LED Projector Box




Introduction: LED Projector Box

About: Longtime DIYer liking the Instructable platform used mainly in the past for learning and ideas, but now hope to give back by sharing ideas I've found and developed myself.

Using the items pictured a project box was created for projecting images, designs, text or anything that one could come up with onto another surface; in this example a name was used - could be your daughter or son!

Image 1 parts came from ledsupply total cost around $27.00:

  1. Clear Project Box
  2. AA Battery Holder with Switch and Wire Leads
  3. LED Driver
  4. LED
  5. Double-Sided Thermal Adhesive Tape

Image 2 parts came from home or can be found at a craft or hardware store:

  1. Black Spray Paint
  2. Foam Letters (reference later steps for other ideas)

Tools and Materials:

  1. Rubbing Alcohol
  2. Solder Iron & Solder
  3. Drill
  4. Heat Shrink Tubing
  5. Tweezers

Step 1: Design

This project started with the design on the inside cover because it ends up needing to be painted and while the paint was drying the remaining steps were completed. This designed created here used foam letters that were already available, but there is no reason masking tape or any other sticky material couldn't have been used and cut or shaped to whatever design imaginable.

The foam letters were stuck to the inside of the cover so the projected image would show up correctly and then the entire inside of the cover was sprayed with black paint.

Step 2: On/Off Switch

The project box had to be drilled out so that the on/off switch on the battery holder could be accessed once the project was enclosed and complete.

  1. The battery holder was held inside the project box as shown in the image and marked on the bottom of the project box where the switch made contact with the box.
  2. A hole was drilled large enough for the switch to protrude and move into both positions.

Step 3: Power to Driver

To properly fit inside the project box and to transfer the power from the battery pack to the LED driver the wires on both the Battery Holder and the MicroPuck needed to be cut shorter and connected to each other.

The wires on the Battery Holder were cut down to about 1 inch, and the input wires (Red + & Black -) on the MicroPuck LED driver were also cut down to about 1 inch. Heat shrink tubing in red and black were used around the soldered connections, but the wires could have been connected with wire nuts or electrical tape as well.

Step 4: Power Connection to LED

To transfer the power from the LED driver to the Luxeon LED, the Orange (+) and Green (-) wires from the MicroPuck were connected to the LED.

First, the positive and negative solder pads on one side of the Luxeon LED were tinned (flow the entire pad in solder and let set) and then the wires on the LED driver were tinned. Tinning each connection prior to making the connection helps make the solder connection less difficult. The Orange wire was then connected to the positive side of the LED and the Green wire was connected to the negative side of the LED.

Step 5: Prepare Guts

Using double-sided tape the guts of the project need to have tape so they can be stuck to the inside of the project box.

The components were all cleaned with alcohol first and then tape was cut-to-length and stuck to the Battery Holder, MicroPuck and LED.

Step 6: Install Guts

Once the tape was on the components then the project box was also cleaned and the components were placed inside.

The Battery Holder needs to sit where the switch lines up with the hole that was cut earlier, then the MicroPuck was stuck towards the far corner so the LED could be placed directly in the center.

Step 7: Finish Cover & Test Her Out

By this time in the process the letters were removed after the paint had set, but before it was completely dry so that the removal was easier. The cover was screwed back down and the switch moved to the on position. It worked first try :)!

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    7 years ago

    spray the box black too then the projection will be brighter and you will t get the sides glowing


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    While you're at it, line the inside (the non-projection sides) with aluminium foil (or tin foil for a lot of english speakers) or similar. Every bit of extra light helps!


    Reply 7 years ago

    Tried it and it doesn't work because it get lots of reflections (same as if you used many LED's)


    Reply 7 years ago

    I think I'll do another one for my son this time and try this, thanks for the suggestion!


    7 years ago

    Amazing idea! Made mine but with some changes: powered by USB, ferrero rocher box (0$), single white high brithness led, can switch paper for diferent projections ;)


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Yes, they help to avoid failure and increase longevity! My own rule of thumb is any diode I drive at 350mA or higher I use an LED driver. In general, LEDs are extremely voltage sensitive and with higher power LEDs the voltage will vary enough that it should be regulated with a driver. Additionally, the driver I used (MicroPuck) was designed specifically for AA battery applications and helps to prolong light output from the batteries!