My "Budget" ESB DL-44


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My first post, so here it goes:

I decided, after building my ANH Vader lightsaber, to move onto a DL-44. My original plan was to build the ANH blaster (my personal favorite), but after a few weeks my search to find a good scope mount and scope for cheap proved unsuccessful. So, brokenhearted ;), I moved onto the next best thing, the ESB DL-44.

My intention was to build this as cheaply as possible, while still looking good (This went poorly quickly). My base Mauser was a $28 BB gun, which I was actually happy with, even though it was inaccurate. However, when preparing it...


Whoops. Also, the trigger broke, so in all, not a good start. Interestingly, I debated going back and buying a second one, and it was gone from Amazon, even my order page URL directed me to a error page.

So, I went with what seems to be the most popular gun 'round these parts, A Denix, which I scored on Amazon for $75 (there goes my "budget" build). It came in the mail today, loose in a box, which I was not entirely happy about, but it was intact, so there's that. It is a lot nicer and heavier than the airsoft gun, so I was happy with it, even if I wasn't happy about spending the extra money on it.


Also in the mail today was my 3D printed side greeblie, which I got for $12 shipped on Ebay, and my resin scope, which I was very happy to get for $15 shipped.

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Now before anyone starts writing those angry letters :lol, yes I know that's not the correct scope. While I wait for the perfect (i.e. cheap) M19 scope find, I settled on this M40 scope as a place holder. Plus, I'm pretty sure no one I hang out with would notice anything was off. Anyway, for $15, this is a pretty nice scope. Here it is after I removed some of the detritus and did some rough sanding. Not to shabby, as it's my first experience with resin.

Scope #01.jpg

Now I'm just waiting on my scope mount that I ordered off of Etsy for $35 (half of which was shipping). I found a seller in the UK making a pretty nice looking scope mount out of "Aluminum DiBond".

I 'm pretty happy with the mount, as I wanted something a little more durable than something 3D printed. Now my next hurdle is going to be determining how I'm going to attach the scope mount to the Denix. When it was going to be based on the BB gun, I found this little $5 camera tripod mount screw that I was going to use, by screwing through the thin metal, and attaching it to the inside of the magazine chamber.
Now that the BB gun is broken, and I don't have the proper (or pretty much any) power tools to drill a hole in the Denix, I'm in a bit of a pickle. Well, that's what I get for being clever and opening up the BB gun. If anyone has any ideas, I'm open to suggestions.

The only part I have yet to purchase is a flash hider, as I still haven't found a metal one that is cheap enough to open my stingy wallet. I'm open to suggestions on that as well. I'm open to using a resin flash hider, as long as its good quality. (I did find an M19 scope in resin, but it looked..., well I went with the M40 scope, so you know how it looked)

Well, if one good thing came from that BB gun purchase, it was the box it came in, which carries a lot nicer than the Denix one. Its almost like it was meant to fit...

I think I've rambled on for long enough, I'll make an update when I get the scope mount. Thanks!
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I recently went back to Bioshock Infinite, and today I was struck with inspiration. I took out the busted BB Mauser, cut half an inch off the barrel and super glued it to the body. Now, a bit shorter, a bit wonky and not exactly winning any beauty contests, I managed to salvage it. And start another project. Bring us the girl and wipe away the debt...

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Damn, the replica thing is so addictive. I was building a budget Vader ROTS saber and with this I'm so tempted to get a DL-44 aswell.

Nice job. I can't wait to see it done
News! (sort of).

The mount screw showed up today. I'm pretty happy with it for a $5 purchase.
IMG_1281.JPGESB4 Han - Copy.JPG

The mount should show up in the next few days, fingers crossed.

Man, I've got a bunch of stuff I want to do, each waiting on one thing or another...

Awesome finds on a tight budget!!!

Does the M40 have the same feet (same distance apart) as the M19?
My scope mount showed up today, all the way from Swindon. Its almost funny that it cost 2 pounds more to ship it than the mount itself costs. Anyway, my initial reaction was "You're a little small to be a scope mount"


But, after comparing it to the Mauser, and some reference photos, I'm pretty happy with it.

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I had to bend it a little to get it straighter, but I don't want to mess with it too much. To get it to bend, the guy who made it had to do a little cutting, and I'd hate to have to buy another one. You can kind of see it here:


What really makes me happy is that the little $5 mount screw fits it perfectly, I just need to cut the screw part down a smidge. Now I just need to figure out how I want to attach the screw to the Mauser, but without really any tools, I may have to glue it.

