New Elstree Studio documentary with discarded Graflex.

Discussion in 'Star Wars Costumes and Props' started by Skelatorious, Feb 24, 2019.

  1. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    Ah, yes! I somehow missed that!
     
  2. R5D4

    R5D4 New Member

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    So we only know of the two side rivets being in the toe pic lightsaber prop correct?
     
  3. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    So far. The question is how the toe pic prop lines with with the onscreen prop(s).
     
  4. R5D4

    R5D4 New Member

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    Also with the new close ups especially of the toe pic saber the t-track does look asymmetrical. We’re you able to tell from your view?
     
  5. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    Here’s a weird one. Looks to be from the Seidemann session, based on Hamill’s hair and belt.

    02A9839F-BE00-4084-891B-313E197BE1AF.jpeg
     
  6. Davy Jones

    Davy Jones Well-Known Member

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    Great work finding all those pictures.
    I know it is frustrating to have so msky good ones and yet still have some questions!

    Here's a clearer version of one of those pics.
    ANH The Saber Bubbles.jpg
     
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  7. R5D4

    R5D4 New Member

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    Doesn’t it look like one side well the right side of the bubble strip has more space after the last bubble than the left side?
     
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  8. halliwax

    halliwax Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Wow guys great photos!
     
  9. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    One I hadn’t seen, before:

    4CA5854C-036C-4BE5-B68F-5CC3DBF72081.jpeg


    And, as with the photos of Hamill and Fisher, they also took photos of Hamill holding both the hero prop and the bladed FX stunt (with the tip painted black from its use as Vader’s FX):

    5E7AE74F-F79E-4EE9-9A83-F630DB2652B5.jpeg B32AF625-8193-47A7-BC97-57F824F1EF2D.jpeg
     
  10. SethS

    SethS Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Like the newer d-ring, I need at least one other pic to confirm before I go drilling new holes into my vintage bottom.
     
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  11. R5D4

    R5D4 New Member

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    Right also if we go that route should we install the two rivets first or the t-track?
     
  12. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    T-track first. The orientation of the grips in relation to the clamp band seems consistent. The new rivets go in the space between grips that is lined up with the “L” in “G R A F L E X” on the band.
     
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  13. R5D4

    R5D4 New Member

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    Ohh okay I got it! Thanks!
     
  14. roygilsing

    roygilsing Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    IMG_6992.jpg

    Might as well add a hole in the bottom! I'm more and more convinced I see two rivets!
     
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  15. R5D4

    R5D4 New Member

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    Yes me too! Definitely need a run of those aluminum clips.
     
  16. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    It’s really hard to tell, though. The angle, combined with the light reflections, combined with people wanting to see two rivets, could be playing tricks with our eyes. I’ve started seeing it, too, because I’m looking for it. But what if it’s not really there?

    Are there no higher-quality versions of these images which would provide insights into this mystery?
     
  17. roygilsing

    roygilsing Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Well, thousands of people have drilled a single hole in a Graflex based on an assumption. Might as well drill another one based on a better assumption!
     
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  18. R5D4

    R5D4 New Member

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    I could not agree more! I’m glad you are working with or will be working with your CAD program for the new clip!
     
  19. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    For what it’s worth, I have unused grips on standby, and just ordered a new bottom tube from TGS. That way, I’ll have both flavors ready to swap out, should more info become available.

    Just waiting for a new clip...
     
  20. kurtyboy

    kurtyboy Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I added the second rivet to mine yesterday. Actually added two new holes and I was able to get the new hand made clip in the correct orientation and completely covered the original hole.

    Let me get some images together to show you what I found, but in the meantime...

    Are these holes between grips originally for wires or a switch?
    falcon hero.jpg

    Here's another useless image:
    falcon stunt.jpg
     
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  21. R5D4

    R5D4 New Member

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    Great idea! What bubble strip do you have just out of curiosity?
     
  22. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    You don’t suppose they originally were thinking of doing an all-in-one prop—a motorized hero they could stick a blade into to use as an FX, and then decided to create a dedicated FX?

    And, yeah, I noted various “holes” (or rivets, or, reflections, or film imperfections) along the length of the gap between grips when I examined the 4K77 footage frame by frame. The results were inconsistent enough that I wouldn’t claim to be sure that ANYTHING—holes or fasteners—are there in that exposed metal gap. It could just as easily be a different prop from the one seen in the toe pic, which DOESN’T have anything going on in that space.
     
  23. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    As much as I love Roy, his bubblestrips are frosted, so I picked up a clear one from Roman, since that seems to be the accurate choice. But my Vader ANH and ESB sabers proudly use Roy’s strips. And grips! And d-rings!

