From February to September this year I made a replica of the sword Sting from Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit. I followed this guide on Instructables. I don’t have it anymore as I gave it to a friend. In this post I will not describe how to make one, as the Instructables guide is very good and detailed, but rather write a little about how I made mine in a different way, and how I would (or probably will) make another one for myself.
The guide I followed used hard wood which was then sanded down to the final shape. I had some 1 cm thich balsa wood available, so I decided to shape that into a rough sword shape and sand down that. The benefit of using balsa is that it is soft, so sanding goes very fast. But since it is light and soft, it’s also fragile. So I covered the whole sword in papier-mâché made with brown packing paper torn into small pieces, soaked in water and glued in place with wood glue thinned with water. When dry this has a very solid and hard surface. After everything was covered and sanded again to get a smooth sword I drew the letters and lines on it and used a wood burning tool to burn it into the sword. When painted this gives the feeling that the letters are engraved in the sword. Instead of buying spray paint and potentially make a mess painting with that I decided to use what I already had, which is Citadel paint (the kind used for models and minatures). I painted the whole sword with small brushes, and that went very well in my opinion.
If I make one more I will do as the guide and use a hard type of wood instead of balsa. For a show piece hanging on a wall balsa is fine, but when I picked it up and played a little with it it didn’t have the right feel and weight of a sword. Also, a sword made in hardwood would (I almost wrote wood again) not need to be covered in papier-mâché. Finally I would maybe also make a plate or stand for it to make it more of a nice show piece.
This summer I worked a lot, but in between I did some small do-it-yourself projects. So here is the complete list of what I made. Click on any of the pictures to see them bigger.
1. New propeller hat. My propeller hat was stolen in June when I wore it at a club. So I bought a new one and made a new propeller. This time the fixing is made with a thin metal tube instead of wood, so it’s a lot lighter and stronger.
2. I tested my homebuilt sailboat I built last summer, and found out that the sails I had made fast didn’t work well. So I added a boom in the front of the boat and made bigger sails. Now it sails really well. I also worked with my cousin on a real sail boat that belongs to my and his family. The autumn came too fast, but now it’s ready for next year!
3. This summer I finally bought and played the games Portal and Portal 2. And since I really liked them I made a portal sentry turret egg cup. The instructions are on instructables.
4. Modular origami. I have become a fan of modular origami, which is geometric shapes made with for example 30 pieces interlocked in each other, as is the case with this one. To make them go to Tom Hulls webpage or his youtube channel (easier to learn).
5. A camera bag/pouch. I needed a camera bag for a travel, but the ones I looked at in the camera shop costed a lot. So I used the same tissue as for the model boat and sewed it together with some rope to make a simple bag. Inside it I have another thicker pouch to protect the camera.
I wrote last blog post on the first of November, but I actually was in Romania at the end of September. So a lot of things has happened since that trip.
in October I went to a Halloween-party. The costume I made was of Bender from Futurama. To make it I used a lot of cardboard, duct tape and metallic plastic foil. Here are three pictures of it:
The first picture is a close up of the head. The head is the part I’m most happy with of the costume (and it also took the longest time to make). The second is of me wearing the costume and the third picture is of the “interior”. Since I had to fit into the costume body it’s only 10cm deep, but it was still enough for a lot of chocolate. In that picture you also can see the chocolate medal I got for the best outfit of the party. But it got even more fun later in the evening when we all went out to “Samfundet” (the student building). I couldn’t walk 10 meters without being stopped by someone who wanted to take a picture of me or telling me that the costume was great. But now it only stand in my living room and uses a lot of space.
In November I was some days in Amsterdam and had a lot of fun with other geography students from across Europe. I visited the Van Gogh museum, the Rijksmuseum (museum of art and history) and biked or walked a lot around in the city. I also learned a lot about the city. I really liked being there and will definitely go back sometime. Since that trip I’ve had some exams. But between the reading and the exams I have found some interesting things on the web. I’m a fan of Daft Punk, but I didn’t know there was a Daft Punk movie until I learned about Interstella 5555. The movie is based on the album Discovery and consists of animated music videos put together to a one-hour movie. It’s possible to see it here or below:
Then I found this video of a Daft Punk helmet: You can read more about this helmet on the website of the maker or at this forum. I really want to make a helmet like this even if it never would be this nice. Maybe I’ll do it for next Halloween. And soon I will see the new Tron movie with soundtrack made by Daft Punk.
Today I borrowed the radio dramatization of “The Hichhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy” made by BBC at the library and listened to the first cd. And then as a coincidence I found out today that something like the guide in the book has been made and is possible to buy. It’s a device called the Openmoko wikireader which allows you to read a downloaded version of wikipedia, so it can be used in places without a network connection or paying for the cell phone network. Something I find nice is that it can run for a year on two aaa batteries. Now I only have one exam left before a long Christmas holiday. So then I will (hopefully) have some more time to write. And during the holiday I will put all my pictures on my online photo album. So then I will write about that process and put links to the best pictures here.
Here in Norway we had a TV comedy series called Brødrene Dal. In the series one of the main characters always sports a propeller hat. Now they have made a new adventure as a feature film, and in that occasion I wanted to make a propeller hat like the one in the series. So some time ago I bought a pith helmet (also called safari helmet) on ebay with the intention of putting a propeller on top of it. Here is how I made it. Click on the images to see them bigger.
Here is the helmet I bought.
I bought the propeller in a local hobby shop, but I didn’t like the original colours. I also wanted to make it like it was in the original series. So I painted it silver and gold with model paint. To make the stripes I used electrical tape. I had to cut the tape to make thinner strips of it. I found out that I could put it on food paper while cutting it. And finally I put the tape strips on the propeller at an equal distance.
The top of the helmet was easy to screw off. Then I had a 1 cm hole on the hat. To fix the propeller to the hat I made 4 parts (as seen in the second image above). The first part is a big nail that I cut to a length of 4 cm. Then I made a 10 cm round rod and cut to round pieces out of thin plywood. The smallest piece will go on the outside of the hat, and the bigger piece will be on the inside. And a small screw will hold it together. In the third image above the parts are fixed together. Below is how the finished hat looks like.