Leia’s defender sport blaster

When you absolutely, positively have to kill every storm trooper on your diplomatic mission to alderaan, only the Defender Sport blaster will do!

My sister is into cosplay, which seems to translate into My sister is into me making costume props for her that she never wears.  Leia’s blaster is the latest in that lineage.   Fortunately AprilStorm put up a great model on Thingiverse so I only had to figure out how to print it and finish it properly.

Two things happened that made this print a giant pain the rear.  The first is that I somehow got some contaminate into my PVA glue mix that wasn’t obvious until after a print was well under way. The second was that my downward cooling fan died, so my only source of active cooling was a USB powered fan mounted outside of my build plate. Not ideal. So this print had to be broken up into several pieces and CA glued up when I was done.  I have lots of clamps for just such an occasion though and used them liberally.

each piece got a bit of sanding before I put them all together, then once the main body was assembled I did some more sanding to help things fit flush. Because of the bed glue issue, I still have some gaps that wouldn’t close, so I marked those pieces off for putty later on.  Because of all the small details on this part, I won’t be using filling primer, just bondo and lots of sanding.  All of the black marks are spots where I need to build up bondo.

With the barrel finally complete (for gods sake, so many thin parts) it’s time for the elbow grease.  First a sanding with 150 grit to even things out, then bondo on the gaps, 150 grit, bondo, 220 grit and a little love with a file in the tight spots. Then we coat with XTC-3D.  I did a very light coat here because I don’t want to lose a lot of the details that AprilStorm included in the blaster. If you notice, I had to print the barrel with the layer lines short instead of long. This is bad. The entire barrel is super weak and prone to breaking, so I went a little heavy on the XTC along the barrel for extra strength. I also inserted an aluminum rod to hopefully help keep things together.

Now it’s just a matter of paint and weathering and we  have Leia’s battle worn defender blaster.