    Here it is, by the way. Built a few months ago from a TGS Gen 2, with TGS Folmer pins and glass eye. Looks like it may not be completed, after all!

    A304584E-5232-4833-95BB-8FA98B75A264.jpeg
     
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  24. kurtyboy

    kurtyboy Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Those are the best I could do. They're from the 86GB non-DNR version.
     
  25. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    That “useless” image appears to be the FX stunt, since I think I can see the cable going up Hamill’s sleeve.
     
  26. AnubisGuard

    AnubisGuard Sr Member

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    For what it's worth, as mostly a spectator to all of this, the most convinced I've ever been that there are two d-ring rivets in the toe pic was the one time I wasn't looking for them. I scrolled past the closeup while looking for new posts in the thread, and bam with 100% clarity, there they were. It sure doesn't look like one rivet to me any more.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2019
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  27. kurtyboy

    kurtyboy Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    yeah, I know. I just posted it since some other from the same shoot were posted recently and I hadn't seen that image until a few days ago.

    Anyway...

    Lucas handing the hero prop to Alec Guinness. Is that an on/off switch or a gleam of light on the end of the clamp lever?
    lucas graflex1.jpg
    lucas graflex2.jpg

    lucas graflex3.jpg

     
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  28. kurtyboy

    kurtyboy Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Of course, it could always be Guinness handing the prop to Lucas!
     
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  29. AnubisGuard

    AnubisGuard Sr Member

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    ^If the clamp lever were opened a la the toe pic, I think it would land right where that highlight is.
     
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  30. halliwax

    halliwax Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Can see the wire up the sleeve on that one
     
  31. kurtyboy

    kurtyboy Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Yep, you're absolutely right. With the lever in this position, the end is almost perfectly facing the camera and if a flash was used it would catch it.

    flash.jpg
     
  32. halliwax

    halliwax Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    * that’s good observation... I would have never thought of that
     
  33. CAKComedyProps

    CAKComedyProps Active Member

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    When I have almost no time to finish any projects:
     

    Attached Files:

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  34. Pixelpiper

    Pixelpiper Well-Known Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    With any luck, there will continue to be minutiae to discover and discuss about this saber for years to come and in the future I can have my grand-kids read me all the new posts in this thread.

    P.S. My kids are 6 and 9 right now so don't make any plans to archive this any time soon. ;)
     
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  35. teecrooz

    teecrooz Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Looks like the clamp lever rectangular washer is missing.
     
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  36. R5D4

    R5D4 New Member

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    Is this picture from the same toe pic photo sessions?
     
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  37. Davy Jones

    Davy Jones Well-Known Member

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    Yes.
     
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  38. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    Been holding up my TGS (with Roy’s single-rivet clip) and trying to match the angle of the toe pic. More and more, it’s looking to me like there must be two rivets on there. One central rivet would be much more obvious, based on my comparison, and it just ain’t happening.
     
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  39. JunkSabers1138

    JunkSabers1138 Sr Member

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    The more I play around with the contrast of this particular picture and see how the highlights bounce around, the more I see the dual rivet attatchment as well.

    IMG_6992.jpg


    That said, given that there ARE parallel-oriented two hole D-Ring mounts that are readily available to purchase today, I'm fairly sure there once existed a similarly shaped vintage D-ring mount that allowed for a comparable method of attachment. Perhaps there's an old catalog somewhere that we could thumb through that would point us in the right direction?

    2cdd01ea1a44e1bca703db322bccb26bbf384c13.jpg .
     
  40. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    That particular sample of a two-rivet d-ring certainly wouldn’t work. In the available reference images, the clip seems to run parallel to the loop that holds the ring, with the edge curved so as to hug the bottom lip of the flash tube.. Basically, Roy’s setup, but with two rivets instead of one. A long strip of metal with rounded ends that was looped back on itself and riveted to the endcap.

    I’m subscribing more and more to the handmade bracket theory. Maybe the Elstree prop really IS a Rosetta Stone for the onscreen hero(es). The only likely difference is that the hero bracket seems longer, and thus more centered on the endcap.


    I’ve been trying to scratch my ANH Graflex itch for nearly 20 years, beginning with my old Larbel, then the Master Replicas Elite Edition, then the Signature Edition, and now my new TGS. Although I fear the itch won’t truly be scratched until I go full vintage.

    Of course, when the Force opens a window, it closes a door. Just when we might actually have solved the last key mystery of this iconic prop, those friggin’ mystery fasteners are discovered between the grips. Un-friggin’-believable!
     
