Jedi 101: Build Your Own Lightsaber at Disneyland’s Star Trader

| May 21, 2011

Ah, young Padawan – the Force is strong with you.  You will need the weapon of a Jedi Knight to save the Rebel Army.

So where do all the young Jedi-wannabes go for their weapon of choice?  LightsaberMart?  No, silly – they closed lightyears ago.  They head to the newly reopened Star Trader shop, next door to Star Tours: The Adventures Continue in Disneyland‘s Tomorrowland!    Of course, if you are in Walt Disney World, you can stop at Once Upon a Toy in Downtown Disney, Tatooine Traders in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Mickey’s Star Traders in the Magic Kingdom.

Now, follow along as my young padawan girls show you what it takes to craft your very own lightsaber – the one your dreams will use to defeat the Empire!

As you exit Star Tours: The Adventures Continue, the specially designed kiosk is very hard to miss.   Lenticular images of lightsaber masters, Darth Vader and Darth Maul, surround an exhibit of the familiar blue and red (good vs. evil) crossed lightsabers.   Added above them, are videos of famous Star Wars lightsaber battles.  Below this “exhibit”, you will find pricing and helpful building instructions, and off to the side, a courteous Tomorrowland Cast Member to assist you!

To begin, you can build your choice of Luke Skywalker’s traditional single saber at $21.95 (plus the Empire’s applicable taxes), or Darth Maul’s  preferred double saber.  Either choice will make your padawan happy….

Let’s get started.  Step 1: Choose your emitter.

A little internet research tells me that the emitter harnesses the plasma to make the blade.  Interesting what you can learn through Google…   There are 5 styles, so personal preference is key.

My girls each picked a different style.

Step 2: Choose your blade.

There are several colors to choose from – all with “historical” basis in the Star Wars movies, video games, and books.  More geek-based internet research tells me that red is the traditional color for the Dark Lords and Sith.  Luke Skywalker had a green one, because it apparently wasn’t from a true crystal, but was synthetic in nature.  Many Jedis apparently had blue plasma, because of the planet that mined the crystals.   Purple crystals were apparently used until the Jedi were wiped out by Emperor Palpatine.

Yeah.  I turned on my inner-geek for this one.

Frankly, my girls thought the purple ones were just plain cool.  That’s what they picked….

Step 3: Add your hilt.

According to the “history” books, the hilt contains the crystal (that is your power source) and various other bits of technology that are not of our planet’s century.   I am totally the wrong person to explain this to you, so if you really, really want to know more about this – click here….

In other words,  ”No mom – they don’t use “batteries” !!!!”  (You really should buy them anyway – the first ones come in the hilt…)

Now that you have all of those components, you need to start to assemble.

The next steps to customization involve more parts.

Step 4: Add a Switch.

Everyone needs that….   I mean, how else is a Jedi supposed to quickly get that blade up and running, while being oppressed by the Empire….

Step 5: Customize with Rings.

I can only figure that these are supposed to represent the different lenses used to focus the plasma… per Jedi technology, of course.    That and they are somewhat decorative.

Step 6: Add a Hilt Sleeve.

Ooh- I know this one – it’s an insulator to keep your hands from being burned by plasma.  See, I’ll be a Jedi in no time….

Step 7:  Choose either a Cap or an Adapter.

Adapters are for making double-bladed sabers.  Supposedly that means your young padawan’s inner Sith is showing…

Caps are the final end to the saber.  Per Jedi technology, they hold the power source, let you grip it in alternative ways, or simply hook it on to your belt.  Huh.   The one with the handle is called a guard shoto.  Yep.  Really.  Look it up here…

Once you’ve got all of your parts, now it’s time to put them all together.  According to those who author extensive trivia bits, this could take a Jedi anywhere from very little time to many, many months – depending on the ease of access to complicated parts.  Kind of like when your husband tells you he’ll get around to installing your new kitchen cabinets himself….

This process took us about 5 minutes total.  Go figure.  My girls were extremely decisive on what they wanted to kick some Empire tushies with.  We had a fabulous time and the Cast Member really enjoyed helping them.  Now once they stop bonking each other on the head with them, I think they will truly be off to use the Force for good!

Photos by N. Johnson.

Thanks to Wookieepedia for the education!

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Category: Disney World, Disneyland

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Disneyland Podcaster for the DIS Unplugged
  • crichardsen

    OMG! Totally have to do that! My husband will be first in line!

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  • Granandshan

    Thanks so much. My son is so excited about being a student at the Training Academy on our next visit and I just cranked it up a notch by showing him your blog and explaining he can build his own lightsaber. (Plus, I was curious about price and what was involved.)

  • Bella Baca-Geary

    Do the lightsabers make a noise and light up ?

  • DMD

    Yes they do. The Hilt (step 3) is basically an LED Flashlight with a soundboard and switch. Turn it on and the blade lights up and it makes the Activation noise and starts the idle hum. Turn it off and it makes the deactivation noise. When on, lightly tapping the side of the blade (Dueling, but not too hard) makes either the blade Swish or Clash sound. It is a toy, so you can’t hit the blades too hard, and it doesn’t have the motion detectors of the expensive replicas, so it will not change sounds as you swing it around.

  • Jennifer Michelle Touchton

    Is there any place to do this outside of Disney property? Maybe at Disney stores?

  • Alan Danielson

    Great eBook about how to build your own prop-quality light
    saber –

  • CGags1789

    There are some Disney Stores in other states. Do you think they will get a make your own lightsaber station?

  • andrew

    How much did these cost because family from guatemala came and they saw this and want to buy it please respond before we go thanks

  • L. West

    Anyone notice the colored “power crystals” in the hilt below the battery compartment. I pulled them out while the lightsaber was on and it started making different noises as if it was losing energy or something.

  • InsaneManatee

    I don’t recommend the end piece with the handle. I got that piece because it looked kinda cool but has gotten in the way during all “fights” :(

  • bkarasek

    Current sabers do! I just got one today at Disneyland’s Star Traders and it does just that.

  • bkarasek

    Almost certainly not. They surely see this as a motivator to drive people into the park.

  • TheFishmonger

    Just noticed those tonight. Very cool!

  • Mauricio Sandoval

    how I can change the batteries for my ligthsaber? somebody knows?

  • Mike Bloem

    Just de assemble it change batteries and assemble it again

  • Alex Everett-last

    Lol I have the same thing myself, but with one of each part and only 1 clear blade. These were kits you could buy ages ago, that were compatible with each other. Someone mentioned you could remove the crystal and it made different sounds? That’s because there are 3, red green and blue. All make it light up with their respective colours, and make different sounds. You can combine them too, so if you want a purple blade you’d put the red and blue crystals in.

  • Julie Gamache

    Any idea how to contact the store? We did this but now we need replacement blades since ours are getting fracked from too much fighting.

  • Davis Jackson

    How many can you make at a time?