I have the last game of our Dropzone Commander Winter Campaign coming up and the event coordinator wants to use the Aegis Orbital Defense Laser as the focal point. I’ve been wanting one of these for a long time so I thought it was high time I picked one up.
So straight out of the box, it dry-fits very well. I had to make some modifications to the blast door on the front and it still doesn’t quite work but I’ll mess with it more later. First thing I really needed to do was take this $75 model and destroy it.
Never content to just leave well enough alone, I have plans for this sucker. So I cut off the back end of the big laser battery.
It’s a laser and a massive piece of resin terrain so I figure I can experiment with putting one of my LEDs inside the sucker to light ‘er up.
Well those LEDs aren’t messing around so I pull out a 0.5″ speed drill bit, hook it up to the power drill and get to work.
I didn’t get very far until I realized I forgot to plug the power drill in so went back to hand drilling the attachment points while the drill charged back up. I’m going to magnetize the back end of the laser to the main assembly because, well, magnets. They’re kind of my jam.
I didn’t want to just go magnet to magnet on these because they tend to require precise placement. If you mess that up, you’re going to have misaligned parts and I don’t want to deal with that nonsense so I cut the heads off a few nails. They will allow me to be off a bit and still have the magnets pull everything together. Word to the wise, be careful cutting those nail heads off. I took a big chunk out of the my hand trying to protect the head from shooting across the room but failed to realize my cover hand had gotten too close to the plier end. It was a mistake I don’t plan on repeating anytime soon.
Once the heads are off and the two-stage hand drilling is complete, I just superglued the heads in the recessed holes.
By the time that was all finished, my drill was charged up enough to hollow out the main laser assembly. I only went deep enough to fit the LED inside and then drilled the small exit hole out from the top.
The hole was a little cantered going in so I used a counter-sink drill bit with a conical bit to widen the back end of the hole without compromising the top.
The LED just slides in.
And lights ‘er up.
This is all still dry fit as I have to paint the laser up.
So I’m not finished but 2+ hours of painting silver and I was ready to call it a night. I could call it done since it is just scenery but it’s too clean for my Dropzone tastes and I want to weather it up a bit.
Playing around with the laser too much drained the batteries (that and multiple “night” games of Batman Miniature Game and Walking Dead).
I decided I also wanted to make the piece easier to store so I magnetized the legs the same way I magnetized the laser bottom. Eventually, I’ll choose a side to mount the bunker entrance as well but I’ll likely wait until I’ve got everything else wrapped up. The laser cradle isn’t properly assembled either but it’ll be easier to seal everything if I can take it apart. After I finish the weathering and other details, I’ll seal it up and it’ll be ready for Sunday.