I saw jumpfroggy's 'ible called "DIY Backlit Wood Sign" and thought it was really cool, but didn't have a use for it. Then my dad started up a new company called Easy Tributes and said he was going to lots of tradeshows and conventions for it. I remembered this, and decided to make it!
Mine is a little different than the original.
- The first noticeable difference is that mine is painted white with a black border, and the letters have a painted stroke around them.
- Also, I used 1x12 wood (Two- 3 foot pieces) for the front and back and used 1x4 for the edges.
- A third difference is in the way I wired it. I used two "light bulb to wall outlet" converters that I found at Walmart for $.98 each. I attached each of those to a short extension cord and hot-glued them in opposite corners of the box. The lightbulbs I used were 100w-simulating CFL bulbs, which actually only use around 25 watts of power. I attached each of those two extension cords to one main short extension cord, and then attached that one to an outdoor/indoor 25 foor heavy duty cord. This is the only cord coming out of the box (I wanted it to be simple and easy to use). I also added a standard light switch about 4 inches from the female end of the heavy-duty cord. This way, you can turn it on or off instead of unplugging and plugging it back in.
- Another minor difference is in the way I cut out the letters. I used a jigsaw, but only for the rough cuts. I went back with the Dremel with a sanding/grinding attachment to make it look nice.
- (Another note on the painting) I also put a coat of Poly-Crylic on top to finish it off and make it look nice.
- The last difference is the diffuser I used behind the letters. I used some thicker card-stock rather than printer paper.
Overall, I think it turned out pretty well. Next time, however, I will do a few thing differently. First of all I would round off the edges with a router. Next I would add two doors on the back - one in front of each lightbulb - so you can easily change the lightbulb when it dies. Third, I would find a better way to mount the light switch... It looks pretty bad.
Thanks for looking!
The light setup in action: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ci7ln1IN48Y&feature=youtu.be
How the letters were traced on the wood: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MZs2WuQeMIM&feature=youtu.be
Overview of the entire piece: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTT7v8Q5YfU&feature=youtu.be