Serenity: Help with River's stylus

cabridges

New Member
I'm looking to duplicate a prop I already have, but my own mechanical skills are... we'll go with "laughable."

I have one of the student styluses seen in River's flashback in "Serenity," bought from the Prop Store. But I'm going to use it in a framed display along with the frame of one of the desktop monitors (also from the Store) and it's too cool not to keep one out to play with.



Anyone have any suggestions on how I can make one of these? Any good sources of bamboo or pointy acrylic (or whatever) ends? This is a wonderful piece, very comfortable in the hand, and perfect for an Asian-influenced future tool. Any help would be appreciated.

The stylus is exactly 7" long, tip to tip.
The clear plastic pieces are each 1 3/4" long.They build from a tapered point to 1/4" wide at the base, where they attach to the bamboo.
The bamboo part is 3 1/2" long. It flares at the ends and slightly in the middle, giving it a very comfortable feel. The ends are 3/8" wide. The middle is 5/16". In between is a hair over 1/4".
The designs start about 1/16" inch from the edge of the bamboo. They consist of alternating dots 1/16" wide and grooves 1/16"x3/16".

Based on these notes, Starfighter66 at propcircle.com is working on a version from bamboo and cut paint brush ends and seems to be getting there. I'm curious, after seeing some of the wonders here, to see what you guys suggest.
 

Mike J.

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Mmm. If you could find some clear plastic paintbrush handles for the tips, that would be ideal...

Might want to consider looking at cheap toys, Christmas ornaments, flashy light-up trinkets, stuff like that.

I think acrylic / lucite / plexiglas can be machined & polished, so that is a possibility if you're willing to spend the dough to have someone do the machining.


-Mike
 

Snoballz

Well-Known Member
Thanks for sharing the pics. If I owned a palm, this would definately be the stylus I would use with it.
These shouldn't be too hard to reproduce. They might not come out completeyly screen accurate because of the use of natural wood, but something that would be fun and useful to boot.
1/4" acrylic rods should work perfectly. Pretty easy to find and not expensive. They're easy to sand or machine and just as easily polished back to their original clear finish once they've been shaped to your liking. I have a couple of 10" lengths of this left.
I'll look into getting some bamboo the next time I visit my old roomates. We had a field of this stuff behind our house.
 

dr_slurpee

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: Serenity: Help with River's stylus

So apparently there were variations in the styluses?
 

Wildefarer

Active Member
Re: Serenity: Help with River's stylus

Here is what I got with a small piece of bamboo and clear acrylic paint brush ends. The dots and dashes are done with a wood burner set.

All of the above is available at Micheal's Arts and Crafts.

I like it, but it doesn't really match the original.

If I did it over I would use a solid piece of wood. The bamboo wall is not quite thick enough to get the nice curved shape of the original.

I could not find a brush end that came to a full point and was big enough. If anyone finds an item that makes a better tip I would like to know since I don't have access to a lathe to machine them. A drill and some sandpaper worked to get the painted end off the brush and polish the acrylic back to clear though.
View attachment 5342
 
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cabridges

New Member
Re: Serenity: Help with River's stylus

Oldzey: cool, you got that one! By the time I saw that one it was already bought.

And yeah, there was more than one style made.
 

oldzey

Sr Member
Re: Serenity: Help with River's stylus

Thanks, Cabridges - I really like my "School stylus" despite it not being quite as detailed/ornate as River's stylus (it also appears to me from the photos that River's stylus was lightly painted/stained).

I received a question about the diameter of the stylus. It's 8mm on the ends and tapers to 6mm in the center. The holes for the stylus tips are 5mm in diameter and they're drilled 10mm (1cm) deep. The very tips look like they've been run through a flame, crimped, (or both) to shrink the tubing.
 
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silverskyes402

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: Serenity: Help with River's stylus

Here is what I got with a small piece of bamboo and clear acrylic paint brush ends. The dots and dashes are done with a wood burner set.

All of the above is available at Micheal's Arts and Crafts.

I like it, but it doesn't really match the original.

If I did it over I would use a solid piece of wood. The bamboo wall is not quite thick enough to get the nice curved shape of the original.

I could not find a brush end that came to a full point and was big enough. If anyone finds an item that makes a better tip I would like to know since I don't have access to a lathe to machine them. A drill and some sandpaper worked to get the painted end off the brush and polish the acrylic back to clear though.
View attachment 5342
Thats done very nice, good job!
 
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