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Part 2 of the Riptide Sword- LED light tutorial


**It should be noted that this tutorial is Part 2 of the Riptide Sword Tutorial and therefore continues from the first set of instructions on how to make the sword in general. This tutorial continues along assuming that you have completed at least the sword and the hilt and have painted it accordingly to your preference.

My advice would be to decide right off the bat if you want both sides to light up, or both sides to be all foam and foam board. If you want both sides to light up, you can simply follow these instructions for both sides. or one side, if it's easier for you.**




Little Flashlight

Let's take a look at the electronics in this project. It is pretty simple. There is a battery pack, a set of LED's, a switch, and some wire. I took the battery pack and the LED setup right out of a little flashlight. This makes it pretty easy. All we need to do is add a switch and wire it all together.


The wiring

Here is the electronics after it comes out of the flashlight. I had to add a little push button switch. The red wire goes from the Positive (+) of the battery to the switch. Then the yellow wire goes to a 100 ohm resistor, then the positive (+) of the LED setup. From there a blue wire goes from the Negative (-) of the LED's to the Negative of the battery pack. That's it. When the button is pressed the electricity flows and the lights go on.

The little 100 ohm resistor is necessary for the LED's but it can be almost any resistance between 10 ohms and 1000 ohms. That little resistor was right inside the flashlight.


•  In the template, locate the Sword Detail piece as well as the Trident Detail. Grab two sheets of tracing paper as well. Trace the outline of the Sword Detail on one and the Trident Detail on the other.

Now, cut out a rectangular piece of foam about 7" by 5"


Place the tracing paper on the foam and begin to trace over the sword detail shape. Because it is foam that we're using, simply applying a lot of pressure to your pen or marker when tracing over the initial traced shape is going to be enough to transfer the Sword Detail visibly onto the foam by leaving an impression of the shape.


Cut out that shape. We used a hot wire cutter because we work with this particular type of foamular on a very regular basis. If you don't have one, it's just foam, so you can cut it out with your utility blade, though it may take a bit longer.


•  If you're using a battery pack like we are, there is a chance that it's going to be a pretty big one that will make it impossible to place your Sword Detail piece directly on the foam board blade itself. That is how we're going to approach the remaining parts of the tutorial.

•  Using a ruler, measure the dimensions of your battery pack. Ours happened to be roughly 2" x 1". Using a ballpoint pen, mark off the areas of the foam where the battery will fit. See picture for more details.

•  Using your sculpting tools, begin to gently score the foam in the area you have marked off as being Where the Battery Pack Goes. This will require patience because if you over-zealously start carving away, you run the risk of puncturing through the other side of the foam and you absolutely do not want that.

•  Remove the excess foam until the battery pack fits comfortably inside the hole and allows for the Sword Detail piece to lie flush on the foam board.

•  In our case specifically, we found it much more prudent to simply hollow out the entire piece of foam leaving only about a 1/16" margin along the sides. We achieved this by using a Dremel on the low setting.


•  Now that you have your hollowed out Sword Detail, take the piece of tracing paper that has the Trident Detail on it, and, using the same process of simply making a firm impression by pressing hard with your pen, trace that right onto the hollowed out piece of foam.

•  When you're done, use your X-acto blade to cut out the trident, we want this cut-out shape because it's where the light is going to pour through when the project is completed.



Now, find your yellow cellophane. You'll have to cut it into a rectangle with the same dimensions of the original piece of foam from your Sword Detail piece: 7" x 5". When you're done, take the hollowed out piece of foam and place it on top of the cellophane. Using a permanent marker, trace the shape of the Sword Detail onto the cellophane. With regular scissors, cut this shape out of the cellophane. Then, basically stuff the cellophane into the hollowed out part of the foam. It should fit really snugly and not require any adhesive.


Now, in our case, even hollowing out the foam didn't make it sit completely level on the surface of the foam board. If you're running into the same problem, simply take a scrap piece of foam or cut yourself a really thin strip of foam and cut that strip into little squares. Those squares are going to boost the Sword Detail up a bit so that the whole thing covers the battery pack AND sits flush on top of the sword. All you have to do is grab your hot glue gun on a very low setting and glue the squares to the edge of the hollowed out Sword Detail.

Remove the cellophane from the Sword Detail for now. Grab your ballpoint pen and draw waves carefully on the face of the Sword Detail, as described in part 1 of this tutorial.


When you're done, as in the last tutorial, use watered-down black acrylic paint to coat the Sword Detail piece. Allow to dry.


Using copper enamel or bronze metallic acrylic paint, paint the entire Sword Detail with a small flat tip brush. Allow to dry.


When that's finished, put the cellophane back in place and, using the hot glue gun on a very low setting, glue the Sword Detail down onto the sword.

That's it! Once you've glued your Sword Detail down, you're done! The LED lights should work, the yellow cellophane and cut out of the trident should allow the light to pour through, and generally, it should be looking pretty B.A. Congratulations!


You've made a pretty in-depth and very cool Riptide sword that lights up just like Percy's does! Have fun and happy crafting!



The Electric Mace

The Electric Mace

This is another fun automatic weapon project. With this one the head of the mace has spikes that go in and out. Good thing that knights from the past didn't have double A batteries :) Learn more about The Electric Mace


The Lazy Man's Sword!

With this sword you can eat a sandwich and battle a dragon at the same time. Yup! No more Arm fatigue when you wield this sword! Check it out here: The Lazy Man's Sword


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