Rendering a Light Saber

In this Blender 2.5 video tutorial we tackle something that is on most people’s “create before I die” list, a light saber. This tutorial focuses in on the post-processing aspect by setting up a node network to create the effect of the glowing blade of a light saber. Modeling is not covered in this tutorial, but the model is included in the source files to play with.

Note: this tutorial uses the official Blender 2.5 Alpha 2 release.

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55 Responses to “Rendering a Light Saber”
  1. Posts: 1
    10010110 says:

    cand be done on 2.6 cos the node types are missing, can u do a 2.6 vresion plz. great job by the way, but a tip 4 a 2.6 one, maby put a basic plan together so u can keep track of where u r up to. just an idea no offence intended

  2. Posts: 1
    Langolier says:

    Great tutorial. It helps me very much for understanding compositing. I tryed to apply this for my own purposes… but… So I have a question. Instead of saber blade i use text “MY WEB SITE” for example. This text looks very nice with neon glowing effect, but i can’t save this with transparent background. I tryed to save in .png with rgba.. and received transparent background but without glowing effect. Help me please. What should i do to save Saber/text with neon glowing effect and on transparent background? Is it possible? i need it for my website.

  3. Posts: 1
    M Yount says:

    I was able to do it on 2.49b. Had the following problems.

    1. light saber has to be two objects.
    2. assign both objects “Pass Index” in (F7) “Object and Links”.
    2. indexed node trees (F10) “Render Layers” “Inde” button.
    3. (F10) “Anim” “Do Composite” must be set for rendering.

    I see I need to do the update python scripts tutorial so I can update scripts and use 2.5.

  4. Posts: 1
    C. Jones says:

    Hi, I am wondering how you would reflect the blade of the light saber. I have a robot holding a lightsaber and am wondering how to make the glow show in the reflections.


  5. Posts: 199
    Shawn Evans says:


    I’ve got my model and I’ve rendered it in Cycles. This uses Blender internal. Is there a way to render the blade like this in Cycles?

  6. Posts: 3
    shadowbladeF22 says:

    I have tried to follow this tutorial, but no matter what I do the end result is always inverted, the blur is white and the blade is the color that I add using the RGB value, any Ideas on what I am doing wrong?

  7. Posts: 1
    krejcaa says:

    hello guyz… I got the same problem as shadowbladef22 … At first everything was okay, then I added some lights and rendered it…and the result = inverted colors.. so have u solved it somehow please? thank you very much

    • Posts: 3
      shadowbladeF22 says:

      Hey, I was able to fix my problem eventually, what I did was add a mask over the blur layer, so that you were seeing the white blade, and then behind it was the glowing effect. that wasn’t a perfect fix but it still looked good in the end. If you want i can post my nodes, but its a little complex because i used two different saber colors.

  8. Posts: 1
    mrcavallo says:

    excellent tutorial – exactly what i was looking for.

    i am new to nodes and was wondering if it is possible to have this effect for 2 separate ID masks. for example i would like a blue and a red light using the same effect but simply cannot work out how to apply this effect to 2 different ID masks.

    thank you.

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