In this experiment I tried to find possible ways of guiding and shaping flashlight with the help of Plastic Optical Fiber.
Step 1: Ingredients
• 9 optical fiber light, I tried to buy only the plastic optical fiber on spool (POF), but I found only very expensive ones. These ones you could buy in these 2 euro shops or Chinese market. Image credit
• thin plywood
• 1 straw
• paper adhesive tape
• wood glue
• transparent sandable epoxy resin for plastic
• punctured bicycle inner tube
• sandpapers with different grades
• and of course your favourite flash light
Step 2: Print flashlight head's profile
Take a frontal photo of your flashlight's head. In Illustrator or any image manipulation software draw the contour of the profile, than print out. I scaled the outline work up and down to have more sizes printed, than I measured the flashlight to see which one fits exactly.
Step 3: Creating profile shapes
Copy contours from paper to plywood with help of carbon paper. than cut out
Step 4: Create 2 structre
Glue together 3 profiles. Put between them small pieces of plywood.
Step 5: Finish these 2 structures
Roll over some paper tape around a pencil (with the sticky part outside) than roll out on the inner part of both structures. You can reinforce the margins with bits of paper tapes.
Step 6: Cut all optical fibers to size
Cut a straw to desired length (mine is 24 cm/9.4 inch).
Put a tape on one ending to close, than you can start to put small amount of optical fibers into it, than cut to size. In this way you won't have to sand a lot.
Step 7: Bundle toghether the optical fibers (hardest part)
Glue temporary those 2 small structure on a sheet of plywood, reinforce them with paper tape.
Start to put optical fibers in it.
Note: these fibers are very delicate to handle, specially at the end of this process. If you bend them to hard, than won't be straight anymore and you have to change them.