Thursday, May 26, 2016

Destiny Hunter Knife Project

I made a thing! Officially, this is my first foamsmith prop, the Destiny Hunter Knife. I've only played Destiny a handful of times and it never really hooked me, but I wanted a small project to start with and this prop looked really cool. Can you believe this is made from a gym floor mat? It was a huge learning experience where I made a TON of mistakes and probably didn't document as well as I should have because of that. Plus I mainly followed Bill Doran's YouTube video on how to construct this prop (with a few differences), so you can check out his videos for a more in-depth look at creating foam props because he's the expert! But here was my process.

I started by getting the blueprint of the knife from and it's free so anybody can go get it! I traced the pattern onto EVA foam and craft foam, glued them together with Barge, and roughly cut the shape out with a utility knife. I cut the holes with a coping saw. That was one of my first mistakes. It left a pretty jagged edge that I could never clean up that well. I should have used a forstner bit or sharpened PVC pipe as Bill suggested. Next time!

I then sanded down the remaining edges and the knife bevel with a palm sander and a Dremel. Another load of mistakes! The Dremel got a away from me on more than one occasion leaving some gouges in the foam. I just went with it and called it "battle damage." Plus the palm sander left a fine layer of foam dust all over my work area. I need better ventilation... :(

I then superglued some thin craft foam around the handle to simulate leather.

Bill used Plastidip to seal his prop. I decided to try this Rustoleum latex paint. After a few coats, it seems to be working fine.

After that, it's just paint! Silver on the blade, brown on the handle, and the spatter design on the blade.

I also airbrushed the edges of the handle to make it look like worn leather.

A little more weathering, a clear matte coat, and it's done!

Here's a look at the other side which probably has a better paint job, but I made a lot more mistakes on the fabrication of this side. This will be the side against the wall when it's on display. ;)

A closer look at the "leather" strapped handle. I'm really happy with how this turned out.

Highlighting some of the mistakes I made. To make the holes I first tried using a metal pipe from a pull-up bar, but the edge wasn't sharp enough and just left an indent in the foam. I then used the coping saw which left the jagged edge and an improperly lined up hole. I also cut the top of this a little too close because I didn't line up the craft foam on each side properly.

Here is where some of the Dremel work got away from me. Thankfully I covered most of it up with the straps but you can see the surfaces aren't exactly the smoothest.

And the top wasn't cut or sanded that that well either because of the unevenness of the sides. But it was a great learning experience for the next prop I build.

All in all, it was a ton of fun to build despite the mistakes. I knew as long as the project was small enough I wouldn't get too discouraged and follow through. This definitely builds up my confidence for another build. Thanks to Bill Doran for the great instructions!

And I still think it's pretty awesome how you can turn a gym floor mat into this. =D

And here's a link to some more pics!

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