Lifesize Toy/Comic Style Power Sword
I was going to wait and debut this when it was a little further along, but figured why not go ahead and do it now. The journey is half the fun, right? :hmgrin:
This has been a long time coming for me. I've wanted a good version of the Power Sword since I was about 3 pretty much. I actually started one of these about 10 years ago, while I was in college. Same basic idea, but it was made completely from clay, and was much more freehand. Needless to say, it didn't turn out very well. For this one I wanted to ensure symmetry as much as possible. You can basically divide it in half lengthwise and widthwise, and get four quadrants. I figured I'd make half of it, mold, cast twice, and then joing together to try and at least save some work from one side to other. I cut a profile template out of 1/8" Masonite, screwed that down to backing boards, then glued green floral foam onto that. I made another template out of 1"x 6" that had the curve of the thickness of the sword that I wanted. On the bottom of it, I screwed a piece of the same Masonite to get it raised off the backing board the same amount as the sword, then pass the template over the foam until that lip meets the Masonite under the sword. That should ensure pretty good symmetry on both sides. I'll get a picture of it later and I'm sure it will make a lot more sense. I carved the foam down a little lower than what the template would hit it at, then sealed with some fiberglass resin. I know floral foam isn't really the most ideal kind to use for this, but hey, I had some laying around. I first tried coating it with drywall mud, which worked ok, except I would end up finding some soft spots from where the foam would move under the hardened resin. I didn't use any mat with the resin, to try and keep it as clean as possible, so in some areas it wasn't as solid as it needed to be. I just cut those areas out, re-fiberglassed, and then just started bondoing from there, rather than drywall mud. At first, I was holding the sandpaper on by hand, which just didn't work for long. I then started clamping the sandpaper to it, which also didn't work too well. Then it hit me, adhesive backed sandpaper, DUH. That's sped things up tremendously. It's been through many rounds of mudding and sanding, and still has many more to go. Once this part is done, I'll add the raised area in the middle, side guards, and handle. I left them off for now since it was easier to get to the inside of the curves, and I haven't decided exactly how they'll look yet since there are so many variations. Also, the bottom is going to change a good bit, so pay no attention to it right now.
It's still very rough right now, but hopefully you guys can see the potential. I'll get more pics up soon if anyone's interested. It will look a lot better when it's in primer so it's one solid color, lol.
Thanks for looking!
He-man Toy/Comic Style Power Sword - BACK from the drawing board!
Zombie project, back from the dead just in time for Halloween!
Well... I said I'd do it differently if I had it to do over again. This project has brought about a lot of old phrases, such as "Be careful what you wish for..." :hmshift:
I owe you guys an apology. Another phrase that comes to mind is "can't see the forest for the trees." I got caught up in the technique and such, that I was missing the big picture and that the sword's proportions weren't very good. This thing was pretty crappy now that I can finally see it for what it was. Lol, I didn't even see it when looking at the silhouettes. It was WAY too fat and stubby. It did kinda have that toy proportion feel, but I only wanted to translate a little bit of that into the final product, not make it look ridiculous. And the thickness. Man, I was WAY off. :hmsad: That one I kind of saw coming though, but I didn't want to believe it. When working on it, I would think it looked a little thick, but kept thinking it was because it was on the masonite template, it would come together once both halves were together, etc. NOPE! Again, missed the forest for the trees.
So, I started over. This time, I thought I would try to avoid molding the half and make it all in once piece. Well, that didn't go well either. I won't go into it in detail, but I made a new template that was double sided, meant to run down the cutting edge sides and shape the blade on both sides of the edge. That part worked, but it was virtually impossible to keep the cutting edge straight. Unfortunately this was pretty much a big waste of time.
I started AGAIN. The original idea DID give me a straight cutting edge on the sides. I had to fight the center line a little bit to keep it straight, using the bodywork trick of taping down the line and bodyworking one side, etc. This time, I figured I'd go all out and split it into quadrants. Hopefully it won't backfire again, but I think this is going to work out really well. I made two quadrants. I can work them laying flat, to get the 'face' of the blade done, as well as work them standing on end, to work the cutting edge. Once I have them both good to go, I'll join them and mold. At least that's the plan, but we all see how the plans have gone already, lol.
Anyway, here's a few pics. I didn't want to show anything else until I was pretty sure it was going to work.
Laying flat for the 'face':
On end for the cutting edge. The gap is pretty much gone once it's clamped:
It really is laughable how thick the other one was. This one is about half as thick. After looking at the toys, etc., it was kind of obvious my other one was completely wrong.
Beginning work on the raised area in the middle, still a ways to go:
Finally, new silhouettes. This may not be an exact comparison, as I don't remember the exact length of the old one offhand. I believe it was coming in at 35-36". The new one will be about 38". I tried to stretch the blade out and thin the proportions down as well. It still has a little of that thick, toy feel when viewed from the side, but I think it works. It's basically just leaner and meaner. (I hope! :blush )
I'd love to hear any feedback, and sorry again for being so blind before!