To make the E-11 blaster rifle, I used the templates by Iambubby from the Blaster Builders Club to make the parts out of sheet metal and
various other materials. Overseeing the simple design of the screen used blaster rifle's folding stock, I made several modifications to the
templates to make mine work the same way, instead of being just a static part.
After downloading the templates, all I had to do was to print them out
in the right scale and cut the shapes out, then glue them onto the
sheet metal that I would make all the parts from.
The first parts I wanted to make were the parts for the magazine,
using templates for the short magazine version of the Sterling
submachine guns that were converted into the blaster rifles used in
the Star Wars movies.
To make the magazine as close to the original as possible, I had to
draw several extensions and extra parts onto the templates.
Instead of making a pair of loose scallop patterns that would be glued
in between the panels of the magazine like the templates suggested, I
made extensions for the scallop pattern that could be bent to a 90
degree angle before cutting the pattern into them.
Cutting the scallop pattern into the extensions before bending them
might distort the shapes of the pattern.
I noticed that the stripe grooves on the real Sterling magazines were
positioned differently than the ones on the templates, so I made mine
to match the real ones instead by beating the grooves into the metal
with a flat screwdriver.
After finishing off the stripe grooves, all the magazine parts were bent
to the right shapes, using both a vise and a pair of pliers.
Now that the extensions for the scallop pattern had been bent to the
right shape, I could glue the scallop pattern templates onto them to
cut the pattern out.
After cutting out the scallop pattern, you can see how making these
extensions and extra parts made the magazine look more like the
The part labeled "INSIDE SCALLOPS" was also custom made by me to
make the magazine look more like the original.
With everything beaten, bent, and cut to the right shape, the
templates were removed from the parts that were then roughly
sanded for a better paint adhesion.
After gluing together all the magazine panels, a piece of Styrofoam
was stuffed into the magazine to prevent any morons from squeezing
it apart, and to generally make it more rigid.
A small spring loaded knob holds the end cover in place on the real
Sterling magazines, so this knob was replicated by gluing a small rivet
onto a metal plate that was then glued onto the inside of the end
With the rivet glued into place, no one will ever tell the difference,
except for everyone who just saw how I made this thing.
While the real Sterling magazines would house bullets, the E-11
blaster rifles conveniently shoot more cost efficient laser bolts, so I
decided to glue a few parts onto the top of the magazine to make it
look more like an energy cell of some sort.
The ejector spring was missing all together from the templates, so I
had to make a template for it myself, just to make the magazine look
more screen accurate.
After the spring housing was screwed onto the magazine, the leaf
spring was also cut out of metal after my own template, and a metal
rod was used to secure it in place.
The metal rod was cut down to the right size before its sides were
hammered flat to keep it in place.
And just when I needed a tube the most, a long metal tube with the
exact same width as the Sterling gun body was found in a random
The templates said the tube should end at 18 ¾ inches, so that's
where I cut it.
The two-part template for the gun body was glued onto the metal tube
using regular paper glue that is also easy to clean off the metal parts
with soapy water.
Behold the templated metal gun body, with this tutorial being
published to my website on the monitor behind it.
While most of the heat vents won't even be visible underneath the
T-rails later on, I chose to drill them all out anyway to make the
blaster rifle look more interesting by making the T-rails slightly
narrower than the vents so they would be at least slightly visible.
A small drill bit was used to make smaller, more precise pilot holes.
After using a larger drill bit to further widen the heat vents, the same
drill bit was used to drill open the various other openings on the gun
I learned the hard way that drilling out the heat vents would make the
hole templates curl up over themselves, making it hard to see where
the holes should be, so I had to remove all the paper inside the hole
templates before drilling further.
And most annoyingly, I ran out of larger drill bits and had to manually
grind away the rest of the excess metal with a milling bit.
After two years of grinding and swearing, the heat vents didn't turn
out too bad in the end.
And of course a conical expansion drill bit was found right after I
finished grinding away the excess metal from the heat vents, but still
it was conveniently used on many of the other larger holes.
With most of the excess metal removed from the front of the ejection
port, the rest of the opening could be cut out using a cutting disc on a
About 50 broken cutting discs later, the ejection port had been cut
open, with only a slight amount of trimming needed to make it look
nice and neat.
The templates showed where to make a mounting hole for the grip on
top of the gun body, but not underneath it where the bolt for the grip
would be, so this missing hole was drawn onto the templates to align
with the top hole where the bolt would be inserted and tightened
The hole for the grip bolt was made just as wide as the bolt threads so
the grip wouldn't wobble around.
The cocking handle disassembly hole was also drilled out using
several increasing drill bit sizes.
With the cocking handle disassembly hole all round and neat, the
cocking handle track could be cut open using several more really
fragile cutting disc on a rotary tool.
About 50 broken cutting discs later, the cocking handle track was
finally open with little trimming required.
With the magazine and the gun body mostly done, I could start
building the magazine well that would have to be mounted into two
slots cut into the gun body.
Most of the edges of the magazine well were bent to the right shape
by clamping it into a vise.
After the magazine well had been bent to the right shape, it would still
need a lot of filler to make it look like one piece.
More fragile cutting discs were used to make the two slots that the
magazine well would be mounted into.
The metal tabs that go into these two slots were cut to the same
thickness as the gun body to prevent the bolt assembly from hitting
them later on.
Now that most of the holes and slots had been made on the gun body,
the templates could finally be pealed off to reveal a cool looking silver
blaster rifle gun body that almost made me want to keep the whole
thing silver colored, but that wouldn't be screen accurate anyway.
After sanding the magazine well and gun body, I applied filler around
the joining seams to make them both look like one piece.
Next to be made were the front and rear sights for the gun body that
were cut out of a 2 millimeter thick aluminum plate, using the
The trigger guard was also made at the same time since it was just a
simple straight piece that could be cut from the edge of the plate.
To remove the metal from inside the front sight, I drilled many small
holes around the edge of the opening, then the metal in between the
small holes were simply cut over.
The front sight was manually bent to the right shape to better
replicate the round angles that are on the original Sterling front
The rear sight was of course cut out of the metal plate, then a couple
of screw holes were drilled through it.
After bending the rear sight to the right shape in a vise, the grooves
that are on the original Sterling rear sight were cut into it.
Filler was used to secure the front and rear sights in place and to
make the parts seamless against the gun body.
And just when I needed a barrel for my blaster rifle, a black tube was
found in a random dumpster.
Only a small amount of grinding had to be done to make the back
piece of the tube fit perfectly inside the gun body to center off the
barrel, almost as if the tube was made for it.
After pushing the back piece of the tube down to the ejection port, the
tube was marked off where it should be cut to the right lenth.
The tube was clamped into a vise while I cut it over using a hacksaw,
turning it into a blaster rifle barrel for imaginary laser bolts.
To center off the barrel at the front of the gun body, a round metal
plate was made by tracing around a metal plug that was originally
inside the metal tube that I made the gun body from, making the
round metal plate fit perfectly inside the gun body.
After cutting out the round metal plate, a hole with the same width as
the barrel was made through the center of the plate.
The creation of the blaster rifle