Chassis System for One Replicas Luke V2 Hilts

Introduction

This chassis is designed to aid with electronic installation in the One Replicas Luke V2 hilt from the following run: thread.

The chassis features dedicated space for an 18650 or smaller battery, 28mm speaker, sound board, recharge port, and accent LEDs. This page provides instructions for a common installation of the chassis system. If you run into any problems please let me know and I will try to help, however the chassis is offered as a DIY kit and as such I cannot be held responsible for any mistakes on the part of the final installer.

Ordering

The chassis is available on Shapeways and breaks down into four parts.

  1. Battery & Speaker Holder.
  2. Sound board support, Switch channel, wire routing, recharge, and faux CC.
  3. Sound board trays: 3a is for Nano Bicotte 2/3 and 3b is a blank tray for DIY. (More options coming soon.)
  4. Sound board cover, optional. This improves the look of the exposed end when pommel is removed.

Cost for full chassis in cheapest material is $50 + shipping.

Parts List

Installation Overview

Please read the entire guide before beginning installation. I have attempted to put everything in a logical order, but some things may work better for your build if done in a slightly different order.

  1. Optional: Paint Chassis
  2. Prepare Hilt
  3. Wire Battery and Speaker Module
  4. Optional: Install Accent LEDs
  5. Install Recharge Port
  6. Install Board Sled
  7. Wire Sound Board
  8. Optional: Install Board Cover
  9. Install Chassis Into Hilt
  10. Wire LED and Switches
  11. Enjoy your new saber!

Step 1 - Paint Chassis (Optional)

Only a small portion of the chassis is visible once installed (see photo), so a quick coat of paint on the back end will help the 3D print look much nicer. I also painted around the faux crystal chamber with a couple colors, but the huge green LED mostly washes that out, so a single color would be sufficient in there. I recommend enamels for plastic models if you want a good metallic finish like my example pictures.

 

Step 2 - Prepare Hilt

Hilt preparation is broken down into three steps

Step 2a - Drill and Tap Chassis Retention Screw

A small set screw (6-32 or 8-32 recommended) must be used to secure the chassis inside the hilt. This can be done two different ways, the pictures illustrate the more time consuming way because I actually did this as the last step before actually installing the chassis.

Method 1 - A Little Quicker/Easier

  1. Mark the drill location 15mm down the sleeve and body from the hole for switch wires.
  2. Drill the body with the correct size bit for the tap you are using.
  3. Tap the hole, being careful to clear the slurry every couple turns.
  4. Drill a hole in the sleeve large enough to allow the outer threads of your set screw to pass through.
  5. Check alignment and adjust hole in sleeve as needed to be able to insert and tighten the set screw.

Method 2 - More Threading

  1. Install the sleeve onto the body, make sure both switch holes are aligned, then secure with the existing set screw.
  2. Mark the location 15mm down from the switch hole.
  3. Drill through the sleeve and body using the correct sized bit for your tap.
  4. Tap both pieces at once, being careful to clear the slurry every couple turns.

Step 2b - Sound Venting & Faux CC Visibility (Optional)

During this step you will drill, dremel, and/or file holes to allow sound and light to pass through the existing holes in the Graflex clamp. If you do not want to use the faux CC, you could vent sound using a TCSS pommel insert that is vented for sound instead of this method.

  1. Place clamp on sleeve and align switch hole with the opening between the clamp bars.
  2. Trace holes from the clamp onto the sleeve using a fine tip marker.
  3. Remove the clamp and install the sleeve onto the hilt, align the switch holes and secure using the lower set screw.
  4. It is best to punch the centers for the holes before drilling to help guide the drill bit on the curved surface.
  5. Use a 1/4 or larger bit to drill holes for the four square openings and a couple holes for the slot.
  6. The sleeve will stick to the body a bit at this point because the drill melds the metal edges together, but you can remove the sleeve by starting with a good twisting motion. The scratches this leaves won't be visible on the finished hilt.
  7. Use a Dremel tool or files to clean up the edges of both pieces and connect the holes for the slot. Be careful with the set screw during this part, mine fell out while I wasn't looking (first photo). Check your progress by placing the clamp back on the hilt and continue to remove material until you can't see any through the windows in the clamp.
  8. Be sure to sand the inside of the body after this so that it won't have anything sharp left to damage the wiring or sound board.

