New Member...Need Advice!


New Member
Hey everyone!

I'm Daniel,

I am a new to the RPF! I have always been fascinated by movie props, even built my first proton pack out of a rubbermaid bin and other house parts in middle school. Prop replicating thrills me and seeing some of your work makes me so excited to try a shot at it. Hopfully one day I can be as good as some of you on here, really impressive stuff.

As I am new my skills are quite limited. Can any of you offer any advice I can use to get started in replicating? I need a project that isn't too hard for a beginner, yet will train me in the many aspects of prop building. Any ideas for my first project?

Welcome to the Brotherhood

Best advice is: if you have questions about anything remember to use the search feature on here. 99% of the time you can find your answer if you just search it.

As far as projects to get started...I like the kits that many members sell on here. They are easy because a lot of work has been done for you. If you want to start something from scratch stick with props that have simple shapes and less intricate details. You will be less likely to get burnt out and give up that way.

A lot of new people do pepakura, there is an entire thread dedicated to it in the costumes section. It's simple and cheap, but requires a lot of time and patience.

Best of luck
We are very happy to have you here. We always are in need of new members who have genuine interest and inspiration in prop-making. I'm looking forward to seeing you around.

Not sure if you're a Star Wars fan, but to start out I would recommend a lightsaber or blaster. Last I checked on eBay there were some resin kits selling for about $10. They may not be the highest quality but they would be great to learn on and they can look really fantastic if done with care. Polish them up, assemble and paint, and wham! Movie prop.

Good luck!
I've done two pepakura builds so far. One was a complete ironman build for my son, and the other was a complete master chief for my son. Starting out I would have to agree with aron42486 that peps would probably the easiest but most time consuming. You can download a free pepakura viewer from here Pepakura Designer

Almost anything you can think of has been turned into a papercraft. If you can't find it through searching then either myself or Vagabond can unfold for you. not sure of any other unfolders on the rpf but then I haven't been on the forums long either.

Good luck and only be afraid to ask questions if you haven't done your searching first.

Welcome to the RPF!
Although I am a newer member here and new to Prop Builds, I can tell you that you may become addicted to this incredible hobby/addiction.:lol

The advice above is great about the different possible props to create.

I started with simple props from TV/Movies I liked as a kid and wanted to have a small piece for myself.
Things I considered when I started was...What tools/hardware/space do I have to build/create with? I recently purchased a drill press after realizing that a Hand Drill does not do the job for 90% of the props I make.

Something else was that I started smallish and simple. Nothing to complex, one of the kits mentioned above might be a great step.

Anyways, if you are married and have kids.... try not to forget about them once you get started....

Welcome and Enjoy!

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Thanks for the warm welcome fellas!

The idea of the lightsaber sounds interesting to me. I'll try and find resin mold out of it. It'll teach me good paint skills too! Even thought about trying my hand at the cane from Jurassic Park, I'll go a search on here and see if anyone has tried it yet.
There are many folks here who have tackled the JP cane. I sort of want one myself.

More often than not though, they turn out to be very expensive, due to hand-made qualities of the amber and even sometimes the bamboo.

Don't forget to take advantage of the Junkyard too. Create an ad "WTB Resin Lightsaber Kit" or whatever you are interested in, I'm sure someone will have one for cheap. Or if not, they will likely at least point you in the right direction.
Welcome! You may want to check out some books by Thurston James, these are considered somewhat of propmaking bibles. :) There's one on maskmaking, one for moldmaking, and another for creating prop replicas/stage props.
Welcome! I'd recommend you start with kits as well. It's good to learn how to paint right off the bat. That and the many ways to use an xacto knife. After that you can movie up to the dremel tool and then casting, etc. There's lots to learn.
Lightsabers from the Big Yellow Box This is where I started, raiding the plumbing section at the local Lowes for lightsaber parts, the plans are not accurate by any means but that just gives you artistic license to create something of your own. Invest in a good rotary tool such as a Dremel. Read as many replica build blogs as you can, members like Volpin, Blindsquirrel, and Throwing Chicken do great write ups on their projects. And welcome to the RPF, you came to the right place !
I'd say start with something that you really want to build and is of great interest to you.

You need to keep enthusiastic about your build, there is nothing worse than starting a project and it becoming a chore rather than a pleasure.

Choose something relatively easy at first, perhaps something built from found parts of your own design, a ray gun for example, made from a cocktail shaker, candlesticks, pipes, wires etc.
Or get a hold of a kit of something, which you can clean up assemble and paint.

Do what you want to do, research the hell out of it, be very patient and remember you can always come back on here and ask as much help as you need, the members here can be very helpful and encouraging!
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