Introduction: Creating a Color Changing Light Table
Ok first heres a materials list of the things you will need and some prices of things.
-MDF(or what ever wood you have laying around)
- hopefully free with crap wood
- between $17-$30 per whole set (thats power supply, leds, remote, and wireless receiver)
-Sandblaster/ some sort of clear matte spray paint.
- spray paint is probably easier, I would suggest testing first.
-Paint if desired
- The paint i used for this was latex wall paint and it took a lot of coats ( around 7) to get close to complete coverage so no light leaked through. I would advise testing some spray paints as it might have a more even, and thicker coat.
Step 1: Creating Your Table
This part is up to you, but I will talk about how I made mine.
I wanted a short sleek table, so my MDF was only 2.5 inches tall.
I had to fit the length and width of the MDF to fit the plexi because I got my plexi first.
I left a .5 inch overhang on all sides to make it look a little bit nicer
Once you have all your sizes and dimensions just cut it out and make sure to use a 45 degree angle to cut the ends of your wood to make the pieces fit perfectly together.
Step 2: Lighting With LEDS
First when buying your LEDs get adhesive backed strips. This will make your life way easier when putting it on the edges.
When you start sticking your LEDs to the wall of your table like in the photo make sure to put the end(of the LED) that connects to wireless receiver on a side that is not going to be distracting to look at.
When applying the LEDs to the wall I went in a spiral to get as many rows of leds as possible(the more light the better).
Step 3: "Frosting" Your Plexi
In order to get you LEDs to light up the plexi, the plexi needs to be "frosted" or matte. If you can find pre made frosted plexi then that would be the best option. If you just have normal plexi then hit with a clear matte spray paint or a sandblaster if accessible.
I made this table with the intention of light up my translucent porcelain. The issue in doing so with this table is that the lights are too bright and can be seen through the plexi which dilutes the porcelain effects. To get around this issue I had to cover up the lights with paint. I did not attach my plexi to the MDF in any way due to the weight of the plexi it just sits on top without any problem. epoxy of any sort will permanently attach them together if needed. If you like the way the lights look without paint then you can skip to step 5.
Step 4: Painting
The fun part about this is that you can make what ever designs you want to be lit up.
With the simple use of tape you can cut out designs, tape it to the plexi, paint over it, and then take it off. After the paint drys you have a back lit design. The paint also helps reflect light around a little bit more and makes the edge of the plexi really pop with color.
Step 5: Play Time
Ok so you made your table and you designed your plexi. Now its time to play with the colors and remote.
Most remotes will have a huge amount of color options. Just make sure when you set up your IR receiver that you put it in a place that can be seen. If it is hidden then it is possible your remote won't reflect and hit it.