The pandemic showed us the large gaps of technology and internet access across social-economic groups, from people working out of a car due to unreliable home internet, to students managing limited use of the only computer in the household, sharing with parents, siblings, etc.
With the pandemic-related closures, makerspaces, and relevant tools such as 3D printers, laser cutters and power tools, all were inaccessible.
The result is an award-winning prop and guide for anyone to make a lightsaber with low-cost use.
- To inspire those with limited access to expensive tools, to craft and build
- To champion and support sustainability methods in making
- To make a lightsaber using upcycling/reuse methods, and low-cost accessible, inexpensive tools
- To document the design process to increase accessibility to make/craft a lightsaber
The immediate audiences include the Make: Media and Nvidia judges evaluating all submissions to the May the 4th Maker challenge. More broadly, my audience are novice crafters, makers, and electronics-interested Star Wars fans who want to make their own lightsaber while in the pandemic.
This project is a series of trial and error, with the challenge of using inexpensive and accessible tools and methods. I also saved a lightsaber toy from the trash, and decided to carve out space for enhancing the lightsaber with improved sounds, lights and interaction.
Sole Researcher, Designer, Builder and Writer
- Dremel/rotary tool
- Soldering iron
- Vices, grips
- Wire stripper
- Design processs (research, prototyping, iteration)
- Electronics (soldering/wiring/etc)
- Arduino programming
- Power tools (rotary tool)
This build and resulting tutorial won Make Media & Nvidia’s May the 4th Maker Challenge. Here’s the award-winning submission and tutorial.