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By canpara
Supporting Member
#4898203
Those instructions probably have a disclaimer about dry time being dependent on temperature and humidity. Longer cure, the better. Also never hurts to lightly scuff the surface before applying second coat.
Yes, it does. I was thinking about that this morning. Even though I was painting inside a temperature controlled garage, it was pretty humid outside with the rain showers that we have received lately (it's funny to associate humidity with the prairies of Alberta, which are normally very dry). Obviously I made a bad judgment. Oh well. Live and learn.
User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4898291
While I'm working on painting the shell, I also started working on my Freeky Geeky wand. I think I figured out how to put together most of the parts:

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I'm trying to figure out how the pop mechanism works, how to install the hat lights and how to feed all the wires through the wand (especially from the wand tip to the main gun body).

Does someone know if anyone is selling hat light sockets similar to the ones that namebrand used to sell? I would love to find some sockets that will work nicely with the GBFans wand kit lights.
User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4898386
Not much to report right now, other than I placed a few orders for some new wand items that I realized that I was missing or that I wished to replace:
  • 1 x Loom to handle attachment part (Freeky Geeky)
    1 x 5/8" acrylic cylinder for LED strobe light (Freeky Geeky)
    2 x Flashbulbs (bishopdonmiguel)
    2 x Hat light sockets (GBFans)
    2 x Orange hat light lenses (GBFans)
    2 x White hat light lenses (GBFans)
I am crossing my fingers that I will receive these items before Halloween!

Installing a grip to the front wand handle

Over the weekend, I managed to install the grip handle on the front tube of my wand. The grips that I purchased from Nickatron Props fit perfectly, even though they were very tight. So tight, in fact, that I probably did not need to secure the front grip with a bolt or anything of the sort. It probably could stay on the metal handle on its own.

Nonetheless, I decided to secure the grip to the handle by passing the black socket head cap bolt (the one that allows you to do a quarter-turn of the handle while keeping the handle secured to the wand) completely through the grip. I am referring to the following socket head bolt:

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I used a drill press to drill a 3/16" hole through the grip, then I used a 5/16" bit to countersink the cap head.

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Here is a picture with the grip secured and the handle rotating properly:

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Freeky Geeky pop-mechanism instructions

Rather than splitting my head trying to figure out how the pop-mech works, I found Freeky Geeky's instructions buried on his web site. They were very helpful. Here is the link to the instructions: http://www.freekygeeky.net/Ghostbusters ... allv2.html
User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4898532
Lesson learned: I probably moved too fast when I installed the grip on the front wand handle. Judging from everyone else's builds, I should not have drilled a hole through the grip for the black socket head cap screw. Do you think this is a big deal? I am okay with this pack not being 100% screen accurate, but I am kicking myself over this mistake. The good news is that this is easy to fix, either with Bondo or by ordering new grips.

I have another question: is it possible to remove the red, yellow and black wires of the ear push button and light (of the GBFans wand lights kit) from their white socket (the one that plugs into the circuit board)? Forgive me if I do not know the proper terminology. I saw the picture below from GohstTarp's build, but when I looked at my own wires, I was not sure how to accomplish this.

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Removing the wires from the white socket would be a clean and effective way to pass the wires through a hole that leads to the gun box.

Thanks in advance for the help!
User avatar
By bishopdonmiguel
Supporting Member
#4898538
You can remove the pins from the plug. There is a metal tab that acts as a retention spring. Push that down with a small flat screwdriver and you should be able to easily pull the pin. You may need to slightly bend the metal tab back up for it to properly link when you plug it back in.
User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4898539
You can remove the pins from the plug. There is a metal tab that acts as a retention spring. Push that down with a small flat screwdriver and you should be able to easily pull the pin. You may need to slightly bend the metal tab back up for it to properly link when you plug it back in.
That is so handy. Thanks again, Bishop. Ghostbuster of the year, right there!
User avatar
By Naptime
#4898611
Guess who I bumped into at the Edmonton Expo this evening?

