Mouse Vader

Sr Member
Thanks for the bearing info guys. Given the recess sizes & Johns's sketch I think there's a fair chance one was fitted to the V2 (for ANH) & maybe intended for the V3. Whether this proved necessary, as you say PPP, is a moot point for me as we're after reproducing the props.

Once again seriously impressive results PPP.
 

thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
If it helps, the emitter recess being for a bearing... it works. That’s if you find one that exact size which they could have had

Warning: for Vadermania - I tried putting a clamp on this and it’s too big, so I nicked up the paint job and went ahead and weathered the whole thing so it at least looked like it was on purpose
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it is rather redundant on a separate emitter though

if we’re replicating the prop as it is and that’s not a separate piece in there and just a shallow-cylindrical hole, then ..cool I guess lol that’s what
 

LOM

Well-Known Member
I had found a supply of 8x20xx bearings before - but of course now that I look again I can't find them :lol: I will try to find them again later today. I'll have to take another peak at that B&W photo again to check that attachment as well.. The V3 emitter has a pretty damaged joint, I think that at one point that emitter might have been attached to a hilt and broke off rather than being a spare casting, so the bearing would have been useful at one point. Definitely not with a spinning emitter though, ha!

Thanks for the brief description of the new casting process as well! It's nice to see the refinement of the process throughout the thread! I find it quite interesting. Someday I'd love to try and get an aluminum foundry set up for some projects.

Edit: McMaster Carr has 9x20x6. I’ll keep looking.. I could’ve sworn I saved the links!
 
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thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I had found a supply of 8x20xx bearings before - but of course now that I look again I can't find them :lol: I will try to find them again later today. I'll have to take another peak at that B&W photo again to check that attachment as well.. The V3 emitter has a pretty damaged joint, I think that at one point that emitter might have been attached to a hilt and broke off rather than being a spare casting,

So.. i think, given how not true these casts are, its nigh impossible to drill straight through and end up where you want on the other side.. and making the neck wall thickness uneven. Cutting the emitter off is one sure fire way to be able to machine them, keeping the neck portion true and shortening the length of bore offset
 

PoopaPapaPalps

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I had found a supply of 8x20xx bearings before - but of course now that I look again I can't find them :lol:....

Thanks for the brief description of the new casting process as well! It's nice to see the refinement of the process throughout the thread! I find it quite interesting. Someday I'd love to try and get an aluminum foundry set up for some projects.

Edit: McMaster Carr has 9x20x6. I’ll keep looking.. I could’ve sworn I saved the links!

Ain't that always the way? I used to get all my bearings from VXB but eBay has better value now that I know what to look for. Damn near impossible for me to find 8x20 when I was playing with my V3 set-ups. Always 9x20's or 8x22's..

I won't dissuade anyone from giving home foundry work a try. It's quite fun problem solving and toying with trying to get good, clean work...As a practical means to produce anything without industrial tooling: it is terrible.


Here's some fraction inch to mm conversions for ref while we're at it :
5/16" = 7.94mm : 3/4" = 19.05mm : 13/16" = 20.64mm : 7/8" = 22.23mm

I honestly don't know how people work or even remember informal empirical measurements. Look at that mess; what the hell exactly is 13/16ths of something? If you want a good standard for your work, it needs standardized units of measurement!
 

Mouse Vader

Sr Member
it needs standardized units of measurement!
:lol: :lol: :lol: Oh it's been tried - & tried & tried ! UNF = unified national fine ; BSF = british standard fine ; ANF = American national fine. Then there's the metric system which is being pushed as that standard you're wanting (for the last 50yrs or more). The problem is it all just adds more mess as there's too much older stuff built with older standards. Add to that die hards who learned one system & don't want to (or can't) change. Go back much past 1900 & you into engineering with no standards at all & was essentially custom work. Parts interchangeability (sh!t that's a long word!) only came through the small arms industry in the 1850/60's.
 

PoopaPapaPalps

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Quick update:

Decided to just go whole hog and cast separate emitters as well in my normal castings. But I can say that I absolutely hate Shapeways and all these other online 3D print and scan services. If it's not for industrial uses, they need to go.

IMG_7417.JPG


This little piece would've cost me 70 USD had it not been for the sale Shapeways was having. Between my orders from them, I've spent enough for a decent 3D printer plus extra materials and accessories. I would've had full control over how my prints turn out! There's always something with these prints, sometime minor to not-so-minor.

I can't wait for the day when 3D printers come complete with a small scanning tool, print in ultra-fine print resolutions as a standard, are as affordable as inkjet printers, and Shapeways and them won't even be footnotes in history. They were a decent service at one point when the process was expensive but that time is quickly drawing to a close. They're nearly redundant now with how much better technology is getting and providing the ability for folks at home to do things like controlling the print quality.

I'm not saying it's been 2k down the drain but it was a very expensive lesson to learn.
 
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SethS

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
So.. i think, given how not true these casts are, its nigh impossible to drill straight through and end up where you want on the other side.. and making the neck wall thickness uneven. Cutting the emitter off is one sure fire way to be able to machine them, keeping the neck portion true and shortening the length of bore offset

I've always wondered... when they decided to go the cast route, why did they even bother with the wooden buck? Why didn't they just make a mold off the hero saber itself?
 

