Introduction: Longboard Rearlight

Picture of Longboard Rearlight

Riding a longboard is nice, wind in your face, standing relaxt on your board. However, riding at night is quite unsafe, having no lights on your board. A light on top of the board doesn't look quite as nice, being able to remove them is favourable. The lights I created hang on the underside of the board, clamping to the tip.

Step 1: Materials List

Picture of Materials List
  • Longboard (for the dimensions)
  • 3D printer
  • Soldering iron
  • Drill
  • Dremel
  • 3 red LED's
  • 47 Ohm resistor
  • 9 Volt battery
  • Battery holder
  • Switch
  • Measuring equipment
  • Wire cutters
  • Spraypaint
  • Metal wire
  • Double adhesive tape
  • Sandigpaper

I ordered all the stuff I needed for the circuit on a Dutch site (since I live in the Netherlands): http://www.allekabels.nl/

And the rest of the materials from a D.I.Y. Shop.

Step 2: Making the Initial Design

Picture of Making the Initial Design

After getting the idea to go around safer on my longboard, I started drawing what I thought would be the best concept.

Step 3: Deciding the Shape and Measurements

This is one of the most important steps.

It is key to get the right dimensions, taking into account the curvature of the board is really important.

Step 4: Making a 3D Model

Picture of Making a 3D Model

With the help of a friend I started make a 3D-model of my idea.

We did this with the program Inventor of Autodesk.

Within the 3D design it is important to integrate a hinge, the 3D printer is able to leave an opening, later on you will be able to put metal wire through the opening to hold the pieces together.

Also on the other side of the cover, we integrated a little hook, to keep the cover against the clamp.

Step 5: 3D Printing

Picture of 3D Printing

The 3D-printing was done on an UP! plus 2.

The 3D printing is a step that requires a lot of patience, I had the problem that the model came loose of the plate it was printed on. This resulted in a slight offset in the clamp, this will have to be sanded off later on. For the next time I would have to use a bigger baseplate (a surface printed to support the model). Also for the cover, the baseplate got stuck to it, for this I do not know the solution (yet).

After the printing you can use a boxcutter to cut away the supports.

Step 6: Getting the Electronics to Work

Picture of Getting the Electronics to Work

My idea was to get 3 LED's into the backside of the case. To see what resistor I would need, I used the following website: https://www.ledtuning.nl/nl/resistor-calculator.

With a 9V battery I need to use a resistor of 47 Ohm.

I drilled holes where the LED's were to be fitted and also a hole for the switch to fit through the cover.

First I had to find out how the circuit had to be arranged and connected. After this I placed the LED's, the resistor and the switch; and cut all the wires to the appropriate length. Then I soldered everything together.

Step 7: Finishing Up and Assembly

Picture of Finishing Up and Assembly

Then came the time to assemble. First I had to sand off the baseplate that got stuck to the cover. I tried to take it off with a Dremel, but this went to fast and left an uneven surface. So I had to do it by hand, with sanding paper.

The Dremel did work well with the edge of the clamp. The edge of the clamp got a little offset when it got loose from the baseplate.

I decided to spraypaint it silver to give it some reflective capability.

When the paint was dry; I put the LED's and switch in place. Afterwards I put some metal wire through the hole for the hinge to keep the cover and clamp together.

Then I used double adhesive tape to keep the battery in place.

Step 8: End Result

Picture of End Result

I'm pleased with the end result, though next time I would improve certain points.

The little hook that keeps the cover in place against the clamp was too brittle and will brake after frequent opening and closing. I would surround the LED's with a bowl to better reflect the light outwards.

To make the light fit better, I would have to use a 3D scanner to get the perfect shape of the board.

All in all: It was fun and I will maybe make an improved version in the near future.

Comments

seamster (author)2016-06-28

This is a fantastic idea! I used to ride a longboard at night, and I never thought to add a light. Smart idea, and nice to see how you made it.

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