Time required for this project: 1 hour
Cost: $0 (I had everything on stock a.k.a. rubbish laying around)
Step 1: What You'll Need
- MAG LITE MINI with an LED instead of the regular light-bulb.,
- A thin layer of acrylic foil. I got mine from a broken ATX power supply. Should be about 0.5mm thick,
- Dark red nail polish... preferably the one your spouse does not like too much,
- Thin magic marker,
- Fine grain sandpaper
Additionally, I ended up using some duct tape, nail polish thinner and a pair of equally sized plates of glass to press the two chips together.
I would recommend against making this mod with a classic MAGLITE light-bulb installed, as I remember it heating quite a lot as opposed to a bright LED. Than again if you should want do, you could simply change the light-bulb with an already colored red LED and go about it that way.
Step 2: Step 1: Disassembly
Step 3: Step 2: Making the New Lens
Once you've outlined the shape, cut the new chips out, but make them only very very slightly smaller than drawn as to compensate for the thickness of your marker.
Should you be as clumsy as I am with your scissors, make use of the fine grain sandpaper mentioned earlier to smooth out any irregularities.
You should end up with 3 equally sized ( 1 original + 2 just made ) lenses.
Step 4: Step 3: Painting
Additionally ensure the nail polish is thin enough. If you, as I suggested, decided to use a nail polish that is not in regular use it's bound to be half dry. So add some solvent to it to make sure you get a nice equal coating. The picture below is what you are trying to avoid. :) But it will not be a whole lot better in any case especially if your working under a couple of 200W lights like I was.
A word of caution about using aggressive solvents like acetone since it could eat through your new lens depending on the material you've used. Be smart and test your solvent on a piece of foil left over from cutting your lenses.
Paint outwards from the center as to not get paint under the chip, gluing it to the glass.
Step 5: Step 4: Pressing
Press and hold for only a few seconds than hold the still pressed lens towards a light source to make sure the color is nice and evenly spread. If not, twist the two plates around by just a little bit while still gently pressing the plates. That should do the trick unless you made the same mistake as I with not equally supporting the while area of the chips.
Providing the nail polish hasn't gotten squeezed out onto both glass plates you can remove the top one without any damage to your work in about a minute or two. At this point I used a hairdryer on its lowest setting in order to speed up the drying process, moving the lens onto sanding paper in order to make it stop being blown off all the time.
Step 6: Step 5: Testing and Assembly
It's time to put your 4 parts back together exactly the same way it was before except for replacing the original lens with you brand new and dim red filter. I feel that taking a picture of that would simply be an overkill.
Step 7: In Action
This has been my first instructable. Hope you enjoyed it.
Kind regards, Vince.