Also, the scope mount fits the M40 scope just fine


Anyway, I took a trip to Michaels today, and picked up all the paints I'll need for this project and a few others. I'll make another update when I move forward.


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Thanks to everyone for the interest and props! Today I tackled removing the Denix logo. I borrowed a Dremel (boy do I need to just buy myself one, those suckers are handy), and sanded it off. I was a bit nervous, but it was probably just in my head, since the Dremel probably isn't powerful enough to gouge out a huge chuck. Anyway, I don't think I did a terrible job. It'll all get painted over anyway, so that should hopefully make it look nice.
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The next bit was the mount screw. I wanted to move forward on this today, so on my way home from work, I grabbed a $10 soldering iron from Walmart. I put a light dab of glue on the screw, and set it where I wanted it to go, then I soldered around the edge. I haven't soldered since freshman year of high school electronics class, but I think I got the job done. Plus, if I get a bee in my bonnet about making it nicer, its solder. My electronics teacher always said "solder is the permanent temporary solution". It'll all get covered by the mount screws and mount anyway.


I want to hopefully prime and paint it tomorrow, so possibly an update later that day. Cheers!
Just caught this, the solder is an excellent idea!

Also, good to know about those scopes, I've always wanted to see what a blaster would look like with a longer one.
Is the magazine area solid? Interesting to see the whole head of the screw set in place, I've only seen real guns or those plastic BBs which both have hollow receivers.

Scratch that, looking closer I see it's attached to the outside, my mistake lol
The "magazine" area isn't solid, but the metal is something like a quarter of an inch thick. Too thick for me to drill it with a Dremel, anyway.
So today I decided that I was going to paint this sucker, no matter what. Firsts things first though, I had to cut the barrel down a bit. I used another RPF members post to determine how much to cut off, not having a flash hider, and left myself a bit of wiggle room. Man, I wish I had a band saw, it took a while to cut that thing with a Dremel. It was a good thing I had a pack of heavy duty cutting blades left over from when I needed to do some car repair (and when car repair requires a Dremel, you know its serious).

That left painting. I decided to attach the side piston greeblie before I painted, to make it look more naturally attached. I also painted the scope and the scope mount together, although that was also a bit of laziness/the need to do this quickly. It's about 30 degrees where I live right now, but I had to paint outside, not having place inside to properly paint without upsetting my roommates. I took a page out of some other builds, and painted grey first, then semi-glass black. If I get a hankering to weather it, the grey is already underneath. Right now, I'm going to keep it pristine.

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Now that I have it mostly together, I'm wondering if I should redo the scope itself in a matte black.I already have the paint, it wouldn't be any trouble, just a preference. I don't know, I'll see how my mood takes me.

I think I'm going to go with the shapeways flash hider, as the only other flash hider I see is one on Ebay that would cost about $70, while the 3D printed one is about $32. The only downside is that the earliest it'll get to me is Jan. 31st. :cry

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Well, clearly I have too much time on my hands anyway...
So I in fact did take the scope today, sand it down a bit, and re paint it with a matte black. I personally like it better, and I think the additional sanding helped it a bit. I've definitely learned a bit more about working with resin, as this is first time, so that'll help me down the line.

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Before After
And of course now that I look at an actual M40 scope, I think I may have to repaint the ends in gloss. The main portion of the scope does look more accurate in a matte black, though, so I'm happy with my decision.

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Cool build. I recently saw a $15 airsoft mauser at my local flea market. I am sure its absolute garbage, but as soon as I saw it I thought about doing my own low-budget DL-44.
Great looking blaster build sofar ... I'm also curious to see some pictures of your Darth Vader ANH lightsaber ... perhaps in a seperate thread? :)

My Vader ANH saber was my first real build, sort of a test, since it was not too difficult to find most of the parts, and because I was able to do it inexpensively. It's funny, the first Heiland flash I bid on went up to about $50, and I was disappointed because it went past my price limit, then minutes later I was able to snag a different Heiland flash "buy it now" for $25 before the first Heiland even sold, and on top of that I got it quickly because the seller only lived a few hours away. I got the t tracks from a place called the custom saber shop, and I snagged the clamp and button on eBay from a guy parting out master fx replicas. I kept the original hood, even though its not the correct one, because I liked that it was metal, and it has "character" from age and being used. The hardest part of the build was getting a sticker off the body that had been on it since it was manufactured. :)

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