PRESS! (FROM THE AMAZING PARADE, ON NY DAILY NEWS)
For the 2021 Halloween Parade I was Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson’s character) from Star Wars.
Why this costume?
I decided to do Qui-Gon Jinn, since I am a huge Star Wars fan and his character is (SPOILER) unfortunately short-lived, but definitely impactful. When I was a young kid, I would always watch Star Wars Episode 1 with my mom and Qui-Gon was her favorite character. He was a great mentor, and a Jedi career highlight was finding Anakin (for better or worse).
How was it to wear?
Overall, the costume was great to wear, as it was just a super long Star Wars robe. I purchased it from Party City — as making the lightsaber from lathe to hardware and software was a tall task — but still tailored it so that the hems fit me well, the hood wasn’t absurdly long, and so it closed with velcro (thanks Marko!).
What I learned in the process
Make more lightsabers! Getting it perfect is difficult, but definitely a gratifying process. I’m glad with the way mine turned out, especially since I gave it a bit of a twist. In making my saber, I was using Qui-Gonn’s as a template, but in early iterations I added/subtracted various elements. Here are some photos of different handles/finishes.
- The project first started on the Lathe, where I turned a block of wood into a dowel, and then carved the dowel into the handles I currently have via different chisels.
2. After the lathe, I primed the saber and let it dry over night. Then, I drilled various holes through the middle of the saber (from top to bottom), with the final being about 3/8″ thick.
3. From there, I found what finish I wanted on the saber and actually switched from a black gloss to a black “wood stain.”
4. Then, I ran to Canal Plastics with the lightsaber crew (Cathy, Erika and Liam) for frosted polycarbonate tubing and drafting sheets. These were the LED casing and diffusion for the saber.
5. After, I refined the code and fed everything through the handle for it to be soldered, including the button.
6. Lastly, I assembled it and had some fun!
Thank you Becky for the amazing night and guidance!
Circuit Diagram and Code: