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12-sided Dice Lampshade

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Picture of 12-sided Dice Lampshade
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Moving into my new apartment, there were a few things I needed – a lampshade was one of them. Why buy one and settle for what’s available when you can build one? A non-cubic dice (popularised by role playing games such as Dungeons & Dragons) came to mind. These dice are synonymous to gaming culture and is a cool accessory for anyone, even if you don’t get the “I roll 20s” joke.
 
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Step 1: Design


I decided to go with a 12-sided dice. This is a regular dodecahedron which consists of 12 regular pentagonal faces. The mathematical nature of these shapes makes it easy to scale this project up or down depending on your needs. [For the rest of this project I’ll just refer to the dodecahedron as the dice – it’s easier to type.]

To determine the size of the pentagons I measured from the base of my lightbulb to the distance I want the top face to be. I used this as the diameter of the dice’s inscribed circle, Di. This relates to the side length of each pentagon, L, by the following approximate formula: L=0.45*Di. From this a side length of 120mm was chosen.

The structure is built from bamboo skewers and covered with paper. No covering is added to the bottom pentagon as the lamp screws on there. Also, a lid was added to the top of the dice to enable access to the lamp.
For the base of the lampshade, the fitting of an old lamp shade was used.
wdlaurie2 years ago
When I was looking through your helpful pictures, I actually thought that the skewers looked metallic in one view. It would be cool to paint the skewers (since they do show through your paper when the light is turned on). I think you'd need to do it post-epoxy step though, since if I remember right, epoxy dissolves some types of paint.

I picked up some rebar wire really cheaply at Ace, and I'm wondering if it's sturdy and light weight enough to use for this instead of the skewers. It was under $10 for enough to do this project and a dozen more.

garside2 years ago
As I was reading this.....I had an idea. Instead of using bamboo skewers you could make a jig on a piece of scrap wood to bend wire around some mounted bolts to make the pentagons. From there you can still epoxy them together. I was also thinking about switching from paper and printing the numbers on there to getting some cheap light fabric and using iron-on transfers printed from my printer of course for the numbers instead. I might just start this little project in the next few days.

If it works out I'll post a link on my page here to let you see how it turned out.

After my long-winded response. Great 'Ible!!!!! I'm a gamer both PC and Tabletop and I never get tired of "Geek Chic"!

Keep it up!!!!
CR34M3 (author)  garside2 years ago
Using wire should work fine – I’d just make sure the bolts are as small as possible (maybe rather use nails?) otherwise you’ll end up with overly round corners. However, if you span your paper or material in such a way that the corners are sharp, then it won’t be a problem.

I’m thinking of making a d20 for the other side of the bed – watch this space.
garside CR34M32 years ago
That would be sweet! Thanks for the tip. This could turn awesome!
mohsen_sam2 years ago
simple and beautiful
elb86522 years ago
A very nice lamp, but the language . . . A die, plural dice.
CR34M3 (author)  elb86522 years ago

Thanks, and I'm sorry if my (second) language use offended you in any way. When I have a few minutes spare I'll consider fixing it. Until then I'll just go with this:
 

The game of dice is singular. Thus in "Dice is a game played with dice," the first occurrence is singular, the second occurrence is plural. Otherwise, the singular usage is considered incorrect by many authorities. However, it should be noted that some authoritative sources state that “In modern standard English, the singular die (rather than dice) is uncommon. Dice is used for both the singular and the plural.  [http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/dice]

But don't worry, the lady in the picture corrects me on my language use regularly. :)
Flintlock2 years ago
Great result!

I love that you used simple and cheap materials to achieve an elegant (if geeky) effect.

I've recently been building large dice out of cardboard and paper, but I've been thinking of using the design as furnishings for my apartment.

Your project is great inspiration!
CR34M3 (author)  Flintlock2 years ago
To be honest, the cost was a result of not waiting and starting the moment I got the idea. But still, I think I'd stick with the thin skewers -- it makes forcing you will on the thing (during final construction) so much easier.
CR34M3 (author) 2 years ago
Thanks for the comments everyone.
tylercard2 years ago
Haha, that's sweet.
dmiles22 years ago
This is EPIC. I'm sooooooooooo making one of these. Poor, lonely little d12, it's nice to see it get some love.
That looks awesome! Great lamp choice too!
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