PoopaPapaPalps

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I've always wondered... when they decided to go the cast route, why did they even bother with the wooden buck? Why didn't they just make a mold off the hero saber itself?

I honestly don't know why they did anything as they did. It's all such a round-about way to do things. The only reasonable explanation is that they didn't have large enough round stock to cut it down on a lathe. Perhaps the original wasn't available or it was in another department? Perhaps they didn't have the material to mold and cast it? We'll probably never know.
 

chazzychaz

Well-Known Member
I honestly don't know why they did anything as they did. It's all such a round-about way to do things. The only reasonable explanation is that they didn't have large enough round stock to cut it down on a lathe. Perhaps the original wasn't available or it was in another department? Perhaps they didn't have the material to mold and cast it? We'll probably never know.
Was RTV rubber even around back then?
 

PoopaPapaPalps

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Was RTV rubber even around back then?

I'm not sure when it was widely commercially available (fairly recently I presume) but I've heard it's been in the movie business as far back as the 60's but was a fairly expensive material and not as good as today's varieties. I know it's used by the 80's from a number of movies, but many were still "hard" casting (using hard materials to make molds/cast from), something I've never managed to do well myself.

I'm sure it's been around for a time, can't say for sure when it started to see heavy use before the last three decades though. Hell, I only found out this stuff was available publicly in the last 10 years. Perhaps some of our industry members here could chime in? Duncanator The 48th Ronin swgeek
 

The 48th Ronin

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I can't speak to what would have been available back then in the UK, but it was absolutely being used in '75/'76 at ILM.

As far as modern varieties being better... maybe? But maybe not. Around 20 years ago Silicones Inc. GI-1000 seemed to be the go-to standard in all of the shops that I worked at. But about 8 - 10 years ago it seemed like they might have changed their formula or something, and mold longevity dropped considerably. Years ago I remember a friend having some molds that were "old" GI-1000 - over 20 year old molds - and it was like they were brand new. So, I dunno... YMMV :unsure:
 

Duncanator

Sr Member
I'm not sure when it was widely commercially available (fairly recently I presume) but I've heard it's been in the movie business as far back as the 60's but was a fairly expensive material and not as good as today's varieties. I know it's used by the 80's from a number of movies, but many were still "hard" casting (using hard materials to make molds/cast from), something I've never managed to do well myself.

I'm sure it's been around for a time, can't say for sure when it started to see heavy use before the last three decades though. Hell, I only found out this stuff was available publicly in the last 10 years. Perhaps some of our industry members here could chime in? Duncanator The 48th Ronin swgeek

48th Ronin is right, silicones have been around for quite a while. And I do have some decades-old molds that are still in great shape. I also have some younger molds that are falling apart. Go figure...

Flexible urethane molds were around back then too. Urethane was cheaper, but had some draw-backs as far as flexibility and mold release went. Urethane is very sticky. If you didn't use a good mold release, you'd end up with your part trapped in a block of rubber. But it cost less!
 

swgeek

Sr Member
I didn't get into the industry until the early 90's but talking to old timers then, they had been using silicone since the 70's.

GI 1000 is the first silicone I ever used. I remember having to save up for a gallon kit for my own project. Then on my first big effects job we had it in 55 gal drums.

As Duncanator says there is urethane rubber. I always hated using urethane rubber, it sticks if you don't release it well enough, you have to use mold release to cast parts and it smells really bad.

As far as why things are done the way they are...who knows. I've worked on a number of props that we make a damaged version but no hero version and then production decides they want a hero version. Why didn't you know that when we started?! We built a hero prop and then damaged it. It's really frustrating. Some times things aren't planned out (a lot lately) and some times they are planned out poorly.
 

thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I have a question.

Where is the center of balance in these hilts without the blade? V3 barely bored out and the v2 bored out for the motor?

Occured to me today the question of tang may be answered via the pipe stunt which had a center right around the bolts, that moved to just past the emitter with a blade, perfectly balanced
 

PoopaPapaPalps

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
That's assuming if the V3 wasn't bored out like the V2. I'm of two minds when it comes to the internals of the V3. I'm currently working on boring one out now and something left as wonky as the V3/Stunt spinning in a steady rest still makes me nervous as all hell. It's already busted one of my bearings and I have to get another one to continue; this makes me wonder if it wasn't bored out any more than to accommodate the pommel. However, there is that one photo with that stunt blade on the table in the Archives where the tang is long enough to at least make it into the clamp section of the Obi stunt hilts. So...I dunno.

In any case, I'm almost 100% positive that in both hilts, there would be much more mass in the grenade section up. How much of each is bored out in both I can only venture with any certainty in the V2, but I would imagine the center of balance would be somewhere in the grenade section as it would've been left the most dense. If I were to venture a guess: it'd likely be somewhere, between the two, in the upper clamp section to maybe the last 4 rings on the grenade section.
 
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PoopaPapaPalps

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I originally had the intention of doing a big write-up on these hilts but, honestly, I think the photos speak for themselves (and that I also forgot what I was going to write about). So here's a big ol' photo-dump with some goofy video.

Some of these were made with the lesser casts for myself to get my hands used to the work, so there's some pock-marking on on a few of these that aren't on my more pristine casts. Otherwise, this is it; these are the hilts as originally made---everything!


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