Captain Mal's Pistol

Firefly / Serenity

Stated scale:


Actual scale:


P1030051.jpg (158317 bytes)

 P1030052.jpg (158040 bytes)

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Overall length:



Number of parts:


Stand included?


Decals included?


My Source:


Cost (w/o s&h):


February, 2007...

This is a project for a friend who hopes, someday, to have a Cap'n Mal costume. This version of the gun has a number of inaccuracies. The only one I fixed is the profile of the grips where they meet the gun body. Compare original from box cover with adjusted profile. The version of Mal's pistol made by Wilco appears far more accurate - see the Novelties section at CS Hobbies. They also have a kit of Jayne's LeMat revolver.

Assembly was straightforward, attaching the two thumbscrews below the barrel with epoxy putty. I drilled out the thumbscrews and attachment point to insert a short wire for added strength. I also drilled out the gun barrel.

Photos of the studio prop show the gun to be highly aged brass, mostly coated with a dark brown brass patina. The patina is worn away along edges and from surfaces that, presumably, rub against the holster inside.

 Stage 1: grips are brush-painted leather color; antique gold Rub'n'Buff applied to gun body using a cotton swab. After drying for about 15 minutes, I buffed it with a soft paper towel. malgun1.jpg (27830 bytes)
 Stage 2: Testors rubber color is airbrushed over the brass coat to provide patina color. I used an extra-thin mix in the airbrush to get a non-uniform coverage. malgun2.jpg (24616 bytes)
Stage 3: Using a cotton swab dipped in paint thinner, I eroded the patina coat along edges and over wear surfaces. Below... detail shots of barrel and body. malgun3.jpg (26910 bytes)
3barrelL.JPG (29664 bytes) 3barrelR.JPG (29043 bytes) 3bodyL.JPG (51355 bytes) 3bodyR.JPG (50524 bytes)
Stage 4: Testors rubber color is brush-painted into the deep recesses and corners to darken the patina color in no-wear areas. Below... overall and body detail.  
4L.JPG (23276 bytes) 4R.JPG (25248 bytes) 4bodyL.JPG (48469 bytes) 4bodyR.JPG (46631 bytes)

 I finished the grips by brush-painting a coat of Tamiya transparent red over the leather color. After it was dry, I airbrushed extra-thinned black enamel over the red and over the silver leaf on the tang, trigger, and guard. For the last step, I applied a little more Rub'n'Buff to highlight the edges. I'm callin' it shiny.