This project started out as something to get my brother off his computer games. He was very obsessed with the game, Team Fortress 2, and would spend hours and hours playing. To get him back to the "real world", I decided to involve him in this project. I asked him about his favorite in-game weapon and got the answer, "Detonator".
We researched about this in-game weapon together, googled images of this weapons, snapped shot different angles of it, checked out how it worked in game and even slowed video recordings of it down to a frame at a time, observing every little detail.
Side by side comparison of in-game design and the crafted prop replica.
After figuring how things should move from all the videos and in-game experiences, I had to brainstorm and research on the different mechanisms I can apply to get the parts to move the way I want. A few templates were drafted out on my computer and a few trials were done.
Finally, a working sample of the mechanism was made. Now, I have to proceed onto figuring out what kind of materials I can use and if there are cheaper alternatives. Majority of the materials used for the final piece are either recycled materials or really cheap wood and foam.
When it came to building the prop, I made a simple list to remind myself the steps I need to take so that I don't miss out so much detail. It also makes the working process a little easier. I actually got my brother involved by getting him to try his hands on some of the tools. This way, he will be more invested in developing the prop.
Designed to have a movable hinge with functioning "trigger" and "hammer".
After making a digital template using many online and in-game references, the design was traced onto a piece of wood. It was then cut with a scroll saw and sanded down to shape.
Majority of the time spent on this project was actually on the study of how the mechanism of the in-game weapon works. I wanted to challenge myself by making a working/movable piece. A lot of effort was spent on making the "hammer" and "trigger" work just like it would in game, such that it would allow a "bullet" to be shot.
Here in the picture above, you can see that there is an aluminum "frame". There were some scrap aluminum lying around in the house, I have decided to incorporate it into the design so that the final piece would be sturdier and weighted.
PVC pipes and an old aluminum water bottle were used to make the "barrel". Magnets were installed between the barrel and the handle to work as the locking mechanism.
After cutting all the pieces to shape, it is time for assembly. The photo on the right above shows a final check done against a scaled print out reference of the in-game weapon.
After loads of sanding, filling and priming, I have decided to go with a matte black look. The parts, as shown in the above picture, were all hit with a couple layers of matte black Krylon plastic fusion, which was probably the most expensive part of the build.
Final assembly was done and brass screws were used to secure the hinge. Other foam and smaller detailed pieces were also glued and attached on. The prop is finally complete.
My brother has been having fun with this prop, constantly running around the house with it, imagining himself as a character from his favorite game.
#detonator #Tf2 #Teamfortress2 #pyro #DIY #weapon #prop #replica
Reference pictures and models
In-game mechanism and movement
Mechanism inspirations and studies