Introduction: Halloween Silhouette Projecting Light
This projecting light can be made to fit any time of year, but is especially fitting around halloween. Basically, a light that casts a shadow of whatever you’d like it to. It is flashlight shaped with changeable lenses, made easily with access to a 3D printer, laser cutter, and Little bits. It can be made with other materials, though these make it much easier.
Tape (Masking tape and duct tape)
Step 1: Build the Outer Shell
Start printing the outer pieces of your light.
You can download my blueprint for the shell Here.
If you’re using my file, print each of the pieces of the light separately.
To do this:
Click on “File” in the upper right hand corner of fusion.
Click “3D print”, uncheck “Send to 3D Print Utility” and select the the top, almost bowl shaped part of the light.
Continue to export to STL file on your desktop
Insert SD card into your laptop
Drag STL file into SD card
Export card and insert it into computer that has access to the 3D printing software. (the larger computer by the 3D printers for RA students)
Use this software to scale the blueprint from 1 to 19.45. Changing one of the values (X Y or Z) will change them all.
Download the file to he SD card
Export and remove the SD card
Insert the card into a Lulzbot 3D printer
Go to temperature and select PLA
Go back to the main menu, select print from SD
Select your file and allow the machine to print
Repeat this process with every piece of the light
Step 2: Build the Filters
The next step is to create some sort of filter. These are meant to block some of the light, causing a shape to be projected with light and are fairly easy to make using a laser cutter.
You can design your own filters , or download mine Here.
To design your own, you open adobe illustrator
Use the circle tool to make 1 circle and then make the same amount of copies as you’d like filters
Go to google images and find clipart of something you’d like to cast a shadow of
Drag the photo into illustrator
Minimize it and place it inside one of your circles, off centered about 3/4 away from the middle
Use the line or curve tools to trace the outside of the image
Delete the image itself, keeping the lines you have made
Export the file as a DXF
Upload the file to a USB and plug it into computer that controls a laser cutter.
Make sure there is a wood piece in the proper place to cut in
If you have used my file,
Upload the file to Cura and
Select every each piece and minimize it (in the upper left corner) to 106.58
Download the design and press print on the laser cutter
Use the electric sander on each of the pieces faces to make the thinner, rotating it to make sure the sanding is even.
Spray paint optional
Step 3: Build the Light Source
Once the outer parts of the light are completed, you can start on the inner functions,
You can use any type of light source, as long as its nonflammable, small, battery powered, and can be switched on and off. I just find LittleBits to be the easiest.
Get your little bits together. You’ll need a bright LED, a wire piece, a toggle switch, a power piece, and the battery that goes with it. You will (But not yet) connect the power source (blue) to the toggle switch (pink) to the wire ( orange) to the light (Green) using the magnetic sides on each of the pieces.
You can now tape the bright LED and the wire together on the one end that allows you to connect them through magnets.
Step 4: Assembling the Top
Now, get a glue gun and the top, bowl shaped piece of your light. Make a layer of hot glue around the wider edge of the light, making a rubbery lining. This will allow you to secure your filters in a way that is flexible, so you can change to different ones.
Insert the LED and wire pieces into the top of the light, though the side that you hot glued. Bring the wire back through the other side. Secure with tape in a way that will not get in the way of a light. You can use more hot glue to make sure it is attached properly, but don’t use glue directly on the Little bits. Only glue parts of the Bits that are covered with tape. Make sure that the light is deep enough that the filter can still fit on top of it. The light will be off centered because of the wire, this is why the filters aren’t centered.
Step 5: Assembling the Body
Finally, we can start to put it all together.
Get one of the tube pieces (Not with a hole in it) and the both piece (the tube with 1 blocked end)
put a layer of hot glue around the ring of the bottom while it is right side up, the blocked side of the tube to the table. Place the other tube piece to it, gluing them together to make one longer tube with a blocked bottom. Once it’s dry, peel off the excess glue on the outside of the tube.
Tape the rest of the pieces together in the previously stated order. Bunch up the wire that's connected to the battery so that its out of the way and place it, vertical and battery down, in the tube you have glued.
Repeat the same gluing technique with the other larger tube piece that doesn’t have a hole in it.
Check that the hole is big enough for the toggle switch to fit through. If it is too small, use pliers to make it a bit bigger. If you out one of the end, sharper pieces of the pliers into the hole and spin it, it should shave some of the plastic and make the hole bigger.
Put the tube with the hole on it on top. make sure that the hole aligns with the toggle switch, so the switch can be accessed outside of the light. Put the metal part of the toggle switch through the hole, the tubes are stacked. Glue the tube in with the hole in it in this position as long as the hole and the switch align. If they don’t align, adjust the LittleBits or flip the tube with the hole in it upside down to change the location of the hole.