Yoko Ritona Sniper Rifle -- Gurren Lagann [Complete]

Discussion in 'Replica Props' started by VitaminZinc, Dec 28, 2011.

  1. VitaminZinc

    VitaminZinc Member

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    One of the first anime shows that my girlfriend recommended to me was Gurren Lagann. This was before we were dating. I had seen BlindSquirrel's blog ages ago while looking for other props and saw he had made a Ritona rifle. After seeing the anime, I thought this would be a cool prop to make for someone. And then my girlfriend and I were dating--cue the light bulb over my head! I was planning this for months, but I was always stuck on "where to start". I finally said "to hell with it. I'll just waste some time and money figuring this out and fix it later". A month and a half later, I have a finished prop, and a happy girlfriend.

    Halfway through the build, I even wondered, "Oh man, what if she doesn't like it." Luckily, her response after I told her was, "Are you kidding me? You made me a big effing gun. Of course I love it" So yeah, it all worked out.

    So, enough backstory text. On to the badly documented build.

    First thing's first. I needed a blueprint to go by. Luckly, BlindSquirrel is an awesome enough person that he has a download section for his designs. So, a big kudos to him. If it wasn't for him, and his far superior build, mine wouldn't have happened.

    Also, I apologize for not taking more detailed pictures of this. I was in a rush and got caught in the build more than a handful of times.

    Here's my rough layout of the PVC so I knew the lengths were about right.
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    This is the MDF cut out and sanded to the approximate shape it was supposed to be. I used a combination of 1/4" and 1/2" MDF. The handle and butt were 1/2". The magazine chamber and the magazine itself were 1/4". I also ended up going with a different brass tube for the chamber release. The one pictured in this is threaded on both ends, which looked bad to me.
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    This is the first attempt at the muzzle. I figured it would be easier to just take a PVC pipe and add bondo to it and sand it to shape. It was not. I spent forever trying to get it correct, but eventually gave up on that method. The method that ended up working was taking six paint stirs, cutting them to length and taping them together. I then wrapped that around a pvc pipe with the tape facing the pipe to keep the general shape while I added apoxie sculpt to the joints and allowed it to sit.
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    This is the magazine, created from 1/4" MDF for the sides, and 1/2" for the ends. Instead of having a release button, I opted for 2 rare earth magnets from my old name tags. They work amazingly well. I then cut styrene strips and gorilla glued them in place.
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    These will eventually be the scope of the gun. I took PVC pipe of approximately the correct size and added a plastic shot glass to the tops. I then poured some liquid resin (smooth-on 300, I think?) and slush cast the cups to give a tapered, machined look without having me sanding pieces for days and days and days. I was running out of time at this point. No stress. x-x;
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    Here it is on my newly made solid door table. I realized I needed more room in my workshop, so I took an hour to use an old solid oak door to make a table. Works great! But, enough about the bazillion-ton door... The piece now has a piece of plastic that was bought from Lowe's and cut to size. I glued it in place, then used a heat gun to finish wrapping it around the other side. It was a little thin, so I wish I'd used a little thicker plastic. The stuff I bought was practically paper thin and didn't like the heat gun so much.
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    Here's the muzzle, hanging and being primed. I drilled holes as accurately as I could without a drill press. I really need to invest in one of those--and a table saw to make actually making one of these a lot easier. x-x;
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    Here's the gun hanging to dry from the primer. The hole on the side is to slip the bolt through to the release thing.
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    Funny (tragic) story. I had finished priming it and let it sit over night. Around midnight, I realize I need some gorilla glue for another part of the process, so I take the trip to my shed and find the gun laying on the floor with the handle broken off! This is the day before I paint it, so I end up gluing it back together, patching the places where it broke and getting it back together. So, the moral of this story is, gravity is NOT your friend. Don't leave wire hanging for long periods of time because it will smash your stuff at the first chance it gets.

    Here's the mostly finished gun on another table in the shed. This was the first mostly-finished assembly. The bipod and scope mounts were bought from Amazon. The sling mounts were from Dick's Sporting Goods.
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    I realized I was spending a lot of money on this, so I opted for a cheaper, fast drying paint. Yes--Lowe's Spray Paint brand spray paint. Can't beat it for 99cents a can.
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    Here's some pictures of it finished and on the boxes I used to transport the behemoth. I used FedEx boxes because of the open ends of them, so I could pack it up and carry it outside without people looking at me like I was crazy or deranged--cause, I mean, it is a big freaking sniper rifle. =X

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    I used the caps from the dollar LED book lights that you can get from the Dollar Store for the scope ends. I just painted them black, and painted the clear plastic inside to be red or green.

    Knobs from Lowe's parts drawers were used for the scope adjustment knobs. The connection between the two scope pieces was a wooden dowel covered in spot putty to clear up the grain.

    The pink sling was just 3 yards of strap/sling material from a fabric store, as well as a little connector piece that they sell as well. I had to look at my Rock Band strap to see how these things go together.
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    My girlfriend posing with her new big-effing-gun.
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  2. Mechamaniac

    Mechamaniac Sr Member

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    Nice! That's a serious BFG.
     
  3. Leon Kowalski

    Leon Kowalski New Member

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    Very nice job.
     