Step 2c - Paint and Weather the Hilt

The Luke V2 is probably the most gloriously weathered hilt in Star Wars. This is the part that makes this saber special, so take your time and be sure you are happy with the results before continuing with the installation. Once electronics are inside some of these processes are no longer possible.

Everyone has their own method for this step, this is the process I used on the hilt in these photos.

  1. Paint entire part (mask off most of the area where the sleeve covers the hilt) and let it dry to the touch. (The drying part was the real breakthrough for me, otherwise I took off too much or it looked more like smeared/rubbed off paint.)
  2. Place part in a jar/bucket of screws, bolts, and/or rocks (the more variety the merrier). Shake vigorously.
  3. Use a cloth dampened with acetone to rub off paint a little at a time, the nicks and scratches from the jar help break up the paint naturally so the acetone doesn't leave edges that look quite so rubbed off.
  4. Repeat 2 & 3 until you have the desired amount of paint removed.
  5. If you are unsatisfied with the results a cloth soaked with acetone should remove all the paint, let the hilt dry and repeat from step 1 until you get the desired effect.
  6. Bake to set the remaining paint. Use an old toaster oven, DO NOT bake paint in an oven you will ever cook with again.

Step 3 - Wiring Battery and Speaker Module

These are the easiest components to install, so we get them out of the way first. If your battery uses a JST connecter there should be room to use it in the wiring channels, I used a Deans Micro connecter which is much shorter but about 1.5 times as thick as a JST and had room for everything.

Battery Installation

The orientation of the battery doesn't matter for this chassis, if using a prewired pack you should try to insert it both ways and see if there is an orientation that leaves 1-2 inches of wire/plug beyond the end of this chassis section for easy connection to the board. If you wish to wire directly to the board be sure to leave enough extra wire to reach the battery pads on your board once the tray is installed in the second chassis section.

The battery should slide into the module without too much force and fit right against the speaker holder. There is a wiring channel down the underside of the battery holder, if your pack is installed with the wires pointing toward the emitter run them back through this channel and under the speaker holder.

Speaker Installation

Either popular model of 28mm speaker should fit by resting the outermost lip on the first recess of the speaker holder. Wire the speaker such that the wires travel toward the middle of the speaker, then pass them through the gap in the back of the speaker holder and under with the battery wires. The speaker holder also has a small piece that can be glued in place to hold the speaker securely in place. (Not pictured)

Set the battery/speaker module aside for now, it's time to start on the second half of the chassis.

Step 4 - Install Faux CC and Accent LEDs (Optional)

If you are using the 10mm LED holder for the faux CC or any of the included 3mm LED holders now is the best time to add wires to those LEDs and secure them in place. Once the board and sled go on the hilt these holders are much harder to use.

Step 5 - Install Recharge Port

The hole for the recharge port is sized small enough to thread the recharge port in, or you can drill/dremel it out a bit if you prefer to use the nut to secure it from the outside. I found it easier to wire it inside the chassis if using the threads to hold it in place. If you plan to use a turnable kill key you will want to add some hot glue to secure the recharge port on the inside after wiring.

If using a battery disconnect wire it to the recharge port and then place the two halves of the chassis together, make sure the connecters reach without any strain or too much extra wire. You may have to remove one or two of the arms that hold wires in the channel underneath the sound board module for the connector to fit (the small white patches in the photos are where I removed them).

Step 6 - Install Board Sled and Connect Chassis Halves

The board sled should fit under the two prongs at the pommel end of the sound board module then rest on the supports and lock in place on the two pegs at the emitter end of the module. Secure the sled with couple drops of super glue on those pegs and under the prongs.

This is also a good time to combine the two main modules, add super glue to the pins below the speaker and the arms protruding from the switch channel and firmly press the two halves together until dry.

Didn't photograph this process specifically, I will get some with my next install.

Step 7 - Wire Sound Board

This part should be done by following the manual for your sound board. I will cover a couple things I did to make routing my wires a little easier and give general amounts of wire to leave for main LED and switch installation.

Tip - Don't be afraid to add some holes

For instance, I added a couple holes to the board tray to allow me to pass wires through from the under side and wire to both sides of the NB. The existing holes for the logo can also be used if they are convenient for your board layout (I used some of them for the accent LEDs).

