Tom's DL-44 thread

Discussion in 'Star Wars Costumes and Props' started by thd9791, Sep 14, 2015.

  1. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Hey everyone, I've been on a bit of a hiatus, life got crazy, but there's a new girl in town who will have impromptu lightsaber battles in Wal-Mart at 1 AM so id say things are going well.

    This thread will, so far, document 3 blasters. Any help, advice and ideas are very welcome, I don't have the eye for blasters that I do lightsabrs :lol I want to thank Tony ( adamata ) Kyle ( chizbot ) Kevin Gosset and anyone else that helped me along the way!

    The first is a resin MGC that came from Jedifather. I knocked out and putty-ed any holes with Apoxie Sculpt. I will then sand and cut away any excess material. I have a beautiful Resin M19 from adamata, as well as a slew of extra greeblies I got from him and others. I want to turn this MGC into a stunt Hoth, as the Hoth was made with an MGC! So that means cutting up some of these motor cool greeblies when the time comes. I ALSO am waiting on a stunt flash hider from guacabe's (spelling?) Shapeways store. I've never worked with 3D prints and since this flash hider wasn't metal anyways, I think it's a great place to start. John over at Blast tech just a sold me one of this scope mounts (which are drilled lower so they sit higher on the reciever just like the Hoth) so I'm excited!

    I did two things of note here: I used the side of a cutting wheel and a tiny drill bit to cut out the slot for the resin hammer. I couldn't get very deep so I snapped the hammer in half and I'll just glue it in? Also, I drilled the holes in the sight and on the gun - maybe I can stick a metal rod through and cut the ends off, making my own hinge? Anyone done this?
     

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  2. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    The second blaster will be a casual ANH. I happened upon a Denix on the bay for 30 bucks and nabbed it. Kyle, Chizbot, traded some props with me over a beer and now I have a blast tech grill, and a dc machinist bull barrel, flash hider (that I succinctly dropped and dented a little) and the little barrel greeblies! I've never tapped anything (resin props can just be force tapped with a bolt) so once I find a scope mount and scope I'll be in for a challenge.

    i spent hours filing the barrel down and couldn't get it to go any farther on so I eventually stopped. Close enough right guys? I also removed the nub on the bolt :) what's next for me?


    the third blaster will be Boba Debts run going on now; I'm waiting on a Luke Bespin :)
     

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    Last edited: Sep 14, 2015
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  3. halliwax

    halliwax Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    looks like your going to be busy tom!

    - - - Updated - - -

    mystery chunk ever show up?
     
  4. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    YES, I nearly forgot, thank you again! It really does look spot on, still shooting for that hand drill tutorial?

    and yea, I'm going to be a bit busy this winter :)
     
  5. halliwax

    halliwax Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    awesome! glad it made it. i had alittle issue this weekend. hoping to setup up some stuff this weekend to make a tutorial.
     
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  6. mugatu

    mugatu Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Tom, you are animal! I have no experience with blasters, but based on your previous work, I'm sure these will turn out stellar.

    Good job on the girl, too. Just don't try that lightsaber stuff at my local Walmart at 1AM or you're likely to get shot by the police! They shoot first and see if those are the droids they're looking for second!
     
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  7. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I got a couple things in the mail today! The first was a real Thorens disc, sent to me at no charge from a Thorens repair guy! He included new screws and a new grommet but I won't be needing those...

    also so I got a flash hider from Shapeways, and I have mixed feelings. It's dead on accurate, and looks wonderful, but it is VERY thin and weighs only a couple ounces. I wonder how strong this is? I don't plan on throwing this around, but it feels like balsa wood!

    here are all my parts (still waiting on a bracket from Yodas house) and I think I'll get hex screws for the resin scope. The bracket - I may rig something up using this spacer from adamata, upper left. Any ideas guys?
     

