Hello Everybody, as I type this the time has just run into Christmas Eve so may I wish you all a happy holiday season however you choose to observe it. This year has been hectic and chaotic…and this past month an interesting one for me. I’ve been extremely busy with some personal issues so I nearly didn’t get to make a card for you all this year. However I managed and here it is….
I’d like to thank all of you for the fantastic support and friendship you have shown me and this site, it really does mean a lot. It keeps me building and designing and at this time of year, makes me feel grateful.
This card has some old special hilts I’ve built (the new and old Graflex sabers) and there are four newer designs. And I really went to town with this card to make it look a bit more realistic…because it is in fact fully 3 dimensional….as this picture shows I set up a full “photoshoot” !
I am now going to set to work on a retrospective post of the past year, which should be interesting (unfortunately I didn’t do much adventuring but there should still be some highlights!).
So enjoy the rest of the holiday season, stay safe and take care of your nearest and dearest…thank you all once again for all you have given me and Till next time…..(New Years’ Eve)…..
Hello Everybody. today I have a saber that has been a long time coming although I only just built it! Last week I had an interesting afternoon where I got stuck in a lift (or elevator for American viewers) for over five hours and I had time to think some things over…and I realised I hadn’t built a Darksaber yet. Many long time visitors may recall when I first started using Blender that I made a hilt with a “Flat Blade” but I never got round to building a version of the hilt that inspired my Acrylic Blade model seen below.
Well, as I was a little shook up by my little emergency (which did result in the Fire Brigade getting me out) I needed a few days to unwind and I decided to shut off and just play with Blender. And in less than 24hrs I had built a Darksaber variant. Now other people and companies make replicas of the hilt…
On the left is Ultrasabers’ new “inspired by” replica and on the right is Hasbro/Lucasfilm’s “Official” Black Series hilt. I figured mine was just as good, but I’ll let you decide….here is Gallery One of DarksaberFTE (aka Exitlight)….
The original Darksaber was first seen in animated form in the Star Wars cartoon The Clone Wars, and was a basic object model that was “squared off” or blocky to assist animating it in the show. It later appeared in live action TV and The Mandalorian show where it had been “reworked” to be more svelte and rounded. So I modelled mine somewhere between the two. It still features a sloped emitter port with a slim vertical opening, the emitter is then separated by a distinctive Tsuba handguard. The Tsuba is positioned diagonally and is bent into an offset “L” shape, but what I am pleased with is the panelling and rounded bevelling on it’s edges. Beneath the lip of the Tsuba you can see three windows cut into the emitter that have become iconic on this lightsaber.
The first image shows off those emitter windows quite nicely along with the silver Hex-head bolt. In the show this bolt is sort of decorative but in a real ilfe replica this could be used to secure the blade into the hilt emitter socket. I just noticed the sloped face of the emitter looks a little plain so I may return to this and add a bit of detail – maybe an etch or ridge around the blade opening. Next behind the Tsuba is the activation switch with white illumination to match the borders of the famous black core blade. There is also a sliding ridged oblong control used to set the blades’ power. The rest of the handgrip is basic but has nice ridged detailing that runs along the length of the hilt before looping around to “saddle” the grip. I omitted the series of rings seen on the original props as those took away from the sweep of the horizontal ridging. The pommel has a basic opening but has a special feature that I haven’t seen used in any other “Darksaber” and that is a staff connector. The connector is a mechanism to connect two hilts together to form a battle staff with double blades! And when two DarksaberFTE hilts are linked they look a bit like this…
Connecting two hilts give the staff a distinctive asymmetrical look…and as I mentioned I don’t think anyone has linked two Darksaber hilts in this way before! Finally if you take a close look at the dark core section of the blades you will see there is actually a faint “lightning” pattern etched into the surface to replicate the “crackled” appearance of the original.
And that just about wraps up this design and I hope you liked it, it was relaxing to model it (and boy did I need to relax after last week!). I am getting old and as some of you may know this time of year is when I celebrate(?) my “Level Up Day” and become a year older so I am going to take a break for a week or two between now and New Years’ . I do this every year but I will still post a “Holidays Greetings” card and while I relax I’ll work on a review of 2021 to post ready for New Year (that should be fun considering the past year we’ve had…).
So for now I’ll end here and thank you all for checking out DarksaberFTE and all of the support you have shown me and my site. I am still working on the Star Wars “Visions” hilts, I hope to have some more costuming news and maybe, just maybe a new saber purchase or two in the New Year so I hope you will join me for those future posts. I shall chat again when I post my “Greeting Card” so….Till Next Time….
Hello Everybody, today I return to the wonderful world of brick building and to the watery world of Kamino! Whilst watching The Bad Batch I was inpsired to design the collection of sabers for Hunter and the rest of Clone Force 99, but it was also around this time that I started messing with the Lego Digital Designer software. And this got me thinking. I decided I wanted to try a large model to go with my Theed City streetscape I modelled and I decided to replicate the city on Kamino.
I must have had a lapse in sanity as Kamino is very distinctive with it’s domed superstructures and oil drilling platform style legs…so I came up with the idea of building the “interiors” as if I had removed the domes. However Tipoca City the capitol of Kamino does have a lot of corridors and platforms so I attempted to replicate those including a few important “locations”. I built a lobby chamber where Obi-Wan is greeted by Taun We and Lama Su and discovers that a “Rupublic Clone Army” has been created. I built a pod to represent the quarters belonging to a certain Bounty Hunter and his famous son….and I included a barracks for a bunch of clones….oh and as if that wasn’t enough I added TWO landing pads similar to the one below!
OK, so now onto my first gallery….
In these pictures you can see the system I employed to create “pods” for each location and how I used corridors to connect each pod, then on the extremes I added the landing pad locations. You will notice that the model is “skeletal” in that I only built half of the corridors and left sections open in the pod walls. This was to facilitate easier play access should anyone build this (or something along these lines). The pods, corridors and platforms all sit atop large pylon legs, some of which have walkways as seen when Obi-Wan battles the Bounty Hunter and falls off the platform using a grappling hook to save himself. He swings onto these walkways.
So back on top of the model and if you look closely you can see Lama Su and Taun We’s chamber with a table and two suspended chairs…
whist at the opposite end of the corridor is chamber that looks like a type of medical bay with two “Cloning Pod” cubicles complete with clone patients inside.
There is an oxygen tank as well as a control panel for the cubicles. At the far extremes of the model are two oblong modules one in white and a second grey coloured section. The white module is the living quarters for the Bounty Hunter and his son, and it even has a Mandalorian helmet and a jetpack in the closet!
Whilst the grey coloured section is the barracks of, yep you guessed it, Clone Force 99 – The Bad Batch! In this module I included a weapons/equipment rack with blaster rifles and mission backpacks and there is a sleeping bunk with a blaster pistol mounted on the wall beside it.
Venturing to the outside of the model and you can see I added two landing pads. One has Obi-Wan’s Jedi Interceptor sat on it and the second landing pad is empty. I tried to make a model of Bounty HunterJango Fett’s ship but that was a bit complex and existing models by other builders were the wrong scale to fit. But the second landing platform does have a gun turret tower as seen during Kenobi and Jango’s battle scene as the bounty hunter attempted to kill Kenobi and escape with Boba Fett, his son. I think that covers all the locations so I will just post a few more random pics…
The first image in the above gallery was my attempt at being “arty” and I tried to capture an atmospheric picture of Kenobi’s Interceptor looking through the windows of the corridor out to the storm swept landing pad. And that I think is everything included in this model. I may return to this build when I have learnt how to model the domes and add them to the pods.
But I am drawing to a close on this post, as always thank you so much for checking this Lego build out. I might try and build an “Interior Only” model of the Death Star for a future post but I do still have other lightsaber designs waiting to be posted and I may have a glove to display for my good friend The Atomic Mage. If you liked what you see here then if you haven’t already comment, like and maybe subscribe. Please be sure to call back and check out these upcoming posts, the support you show me is fantastic and keeps my working busy! So Till next time…..
Hello Everybody, today I have another new saber design to show you all while I wait for another delivery (EDIT: See update at bottom of post!). This time I was inspired by the recent anime style animation series called “Star Wars – Visions”. The series was 9 episodes long and each episode was directed/produced by a different Anime studio/artist. It was a very interesting and different take on what most of us consider Star Wars, The first episode was titled “The Duel” that featured a story mirroring a tale from feudal Japan of a village terrorised by a “gang” and saved by a mysterious “wanderer”. This episode also featured a Katana styled lightsaber and the now famous “Lightsaber Umbrella”. Well these are quite well known so I decided to look at Episode 2 Tatooine Rhapsody. It focused on a young padawan named Jay during the closing event of the Clone Wars , Order 66. Jay was chased by a horde of B-1 Battle Droids and during the chase he fell and damaged his lightsaber. Jay and the saber look like this:
Jay’s fall left him unconscious on the floor of a spacecraft and when he awoke found his saber no longer worked. He also discovered this when he needed the hilt to protect himself from a Hutt named Geezer. However Geezer was not hostile and Jay ended up accompanying the Hutt and even joined his band. Geezer was a musician in a touring band. Jay became the singer, and he repurposed his broken lightsaber to make a microphone! Well, I thought it needed to be repaired as a lightsaber and not gutted to make a microphone so I modelled a “factory fresh” version of his hilt. And I named it….Rhapsody….
This is a fairly simple hilt, but it is the simple ones that are the difficult ones to model and get right. This is because complex/detailed hilts can hide little mistakes but on a simple design the mistakes would stand out. Fortunately I think I nailed this pretty well, especially as I only had two decent screenshots to use as reference and they only showed one side of the hilt! The other side was always obscured. The hilt features a nice flared emitter with several recessed bands before narrowing to a thin neck section. The thin neck has multiple rings that give good grip and would make this a good saber for spinning/choreography. Most of the handgrip is a smooth cylinder with two slanted bands and an inlaid panel on the visible side I could make out. This meant I had to imagine what the other side had so here are a few more pictures to showcase what I cane up with…
I chose to keep it simple and just added two indicator LEDS in red and green to show the saber’s power mode. The activation switch is a sliding two position type. I kept it simple to keep with the anime style yet still be functional. The pommel end of the hilt is interesting however as it features four lozenge shaped fins reminiscent of the bulges and fins found on 1950’s/60’s style American sports/muscle cars (particularly like Chryslers and Cadillacs). Again to keep with the Anime style I modelled a basic pommel speaker vent.
In all I think I got pretty close to the subject matter with this hilt and still added my own little touches. I may return to this design and possibly add more detail or produce a few different colour schemes, but for now I am happy how it turned out. I am afraid once again I’m running out of time and will have to end this post shortly. I am awaiting the arrival of one of my sabers which I needed to send in for repairs and I am really excited to get it back.
I still have more new content to share in upcoming posts including more sabers and more LEGO digital creations, so I hope you’ll call back to check those out. Thank you for visiting and supporting FTSabersite, it means a lot and keeps me designing . Whether you are a new first timer or a regular visitor, you are all appreciated. I think I can hear a delivery person…well I hope….so I’ll end here. Till next time….
EDIT: Breaking news! Just after I finished typing this post and scheduling it to publish….my saber turned up at my front door. And from the limited time I have had to examine it, it is BETTER than it was before! I hopefully will do another post detailing the improvements.