This is part 2 of how I enhanced my Demon Hunter Crossbow. [See Part 1]
I’ve had a request for a more complete explanation as to how I created the crossbow. For those who are extremely good with saws and such, it is very much possible to craft the body of the bow from scratch. But given my two left thumbs, I opted instead to find a toy crossbow body to start with and customize from there.
I literally searched the entire Internet for a wood toy pistol crossbow. There were plenty of regular rifle type toy crossbows but literally no pistol toy types. Until I found a source from China at TinyDeal.com. This is the original crossbow purchased from TinyDeal. It’s actually a fully functioning toy crossbow with rubber tipped arrows. I basically painted the body of this bare bones toy to my liking with acrylic paints. I also found decorative raised stickers at Michaels (that I think are used in scrapbooking) and stuck them on the sides of the bow to embellish it further. I also bought upholstery tacks and clipped the needle point off, then hot glue gunned them to the top and sides of to both hide ugly nails on the body of the gun, as well as embellish it further.
The gun was pretty cool painted as is, but when I went to Fan Expo with my partially completed cosplay, I realized that the bow just lacked presence. That’s when I decided to enhance the front with a silver flare paneling.
As described in Part 1, I traced the panel outline from an official cosplay design. This gave me the stencil I needed to map it onto black craft foam. I then cut the pieces out. Next, I got down to work creating the raised detailing. I first drew out the design on the foam pieces with pencil to help guide me. Next I went over the pencil line with fabric paint to create the raised detailing. I purchased black fabric paint and very carefully outlined the pieces with the detailing. I suggest working with the fabric paint on paper first to get a hang of how it comes out and how to create steady, smooth lines. You’ll need to give your fabric paint 4-6 hours to dry. A whole day would be better!
Once the fabric paint is dry, I was now ready to paint them with silver acrylic paint. I painted both the front and backs of the pieces, as you could see it on both ends. I suggest purchasing good quality acrylics, otherwise you’ll spend a lot of time applying multiple layers (as I did because I was too cheap to fork over the $10 or so to get quality paint – lesson learned!). Again, let your paint dry thoroughly before moving forward.
Once the paint was dry, I proceeded to assemble the pieces together. It took a lot of jigging to get all the pieces aligned correctly. The biggest challenge is making sure both left and right panels are identically laid out. I laid them out as seen in the image and then with a hot glue gun, applied small dabs of glue to the underside of the foam pieces to glue them together. I suggest getting someone to help hold down pieces while you gently lift a corner up to apply glue. The pieces will move easily, so a helping hand is nice. Hold the pieces down where the glue has been applied for a few seconds to ensure bond.
Once I had both the left and right panels glued together, I then applied hot glue on the bow’s outer face and applied the foam panel. Again, hold the foam onto the bow for a few seconds to ensure bonding.
And that’s it!