We just tested the dueling lightsabers. Mostly a success.
How to make some great dueling lightsabers for around $2 each.
These pool noodles come from a dollar store. The green one I cut down from four feet to three and kept the extra for end filler. The blue one I cut in half and then cut a little off each of the two foot sections to use as filler.
This 1/2 inch diameter PVC comes from Home Depot. You can get 10 feet of PVC for $2.50. You can make two small and one large or two large and one small with one ten foot section.
For the long lightsabers I want a three foot blade and a nine inch handle. The last three inches of the blade I don't want any PVC in to allow for safety during thrusts. So we want to cut the PVC at 3' 6" and mark it nine inches from one end with a marker. That will leave 2' 9" in the 3' blade and a 9" handle. I used a saw to make these PVC cuts.
For a small lightsaber, we want a 2' blade and a 9" handle. Cut the PVC at 2' 6" and mark it nine inches from one end. That will leave 1' 9" in the 2' blade and a 9" handle.
Sand the ends of the PVC tubes to make them smooth for safety.
Now push the pool noodle down on the PVC. You will have to push and pull to get it to fit. The pool noodles and 1/2" PVC I used fit very snugly. I was prepared to use super glue and/or tape to get the foam to stay, but friction has proven to be enough. I leave the foam an inch back from the black marker line until after I apply the tape.
I take a little bit from the extra piece of foam.
And cut it in half to fill the ends.
Twist it into the foam end. I think I'm going to add super glue to the inside of the foam tube here, to help the filler not fall out during use.
Push it in so that it is flush with the end.
Put the other half of the foam donut into the handle end half way. This will protect from the unlikely event that the user hits him/herself with the end of the handle. Perhaps in a fall.
I think this design may be improved upon by putting a ball on the end. I will play around with this and see if something comes together.
Duct tape the end on first.
Now tape the handle. I made it simple with duct tape. You can make it as thick as you want by adding tape. And as decorative as you want by adding colored tape.
Then I pushed the foam down the last inch to the end of the tape. There is the finished handle.
And here are the three dueling lightsabers that I made from the two pool noodles and one ten foot PVC pipe.
Next post I'll discuss having kids lightsaber duel safely and compare its safety level to other kids sports.