Tip - Power Extenders Waste a lot of space

If you are using a NB2 with a PEx or a PEx for any other application (single cell hack, for instance) and not planning to use the included resistor pads this is what I like to do with them. You can bridge the resistor pads to the ground pad to provide more places to solder ground wires. May not be the best way to ground everything, but it makes use of otherwise wasted space. I would still recommend chaining ground wires between components as much as possible.

Dangling Wires

The main LED and switches can't be wired yet, though I would recommend wiring them up for test once the rest of the connections are made.

The main LED will need roughly 5-6 inches of wire beyond the end of the battery module to comfortably reach the other end of the emitter. So plan accordingly for that based on the layout of your board. Once the wires are soldered pass them through the channels on the back of the chassis all the way to the end of the battery, then thread them through the center ring of the battery cap. You can secure the battery cap with hot glue.

The switch (or switches) need about 2-3 inches of extra wire beyond the end of the switch channel. You will need to bridge the grounds within the switch holder, there is only room for three 26G wires in the channel. I would recommend doing these last on a NB board, they make it difficult to reach other pads since they will just be hanging over the board once soldered in place.

Step 8 - Install Board Cover (Optional)

If you ordered the board cover, now is the time to attach it to the chassis using super glue on the tabs that fit into the board sled.

Step 9 - Install Chassis in Hilt

Almost there! At this point everything is ready to come together: the chassis should be fully assembled, and the hilt should have the sleeve and clamp secured in place.

To install the chassis in the hilt you should first thread an extra length of wire through the emitter of the hilt and tape that to the dangling end of the main LED wires. Then thread the switch wires through the channel leaving a nice loop of slack behind them, they should rest with the ends right at the end of the slope. Tuck the loop of switch wire under the board cover if possible (Masking tape used as stand in for photo).

Insert the chassis into the hilt and guide the LED wires by gently pulling as you push the chassis into place. Once fully installed there should be about this much chassis remaining that fits in the pommel.

Use a pair of needle nose pliers to pull the switch wires through the wire hole. Only pull the wires toward the emitter, pulling the other direction causes them to bind and could break the wires. Once the wires are fully exposed you can pass the wires for the lower switch under the clamp pin.

Secure the chassis using the set screw installed during the hilt preparation step. The chassis is flexible, so it will not necessarily feel tight, so check by gently pulling on the exposed end of the chassis to make sure it won't slide back out. Do not over-tighten the set screw.

Step 10 - Wire LED and Switches

The LED is the trickiest part of this installation, I would wire a test switch to the exposed wires to be sure it is working once fully installed.

Main LED

This may not be the best method, but it worked for my installation.

  1. Prep the LED star by sanding the edges round until they fit in the heatsink. I used a Dremel and the flat side of a cutoff disc, if you do this be careful the star will get very hot.
  2. Thread the wires through the heatsink and screw the heatsink in until it stops, then back it out a quarter turn so its loose enough to unscrew later.
  3. Bridge the appropriate pads if using a multi-die LED. (The NB is common positive, so those are bridged in my photos.)
  4. Feed the wires through the center hole in the LED.
  5. Use something very thin but sturdy to hold the LED level on the emitter. I used some Exacto blades, if you do this be sure the sharp part faces away from the wires.
  6. Measure and mark the amount of wire you will need for each pad.
  7. Remove the LED star, cut and strip the wires, then feed the wires back through the LED.
  8. Solder the wires to the LED.
  9. Unscrew the heatsink, install the lens and securing ring. Add some threadlock to the heatsink.
  10. Screw the completed LED module back into the hilt, the screwing motion will twist and shorten the wires. The threadlock will prevent this twisting from unscrewing the heatsink later.
  11. Test the LED and be sure the twisting didn't break anything.

Switches

This part is pretty straigtforward. Pass the switch wire through the holes in the holder, if using two switches add one between the two holes to share the ground. Solder the included switch to the wires. Then stuff as much of the wire as you can into the slot in the switch holder and the rest back into the hilt until the switch holder sits flat between the clamp bars.

Tip - Rocking Clamp Card

One Replicas gave me this tip and it worked well for my install. Cut small pieces from an empty tin can to create small clips on either side of the circuit board. Once this is inserted in the clamp it will pinch the middle of the card and allow the ends to rock up and down.

All Done - Enjoy your new saber!