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Ernie Hudson is there too!
Looking sharp, you two! Wish I could've made the trip out there with Jay!
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User avatar
By PssdffJay
#4898747
Great work! I had some catching up to do on the build thread. Bummer about the paint issues. Nice to finally meet you in person!
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User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4898758
Great work! I had some catching up to do on the build thread. Bummer about the paint issues. Nice to finally meet you in person!
Same to you! Good luck finishing the wand. I'm really looking forward to seeing how it turns out!

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Wow, what a great weekend. I still cannot believe we escorted Ernie Hudson on stage. Super cool. Image
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By canpara
Supporting Member
#4898928
Cutting the glass flashbulbs

I adopted Julz’s and GohstTarp’s method of cutting the end of the flashbulb and removing the magnesium from the interior. The flashbulb, of course, will cover the LED strobe light that will be placed on the tip of the wand tube (under the trigger tip).

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Firstly, I wrapped the bulb with a few layers of electrical tape, whereby the edge of the tape indicates the cut line on the flashbulb, like so:

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The electrical tape really helped me insert the bulb into my drill opening. I had to add and remove layers of tape to be able to push the bulb firmly into my drill.

Next, I placed a Dremel 545 diamond wheel onto the appropriate 402 mandrel. I tightened a table vice to hold the mandrel. The idea is to use the diamond wheel to cut the bulb by rotating the bulb onto wheel’s edge.

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I proceeded very slowly. I did not want this thing to blow up in my face. After many revolutions, the end finally fell off the bulb. With my fingers, I pulled out the magnesium « wool ».

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I was expecting to hear the « pop » described by Julz and GohstTarp, but I did not. Also, the end just kind of fell off for me, rather than being projected somewhere.

In the end, I removed the ends of two flashbulbs (one blue and one clear). The blue one was meant for practice, but I could probably still use it if I choose to do so.

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In sum, I need to clean up the flashbulbs, but they look usable to me!
Last edited by canpara on September 29th, 2017, 3:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4898945
Loving this build, will help me out a lot with some ideas I was considering for mine. Thank you for posting this.
I appreciate the sentiments! Like you, I was inspired by a number of ideas from other builds in this forum. Make sure you check out their build threads too!
User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4899003
Finishing the paint on the shell

This has been an exercise in tedium and disappointment so far, but this time, I hope I have it right.

Over the last few weeks, I stripped and sanded the sections of the shell that had the newest/latest “paint wrinkles.” As per the custom, I covered the shell with a plastic bag and I carefully cut the bag over the areas of the shell that I wanted to expose. I taped the bag to the shell with masking tape (green painter’s tape). I also carefully placed masking tape in any other spots that were not covered by the bag.

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When the weather was sunny, dry and warm, I spray painted a couple of coats of grey primer on the exposed sections.

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This time, I waited two days for the primer to fully cure/dry (twice the amount of time specified on the can’s instructions). Then I put on a coat of satin black spray paint.

Waiting a couple of days again for the black paint to dry, I removed all of the masking tape and the plastic bag from the shell.

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I sanded the whole shell with an 800 grit sanding pad, then washed the shell.

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I let the shell dry for nearly a day in the garage. Then I painted the whole shell with a coat of satin black. The pictures below were taken a couple of hours after the application of the paint.

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So far, no sign of wrinkles!

I am not touching this shell for the next couple of days. Hopefully the paint turns out well this time!
User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4899107
The painting saga continues

Generally, I thought the last coat of paint turned out pretty good...

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... Except you might have noticed these spots:

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Gross.

These little spots look like little surface bubbles that somehow became a permanent fixture on my shell. The last picture clearly shows a dripping gloop of paint (I have already complained about the nozzles on these Rust-o-Leum spray cans).

I am thinking of lightly spot-sanding these bubbles to see if they’ll go away without having to repaint the whole shell again. Before I do this, though, I thought I would check with you fellas for advice.

At least there are no paint wrinkles this time.

Building Spongeface’s Bar graph bezel

Now to report some much needed good news.

It was time to build Spongeface’s reputed bezel for the bar graph light. Many people have expressed (on their build threads) some difficulty in putting it together, especially when applying the decal on the plexiglass. Luckily, this turned out pretty well for me.

