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RWBY Gambol Shroud WIP 3

Build Notes

Bondo / Automotive Body Filler is a type of polyester resin filler, widely used in automotive and boating applications for the purposes of filling in cracks and repairing dents and the like.

This filler, consisting of two components (the hardener & the main putty compound) begins to set and hardens after the correct amounts of the two are thoroughly mixed together and smeared onto the desired surface.

For a Prop-making and costuming applications this makes it an amazing versatile material at your disposal, provided it is used correctly and safely.

Bringing me to my first point before I go any further…

Being a polyester resin IT IS A VERY TOXIC MATERIAL TO WORK WITH, if you are going to enjoy the wonders of this material, please WEAR A RESPIRATOR! . This is a definite must both during the premixing and application of the filler and ESPECIALLY DURING THE SANDING!.

Not that this is meant to put you off experimenting and using the material, all I am saying is be responsible and stay safe and well protected that’s all you really need to worry about, now on with the build…

Using copious quantities of the filler I proceeded to smear the compound all along the under side of the scabbard to build up the blade’s rough shape and allowed it to set and harden.

When it was completely set I then went to town sanding away the excess surfaces and chunks of Bondo and shaped out the blade edge I wanted.


After getting the rough shape I wanted I could still see many imperfections that needed to be filled out, a coat of grey primer spray-paint helps highlight a lot of these defects as well as fills in some of the more minor gaps.

So further filling, further sanding I get a surface finish I’m happy with, topping it all off with outer layers of PVC sheets for the details. All that’s left now is my favourite stage, painting and weathering.

Thanks for reading.

RWBY Weapons:

WIP Update: 1
WIP Update: 2
Finished Blade

Crescent Rose
WIP Update: 1
WIP Update: 2
WIP Update: 3
WIP Update: 4
Finished Scythe

Gambol Shroud
WIP Update: 1
WIP Update: 2
WIP Update: 3
Finished Sword

Ember Celica
WIP Update: 1
WIP Update: 2
WIP Update: 3
Finished Gauntlets
Image details
Image size
3317x13998px 49.89 MB
© 2013 - 2021 Tatsutetsu
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GreenBetty's avatar
Hey may i have permission to feature your progress photos in my facebook page? i will give full credit. its meant to assist other cosplayers in completing their projects, and answering any questions they may have! check it out and get back to me THANKS!…
Tatsutetsu's avatar
PLeas go ahead ^^
HeyVikkiTime's avatar
Is there a way for the scabbard part to click into the sword or anything? Say I had the sword in the scabbard and then I pointed it downwards, would the scabbard just fall off. I'm thinking of making Blake's weapon (I don't think I'd use Bondo since you said it was poisonous and I don't think my parents would like me using it so my dad said he might be able to help me do the whole thing out of some wooden planks) and I'm worried about whether it may fall off the sword and break or scratch up the paintwork or something. Do you know how I might be able to make it click into place and then be able to be clicked out again so I don't have to worry about it accidentally slipping out?
Also any idea how I'd get it to stick to my back like in Blake's trailer or do you think it would be best for me to carry it around the whole time at a Comic Con?
Tatsutetsu's avatar
Yes please do take the necessary safety precautions and use assistance when needed.

The only thing stopping the sword from literally just sliding out when upturned is just the force of friction alone. When your doing the internal cut out of the scabbard have that match the shape of the sword as much as possible, the tighter the fit the better but having the slightest enough clearance to slide in and out is what you want.

I also have the scabbard lined with cloth which helps with keeping the paint job safe and in "holding" the sword in place.

Seeing as you will be in crowded packed conditions and on your feet all day, hauling a all wooden sword (depending on how heavy it turns out) on your back all day might not be the most enjoyable experience if your not used to it and you have to be cautious constantly it doesn't fall off you back or hits a person accidentally.

