New Prop maker looking for ideas.


New Member
Hi everyone.
Firstly thank you for reading this, it's kind of daunting to see so many experts on one forum so any interest is appreciated

I am new to the hobby and as such struggling to know where to start and was hoping for some suggestions or ideas.

A little about me first: I am 17 with a large film knowledge and access to a lot of tools and materials through a design technology lab at my school.

I'm interested in sci-fi mostly with a particular fondness for Star Wars and Blade runner.

Basically I was really hoping for suggestions for props I could start with to hone my skills on. Any tips would be much appreciated though.

Thanks in advance



Active Member
What I would do is find a film I love, find a prop which is iconic of that film, and then work out where to go from there.
It may just be the way I work but for me it has to be something I am interested in.



Hey Tom, Its nice to hear that you joined the forum. For Sci-Fi stuff like armour and such i usaly reccomend using foam mats. Ive had alot of luck with that in the past


Well-Known Member
Picking a popular prop, that others have done before, can be helpful for a first project because there is a load of reference material and maybe even some tutorials out there for them, meaning you can focus on the build.

My fist major undertaking was a Boba Fett Helmet, and the Blade Runner Blaster has been on my to do list for years.

You need to think about what kind of build you're looking for as well.
Using my previous examples the Boba Fett Helmet is usually built out of card or plastic, and could easily be done at home. But the paint job is fairly complex if it's your first time doing something like that.

The Blaster has lots of different shaped parts that would allow you to try more techniques, working in plastic wood or metal if you have the tools.
The paint job is simpler on that though.

Back to the Future Hoverboard
Lightsabre (good if you can machine metal)
scale spinner from Blade Runner
other helmets from Star Wars (Vader, Pilots, etc)
Multi Pass from Fifth Element
Tron Disc

Just a few random ideas to get you started.


Well-Known Member
Pepakura and papercraft models are the quickest way to create props. I recommend going to the , there you can find life size paper models of the props like the Phased plasma rifle from the Terminator movies / Pulse rifle from the Aliens movie ETC.... Reinforce the paper models with fiberglass and add electronics. I make rocket packs from the Rocketeer movie based on pepakura paper model. Check out the link to my facebook page in any of my posts. Check out my photo albums for pictures of other props i have made based on pepakura / papercraft.


Active Member
I concur that Papercraft is a great place to start. I started with papercraft and its a very inexpensive way to start learning how to disect a 3 dimensional object and there are many who use it as a base for more expensive builds. If you are crazy like me, you can even keep building with paper.

For some good prop builds I recommend Aliens Papercraft:

This is another aliens build for the powerloader I suggest as it breaks away from the standard papercraft style and actually teaches some principles that will apply to more expensive materials...also it looks awesome.
Ninjatoes' papercraft weblog: Piotr Koper's Aliens Caterpillar P-5000 powerloader papercraft


New Member
Hey guys thanks for the ideas, I've tried papercraft before and I've failed at it so I've decide to avoid that. I was thinking of going with the Lightsaber as I'm good with a lathe and metal. However the blaster does sound like a good idea for practice and I've always wanted one.
Thanks for the help




If you are good with a lathe and metal then you have many options....
You should be able to come up with something awesome once you choose you prop. I usually try to select props that are meaningful to me as opposed to what is popular, although somethimes they are the same :)

Good luck and keep us posted.


New Member
I recognise the poor quality of the image and my creation but this was my casting of a spartan laser keyring, I cut the moulds using a laser cutter from my own sketches so I can't be sure it's accurate. Just thought it was an interesting first attempt.

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