Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Sith Costume and Lightsabers Part 2

Alright, this is probably gonna be a bit on the longer side, cause I need to catch you all up on what I've been up to before deciding to blog about my progress (and what I've done since that decision too). So let's jump right in!

So first, there's the general Sith look. My girlfriend and I looked around some patterns (she has more experience than I do) and bought some fabric. I liked this (McCalls 6209) design, with the scarf (second one down) and the hood (third one down) combined. So I'll try for that.

I managed to cut out the fabric without messing it up (too much) and found that I can use the leftover scraps for the skirt part. I'm a bit worried that the hood isn't big enough, but I figure I can use a bit of scrap to extend it if it's not big enough. Now I just need to find a sewing machine...

For the mask, I bought a pair of welding goggles from Amazon and found a mouthpiece filter on clearance at Home Depot.

I ordered a face mask and plan to cut holes around the eyes and mouth that will be covered by the goggles and mouthpiece.

The voice changer kit arrived, so I need to put that together and find a way to fit that into the mask.

One problem is, while the speaker and mic might be able to fit into the mouthpiece, the motherboard wont. So I'm thinking I'll put the motherboard in a "small" box that will be clipped to my belt. The wires will go through a hose from the box to the mouthpiece, making it look like some sort of filter system. I got a tape measure to provide the clip.

That's what I have for the actual costume so far. I've been looking at a few things on Amazon to help complete the look.

Trying to decide between these two boots. The ones on the left are cooler, but pricier... Hmmm...

Now onto the lightsabers. I started off with some drawings then got 1 1/4" and 1" PVC (you can get pre-cut 2' segments at Home Depot). I then cut pieces of the 1 1/4" to make some details for the hilts. I need to shorten one of them a bit...

As you can see, all the details are either shaped rings, or end caps.

I've gotten a few extra pieces, such as belt clips, fancy knobs, and leather, as well as some chrome and other metallic paint. And yes, I also got LEDs and buttons. These things are gonna light up :)

Not only are they gonna light up, they're gonna have blades too. I ordered these polycarbonate tubes from Custom Saber Shop (check out their website for lightsaber stuffs

I even bought a pack of colored crystals for some added aesthetics! The bottom one is an original, the top two are some sanding trials. Still working on making them look more like they're supposed to.

I like the idea of the internal mechanisms being able to be taken out all at once, so that you have everything right there in one convenient piece. The problem is that the buttons will be poking out through holes, and will be stuck in the shell of the lightsaber. I think I may have an idea how to deal with that. Here are my plans in paper form.

And then here are the pieces laid out for another look at my plan. The spring will hold the button into the whole, as will the screw, but the screw will also serve as a way to hold the internal mechanisms in place, so that they don't move around when it's being swung around.

To hold all the pieces together, I'm gonna attach them all to a 5/8" wide wooden stick, which will be painted to look more metallic. Also, the code for the stick looks awfully close to C3PO to avoid showing off.

I also want to point out that, to screw everything together, I'll be using set screws. These look the most Star Wars-esque (although I'm sure you can point out instances of other screws being used in Star Wars).

So that's what I have so far. I'm currently working on finding a way to sew my costume together and I'm also working on the internal stuff for the lightsabers. I'm waiting for some tools for putting the voice changer together too. Stay tuned for part 3 of my build!

Friday, January 22, 2016

Sith Costume and Lightsabers Part 1

Hello! Some of you may remember that over the summer I made a Wikus (District 9) costume for Stockton-Con and Halloween. Being the nerd/weirdo that I am, I've already started work on my next costume. My girlfriend and I have decided to create our own original Sith characters from Star Wars, that way we don't have to pull our hair out over accuracy, but can still have a set of guidelines to go by (the costuming seen in Star Wars). For this, I'm going to also need an original lightsaber, so I'm also planning on putting together a few lightsabers: one for me, one for my girlfriend, and my sister's boyfriend said he's willing to commission me to do one for him, so I'll be building 3 working lightsabers. I've decided to avoid sound, since I struggled a lot with that during my District 9 costume and this is my first time building lightsabers. Perhaps later I can mess with the sound. So, let's get into the plans!

With the latest Star Wars film, I've sort of become re-obsessed with the series. Kylo Ren has become one of my favorite characters, so quite a bit of my suit will be influenced by his design.

That being said, I wanna be my own Sith, so I won't exactly be copying Mr. Ren there, just taking the bits that I like. For example, the helmet. For some reason I really like a good bad guy with a mask or helmet (Darth Vader, Joker, Yokai) so I'll be going back to that good old Insta-Morph to make myself a mask. I've discovered Pinterest is a good place to get some pictures for inspiration (I know Pinterest is old news, forgive my ignorance).

Sith Lord Kallig’s 3D Printed Helmet from Star Wars: The Old Republic http://3dprint.com/81836/3d-printed-lord-kallig-helmet/: Ma next costume project! Anyone with advice feel free to tell me anything you found handy in making masks or helmets!:
Browsing starwarshelmets.com, I was reminded that there are some pics of mine up there! This was taken back when the Star Wars exhibit was at the Boston Museum of Science.: star wars custom mask the old republci sith acolyte darth revan

Also a good place for the lightsabers, which I've decided to build out of PVC.

Custom Lightsabers Will Make You Really Feel Like A Jedi By Daniel Perez on 04/26/2013: Here's how I go about building a PVC lightsaber. 1. I get my PVC stock and parts. 1” and 1-1/4” PVC, 1” male and female connector and black O-rings. 2. I cut the main body of the hilt from 1” PVC. I cut this stuff by hand. I don't have a miter saw. 3. I….: Lightsaber by skullalf:

I've actually already done a bit of work on this costume. I wasn't originally planning on writing a blog for it, so I don't really have any pictures of the first few steps. I apologize greatly. BUT! I'm still in the beginning stages, so I still have plenty of stuff to show the process of. Pictures of what I have so far will come later, as I'm in the process of moving back into my apartment in San Francisco to begin my last semester of college.

Finally, if I'm gonna be an original character, I'm gonna need a backstory! Part of me wanted to wait until I got the costume together, but I couldn't help but develop some sort of a backstory based off of the plans I already have. Here's a look at what I have so far (yes, it's a bit long, I'm sorry). It's also subject to change as the costume comes together.

(Time period: Pre-Darth Bane)
Kajj Napeel grew up on a planet in the midst of a civil war. He'd been surrounded by fighting for pretty much his entire life. When he neared the end of his teen years, he discovered he was more attuned to the Force than others. He gave up everything he had to travel to the Jedi Council and ask to be trained. Once he got there, they told him he was too old and unstable, and could not be trained to be a Jedi. Devastated that he now had nothing, Kajj ran off, but then "happened to" bump into a mysterious man that promised him he could train him in the ways of the force. The man turned out to be Darth Lehr, and, by the will of the Force, renamed Kajj to Darth Kajjak. During his training, Kajjak found himself in a fight with the infamous pirate, Ressum Glumk, known for wearing a helmet that amplified his voice for intimidation. Kajjak lost the fight and left with a scarred up face and a whole lot of rage. Once Kajjak had finished training and built his lightsaber, he hunted down Ressum. After locating him, Kajjak attempted to behead him, but missed and cut off the front of his infamous helmet. After a quick scuffle, Kajjak succeeded in killing Ressum. After the assassination, Kajjak retrieved the sliced-off front of Ressum's helmet, and now wears it as a trophy to hide his scarred face.