Personally since you will most likely be constantly posing for photos with it I'd just carry it around but it is entirely up to you and how you want your outfit to turn out and what your comfortable with.
HeyVikkiTime's avatar
Oh and how did you cut the PVC sheeting? I'm a total noob at this sort of stuff I'll probably get my dad to do the majority of it :')
Tatsutetsu's avatar
just a good set of Hobby knives and a steel ruler will do or scissors if need be
HeyVikkiTime's avatar
HeyVikkiTime's avatar
Okay I'm thinking of having it wooden on the outside and then foam on the inside for the scabbard to keep the sword safe would that be okay?

Yeah probably best that it's not on my back especially since I may have a backpack with me for buying stuff :)

How heavy do you think it would be to make the sword part completely out of plywood? I'm thinking of making a hollow wooden box sort of shape then adding on the details using thin layers of plywood.

Wish I could make mine like yours but my mum would flip out if she saw that I was using Bondo and found out it was poisonous :') Do you know of anything similar I could maybe use instead for smoothing out stuff instead of Bondo? I'm wondering how I'd make that bit on the scabbard that juts out at the side along the bevel of it.

Thanks for your advice!
Tatsutetsu's avatar
It won't be overly heavy that you'll be dragging it around everywhere I would assume it just depends on how much wood you use

Using Expanding foam and covering it in paper mache is a very popular more safe alternative if not just papermache alone correctly could achieve the right look
HeyVikkiTime's avatar
I'm thinking like you did with one long bit of plywood for the handle and blade. Then building up the main shape using foam, and using PVC for detailing.
The scabbard would probably also be foam and PVC for detailing.
I'll probably do what you did and put fabric inside the scabbard to protect it too :)
I'm also thinking of doing some coats of PVA glue diluted with water on the foam parts just to strengthen it a bit more.

I'll look into that method I just wish I could use bondo so I could sand it down to give it a nice smooth look like yours >.<
Tatsutetsu's avatar
Sounds good everyone has a method that works for them so give it a go, foam strengthening is good it'll also help with painting later on, Start with whats available to you and in your skill set and work your way up.
HeyVikkiTime's avatar
My dad has been helping me and we've made the entire thing out of balsa wood to make it really light but it will dent so easily if I bump it on anything >.< Any advice on hardening it other than priming and painting afterwards for protection?
Tatsutetsu's avatar
Sorry for the late reply, hopefully this is still going well,

as you have probably already experienced balsa wood is very soft and easy to dent, there is not much you can really do to avoid this, other than use a more harder wood instead such as pine.

but as long as it looks good in photos or it survives what you plan to do with it (stage performance for example) you shouldn't really have to worry
View all replies
Very nice... Can't wait to see you finish this!
And start on Yang's gauntlets =D
Tatsutetsu's avatar
Can't get her theme out of my head :D
I can't wait till Yellow's single is released! I love the entire disco remix =D
Also I want to see the official lyrics for Yang's theme song, since I'm having a really hard time hearing them from the trailer :(
So much badassness combined with so much cuteness XD
Tatsutetsu's avatar
I absolutely love her fighting mechanic and wana see more of how they use that
JakeyTheCat's avatar
I really hope to cosplay Blake and this tutorial is extremely helpful, but I have a few questions. Is there anything you could use to substitute for bondo? And what are the dimensions on this, since it seems pretty large? Just curious and excellent job!
Tatsutetsu's avatar
Thank you ^^

Well it depends on whats in your skill set and avliable to you, but filling the gap like I have you could use expanding foam and papermache or possibly papermache clay/pulp, I wouldn't reccomend using ordinary clay for this as it would be extemely brittle and very heavy.

With the sword in the scabbard it spans roughly 92cm (36.2in) end to end and is about 10cm (3.9in) width wise for the body of the scabbard.
JakeyTheCat's avatar
Thank you so much! I'm looking forward to seeing how it turns out in the end~
FreakyFanatic101's avatar
Thanks for the update, this looks wicked awesome!
Tatsutetsu's avatar
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