Light Saber Mini - Every Star Wars fan needs one!

by muzz64, published

Light Saber Mini - Every Star Wars fan needs one! by muzz64 Apr 29, 2015
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The Light Saber Mini is a one piece print with moving parts (Handle and two internal sliding parts). The 'light' parts retract completely within the handle then fully extend with a quick flick of your wrist.

Every Star Wars fan (Jedi) will want to keep one of these in their pocket!

Changing the filament at specific points makes it multi-coloured to more accurately represent a Star Wars Light Saber (albeit on a mini pocket size scale) with your choice of 'light' color.

All required support is designed in... just print and clean up as per the instructions and you're ready for action. Take time to read the instructions provided in full to help ensure a great result (Refer Instructions tab)

May the force be with you!

Note: If you like this design check out all my other designs...


On a Replicator 2 this prints really well at Std. 0.20mm resolution with Raft On / No Support / 4 Shells / 60% infill (to make it solid as some areas are quite thin).

To change colours Z-Pause a Replicator 2 at 33mm / 59mm / 77mm to move from eg. red light parts to gray to black then back to gray (as per images). On machines without a Z-Pause facility change at approx. 40% / 72% / 93% of the way through the build. This is assuming the Raft is approx. 1mm thick and the design is not scaled up... do not scale it down as clearances will become too small to free easily.

Refer to the images for designed in support removal. Start by carefully separating the support from the handle then gently cut/break it away from the outer 'light part' if required (It should almost slide off anyway if the printer is printing accurately). You may also need to carefully clean up around the tip a fraction to clear the inner light part so it slides in/out of the outer light part freely. The support removal and clean up should take no more than a few of minutes if your printer is printing well.

TIP: If you have problems freeing the inner part of the 'light' cut/shorten the light area with a craft knife until it becomes free. This cuts away any base layer plastic that may have slightly joined/adhered to the outer part. Cutting away 0.5mm - 1.0mm does not cause any functional problems.

To make the light parts flick in / out very quickly try applying a quick spray of silicone lubricant around the light (moving) parts. Take time to make sure there are no high points/lumps/bumps in the light areas as these can also slow retraction / extension. Any imperfections can usually be cleared easily with a craft knife or fine file / sand paper.

Note: The clearances applied in this design are fine. If the parts do not separate so the light parts slide freely try my Build Plate Stabilizers on Thingiverse for Replicator 2's / 5th Generation Replicators / MakerBot Mini.

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I'm having the same problems as sabe - no support rings even when scaled to 1.10% - Printed on Wanhao i3, 0.4mm nozzle - Sliced using Cura.

Tried the inbuilt (Cura) support also and no cigar (or sabre)...

I've tried scaling up to 2.0x which is massive and filament heavy, it all looks good in Cura (the support shows) but prints weak and gets layer gaps.

Have given up on this one which is a shame.

I've given up.

Sorry to hear you're having problems printing the Mini Light Sabre. This will be a slicing app issue as not all apps deal with fine details/features as well as others. They also don't seem to work well where there are separate parts within the same model (Print-in place models).

Anyway, the support designed is was very fine to help it break away easily but just enough to do the job. I have an updated version that I can email you which has slightly thicker support surfaces. This should do the job okay. If you want it sent please message me your email address. I don't want t post it as it could cause confusion over which file to print... and many people have already printed this successfully with no issues (I must have made 20+ of these on my MakerBot's and they are great every time as per the photos)

The other thing that can help your slicer is rotating the design in the slicing app slightly. Import it as usual then rotate it by say 15 degrees. This will change the tool path and how the slicer sees the design. That may be all you need to do but I'm happy to email the .stl with thickened up support (still thin) if you want.

Dear muzz64,
I have access to a makerbot replicator 2X. Are you considering in doing this light saber in 2-color? or in multiple objects so that we can directly choose 2 colors before printing?

Thank you

My printer won't print the outer support rings. This way it basically doesn't work :( My slicer shows me that there is a space between the outer ring and the handle on top. And when I visualize the gcode, there are no support rings, just the two rings that are supposed to slide in and out. I have eDee/deeGreen from be3d.

