Rubies Princess Leia Blaster 01 – Out Of The Box

by | Jan 7, 2017 | Science Fiction Props, Star Wars Props, Workshop Blog | 0 comments

To scratch that “I’ve not bought a gaudy children’s toy in a few weeks” itch, I’ve just taken delivery of my second Rubies Princess Leia blaster. The first one I bought is part way through conversion into the Return of the Jedi version of Leia’s blaster. Let’s just say its been consigned to the “I’ll get around to it one day” pile. Consequently, this blaster is destined for a straightforward fettle and repaint into what will hopefully be a pretty accurate Princess Leia blaster from Star Wars: A New Hope.

Is the Rubies Princess Leia Blaster Dimensionally Accurate?

For those that have not encountered the Rubies toy before (banned from the local toy store perhaps?) there are a few things to know. First of all, it’s pretty obvious that Rubies have built the master for their toy from real Margolin .22LR pistol – just like the folks that worked on the original prop, or at the very least on a resin casting of a real one. As a result, the bulk of the rubies princess Leia blaster is dimensionally accurate. As you can see from the images, the extended barrel and assorted gribblies are also very close to the screen used prop.

The Good the Bad and the Fugly

The Rubies Leia blaster is sized correctly, and pretty much all of the correct details are present. However, that’s not to say that it’s all sunshine and kittens. This is a mass-produced toy, there are a number of issues that need to be corrected to make this worthy of the word “replica” or indeed “prop”.

The most obvious problem is the finish. While white and orange are colours we associate with the Rebel Alliance, they’re a bit passe on a blaster. Furthermore, the seam lines where the two halves of the mould intersected are atrocious and will need extensive filler and sanding to produce an acceptable surface finish. There is one other issue, one that is only of importance if you are going to wave your blaster around making “authentic layzooor noises”. Naturally, as it’s a kids toy, the Rubies Princess Leia Blaster weighs about as much as my wallet – that is to say, the square root of fuck all.

Rubies Leia Blaster Image Gallery

How To Improve the Rubies Leia Blaster

The above can be remedied with simple tools and techniques for very little outlay. Consequently, this is a great project for those in the community that haven’t quite worked out how to hold down a job for more than 6 weeks, or are still paying off the last Graflex they “needed”.

First of all, the weight issue can be cured in a couple of different ways, my favourite of which involves drilling a hole in what would have been the mag well of the Margolin, and slowly pouring in your favourite casting resin. The added benefit of this method is that the blaster will feel (and sound) much more solid. The other method involves splitting the toy in half down the centre seam and filling it with lead flashing. Furthermore, this method will allow for alteration of the centre of balance for the blaster. The finishing issues can of course be solved with filler, sanding and painting – all of which I will cover in a future post.

Finally, I guess if you’ve got this far you don’t already own a Leia blaster and have at least a passing interest in Star Wars. If the above is correct, get over to Amazon (or wherever, I’m not your Dad) and pick up the Rubies Leia blaster before they go out of production. Most of all, they are dirt cheap and make a great basis for an iconic part of the Star Wars universe – there’s really no excuse.

Dogless - Prop Up Shop

Prop Builder, cutting mat enthusiast and part time Douglas Fir.

I’ve been making things since I was old enough to pronounce Lego. Consequently my maker life has been spent constructing, kit-bashing and scratch-building anything and everything that has taken my fancy. After dedicating my time to Wargaming, Model  Armour & Railways, I stumbled across what has now become an obsession – Prop building.