Spongeface’s instructions offer two options for the window tint. The first option is by far the simplest and easiest, whereby one simply cuts the window tint to the correct dimensions. The second option involves the application of the window tint to the back of the lenticular material. Spongeface states that the aesthetic differences may be hard to spot, but the second option makes the background look slightly darker. For that reason, I chose the latter option even if it was riskier and more difficult.

For your reference, here is a link to Spongeface's instructions: https://files.secureserver.net/0siHEZQUqdsJGm

Here is a picture of the lenticular material (with the bonded window tint) sitting in the black 3D-printed bezel box on the left. On the right, I applied the decal to the plexiglass and I was waiting for the decal to dry. As you can see, I had not trimmed the decal yet.

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Next, I used a fine detail paint brush to apply a protective coating of Microscale Industries liquid decal film. I let it dry overnight, then trimmed the decal with an x-acto knife.

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I used a toothpick to apply a tiny bit of Lepage Ultra Gel super glue in each corner of the box (overtop the lenticular piece). Then I placed the plexiglass into the bezel box with the decal side touching the ridges of the lenticular material.

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In the upper right corner, one will notice that I accidentally applied too much super glue (even though I was careful to apply the glue sparingly). It’s a detail that I will have to live with. Luckily, it is not too noticeable. Once I snapped the bezel to the bar graph light, the glue did not affect the bar graph light.

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User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4899401
Spot painting

To fix the three spots on the shell where bubbles appeared on the last coat of paint, I did the following:
  • I surrounded the areas with masking tape.
  • I lightly sanded the bubbles with 600 grit sandpaper, followed by 800 grit sandpaper.
  • I washed the sanded areas.
  • I placed a garbage bag over the shell and cut the bag in the areas that I wanted to expose (the sanded areas) and secured the bag to the shell with masking tape.
  • I sprayed a light coat of satin black paint on the exposed areas.
.

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I let the paint dry for a couple of days in the heated garage. The results were not perfect, but they look much better than if I chose not to do anything.

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At this point, I decided that the paint on the shell looked good enough for me. In the grand scheme, these imperfections are barely noticeable anyhow.

Mounting the shell components

I have waited a very long time to be able to use that subtitle!

I will let the pictures speak for themselves:

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Obviously, I need to mount all the piping/tubing, the ribbon cable and the labels. Other than that, does everything look correct?

Oh, I almost forgot. Happy Canadian thanksgiving!
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By canpara
Supporting Member
#4899705
I have a cheap-o Ryobi bandsaw with a fine blade that cut right through the pucks. Virtually no smoke. Might help someone in the future.
That’s good to know! Hell, I might just have to retouch my pucks with one. Thanks for sharing!
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By canpara
Supporting Member
#4899851
Finalizing the vacuum line

In order to shape/straighten the loom that is inserted into the hole that I had previously cut with my Dremel (in the crank generator portion of the shell), I still needed to mount the dowel with Bondo. In order to do so, I cut a piece of loom about two inches long, placed the dowel inside it, then inserted the two into the hole in the shell. This allowed me to correctly position the dowel inside the shell without the force or resistance that would come from a longer piece of loom (since the longer loom needs to bend outside the hole, it can apply a force on the dowel). This, in turn, made it much easier to apply the Bondo.

My apologies for forgetting to take a picture of the dowel with the shorter loom from the outside of the shell, but here it is from the inside:

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The dowel is now solidly attached to the shell with Bondo all around it. It is now firmly stuck to the shell. I really like the way the longer loom (the one I measured to use on the shell) bends now when it exits the crank generator. It is much straighter and cleaner.

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Yes, I know there are labels in that picture, and looking back at it, I believe I stuck the label a little bit too high on the crank generator (I am willing to live with that). More on the other labels in a bit!

Installing the Nycoil tubing and placing the metallic and vinyl labels

Since I planned GB1-style pack, I really based a lot of my decisions on the following two GB1 reference pictures (thanks PssdffJay). Unfortunately, most of our reference pictures are from GB2, so for decisions that required other perspectives (such as side views), I chose to extrapolate, look at other GB1 build threads and ask questions to other GBFans builders.

GB1 reference picture 1:

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GB1 reference picture 2:

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Installing the tubing and placing the labels were pretty straight forward, so I will try to show pictures of where I placed them rather than blabbering too much.

