Monday, August 18, 2014

X-Wing Tutorial : Millenium Falcon lighting and magnetisation

Pic heavy tutorial of my YT-1300 lighting mod.

She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts, kid. I've made a lot of special modifications myself.

For this tutorial, you will need 
 - a YT-1300 model
 - a glue gun with 2 glue sticks
 - superglue
 - plasticard
 - 2 blue leds and corresponding circuitry
 - 2 magnets 3 mm in diameter and 2mm high
 - 2 magnets 3 mm in diameter and 1mm high
 - hand drill with 3mm drill bit
 - an X-Acto
 - a scriber (can be replaced with the X-Acto):

1) The smuggling compartiment
You will need to cut open the beast:
Here the scriber tool is really usefull as it created a kind of groove in the plastic, larger than what you would get with an X-Acto,  which really helps with the cut, especially in a circular shape.

2) The diffuser
We need something to diffuse the light from the 2 leds, otherwise we only have 2 beams of light.
Cut one of your 2 glue gun sticks in a square beam 4mm on a side and 8 cm long with the X-Acto, this will act as the light diffuser. Dry fit and cut to length:
Heat the glue beam with your glue gun on one side and  press to the model to glue the diffuser to the model.

3) Structural reinforcement
We need something for the cut piece of hull to rest on.
Draw the shape of the hull cut  on plasticard, using the cut piece of hull.

Now draw a rough shape around your line about 4mm on either side.

Cut the shape and dry fit to the model. You should have something like this.

Using the X-Acto or a pair of scissors, reduce the shape till it fits in the hole.

Glue the shape to the model:

4) Magnetization:
Drill 2 3mm holes in the hull cover on either side to place the 2 3mm * 1mm magnets.
Using the heated glue gun (or a soldering iron), create 2 holes in the diffuser on each side opposite the 2 holes on the cover and place the 2 3mm*2mm magnets (it will be easier to proceed one by one).

5) The electrical circuit

Mine is made with 2 blue leds in parallel, soldered to the switch on one side and the battery on the other with a resistor.

After testing everything a few times I cut a hole in the plasticard shape for the light switch, drilled a hole in the hull cover opposite and glued switch to the model. I then used additional glue from the glue gun to hold the leds in place and act as light conduit to the diffuser.

When closed you should end up with this:

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  2. Congratulations for the Blog and your tutorials!
    Ahhgg! I´ve finished two custom Falcons before I see this...