Mrs Rog has a very smart glass topped meeting table in her new office, she asked if there was any way to jazz it up a bit....It was obvious to me "infinity mirror". This was for a Dutch based company who use orange and black as their colours.... design done then :)
When the table is not in use the mirror plugs into the mains electric, for meetings it uses a battery pack so that there is no trailing wire.
At the end of this instructable I will go through the things that can go wrong and how to avoid them!
Step 1: Parts Required for the Build
I looked around the internet to see if I could find a good starting point, I did! On ebay I found a metal framed mirror that is the same shape as the table.
Now for the rest of the parts
I had a sheet of 12mm ply lying around for mounting everything
In addition I needed a sheet of 3mm clear acrylic sheet the same size as the mirror.
A roll of 2 way mirror film for the front of the assembly.
As I was going to put a company logo in the mirror I purchased some 3mm and 5mm Foamex board for this purpose.
The remainder of the items were sourced from reichelt an online retailer for industrial and consumer electronics – they offer a range of tools, components, tech accessories and more – save up to 20% on many products.
RGB LED strip, I have set this at one colour for this job but this will do some lovely colour fades and changes.
12V 1.5A power supply This one is just big enough for the number of LEDs in this build.
Step 2: The Woodwork
From the sheet of plywood I cut out :
- A backplate which was the outside size of the mirror frame.
- Another oval that just fitted inside the mirror frame
- From the above oval I cut an oval strip that was just slightly less wide than the mirror frame front return.
- this left me with a packer piece that was a bit smaller than the mirror frame
There is a small gap in the oval strip for wiring the LED's, I also cut out a piece of one end of the packer board and the metal mirror frame to allow a battery pack to be slid into the mirror when required.
Step 3: Paint It Black
I drilled 4 holes spaced around the LED frame for later use, screwed the base plate and the packer together.
To make a nice job of it I sprayed all the wood and metal parts that will be seen in semi matt black.
Step 4: The 2 Way Mirror
A piece of 3mm acrylic was cut to fit the frame of the mirror and then turned into a 2 way mirror by covering with reflective window film. There are loads of you tube videos showing how to do this part of the job.
Step 5: Installing the LED's
The LED's come on a reel, the strip has a sticky back for holding them in place, the strip can be cut to length at every third LED. I started at one side of the wiring gap and worked my way round the mounting frame pulling back the backing strip and pressing into place, once it was all the way round I cut the excess off...... I do wish I had done a bit more work at this point as I ended up with a slight gap at the wiring end, had I thought about it I may have been able to hide a couple of LED's behind the gap in the wood to get an extra light at the join.....
As the frame has quite a curve in it at each end I added a few very fine cable ties around the frame to hold the LED's back in case the sticky back was not good enough to do the job.... more of this later.
Step 6: The Logo
This is for a company so the logo is important to them as you can see it is black orange and grey. The material I cut the logo from is 3mm and 5mm foamex board, the butterfly was cut from 3 layers of foamex in one go on my fretsaw, once the outer shape was cut I removed the lowest layer and cut the other 2 layers to the next shape, and then the last layer to the smallest part of the design ( no photo's of this in progress as I get caught up in doing the job and forget the camera :)
The top layer I painted black with a sharpie, the middle layer I peeled off the blue protective layer to allow the orange light to fall on the white surface, the lowest layer has the protective film left on which gives a pretty good grey when lit up.
The letters were done the same way, cut with a fretsaw and the top made black with the sharpie except for the dot above the j which will show orange.
Once the Mirror had been cleaned I stuck the logo on with double sided tape.
Step 7: Assembled and Tested
Assembly was as simple as sticking a foam draft seal around the frame where the 2 way mirror will go, put in the 2 way mirror followed by the LED frame, at this point I drilled through the previously drilled holes in the LED frame, through the 2 way mirror and into the metal frame, tapped the holes M4 diameter and screwed the pieces together.
I drilled a hole in the metal frame for a power socket and soldered the wires in place.
The mirror, with logo, was stuck to the packer plate with double sided tape.
Finally the pre-assembled metal mirror frame and LED unit were dropped onto the base and 4 wood screws drilled through from the sides to hold it all together.
Plugged into a 12v supply and see what it looks like!
Step 8: Battery Power
I sourced a 12v Li-ion battery that was allegedly 6.8 A/hr, I thought it might last for 2 hours..... reality is less than an hour, Mrs Rog will have to keep those meetings short :)
I will see if I can find a better solution.
Step 9: Pitfalls and Fixes
Starting from the first part I purchased,
- The mirror, I should have thought about the description on ebay, it said shabby-chic..... that really meant shoddily made, the metalwork was all shapes and the mirror glass was all over the place as well. I had to spend a lot of time cutting everything else to fit properly and remember that everything had to be the right way round on assembly or it would look all skew-whiff (an old English term). It made the build far harder than it needed to be.
- The 2 way mirror.... do not try putting the film on outdoors if there is any sort of breeze... that is all! Seriously, indoors on a nice clean surface is best.
- The LED strip, the sticky back isn't very good and the strip expands when the LED's are lit causing the plastic to move, you may get separation from the frame due to the expansion, thank goodness I used some zip ties....should have used more.
- The woodwork... The plywood that I used, it turns out, was damp, it has taken a long time to dry out the moisture that formed between the mirrors.
Other than that the jobs a good'un!