Please note that I decided not to use the labels that Benofkent Props included in his kit. Rather, I am using Joe Luna's metal labels, the GBFans vinyl labels and the GBFans dry rub labels. As a side note, I tried to update my parts list on the first post of this thread, but I no longer have those editing privileges. I will need to ask a moderator for the proper permissions.

Now let’s start with the Ion Arm.

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For the time being, the tubing and loom are only attached by compression, so I did not apply any glue for the time being. I found the yellow tubing to be difficult to pull over the Dale resistor contact. I pondered whether or not I should trim the contact to help pull the tube over it without stretching (as bishopdonmiguel had done). In the end, I did not trim the contact and I let the tube stretch a bit.

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In the picture above, you will notice that I still need to work on the blue Ion Arm tubing. The Legris elbow on the end cap is not properly positioned, so I might need to use some glue or something to achieve the correct placement. I will also need to glue the tubing and the loom onto the long Dale resistor.

As you can see, Joe Luna’s metal labels are simply stunning. I think they really add to the realism and authenticity that I was looking for in my pack.

As for the loom that covers the ends of the Nycoil tubing, I had a hard time figuring out what the proper length should be. Bishopdonmiguel specified that they should be 30 millimetres in length, while PssdffJay brilliantly suggested counting each “rib” of the loom from the reference pictures. My counts revealed this to be 11 “ribs,” which, when all was said and done, measured 30 millimetres. Great advice from two experienced pack builders!

Here is a picture of the Nycoil tubing and loom on the injectors, with a GBFans vinyl danger label:

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Even though the tubes are very solid on their own, I used some zip ties to make sure they will not come out of the injector block. I plan to do the same thing with the thin red Nycoil tubing that enters the Legris straights.

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I had an unexpected issue with the loom that covers the blue tube that enters the PPD. When I drilled the hole in the PPD, I forgot to countersink the hole to account for the diameter of the loom! Luckily, I had access to a drill press and I enlarged the mouth of the hole to a diameter of 3/8” using a step bit (the closest but size I had to the outer diameter of the loom). This worked perfectly.

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Here is a side view picture with the Legris elbows, the Legris straights, the Nycoil tubing, loom, metal HGA label, vinyl PPD label and yellow label.

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Hijacker made the grey elbows for me using the same SMC elbows that are offered in the GBFans store. I must say, they look great! As for the Nycoil tube that goes from the filler plug to the HGA, I chose the red of the hero packs rather than the blue of the semi-hero packs (even though you can’t really see it). I consider my pack to be very close to a hero pack, despite using a few resin components (even though I originally planned for a semi-hero build). For this reason, I will borrow Bishops term “hero-esque.”

Although the GB2 Stantz and Spengler packs have a small red danger sticker next to the Cyclotron elbow in the reference pictures, I did not know if that sticker was on the GB1 packs.

Spengler pack reference picture:

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I talked to PssdffJay and he decided to put one on his pack, so I decided to do the same. At least there will be some degree of consistency between our packs next time we are suited up at an event.

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From the picture above, one can notice that I did not place the silver/grey danger label or the red schematic diagram label that are meant for the N-Filter. This is because I am waiting for my dry rub schematic label to arrive in the mail.

Here is an overhead view of my pack shell so far with the metal label on the right side of the bumper:

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Other notes

Originally, I planned to use clear frosted lenses on my shell. From the pictures above, you may have noticed that I substituted them with clear transparent ones. For the record, the new clear lenses are cut to the same dimensions (33 mm or 1 5/16" in diameter and 5 mm or 3/16" thick) than the frosted ones that I prepared about a year ago. All of the lenses (including the blue powercell lens) are held by Lepage Super Glue Ultra Gel, which I applied to the shell surface using a tooth pick.

Unless someone can indicate otherwise, I believe the only missing piece is the ribbon cable. Unfortunately, I found that the ribbon cable that I purchased from Neon Props was not wide enough. The edges of the cable fit between the socket head cap screws of my GBFans ribbon cable clamp. Therefore, I purchased a new one from Fincher Technologies, which measures a more appropriate 78 millimetres (it looks like 76 mm in the picture below). I am waiting for the cable to arrive in the mail as well.

