Introduction: Home Made Lightbox

About: A professional who loves photography, build things and Arduino projects.

This instructable have the intention to create a Lightbox that we can use to scan our negatives. For that purpose i will use and old part and some new ones.


The only recycled part is the router; i will dismantle it to retrieve the circuits and the holes will be covered in part with black adhesive paper and with the rest with wood.

  • Black adhesive tape (or Contact as we use to call it here)
  • LED strip
  • 12 Volt adapter
  • A proper connection for the adapter
  • MDF or a piece of thin wood
  • Some screws (same ones that comes out of the router)
  • A nylon stripe
  • A piece of wire
  • Aluminium foil
  • A piece of glass or acrilic, also the paper that will be used to install it bellow on order to diffuse the light.

Step 1: Adapting the Case

First i will remove the inner parts of the router, and at the top of the case, i will cut a square hole to be able to measure and install the piece of wood that later must be covered with the aluminium foil to reflect the light. Attach it to the bottom with the screws.

After this, you must locate and put the adapter inside (in my case a router hole on the back will be the exit for the connection), attach it carefully to the wood trying to avoid any damage to the aluminium foil, you can do it with a nylon strip.

Step 2: Install the Lights and Put the Cover

To do this i will just measure the LED strip and cut at the lenght that i need. In this case i only cut two segments and put a little bit of soldering from the wires to the LED strip.

Step 3: Test the Lights

In this step i will test the connections to check if the lights are working well and put some glue to avoid the movement of the glass cover.

Step 4: Finishing the Lightbox

And that's it! Now you have to test it (it's better at night to avoid any other light source...) and see if it works for you.

Step 5: ​Self Criticism and Possible Improvements

This is more or less the way that you will get at the end, i will use my DSLR to scan my negatives and copy my old photos.

The paper below the glass as a cover doesn't work really well, because it leave some marks from the structure of the paper itself.

So it will be better to use a piece of acrilyc to act as a diffuser, or may be some other material that doesn't have any notable texture.

The result of the scan with the paper could be too "grainy" as the last photo can show it.