Sorry to hear you are having issues slicing this file... it is quite a complex thing that some slicers find a challenge so won't correctly prepare for printing. As you've seen in the images posted this file prints really well when sliced precisely and printed on a well set up machine... I've printed quite a few on my MakerBot's with no issues as have lots of Thingiverse members.

Unfortunately it does come down to the slicing app and also the machine... not all 3D printers and apps are as accurate / precise as others. However, as a suggestion, many people use Slic3r or Cura as free slicing apps that seem to handle things like this reasonably well. My MakerBot app never has issues with even the finest detail... for more detailed / advanced designs you need to move to something with higher capability.

All the best

This is a printer from company where I work, so we have this printer in my workplace for free use :) And it comes with it's own app for slicing and sending it to the printer via network. (Ever heard of SafeQ?) So, I guess, no lightsaber for me :(

Unfortunately I've never heard of SafeQ... the bottom line is the main stream printers and apps work really well these days but there are still plenty out there that are greatly lacking in many ways. It sounds like the set up you have access to falls into that category.

However, the one work around suggestion I have is to do the following...

(1) Uniformly scale the file up in the slicing app by say 10%. This will make it slightly bigger so potentially easier for the slicing app to identify the detail in the structures. It will also change the tool path because it forces the slicing app to look at the file differently. In addition, try rotating the file on the slicing apps virtual build plate by 10 - 15 degrees. Again this is all about trying to get the slicing app to recognise the detail within the file. Changing its orientation may help in addition to the above...

Hopefully this helps get it working for you... so 'May the Force be with You"

The built in supports are too thin for my .4mm nozzle. I am pretty sure that the support walls are .2mm. Is there a way you can upload an updated model with updated support? I would love to print this (I am currently trying to) but I do not think it will turn out as good without the build in supports or with supports added by my slicer. Also, you say that you add a raft in the description, but in the pictures, it looks like you have a brim enabled (not a raft). Can you please clarify which one designed this to be used with?

This prints really well on my MakerBots with 0.4mm nozzles so that shouldn't be an issue. By designing in the support at 0.2mm your machine should just print it as finely as it can it's also printed really well with no issues for lots of people.

The only issues some people run into with designed in support like this is the slicing app not recognizing it correctly so it either doesn't build it in or makes it part of the solid structure. If you are having issues I have to think it's more likely to be your slicing app

The simple solution is often to scale it up uniformly by a few percent. Rotating it a few degrees in your slicing app can also help as that will change the tool path.

With regards to the raft it is a standard MakerBot raft that builds out 4mm from the print. This increases the footprint of the print which helps stabilize this as it is so tall and thin.

I hope this helps

I'm printing one now as I type this, giving it as a gift to my Star Wars fan nephew. Thank you for sharing this! I'm new at 3D printing so I gotta ask...any chance you can turn this into a key chain maybe? Im not exactly sure how to add the "loop" where I can attach the key ring. Thanks again, this is awesome!

Printed well this is a really cool print so hopefully it works out well for you... it can be challenging for some machines and slicing applications. If you current print comes out okay let me know and I'll look at the key fob addition

It came out really, really well with no problems on taking out the built in support, as well as the outer "light" part. The inner "light" part wouldnt budge though but that's ok. Im ok with just that one light part coming out since it seems long enough for the purpose. Just need to figure out how to round out the tip so it wont be flat haha! I printed on a single extruder da vinci printer so im attempting to paint some parts right now. Will post some pics tomorrow.

Chances are you can free the centre smaller diameter part. Just trim it back a fraction with a craft knife then push up the very centre. If the force is with you it will free up... try it.

Message me your email address and I'll send the key fob version.

It should be able to be scaled up uniformly in your slicing application. At a guess 150% would be about limit as clearances Wil become too great beyond that. Any bigger would mean reworking design. It was intended as a small pocket size print to demonstrate what's readily possible with 3D printing. ... hope this helps.

can u make it bigger?