Darth Vader ESB Lightsaber MPP Build

Discussion in 'Star Wars Costumes' started by intwenothor, Nov 25, 2014.

  1. intwenothor

    intwenothor Active Member

    Taking a little break from the Fett Man. I'm working on a pair of matching Luke and Vader ESB lightsabers from found parts (where possible) and thought this could stand to be shared here. It's not complete yet but I thought I'd show some progress. I've owned a few MPPs in my time and still have three. Only ever the one Graflex though.


    Putting together the correct clamp has been a real mission to get the correct angled side bars, sleeve and through screw. This clamp is actually a combination of parts from three clamps.


    Trimming the bubbles is far more time consuming than you'd think especially to trim the circuit board to sit underneath (which is present on the original prop). Essentially I copied this RPF thread from clutch.


    I thought removing the nameplate would be a massive problem but when I was having an exploratory poke one of the rivets pinged across the room. The other side I removed with a dremmel. It was filthy under there and some cleaning was required.

    Apparently Exactra calcs can be restored with replica bubbles but not this one. I destroyed the circuit board so I couls place under the bubbles in the clamp as per the surviving prop. It'll never work again but I'll keep it for posterity.

    The wires are from a 1970s projector



    Drilling a hole in the back of the shroud is not for the faint hearted.


    Still need to cut and attach my T track but you get the idea.

    Live the dream

    BobaKen, Mugatu, Matty Matt and 2 others like this.
  2. DanzoFett

    DanzoFett Member

    Should be a good read :)
  3. intwenothor

    intwenothor Active Member

    Hey Danzo, I hope you are well.

    Although I haven't pictured it yet I also swapped out the innards for a cleaner and less corroded set (but still not perfect) and although this came with the correct 3 rings in the black circle end cap the cap was pretty beaten and dented so I swapped that with a better one too. The prop as it exists today is more consistent with the dented one but I thought I'd make it as clean as I could. This really is the amalgamation of several (original) units.
  4. KrokoHunter

    KrokoHunter New Member

    Awesome project. Will follow this. And really, really, really try not to be tempted to start one of my own,before I've finished some of my other projects :D
  5. vader45

    vader45 New Member

    WOW, you are super lucky to own original MPPs
  6. OnnoHeesbeen

    OnnoHeesbeen New Member

    Great job! Always keep my eye open for a MPP but haven'tbeen lucky so far
  7. intwenothor

    intwenothor Active Member

    Thanks guys, I'll post updates when the T Track is on. In respect of the MPPs I would have to say that it was a question of hard looking and funds to get them rather than luck but being in the country of origin probably helped. I took up large format photography to make it happen with an old MPP S92 large format. In general Photog shops won't be interested in selling vintage stuff to star wars geeks even if money is no object; they just don't like what we're going to do and I can't say I blame them really. Same thing with Webleys as well as a lot of other stuff and I wouldn't even dream of bringing up found parts with companies like Michell Engineering. Those guys have had enough! I will say that large format photography was enjoyable if a little time consuming but I didn't have the time to devote to make myself good at it but it is true that my Star Wars hobby has opened up other interests and hobbies I'd never been interested in before. Searching for Michell stuff led me to renovate a 70s TT and listening to old vinyl is great.


    Live the dream.

  8. Major

    Major Active Member

    That looks great...... Beautiful work...... If you ever want to part with one of those other tubes, let me know

    Sent from my iPhone
  9. DarthPestilence

    DarthPestilence New Member

    Awesome. I want to do a build but I can't get my hands on the flash
  10. syllander

    syllander Active Member

    Really nice looking there man! I'd love to get one of these built up too one day. So I'll just stare at yours until then....
  11. Marv

    Marv Member

    Braver than me that's for sure, I've a few of these too but I cannot bring myself to drilling the shroud or removing the name plate on any of them, or remove the clamp arm. I'm also agonising over how to cut the bubble strip, I know it's accurate as you have it but it just looks a little tidier with the full bubble.
    Would you happen to have a small length of the brown and grey wire spare?
  12. intwenothor

    intwenothor Active Member

    You can do it Marv:)

    To be honest i'm all in at this point with these old found parts and I'm considering epoxy for the t track so it sticks first time and never needs be repeated. The wires were provided me by Chaim of rpf. I have none spare.
  13. Marv

    Marv Member

    I simply went with super glue gell a couple of dabs and its stuck fast :)
  14. BFLV

    BFLV New Member

    Excellent !!! ;) i search replica or mpp to have the same ESB lightsaber
  15. intwenothor

    intwenothor Active Member

    A couple of quick and dirty shots of my MPP with Roy's T track attached.

    and compared to the 2003 offering from Master Replicas; yes, it really has been twelve years!
    the_man_with_the_ee3 and BobaKen like this.
  16. intwenothor

    intwenothor Active Member

    Here are some daylight pictures for you. Still quick and dirty i'm afraid or I'm going to be late for work!






    Live the dream.

  17. Mugatu

    Mugatu Jr Member

    Absolutely fantastic! I can't wait for the day I have the parts needed to complete one of these. Exactra bubbles down, MPP to go!
  18. Viper

    Viper Member

    Holy .....
    Well done!
  19. Mugatu

    Mugatu Jr Member

    Did all of your MPP's come with the same thumb screw in their shrouds? None had a diamond knurl pattern?
  20. intwenothor

    intwenothor Active Member

    You are correct. Not seen the cross diamond pattern on anything (MPP, Helland, Kobold, King Sol). I suspect the original may have become lost and was simply replaced from the first thing to fit I. E. Not from a flash. Could be wrong of course.
    Mugatu likes this.
  21. Mugatu

    Mugatu Jr Member

    I suppose if it was used as a bladed stunt at any time, that thumb screw was in the perfect spot to get knocked off.
  22. intwenothor

    intwenothor Active Member

    Maybe but there isn't really anything that moves on the prop. It might be as simple as a bored actor playing with it or losing it, got knocked off during filming or any one of a number of other reasons.
  23. Mugatu

    Mugatu Jr Member

    You are right.
    In any case, your Vader ESB saber looks awesome!
  24. intwenothor

    intwenothor Active Member

    Thanks dude. I really enjoy it (for an inanimate object). Theory on the thumbscrew is only that. I have no evidence at all. There might be a matching mpp out there.
    Mugatu likes this.
  25. Mugatu

    Mugatu Jr Member

    If I may ask, Andy, how did you attach the T Tracks? Double-sided tape or epoxy of some sort? Did you do any special filing of the ends that cover the end cap?

    I've picked up a resin cast of a correct shroud from Sidewinder. I am a bit hesitant to drill into it though for fear of breaking through where I am not intending. Nevertheless, all that to say, I will likely begin a temporary build soon and have been going back and forth about attaching the T tracks in the most non-permanent way. Any advice is greatly appreciated.

    I say non-permanent as this MPP is destined for non-Vader usage ultimately.

Share This Page