DIY Nanoleaf (Vrikxa)

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Introduction: DIY Nanoleaf (Vrikxa)

About: Hi everyone. I am an electronics enthusiast and like to explore new and exciting applications electronic gadgets has to offer these days. I am also a professional working in silicone valley as a firmware engin…

Hi everyone, Here I have presented my try on making Nanoleaf rhythm. The original product is very expensive so I thought to make one by myself which looks similar to that. If you want to learn more please watch my YouTube video attached below or you can also follow steps mentioned here. 3D model is available to download so please go ahead and use it and if you want to point out my mistake in that, please feel free.

Supplies

  1. Govee RGB LED strip
  2. 3D model (Model available to download)
  3. 2447 White acrylic sheet
  4. Acrylic cutter

Step 1: Understand Original Product

I made my first 3D model on Autodesk Fusion 360. For that I searched for Nanoleaf rhythm online to get information like dimensions, shaoe, LED placement and features like RGB with music sync and DIY scene creation. After taking inspiration from that, I designed the model but question was how to connect LEDs. You can download the 3D model from GitHub.

Step 2: Panel Connections

For LED connection, went back to original product and saw how they made it. Nanoleaf uses connectors called linkers. It comes in 2 types, rigid and flexible. Rigid is widely used linker type for flat wall mounts. But as the design size grew bigger, Nanoleaf decided to launch flexible linkers to allow users to connect LED panels around the corners and uneven textures walls. (Photos are from official website).

For that I decided to used solderless connectors with locks, which allows easy replacements and helps to reinforce the whole LED design. For that I left a window of matching size of solderless connector on all 3 sides of my 3D design.

Step 3: 3D Model

Step 4: 3D Model Prints

Once you get your 3D models printed, then you are halfway there. I got my prints done from www.craftscloud.com and I felt their price quotes were in budget and quality I got for that is really good. (not sponsored)

Step 5: LED Placement

Measure how long LED strip you need to stick inside the panels. The original nanoleaf uses 3 LEDs in each corner of panels. I saw couple of videos on YouTube using same design but it wasn't bright enough to lighten the room. So, I decided to run LEDs on all sides from inside of panels.

Step 6: Diffuser

Now, we need diffuser. Diffuser as the name suggests that is helps to spread the light in all directions by diffusing the light rays. For that I decided to use 3mm 2447 white acrylic sheet. There are different variants for white acrylic sheets so make sure you check before buying. I decided to cut it by myself but you can just get it done at hardware shops for few bucks.

Step 7: Cutting Diffuser

To cut the acrylic sheet you need acrylic cutter which has a unique shape like cat claw and purpose is same, TO SCRATCH the hell out. :D Once you get the impression of panels, you need to scratch the acrylic sheet on that line over and over again until acrylic sheet is thin enough to bend and break. Don't take this step lightly. Even if you feel tired and you think you have scratched enough, do it few more times, because when you bend the acrylic, sometimes it doesn't break in straight line. So, deeper you have scratched, higher chances of breaking it right.

Step 8: Make Connections

Now run your LED strip through all panels and connect them all using the connectors I mentioned earlier.

Step 9: Get the Final Shape

You can glue all the panels together if you want, otherwise connectors will try their best to hold them tight. Stick diffuser on the top and 3M double sided tape at the back to stick it to wall.

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    9 Comments

    0
    ejthesecond3
    ejthesecond3

    9 months ago

    not gonna lie, how safe would it be to just use el wire or something that won't show individual lights? i'm not a fan of seeing the individual lights...

    0
    CuriousHuman
    CuriousHuman

    Reply 9 months ago

    Not sure how bright you want but I don't think El wire gets that bright. But yes you can use them. Just that you will have to work on connectors if you want individual tiles to stay separate. What I mean is if you want to change design let's say, LED strip can be easy to handle. If you don't want to see individual LED, you can use thicker diffuser or increase the depth of the tile which will increase the distance between LED and diffuser.

    0
    ejthesecond3
    ejthesecond3

    Reply 9 months ago

    thx!

    1
    CuriousHuman
    CuriousHuman

    Reply 9 months ago

    Thank you for introducing El wires. I didn't know the name. Have fun and keep tinkering. 😄👍🏼

    0
    ejthesecond3
    ejthesecond3

    Reply 9 months ago

    lol i know nothing about them... i just recently learned about them myself...

    1
    CuriousHuman
    CuriousHuman

    Tip 10 months ago

    Another tip I have is you can use a thicker or better diffuser. I used 3mm 2447 white acrylic. You can go for either 6mm or use different number of white acrylic. that might help to diffuse light better or 3D print that too but that can take your overall expense high.

    1
    CuriousHuman
    CuriousHuman

    Tip 10 months ago

    You can increase the depth of the 3D model. I used 10mm LED strip and kept the depth of 12mm. But feels like LEDs are too close to the diffuser and you can see the heavy LED spots. if you increase the space between LED and diffuser that'd be great I feel.

    final_blue1.jpg
    1
    Nikolaos Babetas
    Nikolaos Babetas

    10 months ago

    Really nice project! Out of curiosity, how much does it cost to buy the components?

    0
    CuriousHuman
    CuriousHuman

    Reply 10 months ago

    Thank you Nikolaos, Price might vary depending on the location you are in and websites you use. For me 3D print was like $8 (USD) per piece, LED strip with remote and LED controller was $25 from Amazon and cutter was $8. And I still have Acrylic sheet and LED strip left extra. You can get the big single piece acrylic sheet and cut it by hand like it did to reduce the overall cost.