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  8. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I did numerous things today, all of them quick and dirty. I sanded all the putty surfaces I could, using a cylindrical grinding stone and a ball shaped "cutter" for dremels. I did also use a few needle files as well! I decided to remove material beneath the hammer and the safety too - by drilling with very small drill bits. I'm going to wet sand this whole thing with 600 grit soon.

    It turns out my barrel was too short for my liking. I wanted support through the whole flash hider and managed it by * a conical grommet to the tip of my barrel cut off. I then filed out the front hole and jammed a piece of brass tubing through the cone and against the grommet inside. With the support ridges in the flash hider this isn't going anywhere! ( the brass tube was from an antenna socket, I have multiple pounds of them.

    i tried cutting the motor cool pieces but I did TOO nice a job and trimmed then to circular rings and rectangles like they were probably supposed to be. I might try to find another and re do them
     

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  9. halliwax

    halliwax Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    nice thinking with the barrel extension!
     
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  10. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Thanks man! Being pressure fit, this is relatively reversible if I ever find a better one

    i also super glued the hammer in that slot - smooth surfaces bond better with ca glue as opposed to epoxy.

    I need to do a bit more sanding, glue on the greeblies and prime this thing!
     
  11. chizbot

    chizbot Active Member

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    looking good! wish I had some time to work on my project... maybe if I get fired...
     
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  12. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I spent the day looking for screws, sanding, drilling and priming this thing.

    i used two part loctite epoxy to stick on the greeblies! I re-cut the center pieces to look more like the screen picture. There were milled out sections (probably for fake retainer rings) so instead of sanding out the center, I swiped some apoxie putty across it, leaving a level area. That left enough stickiness to keep the parts in place while I drilled out for the screws. These 4 I scrounged up from my drawer of screws, I looked for flat ish ones for the center pieces and pan head screws for the Pistons. I thus used automotive primer on all the parts, including the flash hider, thinking of gunking that up and sanding that down...I think this looks great so far! I'm going to spray brass and chrome before satin black
     

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  13. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I wet sanded with some 600 grit sandpaper today. I avoided sanding the scope too much, to keep that cast look. All I had to do there was flick off some Primer pieces and bubbles.

    The gun was such a great cast it barely needed any sanding (Thanks Jedifather ) Just the bubbles that I puttied in. Also, being a resin stunt prop, I am keeping myself in check - trying not to fret about 1/16 inch blemishes or cuts.

    Surprisingly it was hard to find brass spray paint this week. I ended up with Krylon Brass, which is easy to heavy hand. I initially sprayed too much on the scope and it began to buckle and bubble up like it had been hammered. I actually stepped back and hit it with one long light coat and that smoothed it out! Also, as a tip, there was some buildup over the words on the scope ring. I took a piece of sandpaper, turned it over and laid the smooth back on the gunked area. I then immediately peeled it up (never swipe) and it slowly began to take down the paint, leaving the words. Repeat as needed until you start to see primer, obviously stop then)

    The screws on the pistons are covered while I paint. I taped up the handles of the gun before hitting it with rustoleum aluminum metallic. This way the black will look a bit dulled on the handles as opposed to the rest of the body. I don't believe the Hoth had brown handles, looking at that archives shot, but does someone have another opinion?

    I'll post pics asap
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 8, 2018
  14. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I first wanted to post what I started with today. A nice layer of primer that needed a bit of wet sanding. I went a little heavy on the scope by accident, but I tried not to sand too much to save the cast finish. The gun looks great, but the flash hider did not mesh well with the primer. I think I need to find a resin flash hider.
     

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  15. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I then chromed and brass-ed the parts. I couldn't get the seam line off the scope, but those things are brass cast anyways. It really was pretty straightforward, having done this before I was pretty confident!
     

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  16. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I also was a little worried at the flimsiness of the hammer. So! I took a little metal hook/plate thing that was in ou house DIY hardware buckets and cut it to shape with a dremel. A little epoxy and voila! My hammer is reinforced with an aluminum back.
     

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  17. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    i went at it with satin black today! I'll post pics soon, I had to try really hard to not keep spraying spots I thought i missed. Don't want to gob it up...curing overnight
     
  18. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Hit a bit of a snag. I used an acryllic white paint to do the letters on the scope - and i wiped the paint away and all it did was smear and stick to the black paint! Before I ask adamata for another casting, I'll snap some pics for y'all. I sanded the white bird **** away so the scope just looks REALLY beat up now. I did wet sand/brass wash some of the parts like the lens socket which look fantastic!

    The gun looks a lot like the rotj blaster, rather than a dusty black. looking at the original stock photo though, thats right I think.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 8, 2018
  19. Jedifather

    Jedifather Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I used water-based white paint once. Worked pretty good and was easy to wipe away the excess without ruining the black. Also...try "wiping" the paint into the lettering with a squeegie or even a piece of thick index card or similar. Kinda like the way silk screening is done. It'll leave less excess paint to wipe away.
     
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  20. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    that's a great idea! Thanks man
     
  21. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Tom's DL-44 thread- Hoth updates 10/8

    I finally got some pics. Here's the scope and mount parts that I have. You'll notice I got most of the white smearing off at cost to the original coats of paint. The light socket and lens rims I sanded down to the brass and then added a bit more brass on top.

    the scope mount is from blast tech, thicker than I expected and forged/folded. I do want to accurize the shape by rounding out the corner and cleaning up the back joint. What about the shape?
     

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  22. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    The gun itself came out very smooth and slick looking. See for yourself. I managed to get an aluminum flash hider and spacer disc from daves current run, I'll probably get those when the ESB blasters finish up
     

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  23. halliwax

    halliwax Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Tom the scope came out awesome!! What did you use to paint the white lettering? I was wondering if dipping a tooth pick in white paint would work?
     
  24. matty matt

    matty matt Sr Member

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    Looking good! The scope came out great.
     
  25. nomoreimfull

    nomoreimfull New Member

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    Hey all. I am working to build the blaster from scratch (ESB). I was hoping that someone might have a scale vector of the blaster. I have found tons of images, but need the scale.
     
  26. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Not sure about scale vectors, sorry

    I'm such a jackass :lol - I lost the Thoren's disc. Contacted the same guy, he's tossing me another like its nothing. I'm okay with this!

    Waiting on a spacer and FH from the ESB blaster run going on now....the ANH blaster is in wait until a mount can be found (and I decide if my incorrect filing job is not a big deal)...and the Bespin blaster from that same run will, obviously, show up when that comes to fruition!
     
  27. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Thanks for the compliments! The letters are actually thinner than a toothpick tip and much more shallow. (especially after 2-3 layers of paint)
     
  28. griffinx1

    griffinx1 Member

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    Re: Tom's DL-44 thread- Hoth updates 10/8

    Awesome work on your blaster! I am building one myself and I'm currently looking for a scope and mount too. PM sent...
     
  29. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I made some progress today! I ordered the most normal brass bolts I could find for less than two bucks offline. They're bronze actually...anyway they are much thicker than the bolts on an M19 or 32. Since this is resin I tried getting hex screws but to no avail. Today I picked a drill bit 1/32 smaller than the width of the threads and hand drilled holes in the scope. I wrapped it in sandpaper, rough side out, to get some grip and save the paint without clamping it down. Of course, I hit the trigger softly so the bit spun slowly and had time to get traction without bouncing off (little drilling resin tidbit there)

    after this I just screwed in the bolts with a set of pliers and they tapped themselves into the resin.

    I also had to drill out the holes on the mount, and this being some hard cast metal I had trouble. That grinding bit did work a bit, but I resorted to the thickest drill bit in the set...running it in circles, in and out and that eventually hollowed out the holes diameter.
     