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If anyone notices that something is off, awkward or flat-out missing, please let me know. There is still time to make changes or corrections. I am always looking for feedback!
Last edited by canpara on October 18th, 2017, 11:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4899856
Looking great! Have you seen the other photos from that collection of the GB1 Spengler Pack? I wasn't sure if you only had those 2 photos or not. There's some side views of it!

http://marshall-arts.net/ProtonPacks/references.html
No, I had not seen all of these pictures! These pictures validate my decision to place red danger labels 1) near the Legris elbow on the cyclotron as well as 2) on the injector block! Thanks so much!
User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4900008
Enlarging holes for the bar graph and the toggle switches on the wand

My Freeky Geeky wand had pre-drilled holes, but the majority of the holes were drilled to dimensions that were smaller than I need for my wand lights electronics.

Beginning with the bar graph, I needed to enlarge the width of the hole to fit Spongeface’s bar graph bezel. I traced the width of the bezel onto the gun box with a sharpie, then I used a file to enlarge the hole.

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This took a little bit of time, but I am glad that I took my time and filed it by hand rather than use a power tool such as a Dremel. The bar graph bezel fit very well.

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Using my drill and a 3/16” drill bit, I enlarged the holes in the gun box for the power up/down toggle switch and the vent light toggle switch, as well as the song toggle switch on the trigger box.

I used a 17/64” drill bit to enlarge the hole for the black fire push button switch on the trigger box.

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I was surprised that the hole for the red push button switch for the ear connection was already drilled at precisely the correct size.

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In the picture above, you can see a small acrylic cylinder within the clear tube (underneath the trigger trip) that will hold the Spongeface’s LED strobe light as well as the flashbulb that I cut a few weeks ago. It is held within the larger acrylic wand tube with a tiny set screw. More on that later.

I would like to proceed with enlarging the holes for the hat lights and acrolytic lights, but I am still waiting for the sockets and covers to arrive by mail. Time is ticking before Halloween, so I hope I will receive them this coming week (I check my parcel tracking daily, but you never know when packages have to clear customs). Part of it is because I do not understand yet how others have installed these lights in their wands and how the lights (and covers) are held in place. I have looked at a number of threads, but it is not clicking in my head... This is likely because I do not have the parts to look at in person. I am always open to ideas, suggestions and comments!
User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4900037
Drilling the wand Legris straights

I drilled a 3/32” hole in both Legris straights in order to feed the wire of the LED light that will be located inside the flashbulb of the clear wand tube (underneath the trigger tip).

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After drilling the hole square to the Legris straight, I drilled once more at an angle in order to direct the wire to the exit hole.

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Re-mounting the front want grip

Remember when I made a mistake by passing the black socket head cap screw through the wand grip in order to secure it to the rotating wand tube? I realized that I made a mistake and that the grip is normally secured by two bolts (one on either end of the grip).

It turns out that the Freeky Geeky wand already has those holes drilled and tapped, so I bought two 6/32” socket head cap screws (one 3/4” and the other 1” in length) to do it the proper way.

On my wand, the grip curves away from the ear rather dramatically. When I look at other builders who used Nick-a-Tron grips, the resin tends to be flush with the ear. Has anyone else experienced this?

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This became an issue when placing the mounting socket head cap screw through the ear and into the grip. Firstly, you can see a good portion of the screw once it leaves the ear and enters the grip. Secondly, the screw enters the extremity of the grip, which seems useless to me.

I am not sure whether or not to 1) keep the bolt (and have it barely enter the grip) or 2) remove the bolt entirely. I am l leaning towards the latter, since it is neither practical or elegant. If I decide to keep the bolt, I will definitely shorten it so that the head can fully enter the countersink without having the bolt enter the grip any further.

The other side (the one closest to the gun body) is much better. It definitely holds the grip in place on its own.

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In the picture above, one can notice that I somehow chipped the end of the grip. I have no idea how this happened and I could not find the other piece in order to try and fix it. This is another thing that I will have to try and live with.

Fixing the unwanted hole in the front wand grip

While it is necessary to have a hole on the underside of the wand grip to accommodate the socket head cap screw on the aluminum wand tube, I no longer need the hole to go straight through. As with most of my mistakes, I decided to fix it with Bondo.