  4. fotokid

    fotokid Well-Known Member

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  5. cayman shen

    cayman shen Master Member

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    Never heard of the anime, but the gun looks fantastic!
     
  6. VitaminZinc

    VitaminZinc Member

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    Thanks. Even looking at the blueprint for it, I thought it looked reasonable, but 3D makes it... uh... huge, to say the least. Luckily, my girlfriend's entertainment center had a large unused space on top.

    Thanks. :D

    That's a pretty sweet gun, yourself. Very impressive!

    And yeah, she loved it--And the Pokemon game I got her in case she didn't like the gun. :lol

    Thanks! The show is pretty good. It has its problems with the plot, but it's an enjoyable anime for a non-Gundam big robot cartoon. I'd still recommend it.
     
  7. zanderwitaz

    zanderwitaz Well-Known Member

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    Very nice build! only thing I recommend is covering the bipod legs with a shroud. I actually used the same one you did when I built mine. Take a look at my post and you can see I used 1/8th inch mdf for the shrouds. Really completed the look of it.

    Prop Design by Zander Brandt: Yoko Ritona's Sniper Rifle
     
  8. VitaminZinc

    VitaminZinc Member

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    Thanks. Due to the rush I was in at the end I didn't have time to fine-tune everything, so I told her there were a few things I needed to add and finish up. I had completely forgotten about the shroud, though. Thanks for pointing that out. :D
     
  9. frostbolt85

    frostbolt85 New Member

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    I can't seem to find a link to the plans you used. It's driving me crazy! I really want to build this gun!
     
  10. VitaminZinc

    VitaminZinc Member

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    It's on the side, under the link labeled "Free Plans!" -- Then you can search for "Ritona" and it should pop up.

    By the way, love the saying in your sig. Building is a way more fun, by far.
     
  11. purifier

    purifier New Member

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    Nice build man, the only addition I would make is an actual working bolt with ejecting casing, I saw one a few years ago in an online cosplay skit, I'll post it here for you if I can find it again :cool
     
  12. VitaminZinc

    VitaminZinc Member

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    Thanks!

    The bolt does kinda work. You just have to manually pull it back and then press it forward again. I couldn't find a spring to get it to spring forward. There's probably a fairly easy way to get that to work, but time restraints, and the fact that it was just going to be a display piece made it unnecessary for me to spend a ton of time on a small (but awesome) feature like that.

    I do wanna see the one with an ejecting case. That sounds awesome. Hope you can find it.
     
  13. purifier

    purifier New Member

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  14. frostbolt85

    frostbolt85 New Member

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    Thank you! I haven't built anything in a while now, so I probably don't even have any skill left. (Employment is scarce around here. I was lucky to find a seasonal job!)

    Anyway, I noticed the link a little before you replied. I couldn't help but think, "Man, my observational skills suck!" What else are you working on?

    Edit: The link just goes to a blank mediafire page...
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2012
  15. frostbolt85

    frostbolt85 New Member

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    I'm discussing the prop with my friend, who is now a potential client. The price of all the parts is about $117! I have a lot of plywood lying around, and some of it is subfloor grade. Could I use that in place of the MDF to help bring the price down? (If I ever get up the cash to build this thing, it'll be my first formal prop build. Thanks for any advice that you can give!)
     
  16. VitaminZinc

    VitaminZinc Member

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    That's pretty freakin' sweet! I kinda wanna make another one now... lol

    The mediafire link works fine for me still. If you're still having issue with it, I can download it and send it in an email. Just toss me a PM with your email and I'll toss it your way as an attachment.

    Yeah, employment's a bit shoddy around here, too. I'm slowly trying to get some examples together for a local comic con in March so I can show off some things and maybe get some commissions going.

    Yikes! That's kinda high. I think I spent around $80-90 total, maybe. I didn't take very good notes, along with terribad few-and-far-between progress pictures, so it's not an exact quote, but it was definitely under $117. Raw materials were definitely under $50, between PVC, dowels, MDF, primer, and spray paint.

    The big cost was the actual gun pieces. Shop around for the bipod, scope mount, and sling mounts. Also, check out thrift stores and/or flea markets. I found some toy guns there that ALMOST worked for a few pieces--almost.

    MDF is such a good material to use because there's no grain to it. I'm not sure how well subflooring would work. Home Depot sells smaller sheets of thinner MDF board (1/4" and 1/2") for around $8-10 for a ~3x5' sheet. Not sure if Lowes has the same selection, though I usually use them for everything else. In any case, you won't use a full sheet for a gun. I still have half of a 1/2" sheet, and basically all of a 1/4".

    Also, check and see if there's any scrap MDF in the cull bins of Lowes/Home Depot. The stuff they're just tossing out is super-cheap. You can sometimes find some good stuff.
     
  17. frostbolt85

    frostbolt85 New Member

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    I think what increased the cost of the project was the fact that I budgeted for extra materials in order to allow for mistakes. Thanks for your help! Now all I really have to do is wait for my girlfriend to return the money she owes me.
     
  18. Escher84

    Escher84 New Member

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    You are my savior right now. I just started on a Yoko cosplay and had no idea how I was going to do that BFG!
     
  19. VitaminZinc

    VitaminZinc Member

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    Glad I could help. :)
     
  20. angkunster

    angkunster New Member

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    where can i get the plan?
     

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