In the old Star Wars expanded universe, lightsabers weren’t the first laser-sword weapons wielded by Jedi and the Sith. No, that honour went to the protosaber, the hilariously clunky version of the lightsaber that, instead of using an internal power cell, had an external wearable power supply. Like a wearable vacuum cleaner, but for cutting things with lasers. It’s a silly, wonderful idea.
Now, glowing beams of lasers emerging fully formed is still impossible, but using a big ugly power pack to make something like a laser beam? That’s doable, and the YouTube makers at the Hacksmith have done just that. In a fascinating video exploring the mechanics and process of building something big, stupid, and literally hot enough to burn things, these craftspeople showcase the process and results of their protosaber experiment.