Firstly, I firmly secured the wand grip onto the wand tube with mounting cap screws in place on each end. Secondly, I cut a round piece of plastic from the cover of a cream cheese container and placed it inside the unwanted hole to cover the cap screw. The idea is to prevent any Bondo from going any lower, thus protecting the cap screw.

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I applied the Bondo with a golf tee (of all things) and let it sit to dry. Tomorrow, I will sand it for a finish that is level and smooth with the resin.

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Routing the wires of the flashbulb LED light, the ear red push button switch and the ear hat light through the front wand grip

Like many before me, I used a Dremel to rout a “canal” in the front wand grip to hide the wires that travel from the ear to the gun body.

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I plan to fit the wires in heat shrink before the final wand assembly.

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Here is a picture with the wire going through the side “canal” (nearest to the gun body):

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Now the side nearest the ear:

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User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4900106
Mounting the back wand grip

I started by flipping around the wand upside m-down. I used a set square and a ruler to find the middle of the cylinder. Then I traced a centre line from one end to the other. I placed the grip on the cylinder and found that there was a half inch of space on either end of the cylinder (specifically 1) from the trigger box to the front end of the grip and 2) from the very back tip of the cylinder to the back end of the grip). I marked the ends of the grip perpendicularly to the centre line. If you look closely, I also marked the location of the hole I will need to drill for the Freeky Geeky loom attachment part.

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I am aware that the screen-used wands used pop rivets to attach the resin grip to the back wand handle cylinder, but I decided to use 6-32 socket head cap screws instead. Putting the wand aside, I took the grip and I marked with a pencil where I wanted to place the two cap screws through the grip. Securing the grip in a vice, I used a press drill and a 7/64” drill bit to drill the first hole through the grip.

Once the hole was drilled, I placed the grip on the handle cylinder and aligned it with my pencil markings. Looking through the hole that I had just drilled through the grip, I found the centre line that I traced on the cylinder. Using the drill press, I used the hole in the grip as a guide to drill the hole in the cylinder with the same 7/64” drill bit. I removed the grip, then tapped the hole in the cylinder with a 6-32 tap. Note that I did not tap the grip.

Now that the hole was tapped, I enlarged the hole in the grip using a 9/64” drill bit. I put the grip back on the handle and tightened the two together with the socket head cap screw.

Drilling the second hole was simpler than drilling the first hole. With the grip properly secured to the handle cylinder with the first cap screw, I placed them in the vice. I aligned the 7/64” drill bit to where I wanted to drill the hole (using the centre line that I traced in pencil as a reference), then drilled through both the grip and the cylinder.

Once I removed the grip from the cylinder, I tapped the hole in the cylinder and I enlarged the hole in the grip. Then I countersunk the caps of the screws with a 7/32”. Here is the result:

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Installing Freeky Geeky’s loom attachment

After I mounted the grip, I thought it would be a convenient time to install Freeky Geeky’s loom attachment.

Firstly, I used my largest drill bit and a file to enlarge the hole in the loom attachment part so that I could pass the black connector of the ribbon cable through it. Then I fit the loom into the attachment part until it the loom hit the wall. I then pushed a pilot hole punch through the pre-drilled (and tapped) hole of the loom attachment in order to punch an equivalent hole through the loom. The hole that I punched in the loom was sufficient to accept the provided 6-32 set screw.

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On the wand handle cylinder, I drilled a hole with a 9/64” drill bit on the centre line where I had made my pencil mark.

The picture below has the loom attachment properly secured in the back wand handle.

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User avatar
By canpara
Supporting Member
#4900114
Drilling a hole from the instrument bar to the gun box

The Freeky Geeky wand came with pre-drilled holes for the bolts that hold the trigger box/instrument bar to the gun box, but it did not have a hole to pass wires through the former and into the later. However, the gun box did have such a hole.

Since I did not feel like disassembling the trigger box/instrument bar from the gun box, I took a quicker and less calculated approach to drilling a hole for the wires. Using a sharpie, I marked the spot inside the instrument bar where I thought the pre-drilled hole would be located in the gun box. Using a 3/16” drill bit, I drilled a hole straight through the instrument bar and into the gun box. As luck would have it, the new hole aligned precisely with the existing hole in gun box, while enlarging the latter one in the process.

