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Thread: Phoenix Props Imperial Knight Neopixel TeensySaber

  1. #1

    Default Phoenix Props Imperial Knight Neopixel TeensySaber

    This will be a placeholder for my eventual WIP thread for this one. These Imperial Knights are very plain hilts, but the Star Wars fanatics love them, especially the 501st folks. I think I may be the first person in the world to install one with neopixel and TeensySaber V3! That's exciting. Because of the excitement, this chassis also sports: OLED Display, Blue Tooth Control, and accent strips currently in the reveal on the Padawan Chassis by Darth Ry. I may have to re-think that, because my solution is creating issues with the micro-switches and plugers on the chassis.

    Build: Phoenix Props Imperial Knight custom lightsaber
    TCSS 18650 10A high drain Li-Ion battery
    TCSS JST connectors for replaceable battery
    TCSS 1" Hilt Adapter for TCSS Pixel Adapters
    TCSS neopixel adapters
    TCSS 1" thin-walled blade w/strip diffuser tube and round tip (hollowed)
    TCSS Foam for 1" blades
    TCSS Saber Essentials Bass Speaker 24mm by Adrian Tan
    TCSS 1" Thin walled blade
    TCSS 1" round blade tip (hollowed out)
    TCSS JST connectors for battery....I would have preferred to hard wire it in...but this is what was requested.
    micro tactile switches w/ 1.5mm rise. Switches are 4.5mm by 4.5 mm. (they've been killing me) good thing I got 30 of them!
    ws2813 (dual data line) strips w/ 5050 neopixels
    TeensySaberV3 Teensy 3.2
    1.3 mm RC Port (high amp)
    high amp switch
    Goth3d Padawan Chassis (included the button plungers)
    SkyWampa 18650 sticker to dress up the battery a bit, I like them.
    Various wire/connectors.
    OLED Display
    Red Bear BLE Blue tooth unit
    Copper mesh

    On this build I used Goth3D Padawan Chassis for Imperial Knight by PP, TCSS 1" Delrin Hilt Adapter w/ TCSS Plecter Pixel adapters. I attached the Delrin module to the chassis, and then had to mill out switch slots so I could sneak it by the switch plungers in the hilt. That has been the tough part of this build: adjusting the switches and plungers. I'll get it, I'm getting closer with each mod. There is a lot more under the hood than this video reveals! More to come! I need to finish this, so I can get back to work on Nihilus II!

    I'll try and get some build pics up tomorrow night or later this week. Had to break the silence around here!



    Tom
    Last edited by Tom Tilmon; 07-11-2018 at 09:48 AM.

    "Let the past die."

  2. #2

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    Thanks Tom, I needed a break of this silence. And that thing is a beaut! Wow, Bluetooth, eh? Fancy!

  3. #3

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    I want to make this hilt out of MHS stuff. I need to get a hilt piece machined to see if I can get it to work. If so, I think I could do more with the space in the hilt. that hilt piece really needs to be powder coated too, before I cut the shroud. The shroud on the IK is very similar to the saber you just made! So, I took a keen interest watching your build because of its vague resemblance.

    Tom

    "Let the past die."

  4. #4

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    MHS system is just awesome. Do you know who made it? I am a big fan of that shroud design, no matter how nice and fancy of a saber I'll ever make, my first one will always be my favorite hilt, I just love it so much!

    Edit: by the way, if there is any similarities between my saber and one of yours, that means that my saber must look good.
    Last edited by Seth Skywalker; 07-08-2018 at 12:57 PM.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seth Skywalker View Post
    MHS system is just awesome. Do you know who made it? I am a big fan of that shroud design, no matter how nice and fancy of a saber I'll ever make, my first one will always be my favorite hilt, I just love it so much!

    Edit: by the way, if there is any similarities between my saber and one of yours, that means that my saber must look good.
    Phoenix Props made this hilt. I think you could definitely do it in MHS V1 or V2. The ID of the entire hilt is 1", so its a very slim saber. I appreciate the compliments, but the big guns are the guys that have a machine shop and make their own hilts. We can all only aspire to their skill and artistry. Someone buy me at lathe, mill, and 3D Printer

    Building the blade, this particular saber guy wanted WS2813 strips with redundant data lines, you can't trim them because the positive and negative leads are outboard to make room for the dual data lines in the middle. The design of the WS2813s are such that if a pixel fails, the redundant data line will continue the signal to the rest of the string. Great in theory, but if you have a bad pixel, you'll see it in your blade anyway, so, I'm not so sure this solution is the best. I'm still partial to the WS2812 5050 strips. But, here you go:





    Goth3D Padawan Chassis in this one, so here is the initial build:







    There are tiny holes in the inner hilt, and switch plungers that fit into the hilt and depress micro switches installed in the switch slots. The switches are 4.5 mm x 4.5 mm and have a actuator height of 1.5mm. So, they weren't much fun to solder, worse than SMD LEDs or SMD Resistors, very tiny. But, to even push this one piece chassis into the saber and past the switch hats in the hilt, you had to also mill out the slots for the switches in the attached LED adapter from TCSS. I was worried about pushing too deep, and then into the neopixel adapter PCB, but fortunately, the slots weren't as deep as the pcb in the 1" TCSS adapter. Flying by the seat of my pants there. Again, I wish I had a machine shop, it was nothing but dremel butchery to cut the slots. That is inaccurate, and messy, but I made it work! More to come.

    Tom
    Attached Images Attached Images

    "Let the past die."

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seth Skywalker View Post
    MHS system is just awesome. Do you know who made it? I am a big fan of that shroud design, no matter how nice and fancy of a saber I'll ever make, my first one will always be my favorite hilt, I just love it so much!

    Edit: by the way, if there is any similarities between my saber and one of yours, that means that my saber must look good.
    Who made what, the MHS system? Ill take a wild guess (not really) and say that Tim was very, VERY heavily involved.
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  7. #7

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    Ok thanks, was just wondering.

  8. #8

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    Board mess. I was in one. Anytime you're trying to squeeze the TeensySaberV3 into chassis made for "standard" boards, you're in a world of hurt. Its like a baby trying to eat a Big Mac. Particularly in this saber. How Darth Ryo designed this chassis, the aft end of the board is supposed to be exposed out of the front of the chassis. Access of the SD card is via the very front of the chassis, with the board mounted backwards as it were. Well, when I incorporated the TCSS 1" Delrin Hilt Side Neopixel Adapter, that blocked the area to access the SD. Thus my quandary.

    How the board is supposed to mount in chassis:


    Then you have my big mess underneath, I did this to myself:


    Here was my solution to solve the issue. Once I maneuvered the board into place opposite of how it was intended, it slid right into a position that was easily solidified. Here is the result, in addition to the cleaning up of all the wires feeding: neopixels, switches, blue tooth, OLED, Accents, Power.


    Oh, back to the button slots and those darned little 4.5 mm micro tactile switches. I ordered 30 of them, and its a good thing, I wasted 8 or so of them trying to fit them under the hats in the hilt. I'd destroy a switch, then remove it, add a new one, sand down the plunger a bit, try again, waste another switch, and so on. These things are more fragile than the switch 22's! I also have to solder them under 25x magnification, because I can't see them with my eyes.

    Switch Slots, switches, and plungers (white squares in black hilt):


    Custom boot screen on my OLED Display!


    Spicing up the Padawan Chassis:


    Cleaning it up with black ribbon:


    Battery Installed:


    Aft end:


    Finished board Install:
    Starboard:

    Port:

    Top:

    Board cover made from TCSS Strip Diffuser and Copper mesh, it covers the board when you rotate the shroud to the reveal section:
    How bout that battery sticker? Worked out good.
    Initially I had neopixel strips on top of the board illuminating this section, but it was messy and cramped, and I didn't like it, so I axed it.

    Almost finished product:


    The only thing I'm thinking about doing, but haven't made up my mind yet, is adding a few neopixels at the Goth3D logo to light up that forward chamber a little, so it you rotate the shroud to the reveal....something is going on in there. Still pondering that. Hope to have a video in a week or two, this saber is pretty awesome. Last major project remaining is neopixelizing a DSE Razor Turbine Blade Plug for it. Then, some polishing, touch-up paint, maybe a few pixels under the hood, and whamo! Imperial Knight is fini!

    Tom
    Last edited by Tom Tilmon; 07-10-2018 at 11:53 PM.

    "Let the past die."

  9. #9

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    Amazing what all you can cram in that space. Well done
    wsoFB by Nathan Barnes, on Flickr

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Leximus View Post
    Amazing what all you can cram in that space. Well done
    Thank you kindly sir. I feel better after a personal flop as of late, very visible flop. So, at least I know this saber is pretty decent for a kit.

    Video of the chassis in action. This chassis is in effect the lightsaber. It just goes on the inside of the hilt. Most of this stuff will sadly never be seen, but it helped me master the programming for these features, so each saber is another step further into the potential of Arduino that I am able to unleash inside these flashlights!


    "Let the past die."

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