The colours on this Black-throated Blue Warbler were spectacular. The screen never really does justice to iridescent colours. I couldn’t have asked for a more willing subject as at certain points this little fellow was closer than my lens could focus.
How to make Rey’s Blaster (A second crappy tutorial)
Because my tutorial on how to make Rey’s staff went down so well, thought I would add my second build. This time, the Blaster Han Solo gifted to Rey in the movie. Again, this is fairly crappy, based on several reference pictures and to be honest, you will probably get far better if you have access to a 3D printer.
Equipment/Materials - 2x pine boards, 1 roughly 1.5-2cm thick, the other around 1cm. 1 sheet balsa wood, 6.5mm thick, 2x pvc pipe, 1 roughly 2.7cm thick, the other 1.5cm thick (I actually used the blade of a kiddies light saber which I destroyed, to get these pieces cheaply) an A4 sized piece of Warbler, wood glue, gesso (I am a sucker for this stuff) silver spray paint, black paint, black nail polish, clear spray paint.
I can’t give a rough estimate of price this time because most of this stuff, I already had lying around the house.
Step 1 : I drew up a life sized picture to get an idea of where every detail was. Weapon (not including barrel) is roughly 25cm long and 8cm wide.
Step 2 : Cutting out the base, excluding the barrel of the blaster, from the thicker pine board. I drew the outline on the pine and cut it out with a jigsaw cutter, then sanded it down a bit.
Step 3: Cut out the trigger area. I was a dumbass who didn’t do this until later in construction and I can guarantee it was a stupid move. I carved it in a way so the trigger was a piece of the pine but it would probably be easier to carve out the whole thing and glue in a trigger later.
Step 4: Cut out the body of the weapon, using the thinner piece of pine.You will need 2 of these, mirror imaged.
Step 5: Glue the pieces together with a strong wood glue. Most glues recommend letting them set for at least 1 hour and for a strong grip, 12-24 hours. Would recommend keeping the pieces in a clamp to assist this.
Step 6: While waiting, cut out the barrel of the weapon from the pipes. The thicker pipe should be roughly 7.5cm in length while the smaller piece should be around 1.5cms. Drill 8 holes in a straight line into the thicker pipe on both sides.
Step 7: Once the glue is dried on the pine, sand the edges down to a smooth curve. This is also a good time to start carving in the details.
Step 8: Attach the pieces of pipe to the wood. Again, wood glue can work but takes a long while. I also used liquid nails to make it stronger.
Step 9: Cut out squares of warbler and glue to the sides. I also used small circles of warbler to give the impression of bolts.
Step 10: Gesso and paint with the silver spray paint. I initally used a chrome paint but it was too shiny so I covered it with a matt silver and then wiped a mix of black ink and water over it to give it a dirty look. Let everything dry.
Step 11: Detailing using black paint and nail polish to give a glassy shiny look.
Step 12: Cut out 2x pieces of the hand grip from the balsa. Glue them to the almost finished product and sand the edges until it sits comfortably in your hands.
Step 13: Paint the balsa black cover the whole thing with a clear spray paint to protect the whole product….and, you are done.
So there we have it. My second Star Wars build ever. This was a lot of fun to make, and a big thank you to my housemate Kristian who taught me how to use a jigsaw. If you liked this and haven’t checked out my Staff tutorial, please go and have a look. If you plan to give this a go, please let me know how it goes and have fun with it.
Any questions you have, feel free to ask and to all the aspiring Rey’s out there, just like last time, May the Force Be With You!
Unique experience: I was at a council meeting for a local native American group last night. This was across the stream from the house, and the whole time I could hear wood thrushes, veeries, warblers, and other woodland birds. Heaven!
Distinguished from the Old World Warblers by their 9 primaries (Old World Warblers have ten), the small, colorful songbirds of the New World are common spring migrants to the woodlands of North America.
They are mainly insectivorous; some species trunk-creep, fly-catch, glean off of twigs, pull worms from the ground, and eat fruit in the fall and winter. Their favorite arthropods are moth and butterfly larvae.
Wood-warblers are mostly monogamous although extra-pair copulations have been recorded in several species. Males usually sing to females and different species will have different songs to suit their habitats—for example, those living in the woodland understory will tend to have rich, loud, ringing sounds while those living in the upper levels of the trees with have higher, thinner songs.
The female builds the nest and incubates 4-5 eggs for 9-15 days, although fledglings are fed by their parents up to a month after they leave the nest due to poor flight skills.
These little birds are remarkable for their ability to fly great distances during migration. Most species that are found in North America breed in the southernmost US, Mexico, Central America, Caribbean, and northern South America. Many fly over the Gulf of Mexico and during headwinds may rest on oil rigs or ships, although many die in the sea.
Pictured are several species found commonly in my home of the Pacific Northwest.
(from top down, left to right: Yellow Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warbler, MacGillivray’s Warbler, Common Yellowthroat, Townsend’s Warbler, and Wilson’s Warbler).
Source: Garrett, Kimball L. “Wood-Warblers." The Sibley Guide to Bird Life & Behavior. By John B. Dunning. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2001. 492-509. Print.
The American Wood Warblers comprise one of the most spectacular and colorful groups of birds in the world. Each spring the migrant warblers move northward, and twenty or more species may be observed in a brief period of time.
Find this diorama in the Sanford Hall of North American Birds.
These wood warblers are found in the eastern parts of North America, wintering in Central America and Northern South America. They feed on insects, especially moth and butterfly larvae during spring migration and the breeding season. Like creepers and nuthatches, they forage by crawling along tree trunks, hunting for insects in tree bark. Unlike other creeping birds, they climb in any direction, not just up or down. Males aggressively defend their territories from other birds. Females build cup-shaped nests on or near the ground and incubate the eggs. Both parents feed the chicks.