  41. JunkSabers1138

    JunkSabers1138 Sr Member

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    Oh I am very well aware that the presented clip is in no way identical to what would have been used; only in that it is proof that such side-by-side hole mounts do exist in reality and that an older model with two holes in similar configuration could have been used.

    Apologies if I didnt clarify that correctly
     
  42. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    No, you were perfectly clear. It’s just that seeing that particular two-hole bracket makes me think that a found-parts setup like that seems less likely than a handmade bracket. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a two-hole mount which is also shaped like Roy’s single-hole mount.

    In proper scientific method tradition, I was being as skeptical as possible when presented with this new, two-rivet theory, but the available data is leaning more and more in the direction of a handmade bracket/two rivets.

    If the Elstree saber was indeed production-made (which seems likely), then the only likely variance between it and the hero bracket is the length of metal used to make the clip.
     
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  43. indignate

    indignate Member

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    Do anyone else see a broken bubble strip in this shot? broken bubble.jpg
     
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  44. SethS

    SethS Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    It's a trick of the light because the strip is pinched bu the brackets, not slotted in like most replicas.
     
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  45. indignate

    indignate Member

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    another curiosity. A speck in the very same place. Can be whatever. But its curious.


    top detailb.jpg
     
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  46. roygilsing

    roygilsing Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Well, the Graflex mirror goes in there. Most likely a lot of Graflexes have scratches there.
     
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  47. Aison

    Aison Active Member

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    Been thinking about why the clamp lever, is closed and then shown half closed during the filming schedule.

    Going off the time line that was linked.

    22nd March Sand Crawler scenes shot (does not mention if the scene where he then runs off to the speeder to go home, but it would make sense they shot that too) (Clamp lever open)

    April 2nd Mos Eisley exteriors are shot. (Luke getting out of speeder when they arrive. When Luke gets to Mos Eisley with Ben the clamp lever is closed.)

    April 22nd. Ben’s cave

    The Exactra strip was sandwich inserted, and they seem to have been well aware they could adjust the clamp to fully close it. They adjusted it and closed the lever all the way. In my simulation experiment it shows the whole assembly is loose if this is what they did.



    In this experiment I used my Graflex Inc vintage in ESB configuration. I used an Exactra bubble strip with the flat edges I bought loose. It had been slimmed down, but the width was still the same. I adjusted the clamp so it could fully closed on the strip in position. I also compared the width with to my other ones still in the calculator. Both versions, flat and frosted are the same width.

    IMG_6775.JPG IMG_6776.JPG

    In the next vid I simulated some bounce and twist actions. At first it held together really well, even being loose like that. Then I was shocked. With the right bounce and twist it can quickly come apart. However if you are bouncing and twisting the other direction from the open slots it stays together pretty well.



    This may have happened when Luke runs to the Land Speeder at the Sand Crawler scene. The saber is really bouncing all over the place. If it happened it needs to be fixed there and then. So they tightened lever and they try to shut it all the way, but it only goes so far. I now think Luke grabs onto it to in fear of it falling apart. If he was running and grabbed onto it while it was loose, I am pretty sure it could have come apart as well.

    In the third experiment I wanted to test if this would actually fix the problem. I made a faux strip to the width of the exactra strip, slightly bigger.

    IMG_6780.JPG

    I made one revolution of the lever to tighten. The faux card was tight to put between the clamp edges, but it went in. I closed the lever as much as I could, and it matches what we see in the promo shots and on screen. This slight adjustment tightened the bottom assembly right up to my surprise and disbelief. The top is still a little loose. Putting the little top clamp screw in would fix that, also bending the tube tabs out. (Pushing that lever tight was cringy, my poor Vintage ESB being experiment onL)



    The Elstree shows both sides of the strip have been chamfered down. This could indicate this was done to fix the fact the lever can’t be closed after that quick fix. Another photo of the toe saber shows that the strip has not been chamfered yet well.

    ANH The Saber Bubbles no chamfer edge.jpg

    This would mean the toe pic saber promo shots would have to have been taken before Mos Eisley scenes, if they were to use this hero in that scene, which is unlikely.

    The toe pic promo shots must have been done after the Sand Crawler dash to the speeder. But there is a missing grip, so they must have repaired that before photos. If the Elstree is the toe pic saber, than there probably should be a spot on one grip that shows extra glue residue because of the replaced grip. However the bubble strip still was not chamfered at this point.

    I believe this violent action of the saber bouncing around, has contributed to the flared edges and stress cracks of the aluminium clip. This wear and tear cannot be so easily discarded, as it is consistent with wear and tear of something that has been used. However the clip is not bent back yet if it is the toe pic hero.

