Introduction: Light 'em Up: Turn Any 3D Print Into a LED Lamp
3D print + LED = awesomeness
Here I'll show you how to make a little LED lamp from any 3D print you like
This is the easiest way I could think of and it requires just a LED and a button cell battery
The result is a mood light which you can turn on/off by turning, which allows for the LED to make contact with the battery
Step 1: What You'll Need
- 3D printer or access to one
- Transparant filament, I use natural PETG
- 1 button cell battery3v CR2032
- 1 standard 5mm LED, get the bright ones
- Meshmixer software if you want to turn your own print into a LED lamp
Step 2: Prepare the Print
Our 3D light will exist out of 2 parts: the threaded base with battery + the transparant print with threaded cut-out and LED
The base you can print in any material and doesn't need support
If you want to convert an existing print to fit the base you first need to do a boolean difference with the 'Cut out' file in the (free) meshmixer software (works with STL files)
I added a short video that shows how to do this
Step 3: Print
I printed the base in white PLA without support and 20% infill
For the transparant part I suggest natural PETG and 15% infill (less infill is more light coming through)
There is no need for support to print the threaded Cut-out, but it might be needed for other overhangs in your print
Step 4: Install Battery and LED
The battery snaps on the base, make sure to put the negative side upwards
Before you snap the LED into the print, coil up the negative wire (the shortest wire) with a pencil
Fit the LED and bend the positive wire so it touches the side of the print right underneath the thread, or possibly a little bit inside the thread. You might need to redo this a couple times before you get it right.
Now just screw the print onto the base and you're done!
NOTE: one button cell battery provides juice for about 10 hours of light (220mAh/20mA=+-10h)
NOTE: using LEDs without a resistor might cause them to burn out faster, this is the case when you use a LED that needs less voltage then the battery provides (3V). Like yellow/red/orange LEDs (+-1.8V). I haven't seen them burn out yet, the difference isn't that big and since LEDs are cheap I wouldn't care too much about it. But if you want to be sure use a 100 ohm resistor or use green/blue/white/pink LEDs they are about 3.2V or more.
Step 5: Let It Shine!
Share your Light 'em up prints so we can make a bigger series in all different colors!