Introduction: Mario Question Block Light

This is my first instructable, so bear with me.  My project is an 8x8 cube light inspired by the Mario Bros question block.  It took me about a month to complete, mainly cause I am easily distracted. Each cube took around 3-5 hours to complete.

Step 1: Parts

Body:
2 - 8" clear acrylic cubes (Amazon)
4 - 8" clear acrylic squares (Etsy)
350 - orange 1/2" square tile (Etsy)
350 - black 1/2" square tile (Etsy)
super glue

Guts:
2 - plastic wiring boxes
2 - light sockets
2 - nipples
2 - locking nuts
2 - 12ft extension cords/lamp wires
2 - light bulbs (LED or CFL)

Step 2: Prep the Parts

The custom orange tiles I got (from Etsy) were not the right color orange that I needed, so I ended up spraying them a darker orange (hard to tell from the picture, but side by side you can see the super bright vs the painted dark orange).  The 3 colors used for the cube are a cheese orange/yellow, pumpkin dark orange and black.  The inside box got colored cheese, while the tiles needed a coating of pumpkin to give the right contrast.  After everything dried it was on to assembly.

Step 3: Assemble the Body

A straight edge is crucial to get everything lined up.  It took an hour per side to complete doing 3 sides per cube.  I used a print out of the block I found online and blew it up to scale (I wasn't worried about it being pixelated :P)  A little dab of super glue on each tile and they are set.  Once its down, theres no going back, that glue dried fast and strong!

Step 4: Wiring the Guts

I went through a bunch of different interior lights be decided a traditional light fixture would give the best results.  I went with an LED 40w equivalent which doesnt throw much heat but is still plenty bright.  For the base I used an electrical box meant for ceiling fans and a 12ft extension cord to attach to the socket fixture.  I cut a small hole at the bottom of the box to feed the wire into.  I attached it to the base using a medium nipple and locking nut.  Then I couldnt figure out a good way to secure it to the bottom without using screws, so I hot glued it in.  The base has a removable bottom cap, which is what I glued down, so I could still remove the base if I ever needed to.  I glued some extra tiles to the bottom of the cube's lid so they would not slide around, then plugged it in to test!

Step 5: Finish!

After both guts where put in, all that was left was mounting to the wall.  I used some channeling to hide the wire.  I also decided not to use the colored lids as they made the room too orange.  The final step will be getting a pedal switch So I can turn them on and off while at my desk.

Comments

author
mdale1 (author)2011-05-01

Can't seem to find the tiles on Etsy or anywhere else.
Anyway you could provide a link?

author
phdearthworm (author)mdale12011-05-02

I got these back when Etsy used to let you use Alchemy to post what you need and have the vendor come to you. I used SundrySupply for the 1/2" tiles and A Pile of Hats for the square tops.  I'm sure either of those could get you what you need upon request.  They cost about $60 and $25 respectively.

author
wilderv2 (author)2011-04-05

could you post a link to where you got the boxes, i've searched amazon but found nothing similar to it

author
phdearthworm (author)wilderv22011-04-06

Sure, I listed it next to the Parts. Its from a company called Azar.

author
Kiteman (author)2011-03-26

Where did you source the cubes?

author
phdearthworm (author)Kiteman2011-03-27

They are available on Amazon for $16.

author
Kiteman (author)phdearthworm2011-03-27

OK.

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