Keychain sword


This is one of those works that “happen by chance”, while you are doing something and not knowing how, you find yourself doing something else.
After the tests with the dagger, in which the blade was composed of several pieces, I wanted to try a weapon whose blade is made from a single piece, then a dagger or a sword, with the blade no longer than 20cm.
During the tests I had thought of various possible dimensions, including some versions to be printed in one piece. Among these were some 10cm long swords, in which I noticed that with a hole in the knob they could have been perfect as key rings.
The sword-shaped keychains I will talk about today are nothing but a rescaled version of the biggest dagger I had started working on, but which I have never finished.
Since I have also made several versions, with minimal differences between them, in this first page I will show only the first version, while the others will show them on the following page.

Figure 1 – Rendering of the keychain sword we will see today

The 3D model

As mentioned earlier, the keychains are composed of a single block.
The most elaborate part is the handle, composed of a cylinder to which I have created two loops in the middle (ctrl + r) and reduced the external vertices. Then, with the aid of the modifier array, I made several copies of this cylinder until it reaches the desired length for the handle. To avoid problems during printing, each cylinder has a slight overlap with adjacent ones, obtained by setting a relative distance of 0.8, as can be seen from the figure below.

Figure 2 – The handle, consisting of 12 cylinders

To do the rest instead I limited myself to using the modifier mirror.

The video presents the modeling of the big version of the dagger, therefore also of the pins, of which I have not discussed because in the keychains are not present. You can also notice that I created a recess in the guard, for a better adhesion with the blade, another thing I have not discussed because for the keychains I used a guard without the recess.

After creating all the pieces, with the boolean modifier I went to create the hole in the knob. In this case I did not use pre-established dimensions, but I went to the eye, trying to make the hole as big as possible, as far as the model allowed me.

Figure 3 – The hole in the sword knob

The result

Figure 4 – The 3D model of the first version of the keychain sword

The 3D printing

For the keychains I set the layers to 0.2mm, each took about 45 minutes to print and the media generated with Cura were more than enough.
At this point I feel obliged to discuss a couple of tricks to get the perfect models, as they are problems that are encountered in many types of printing, so I find it is always good to repeat it.

The first thing to consider is the orientation of the piece, since we can print it in two different positions.

Figure 5 – Orientations of possible prints.
I omitted the part with the tip upward as it would be more fragile than these and therefore inadvisable

Let’s look at the printed lying:

Figure 6 – The printed sword lying down. Top
Figure 7 – The printed sword lying down. Bottom

As you can see from the images above, even if the upper part has gone out quite well, the lower one is very bad. Probably with many tricks it would be possible to solve the problem, but I find it to be an excessive effort, when it is enough to change the orientation.

Figure 8 – The standing sword

In fact, as seen in Figure 8, the standing print gives us an almost perfect result, having only to place the part above the guard, placing a dummy piece next to the print. This serves to move the extruder away from the sword when we are near the end of the print, and to prevent the piece from deforming due to excessive heat.

Figure 9 – The sword just removed from the printer bed, with the help of the dummy piece

One thing to remember is to create the highest dummy piece of the model to be printed.
The removal of the support material did not create any problem, not even the material inside the hole. After removal, any remaining imperfections can be removed with a rasp.


To paint the keychain swords I gave a black base with the spray and then used:

  • Runefang steel
  • Abaddon black


  • Brown
  • Gold

The first of the Citadel and the seconds of the Tamiya.
Once painted, keychain swords appear like this:

Figure 10 –
The keychain sword completed

Now that we have finished with this, on the next page let’s see the other versions.

This is a translation for the original italian post: Spada portachiavi

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