Vader etc etc!

    and Re-V2, The must have done ALOT of work on it to make it clean up nice, allow the spinning head (would probably involve a lot of slicing, boring and cleaning up alone, most likely to show more imperfections from casting and horrendously weaken it internally, surprised if it was used as a fighting saber it survived!).

    Want to keep the thread clean however so ill end my input here on the V2.

    SOOOOO.... Back to this little disk, think my general stance is: Could be a found part, could be machined, who the hell knows...
     
  20. halliwax

    halliwax Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Could be a found part, could be machined, who the hell knows... [/QUOTE]

    Lol that seems to be my out look on every Star Wars prop!! Lol



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  21. Dann

    Dann Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Halliwax to the rescue with the photo and the V2 info!

    Thanks, I hadn't seen that pic in so long, I saved it this time. I wish more eBay auctions like this would crop up.

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  22. SFPROPS

    SFPROPS Well-Known Member

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    I'd say that phillbarron hit the nail on the head here. I looked for years for this piece and did a lot of research back when I used to make and sell belt/holster rigs back in the early 2000's around the time of the first fan designed ANH Solo blasters that went up for sale (I helped Boba Debt with some of the cast pieces on his kit). I crafted a cast metal replica that was based on all the screen caps and reference photos I could get my hands on and I made a piece that looks just like the cigar lighter top shown above. Same number and layout of the holes and everything. For some reason, I always suspected it was part of a piece to a humidifier that goes into a humidor. So, at least I had the cigar angle right. LOL

    IMO, the search is over. KUDOS
     
  23. Dann

    Dann Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Yes, I agree. I'd say the source for the part has been found.



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  24. CWOODREPLICAS

    CWOODREPLICAS Member

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    I haven't yet found one of the lighters that matches the hole pattern myself. Well, certainly not the one thats on display. I don't have many screen grabs from ANH though so cant 100% say. To me though I feel though its could be based on this, but not sure it is that part.
     
  25. Seth Skywalker

    Seth Skywalker Well-Known Member

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    Great hunting skills you guys! Lol, @SFPROPS, took me a little while to notice it was your avatar, not some crazy insect crawling around on my screen. :lol
     
  26. SFPROPS

    SFPROPS Well-Known Member

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    Here's a photo showing the disc from the book that went along with the original Smithsonian "Magic of Myth" tour, and the one I scratch built.
    Circles.jpg
    Here's a photo I took from one of the tour Solo costumes
    backbelt.jpg
    Here's screen cap that shows the shape but not many details
    jab_han.jpg
    And here is a photo of one of the belts I used to sell with the disc on it
    holster_compare_1.jpg
    So, yeah - I think it's what was used based on the evidence. At least on the ANH belts.
     
  27. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    I disagree ... mostly with myself.

    Two things make me doubt the original disk is a cigar lighter:

    1) The central hole on the belt disk seems to be larger and deeper. It looks like there's a screw inside it which possibly wouldn't work with a lighter? (I guess it could have been drilled and counter sunk? Depends what's behind there.)

    2) The pattern of holes on the belt disk is hexagonal, yet on all the lighters I've looked at they're arranged in a circle.

    Neither of these points is conclusive either way, certainly regarding the ANH disk since the pictorial evidence is so scant ... but I think I'd need to see a lighter with the right number/pattern of holes to be certain.
     
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  28. SFPROPS

    SFPROPS Well-Known Member

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    While it might not be the exact brands/styles you've found photos of, the chances of it being so close in size and with the same basic features, and it not being an electric cigar lighter are slim, IMO.
     
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  29. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    It's also entirely possible the pattern of holes was more circular in ANH because it was a found item.By the time ESB came around it was replicated on a lathe and the holes were hexagon-ised.

    Interestingly, in this photo it looks like there's a seam running around the centre of the edge. So it could have been a budbuster after all.

    Capture.PNG

    Maybe they used the whole thing for ANH and just the lid for ESB/ROTJ?
     
  30. Corellianexports

    Corellianexports Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I'm wondering if this was also an original airplane part.

    Another item I'm thinking of is a speaker from a toy that makes cow sounds. I remember these from the 1970's.
    They were based on compressed air, so the holes were needed to help generate the sounds.
     
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  31. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    a5f349fb80c197c8ad7e30fae4a321f6.jpg

    This sort of thing? I don't know what's in them, but I think there's no speaker as such? Pattern looks similar though.
     
  32. Cameron

    Cameron Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    How about a vintage airplane radio mic or steward announcement mic?
     
  33. Dann

    Dann Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Haha, I guess I hadn't realized just how many different found objects that have totally different purposes and uses share this very similar design!

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  34. Cameron

    Cameron Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Ive been looking at "vintage microphone elements" for awhile now. Give that a google.
     
  35. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    I would add aviation basin waste to the list of possibles.

    Yeah, again they all seem to have the holes arranged in a circular pattern ... but it could be easily a variant of them. Like you say, they may well have had an aviation or steward/ess announcement mic in the pile of bits - the problem there is finding an image of a dismantled one rather than the unit as a whole.
     
  36. Dann

    Dann Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Another contender for the part, a microphone element! 58ca632887b0593fdc56ca8627d70f1c.jpg

    I suppose the trick would be to find the correct size...

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  37. Zombie Killer

    Zombie Killer Sr Member

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    Ding ding ding. Dan wins the prize!!! The prize is …….sorry, nothing here. lol Its from a Voice of Music microphone. There are a few other names that used it. I've seen Philco and others. Its from a Harp microphone. You need to remove the center hole cover.

    Here it is without the cover.
    IMG_4861s.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018
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  38. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    Those look identical to me. An exact match even.
     
  39. Zombie Killer

    Zombie Killer Sr Member

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    Ya, I guess the back has to be thinned down a bit because the actual prop is a tad thinner. I assume there is a screw in the middle hole to attach to the belt. Ive haven't built a belt yet but bought one when I located it. Its what Kurtyboy uses on his belt.
     
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  40. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    Do you know which Voice of Music mic it's from?
     
  41. Zombie Killer

    Zombie Killer Sr Member

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    Its the one that looks like a bullet. IIRC it was a PITA to get the top off it. Just search Voice of music mic. There is also a guy on EBAY selling just the elements. Not listed under VM though. Might have been "harp VOM mic element"

    Oh and there are a couple different types so look for that hole pattern.
     
  42. Dann

    Dann Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Guess I should've bought one before I opened my big mouth!

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  43. kurtyboy

    kurtyboy Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Oh that thing! I remembered it as a speaker, not microphone. I never actually installed it because I wasn't sure the size was right, but it's still in one of my parts boxes.



    Found it!
     
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  44. Zombie Killer

    Zombie Killer Sr Member

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    OOps, I thought you had used it....lol. I cant keep up...…

    here is a little reference pic I put together when we were looking for it. How wide are the belts you guys are using?

    han belt.JPG
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018
  45. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    Mine's 2 inches. Don't know if that's accurate though.
     
  46. Dann

    Dann Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Apparently the disc I shared the photo of is "roughly" 1 1/8" in diameter, which is 1/8" smaller than the one that's on my Todd's gunbelt.

    The Todd's belt is 2" wide, btw.

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    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018
  47. Zombie Killer

    Zombie Killer Sr Member

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    1.14" or 29mm dia. and about .40" or 10.4mm thick. Here it is sitting on my stunt Vader belt which is 1-3/4"

    IMG_4863s.jpg

    IMG_4864s.jpg
     
  48. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    I think that's it, I was pretty certain I could make out the line around the side on a screenshot. The ESB/ROTJ one looks like the same piece but just the top half.
     
  49. Zombie Killer

    Zombie Killer Sr Member

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    If it is used on the ESB belt I would bet they opened up the holes a tad. It looks different. I have this pic and I think the top section is from ESB. I cant tell if its just lighting or if they opened up the holes a bit. I think in ROTJ they used the mic too so I don't see why they would have changed for ESB. This is IIRC because it was about 7 years ago I was last on this subject from what the pic dates are telling me.

    Han belt comp.JPG

    edit. Ok I found this pic labelled ROTJ, it is where I was thinking they thinned the mic down because its thinner here. All the ANH pics I have show it to be thicker. ESB being the thickest.

    Han Disk ROTJ.jpg
     
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  50. phillbarron

    phillbarron Jr Member

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    s-l400 (1).jpg

    Seems to be a Ronette of Holland mic used by VM, Silvertone and Philco (possibly others?) Might be called a bullet mkiii?
     

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