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    Last edited: Oct 30, 2015
  30. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    After this I used a round file and then a flat file to make the rounded corner on the Hoth scope mount. I had to use the flat file to take down the angle and left side to match the radius I worked into the corner.

    Now - the screws that came with my Thorens disc were inaccurate and the smallest ones I could find at the hardware store were still too big. So I went online and found a site that includes dimensions of the whole unit - a certain threading (2/56 or something) had a smaller head than the others. Basically the decimal had to be under .22 inches I think and these were .18-.21 and would fit the outside circle on a Thorens disc. Those are coming in the mail, but I wanted to really anchor this bracket on and use the center hole too. I found a countersunk screw in a junk drawer and countersunk the center hole by hand as best I could...so the disc could still sit mostly flat. I then used a white paint pen to mark where the center hole would be. I did this by putting the mount in place and dotting the paint pen through the hole. It looks off in the photo but I swear it lines up like the Archive photo, higher on the receiver and covering part of the center recessed area.

    spacers! I don't think I'll need to order one from David's run - in my old box of physics equipment I found these brass bushings that are tall enough to push the bracket past the guns rail. I found three, then I drilled out the center of a Service/Praco flash nut for the center. That nut plus a rubber washer equals the height of the bushings, and they're small enough to fit inside the ring of holes!
     

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    Last edited: Nov 1, 2015
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  31. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Here's where I am now - I'll drill out the three holes for the Allen screws when I get them. In the mean time, I attached the bracket for a good feeling or two.
     

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  32. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Got the screws today! I apparently ordered 3/4" screws so they'd pass though the disc, bracket, spacers and into the gun. I think this was a good choice. The heads are a little flat...but they're the correct size head. Never seen this thread count before?m, but it was 2-56 I ordered?
     

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  33. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Here are some updates - everything is drilled - the bracket is drying- I tried to grind some of the Thorens disc so the bushings would sit flatter.....until I realized the bushing go against the bracket and not the disc. Stupid move, but that was done to the back of the disc. No worries!
     

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  34. Boba Debt

    Boba Debt Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Nice job.

    I can't wait to see the follow up pictured of it mounted
     
  35. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    during installation I found out the Praco nut wasn't going to work - too big. I needed something the same height as the bushings, thick enough to hug the center screw and with a smaller diameter. I actually found this tarnished connector/plug in that box of junk. It's not coaxial...hoping someone recognizes it. The threaded insert is the perfect size!

    I had to screw the center down first, slide and tap the bushings into place, hold it down and make the final turn on the center screw and then gently screw in the other 3 screws. I may have stripped the tiny Allen wrench needed for this hahaha

    the scope is rock solid on there. The bushings rattle a bit, because of their larger inner diameter, so most of the weight is on the center screw I'd guess. That's a temporary flash hider until I get the nice one.
     

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    Last edited: Nov 3, 2015
  36. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Thank you! That means a lot, coming from you.
    After taking pictures I realized my disc was not sitting flat. Because I don't have countersinking bits, my hand-drilled screw is not completely flush with the bracket. Since the screw is in line with the two bottom allen screws, it was pushing them up, while the top screw was much closer to the gun. This meant the disc was tilted. I found an extremely thin washer (it was a lock washer but it was so small I just pushed the two cut ends back together) and slid that underneath the disc. It now all sits flush, I'll add some pics of this in a little bit.
     
  37. thd9791

    thd9791 Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    here;s the teeny tiny washer and some "Almost done" photos. I had real trouble getting my camera to focus and not wash out props. Does this happen with automatic cameras? It worked wonderful right out of the box..I've got a Nikon S9100
    DSCN3295.JPG DSCN3309.jpg DSCN3312.jpg DSCN3322.JPG DSCN3325.JPG DSCN3327.jpg
     
  38. Boba Debt

    Boba Debt Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    It looks god to me

    Photographing prop is always hard, you just have to keep playing with it until you learn your camera
     
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