Tom’s ROTJ Luke Yuma Stunt Lightsaber

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thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I finally have a blank to use for this project! This is the work of TheJrSkywalker

i actually bugged him to make this shape of control box. He had one for the Hero and he was able to mock up the Yuma box too

tiday I researched and picked a rattle can for the neck. I wanted a darker brass, not gold like most brass metallic paints in a hardware stores, and I settled on Rustoleum aged brass. It’s a little less orangey than I’d like, but the closest to the mistaken for copper color I could find, while avoiding those cheap krylon colors meant for only indoors.

i dusted light coats - the first two coats looked like the aluminum had a gold tint it was kinda cool:

regretfully, after a heat gun and baking it in the oven it’s still a bit tacky. It’s getting better so I’ll leave it overnight before clear coating it maybe?

i also wanted to ask people’s ideas on how to mechanically attach the lever. I wanted to avoid seeing fasteners, but it’s too thin for my taps to get into without going al the way through. the width of the lever is almost as long as the no-tap tip that helps you tap straight!
 

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PoopaPapaPalps

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Looks great!

As far as mechanically attaching the lever, (and it's interesting you went with a more resembling shape; I always figured it was a square block), I would go with a small set screw threaded inbetween the box and lever. Like, take the screw and tap and thread it in halfway into the box and then screw the lever onto the exposed half (maybe with a bit of glue to aid in keeping it on). Again, like you mention, I don't know how strong it'll be but that's how I'd go about it and hide the thing.
 

Halliwax

Legendary Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Tom, your my hero buddy! Always surprising me!

This looks freakning great!!

First thing that came to mind for attaching is like palps said. Tap the lever and the box and connect with a screw in between.

You could do some test runs see how deep you have to go to line the lever up the way you want. And in fear of it backing out drop one dab of loctite on it once your happy with the levers location

As always tom, I’m a huge fan of your builds so I’m excited to see what you come up with!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

ms80444

Active Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I finally have a blank to use for this project! This is the work of @TheJrSkywalker

i actually bugged him to make this shape of control box. He had one for the Hero and he was able to mock up the Yuma box too

tiday I researched and picked a rattle can for the neck. I wanted a darker brass, not gold like most brass metallic paints in a hardware stores, and I settled on Rustoleum aged brass. It’s a little less orangey than I’d like, but the closest to the mistaken for copper color I could find, while avoiding those cheap krylon colors meant for only indoors.

i dusted light coats - the first two coats looked like the aluminum had a gold tint it was kinda cool:

regretfully, after a heat gun and baking it in the oven it’s still a bit tacky. It’s getting better so I’ll leave it overnight before clear coating it maybe?

i also wanted to ask people’s ideas on how to mechanically attach the lever. I wanted to avoid seeing fasteners, but it’s too thin for my taps to get into without going al the way through. the width of the lever is almost as long as the no-tap tip that helps you tap straight!

Dude, that control box looks AWESOME!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
Last edited by a moderator:

E Williams

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
There are flat bottom taps that would help you tap a hole that shallow. Or you could get a cheap regular one and shorten/grind it flat yourself.

I've found Rustoleum can take up to a week or more to cure fully. I'd wait that long before adding the clear coat if you have any doubts about it being fully cured.

Also, in general, if you don't apply additional coats (color or clear) within an hour or two of the color coat, wait at least 48 hours or you risk the paint cracking (more if like in your case the paint is still tacky). I'm just parroting the typical directions here but it's definitely happened to me.
 

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TheJrSkywalker

Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
That's looking nice! I like that paint color. If you do end up attaching the lever via threading, a drill press (if you have one handy) can be used for running a tap in straight. The best bet is to do it in the same setup as drilling the tap hole. Do it with the belt off the drill press with the tap held in the chuck and turning the spindle by hand. Unchuck the tap before backing it out the last few turns so that you don't tear the top threads out.

If at all possible, I'd start the hole with a plug tap (medium taper length) and when you get to the bottom of the hole, back it out and finish with the bottoming tap as E Williams suggests. The plug tap lowers the cutting force and helps start the tap straight.

Either freehand or in the press, tapping oil is your friend! I tend to use WD-40 on aluminum.

If the lever isn't clocked right when you're done, you can always file the surface of the lever that you tapped into, which effectively changes the position that the thread starts and will reclock it. The same could be done by putting uber thin washers between the lever and control box.
 

thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
you guys are life savers. I forgot the oil and forgot to switch taps. I ended up nicely tapping the box and going a bit too far with the lever, leaving a small dot hole on the outside. I thus blew out the top threads on the lever too.

Needless to say I used older bottoming taps I got through ebay a long time ago and never really used. it worked. That filing trick is amazing. Originally the lever was tight at 4 o clock and after a bit of filing it is now straight at 6.

i'l post some pictures soon!
 

thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Here we go - I was able to clear coat it too, a little earlier than expected. The brass finally cured but was so smooth I questioned it haha

the grips are high heat rustoleuk grill paint, cured with a heat gun. Clear satin enamel from rustoleum sealed it. I tried to go with the Yuma paint scheme: a bare bottom shoulder but didn’t sand off the top bevel. I’ve only seen one photo with that part silver... any other good ones out there?

i went a little far in tapping the lever and blew out the top threads... I can always re do it but there are enough at the bottom that it screws on tight. 1/4 20 threading and a piece of threaded rod.

- - - Updated - - -

Here are some beauty shots. Tried to replicate some famous scenes..
 

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thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
tried to do some distortion in photoshop to compare the boxes. my lever might be a tad thick, only by 1-2mm
clampbox.jpg
 

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thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Thank you! I took tonight to experiment with chemicals. I used aluminum black in a multitude of fashions (should have used gloves tho) and got the dark silver if the emitter and the dirty used look of the handle!!! Weathered the grips and TRIED to weather the brass, but I had a hard coating on there. I ended up rubbing some expired pasty Grecian gold rub n buff to get some orange tint in there. I think it worked!

i blackened the screws too, to better match the picture under marks chin. Oh, and I experimented with barricade on my ESB blued blaster and some ANH blaster parts. Stuff smells like ****.

i went with Johnson’s pastel wax on the Yuma saber actually. Better for handling, hard finish, easily reapplied and doesn’t take off a lot of the finish!
 

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thd9791

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
That looks spectacular! I love the weathering. Seeing yours done makes me want to make a Yuma control box for mine!
thank the maker! (literally)

I really appreciate it, though my lever might be a bit big.

I had a small tinge of regret missing the almost mirrored finish of it originally haha but weathering always seems to win out in the end with me
 

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