Here is a view from the inside of the instrument bar:

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Here is a view of the same hole from inside the gun box:

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Cutting nylon mounting spacers for the ovwthrillseekr vent light and wand lights bar graph

I am planning to mount my ovwthrillseekr vent light and my bar graph inside my gun box the way that GohstTarp has done on his build. He used super glue and epoxy to permanently affix nylon spacers inside the gun box in order to be able to mount box circuit boards with nylon screws.

I was able to easily hold two spacers on my vent light, but some of the LEDs acted as obstacles to the two other spacers. As you can see on the right side of the picture below, I solved this problem by cutting little slots in the spacers to accommodate the LED lights.

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The next step would be to super glue the spacers in place, remove the screws and the circuit board, then epoxy the spacers in place. I decided not to perform these steps until I have received the hat lights and hat light sockets that will be mounted next to the vent light. Since one hat light and one acrolytic light will be mounted next to the vent light, I want to make sure that they will fit well next to each other before positioning anything permanently.

I intend to affix the bar graph in the same way, but I needed to adjust the height of both nylon spacers so that the bar graph bezel will be well positioned outside the gun box.

Using my Dremel, I had cut both the spacers and the screws to approximately a 1/4” in length.

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Once placed into the wand, I thought the bar graph bezel protruded outside the gun box at an ideal height.

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As with the vent light, I did not permanently affix these spacers inside the gun box yet.

Installing the neck foam to the ALICE frame and placing the red danger sticker on the back of the motherboard

I decided that I needed a change from my wand work, so I installed the neck foam to my ALICE frame.

A while ago, I purchased two tubes of foam pipe insulation from Lowe’s (one fitting pipes that are 1/2” in diameter and the other fitting pipes that are 1” in diameter). The first tube fit very well inside the other.

After fitting the 1/2” foam tube on the ALICE frame, I cut the tube to 10 3/4” in length. I also cut little slits in the tube for the two LC-1 straps and for the frame’s metal spine. This helped me wrap the foam tube cleanly over the top bar of the ALICE frame and achieve a snug fit.

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Then I placed the 1” tube over the 1/2” tube and cut it to the same length. It was not necessary to cut the same slits in the larger tube. I secured the two tubes to the ALICE frame using zip ties. Since my zip ties were not long enough to completely wrap around the tubes on their own, I connected two zip ties for each loop. The little zipping “boxes” protruded on each side of the frame, but luckily, I was able to position them low enough that they would not be visible when wrapped in tape.

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Once I trimmed the zip ties, I cut strips of black gorilla tape and wrapped them around the foam tubes in straight lines. I was hoping to achieve the look of a continuous piece of tape that was wrapped around the foam (like players do on their hockey sticks). Originally, I thought of using the screen-accurate gaffer’s tape. After hearing that gaffer’s tape rubs off onto your uniform, I did what some other builders have done and I resorted to the black gorilla tape. It is glossier, but it still looks great.

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While the motherboard was dismounted from the ALICE frame, I took the opportunity to place the large red danger sticker to the back of my motherboard. I centred the sticker horizontally on the motherboard, while sticking it as low as I could between the socket head cap screws that are keeping my electronics in place.

Unfortunately, I did not take a closeup picture of the sticker when the motherboard was still dismounted from the frame. This is what it looks like with the frame:

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After showing him a picture of the sticker, Pssdffjay asked me why I placed the sticker before accounting for the motherboard foam. Although I had seen motherboard foam on a few builds, I never noticed it in the reference films or when watching the movies. Yet the foam is clearly there and it is an important differentiator between hero and semi-hero packs.

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Now I have to shop for some motherboard foam to get this right. I know I will need to put some pieces to fit the socket head cap screws (or perhaps even hide them, if I’m lucky). However, I’m worried that the sticker is placed too high on the motherboard and that the foam would cover most of it up as well. We will see.

Before I call it a night, I just want to leave this picture with you guys.

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It sure feels good to wear this on my back after all this time.
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