View Full Version : If I buy a white polycarbonate tube is necessary the foam diffuser?

06-04-2012, 11:11 AM
If I buy a white polycarbonate tube is necessary the foam diffuser or other?


06-04-2012, 11:36 AM
Kinda hard to answer that question with the information given.

Are you using a string LED system?

Are you using just a standard rebel, P4 or LEDengin in the hilt?

I built PVC sabers for my kids using the white polycarbonate blades and I didn't use any other form of diffusion with them. It was "good enough" for their uses.

The only place I have seen foam used is with string LEDs. On the standard rebel, P4, LEDengin setups people generally use corbin film, and/or several feet of clear gift wrap to even out the lighting along the length of the blade.
I doubt you would see much of the effect of the corbin film in a white polycarbonate blade, but you could still benefit from the clear gift wrap.

In the end it is going to come down to what you want it to look like.

06-04-2012, 03:28 PM
No, it's not a necessity to diffuse the trans white blade. The eveness of the light will depend on 1) the power of the LED, 2) the length of the blade, 3) how your eyes see the light (everyone has different senses and opinions of what looks good). Try it without first, if your setup has an unsatisfactory evenness after you try it, then try some of the clear gift wrap to diffuse. I don't think any other type of diffuser would be helpful in the trans white blade.

06-05-2012, 04:51 AM
Thanks to all.'
@ Zzan: It's not for a led strip, but for a blade whiyh one led on the hilt, I don't know which led I have to buy, I need a blue light and I want a super bright saber. I want a removable blade, I want do do some spinning with the saber, but not to fight so strong.

Now I have another question:
What kind of led do you recommend me?
If I buy a white thin polycarbonate tube is better to take the corbin film?

06-05-2012, 05:52 AM
I would say get a seoul P4 for simple bright blue blade.

If you are comfortable with soldering stubborn components you could go with a LEDengin BBBB and wire multiple dice together to get a brighter blade (it has 4 blue die, as opposed to the rebels and P4's that only have one)

In my opinion the P4 is plenty bright enough, but some people like to have to wear sunglasses when they turn on their sabers.

I wouldn't put corbin film in a white polycarbonate blade. The blade may be fine as is, it really depends on the length of the blade and how you see the blade.

If the blade is too long (relative) you will have a bright spot at the base and a bright spot at the tip with the center being not so bright. This can be fixed by adding a few feet of clear gift wrap to the inside of the blade until the desired even-ness of light along the blade is reached.

06-05-2012, 12:51 PM
The battery solution for BBBB is pretty complicated for a beginner. P4s are bright and easy, I'd go with that first. If you feel like improving once your skills are up, you can always swap it out later.

06-05-2012, 12:56 PM
There is a difference between Corbin film and regular clear gift wrap film. The Corbin film is used specifically to create a core beam effect to the inside of the blade. (which can be seen here http://www.thecustomsabershop.com/LED-Corbin-style-Show-blade-1-OD--P227.aspx). The downside of the coring effect is lack of evenness of the light across the length of the blade. This effect won't be very noticible inside a white tube, it's meant for a clear tube. If your goal is a white tube with evenness just get regular clear gift wrap, don't get Corbin film. If the Corbin effect is something you desire then don't get a white tube, go clear.

06-05-2012, 01:23 PM
Here is a good resource thread (http://forums.thecustomsabershop.com/showthread.php?7266-LED-Brightness-Chart&highlight=Lumens) for seeing the difference in brightness (measured in lumens) between different LEDs for various colors. There is no easy answer choosing between the P4 and Rebel Star, it depends on color and how much current you plan to drive to the LED. Short answer, if your choice is blue, P4 seems to get more lumens out of blue than the Rebel does. Also remember, what you see with your own eyes might not always agree with the mathematics.

06-05-2012, 02:04 PM
Sounds like that'd work pretty good to me.

06-06-2012, 10:31 AM
Hey there everyone,

I was racking my brain trying to find my personal preference for blade type/thickness/film use etc for some time. I am still waiting on a few corbin blades with my next order, so my current choice may not be what I use going forward, but thought for the sake of others I would post some photos I took of a Rebel Green with various blade types. My testing shows that pretty well regardless what type of blade used, they all benefit from clear gift wrap (something mentioned many times here already).

But here is a side by side photo comparison of several different options that are out there, 69946995699669976998

Photo 1 - 36" long, 1" battle blade (thick) with diffuser, no gift wrap
Photo 2 - 36" long, 1" battle blade (thick) with diffuser, 6' gift wrap
Photo 3 - 34" long, 1" thin walled blade with 6' of gift wrap
Photo 4 - 34" long, trans-white polyC blade with no gift wrap
Photo 5 - 34" long, trans-white polyC blade with with 6' of gift wrap

Apparently I can only post 5 pictures, but I also have a photo of a red polyC with a P4 White (waiting on my RRRR to arrive) which I think looks really good, also with wrap. I may end up using this with my planned sith saber because it just looks so awesome when not lit. If anyone want to see it I can make another post.

I actually like the Trans-white blades a lot more than I figured I would, however I think they look cheesy when not lit. There is not much difference with the thick/thin walled blades either, but I love the feel of the battle blade, very substantial. The thinwalled blade just feels like I am going to break it when I hold it.

Thanks everyone!

06-06-2012, 11:27 PM

Here is the red polyC tube (40" thick-walled) I spoke about earlier with 6' of gift wrap. I had to use a P4 white in it as my RRRR has not yet arrived. I think the look is quite good, and looks totally badass when not lit.


06-07-2012, 07:28 AM
I hope your RRRR output wavelength is in the range of wavelengths the Red PolyC lets through.

Otherwise you may not get the results you are hoping for. IE. you get a very dim blade or even dark blade because it is filtering out most or all your LED light.
You may have to go with a clear or white blade, or re-order a cool white LZ4-20CW00 = White LED to use your Red PolyC blade.

Colored LED's put out a single wavelength of light. Any filter that does not allow that wavelength through will act as a complete block to the light.

White = all visible wavelengths
Black = no visible wavelengths


As you can see the range of wavelengths that the human eye perceives as the color red are between 620 and 750 nanometers.

Your LED will emit exactly one of those wavelengths (the LED specs are probably tighter than the actual 620-750, you will have to look at the LED specs to find out what their allowable manufacturing specs are)

Edit: From the LEDEngin datasheets:
Red: LZ4-00R100 Red 623nm
Deep Red: LZ4-00R200 Deep Red (660 nm peak)

Onli-Won Kanomi
06-08-2012, 12:30 AM
The LEDs we commonly use don't emit only one wavelength...only lasers do that and our sabers while LEGALLY classified in some jurisdiction as "class II lasers" because of their brightness and use of tight collimator optics are NOT true lasers and do not use true laser diodes. They do have a dominant wavelength which is used for their nominal rating in the manufacturers spec sheets but they emit light in a range of wavelengths around that nominal rated dominant wavelength not an exact single one.

As for the OP, a blue P4 is quite bright for blue sabers and should give very nice results with a white polycarbonate show [thinwall] blade and with white poly-c a diffuser may not be necessary unless you are using a long blade [36"+]. Corbin film doesnt give its FULL benefit with white poly-C since one of the things some like about Corbin film is the core effect noted above - but the other thing Corbin film provides is the pseudo-extend/retract illusion IF used with a PWM driver like the Petit Crouton so it can still have a use in white blades. For evenness however I'd try the white blade empty first and if you find the white blade by itself to be uneven to your eyes then adding 4-6' of clear gift wrap is an easy fix. Since you suggest you don't need a heavy 'gorilla' dueling blade a thinwall show blade will be a bit brighter and the show blades are still VERY strong.

06-08-2012, 02:10 PM
Just to show just how strong these blades really are here's a strength test video done by Madcow. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cqIQ8lkZC3g&feature=youtube_gdata_player