    Star Wars - A New Hope - Luke Skywalker Lightsaber_clip stress cracks and flared edges15.jpg

    After the promo shots it would then have to go to have the strip ground down just enough so the lever can be fully closed. While this one is off, they may have replaced it with another hero. At Mos Eisley the hero has all its grips as opposed to the Sand Crawler run scene. (A different Hero?)

    Ben’s cave. I re-watched the scene: ‘When he says: “I can take you as far as…” Seems to be the only spot where the lever might be visible. (Maybe high res 4k) This hero probably is the new one switched, I just can’t tell.

    Back to the Hero with the open lever. Vader needs a stunt saber. This would definitely support the bubble strip needs to be ground down a touch so it could be clamped tightly all the way if it is going to be used as a stunt.

    Someone is given the task of building it. The Elstree shows a screw missing from the bulb assembly at the front. They probably thought to remove the plastic bulb assembly, but it is not easily removed. They then think quickly to push the washer down on the button and squish the sides to hold it in to weld.

    Star Wars - A New Hope - Luke Skywalker Lightsaberzoom_7.jpg

    1. Is that a braze tack weld?

    2. Is that the rounded edge fall off of the spring loaded contact.?

    3. Is that signs of a thread?

    Star Wars - A New Hope - Luke Skywalker Lightsaber_36 melted plastic.jpg

    looks like melted plastic

    If there is no thread, another way I thought of would be to take the bracket off a reflector, modify it, and screw it to a blade so it can clip into the hilt. Or maybe they were just going to weld or thread the blade on, since they only need a stunt, not a hero for Vader? This is more likely.

    So this would have been a static stunt, which they eventually went with in ESB. They obviously were not too happy with the complexity of the spinning stunts. Also Vader is heavily costumed, maybe he needed something simpler. The d ring clip at this point could have been pushed back, as to why? I don’t know.

    It would appear that the person ran out of time, and it is an unfinished project. Someone probably said: “Don’t worry about finishing that Vader stunt. We will paint the tip black, and use Luke’s stunt as Vader’s?

    Engraving on the Elstree clamp bar? The spot where the number would have been engraved is corroded. When engraving the nickel plating it would have cut through to the steel, like an open wound, and help the corrosion process.

    There is a thing called the Antikythera device. It is over two thousand years old, but when they CT scanned it they were even able to see engraved glyphs. I really think the clamp bar should be professionally examined. Perhaps a microscope? Better safe than sorry!

    Even if there is nothing on it, it does not disqualify the bottom tube. Due to parts swapping. I was told here that the stamping on the bottom is randomly all over. This would be caused by tubes being loaded into a jig to cut the slots perhaps?

    The Elstree not only assembles so the clip lines up with the clamp. I can also see a hint of the ‘Graflex’ direction of stamping and angle, that also seems to line up with the Elstree.

    As for the two screws between the grips, could they not be on another hero. They baffle me and all I can think of is fishing line and the V2, but why?

    That’s my last theory for you all to consider and debunk. Forgive me if I have made lots of mistakes, this is a lot of information to process, and I am not as knowledgeable as most of you here.


    Only if we had Deckard’s photo scanner!


    “Rebellion is built on hope”
     
  48. THX1138

    THX1138 Well-Known Member

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    I feel like the D-ring brackets on the "Elstree Saber" and the "Toe Pic Saber" are both hand made aluminum brackets. Probably both were made the same way, though, with two attachment rivots. They just don't look "machine made" to me. Like someone cut them out with tin snips, folded it over the d-ring and drilled two holes in them.

    - Jim
     
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  49. JunkSabers1138

    JunkSabers1138 Sr Member

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    Something that just occurred to me, BOTH the Elstree and the Luke/Vader Shared Stunt are missing the bunny ears, and to the best of my recollection BOTH have the thin-knurl buttons.

    Do you think after they bungled whatever failed attempt at converting an actual Graflex into a stunt hilt, they gave the damaged remains to the guys who made the motorized scratch-built hilt and said "Here, make something that looks like this", and they, being unaware of the bunny ears and therefore unable to use a sort of greeblie to approximate them via kit-bashing, just made the stunt hilt pipe body with a plain smooth tip.

    That could ALSO explain why the Elstree is missing its grips; they were probably salvaged from it and used in the construction of the stunt hilt, though that would also raise the question as to why they didn't salvage the button, clamp, and bubble strip as well... guess they already had enough of those lying around?

    Hmmm....

    upload_2019-3-6_12-55-40.png
    26.jpg
    upload_2019-3-6_12-56-22.png
     
  50. Gregatron

    Gregatron Sr Member

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    It’s a good theory.
     

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