Saturday, May 11, 2013

Bioshock Infinite Triple R repeater machine gun build

I played through Bioshock Infinite a few weeks ago and really loved the game, but right before I played it, my friend Bill Doran of Punished Props had posted a picture he liked of one of the in-game weapons, the Rolston Reciprocating repeater.

I really loved the design of the gun, and fell in love with it even more while playing the game, in fact I probably used it more than 80% of the time! I REALLY wanted to have this gun and quickly talked myself into building it ! I almost didn't go for it though, I was a little intimidated by the project to be honest with you. I read over Volpin Props write up for his Terrible Shotgun and decided to go for it, and here we go !

I first gathered all the reference pics I could (which wasn't much) and took a good side shot that could give me something to get my scaling figures. I found that the Triple R was possibly inspired by the old Lanchester sub machine gun so I scaled my build to be the same length, 33 inches or so long.

It was time to start building, and I started with the stock. I used 3 pieces of red oak laminated together with wood glue and as many clamps I could use.

After letting that dry overnight, I started shaping it on my belt sander with a 60 grit belt. I also went out and bought a wood rasp and a sure form recommended by some prop builder friends. shaping the red oak was a lot different than the MDF that I've gotten used to working with, it definately took some time to get it right.

My next step was that iconic barrel and heat shroud. I was in luck that the diameter and thickness was the same as some readily available PVC pipe I could get from the home improvement store ! I knew there were 8 rows of 1 inch holes in the shroud, each row offset from the next. I took some paper and wrapped it around the circumfrence of the pipe and trimmed it so the ends would just meet. I folded it to get 8 perfectly spaced folds and used that to mark the rows on the pipe. I then found the spacing of the holes through some measuring and the math stuff they tried to teach me in school and maked those off as well. Each hole was cut with a 1 inch hole saw in my drill.

I cut the inserts in both ends from 1/4 inch styrene and sanded them round by hand. No laser cut parts here! I shaped the front sight from a block of Sintra and the sight "cage" from a strip of styrene heated and bent to shape.

Up next was the receiver. I used some PVC and fittings of the proper diameters, and used MDF for the plate for the bolt. I coated the MDF with super glue which gave me a nice sandable surface ! Details were added with Styrene.

To attach the stock to the receiver, I made it so it would plug in like a lego. I glued the appropriate size pvc pipe piece onto the plate I made from 1/4 inch styrene. I then drilled a hole into the end of the stock and screwed a bolt into it so it would stick out into the pipe. I filled it with a batch of Smoothcast resin and it was solid ! That sucker isn't coming off ! I used Apoxie Sculpt to make the transition of the wood stock into the plate . I also made a butt-plate for the stock with more 1/4 inch styrene with a texture on one side.

The trigger guard was made by heating a strip of styrene over a wooden buck and trimming it to fit.

I made the Magwell from some acrylic sheet in my plastic bin, first making some paper patterns by hand. This entire gun was made without any blueprints!

after attaching the magwell to the gun, I made the clip from the same material. I installed some rare earth magnets in the end of the clip and inside the magwell to hold the clip in place while it is attached,

Next was the bolt handle. I cut a round piece out of 2 pieces of red oak, stuck a washer between them , drilled a hole and put a screw though them and finally chucked it into my drill press. The drill press was like a lathe and I shaped the knob with my dremel with a course sanding drum attached ~ ta da !

Finally it was the part I feared the most. The rear sights. It should be a little wider, but I didn't have room for it to be any wider with starting all over on the receiver .I made it the best I could out of Sintra and styrene and I feel it turned out pretty good !
And finally a mock up !
I finally got to start painting this bad boy !  First I added some detail to the ammo clip. I noticed in some of the pictures I had, that there was a groove/window cut lengthwise into the clip so you could see how much ammo you are pumping into that attacking fireman! I cut the groove into it and went by a local gun shop, who were nice enough to donate some empty rounds from the back of his pickup truck. I made an insert for the clip and now real bullet casings show through the groove ! Groovy !
I painted the main body a rustoleum oil rubbed bronze and stained the stock with light walnut stain.
And last but not least, the final product. I weathered the entire gun just like the video put out by Volpin Props using black and brown acrylic paint. I then used Rub'n Buff silver to do all the weathered edges and such.

Thank you for reading ! Feel free to like my Facebook fanpage also !


  1. very cool, you should contact Irrational and make replicas for them! how much did the whole process cost to make?

  2. Do the Hand Cannon Next!!!1 And give it to me!!!
    i would love you guys!

  3. My more sincere congratulations!
    I'm totally in love with this piece! Also, excellent process =D I learned one or two interesting tips with that one!

    Can't wait to see more of your creations!

  4. too bad it's not real and only a replica. Anyone can make a replica!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. I'm looking to do a Vox Cosplay at some point and this would top off what I would require for that look. Awesome work though man and from one designer to another, your process for this piece was a enjoyable and interesting read.

  6. This is amazing I saw this and instantly thought of the Czech ZK-383 SMG clearly thats what its based off of.