Firefly: Mal's pistol



Up till now I have tried to find projects that had very rigid geometry since it's very hard to do subtle curves with paper. I have been playing around with some different techniques and decided it was time to tackle a project that would test them out. I have wanted to build Mal Reynolds pistol from the show Firefly for some time. It was a great show that sadly was pulled from the air too soon so hopefully this is a fitting tribute. The gun has a nice retro futuristic look that borrows from western designs and even old flint lock pistols. The subtle curves would be a challenge but that’s what I was looking for.


The first challenge was the wood grips both in painting and building. To achieve the curve shape of the wood I first carved the grip shape from floral foam and then stretched some lightly wetted paper over the form. Once the glue dried I cut off the excess around the edges and I was happy with how it looked. I used this same technique throughout and I am quite happy with the effect. I also had to really make sure to sand and keep all the edges of my cuts flush with the model since the final gun had to look like a single piece of cast metal. I even built a working trigger assembly based on a flintlock mechanism and a removable clip. I sprayed the final painted model with a semi gloss finish to really give it that metallic gleam. For the photography, I included some fake money from the show I found and leather bound Ship's papers I built. The leather work was all done by me and the actually papers comprise pages I made along with some I found online.


Click the pictures to see larger photos.


Finished Model: