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Project of the Week: 3D Printed Solid Eye from Metal Gear Solid 4

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Are you a diehard fan of the Metal Gear video game franchise? Now you can use your 3D printer to cosplay as Solid Snake with a Solid Eye that is equipped with a working LED light.

For over 30 years, generations of gamers have been captivated by Hideo Kojima’s massively popular action-adventure stealth video game franchise Metal Gear. The first iteration of the game was released way back in 1987, and earlier this year, the developer Konami is released the 23rd title from the series, entitled Metal Gear Survive.

Each game stars a special forces operative, usually named Solid Snake or Big Boss, that is tasked with finding the super-weapon called “Metal Gear”.  Those who completed Metal Gear Solid 4 might recall a special eyepatch that helped Solid Snake defeat Liquid Ocelot.

This device is called the Solid Eye, capable of combining “Enhanced Night Vision Goggles” light amplification and imaging technology, while also doubling as binoculars.

Well, if you’ve been preparing to take on a top-secret mission of your own, you can gain some of the stealth that has made Solid Snake so successful over the years.

Designer Cristian Esalini recently shared his 3D printed version of the Solid Eye, which is even equipped with a red LED light. This 3D printable prop is perfect for Solid Snake cosplay, or even just showing off your fandom and knowledge of this classic series.

Here’s what you need to know in order to 3D print your own Solid Eye!


3D Printed Solid Eye: What Do You Need?

The casing of the Solid Eye accessory is 3D printed, but you’ll need a few other components to get the LED flashing. The STL files for the 3D model are freely available on Thingiverse.

Here’s what else you need to build your own 3D printed Solid Eye:


3D Printed Solid Eye: Putting it Together

Now that you’ve got all the components needed to build the Solid Eye, it’s time to put it all together. The print itself takes about four hours to complete, and should only have support material from the base of the model.

Esalini recommends sanding, priming and spray painting it black once it’s finished. Don’t be shy while sanding the 3D print, as the designers claims that this post-processing method requires some “insistence”. There’s also white lettering on the front that states “SOLID EYE SYSTEM”, which can be done with stickers or a stencil.

For the strap, Esalini suggests finding one that measures between 10 and 15mm, depending on who will be wearing this contraption. The inner side of the 3D printed Solid Eye casing is where you’ll mount the electronic components. You can look at the photo of the circuit above. The assembly process looks quite simple, but comprehensive instructions are not available, so it’ll definitely be helpful to have some experience with soldering and electronic circuitry.

Once you finish connecting everything, you should have a wearable Solid Eye with a leering red LED light. Show your friends that your the stealthiest Solid Snake in town, the Big Boss of gaming, and someone who knows how to make use of their 3D printer.


License: The text of “Project of the Week: 3D Printed Solid Eye from Metal Gear Solid 4” by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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