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PRAETORIAN BLASTERS - DLT-19

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PRAETORIAN BLASTERS - WHO WE ARE...

We've been making blasters for the 501st and other costuming groups for over 10 years. We took a long break and reorganized. Nathan and I talked for a long time about having a different approach to making high-end rubber blasters for the 501st / costumers. What we wanted to focus on was quality. I know I've been saying that a lot lately but the reality is that we are going to great lengths to make these new blasters a much higher quality than what we'd produced in the past by creating molds that have splits designed to minimize the destruction of details. Separate molds for separate parts which not only creates an illusion of separate parts but actually produces separate parts with under cuts and higher detail. We're not interested in producing 20 blasters a week if they are not something we are proud of. 

The idea of Praetorian Blasters is brought about by the 501st Centurion status maintained on the FISD forum. Requirements have been set to reach "Centurion status". We wanted to make blasters that would excel beyond those requirements and set a new bar of quality. 

 

WHAT'S THE PLAN?

Nathan and I have started work on the Praetorian DLT-19. We've taken two MG-34s that we have here at work and are combining the best components into one for molding. In the end, this hard rubber blaster will come complete with accurate fins including wire wrap, disc on the side of the grip and box on the feeder port. Things we will be doing that are standard for this blaster:

  • Nozzle will be molded separately - This will allow for greater detail in the cone area where predecessors have had shallow details. This will also alleviate the need to vent expanding foam from the back of the blaster which has destroyed butt stock detail in the past. 
  • Receiver top will be molded separately - This will allow for visible "pass thru" area under the lid. When the box insert is in place, you won't actually be able to see through but the depth detail will be very nice. 
  • Bipod is molded separately - This bipod will have greater detail in the way we will be molding it. We will be increasing the stability of the connections as well.

 

WHY CAN'T YOU MAKE THAT AREA HOLLOW?

There are often questions about how we could go about making the barrels hollow and not clay in certain parts. We always put quality first. The fact is that, yes, we could make the barrel hollow. It would not be rubber at that point. It would need to be plastic or metal. That completely defeats the purpose of the rubber blaster. The entire reason for making blaster from rubber is durability. Secondary reasons are high quality detail and price. The level of detail that is possible with silicone molds and rubber cast parts is by far heads above other materials. We use EXACTLY the same processes and materials for all of the mainstream films and television shows. Aside from that, manufacturing hollow parts and pass thru areas severely drives the cost up. 

 

WHY ARE YOU BLASTERS SO EXPENSIVE?

We are separating parts and making additional molds to bring you a high level of detail and trying to keep the cost down at an "affordable" level. I put affordable in quotation marks because there is always a discussion about why these blasters are so "expensive" (there they are again). They are not expensive. "Expensive" is relative as well as "affordable". Silicone, if you've ever purchased any for a project is about $100 per gallon. This is for tin-based silicones. With rubber parts, you are almost guaranteed that your molds will produce up to 20 parts before the silicone begins to break down. Many hobbyists and professionals will disagree with my "20" parts statement but it's the truth. You will still be able to pull parts from the mold beyond that number but the quality begins to drop. Higher quality and detail just costs more to maintain. 

As with our E-11 M38 and M19, we've made multiple molds out of the starting gate to ensure that we don't burn the molds out. We will most likely do the same for this blaster. 

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Very informative introductory post.
I'm looking forward to this project and answering any questions that John didn't cover above.


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Can't wait to see the results!

With two such experienced men involved this will be superb, no doubt!

 

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I know you may have covered this somewhat in the explanation above but wondering if the this blaster could be done so that you can break it down for transport. I know this reduces sturdiness but wondering if there could be some connection system  like how the Doopy DLT comes apart. Is it possible or has it been tried before?

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47 minutes ago, Bulldog44 said:

I know you may have covered this somewhat in the explanation above but wondering if the this blaster could be done so that you can break it down for transport. I know this reduces sturdiness but wondering if there could be some connection system  like how the Doopy DLT comes apart. Is it possible or has it been tried before?

You are correct. Could we make these two pieces and make them able to connect? Of course. Would we? No. The reason is above but I will continue to explain. These are considered by some to be "expensive" blasters. When you compare the cost of a rubber blaster (ie. Praetorian, HFX, etc) to a resin blaster, you will find that there is a obvious cost difference. The entire reason behind rubber blasters is structure and durability. Making pieces that separate will, guaranteed, eventually become loose and destroy the structure of the prop. 

The second reason which is probably more of a concern to everyone else...Cost. These are not held together with pvc tubing or anything like that where the plastic is made to press fit together. I'm not sure how the Doppy blaster is assembled and disassembled but in our case, the main armature that provides the lightweight structure is a length of fiberglass rod. The additional work and fasteners required to do this properly would make this blaster completely cost prohibitive for everyone except a very few.

Structure, durability and quality...

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Thanks for the reply and explanation. I see your point.  Getting my hyperfirm to Japan was a bit of a headache so I alway hoped the DLT could be easier to transport and assemble. But as you mentioned, Structure, durability and quality...and cost speak volumes. I trust your knowledge and word on this. Now I must start saving cash for one of these babies or sell one of my kidneys! 

Cheers!

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1 hour ago, Bulldog44 said:

Thanks for the reply and explanation. I see your point.  Getting my hyperfirm to Japan was a bit of a headache so I alway hoped the DLT could be easier to transport and assemble. But as you mentioned, Structure, durability and quality...and cost speak volumes. I trust your knowledge and word on this. Now I must start saving cash for one of these babies or sell one of my kidneys! 

Cheers!

No problem. Believe me. We would love to give you guys everything you ask for but unfortunately, we just have to settle for most of it. :)

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Looking forward to these and interested in one once they come out!


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We're looking at being up and running with the first castings of the DLT-19 in two weeks or less.


Got my finger on the pay pal trigger lol




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Nice guns, looking forward to see the production of them ;)

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Hello, when will you start your dlt19 run? I 've sent you message via your web by the way... thanks


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It's not really going to be a "Run" per se,  we will add these to the available blasters on our website.

We plan on getting these going as soon as the Rogue One E-11 is in production.

We are a two man team, and this is something we are doing in our spare time ( and neither of us have an abundance of that LOL)

 

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Man.... These look absolutely amazing. If the DLT-19 was a lady, these girls of yours would be a perfect 10.

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What is the pricing for the DLT-19 ?


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Not sure on the pricing yet. We have to finish the molds and cast a set of parts first. These are being cast in multiple parts vs. the old way we used to do it (one piece). This will ensure that you will get better detail and a bit more accuracy. Our old MG-34 that we used was not overly accurate.

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Will these be like the 11s and a continuous run or will there be a list to get on?


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Will these be like the 11s and a continuous run or will there be a list to get on?


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Will these be like the 11s and a continuous run or will there be a list to get on?


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Will these be like the 11s and be a continuous run or will there be a list to get on?


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These will be continuously available as long as there is a demand. We're working on a extremely elite version of the E-11 also. Just not sure how it will be received. MG-34 is our priority after this week.

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These will be like the ANH E-11 (and the Rogue One E-11 that's coming very soon)
They will all be available on the website
http://praetorianblasters.com/

Although, we may offer up completed blasters directly on the forums in the future


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