Intro: LED Lightbox
Xaria requires a light box for her quilting so she can trace patterns on to martial. In my wisdom I said ok. So I will be making it out of scrap pallet wood and opal acrylic with an LED strip. I am using a set of LED light strips from our local hardware store. It will be a simple box with a dado so you can slide the acrylic out if needed.
She has requested it to be around A4 size. So it is not to big lightbox. I have made it about 20mm bigger all round.
This build was off the cuff... as most of my projects
First cut your wood to required width on table saw and the set height of your blade to about 5mm. don't worry about length just yet just make sure you have enough.
Then set the fence to desired distance maybe 5mm and run all pieces to make a dado. Check the thickness wit your acrylic and adjust if you have to make a second cut.
Now mitre the corners at 45. Take your time doing this with the inset as it can throw you off a little. On one of the ends I then decided to cut it lower so one can remove the acrylic if needed.
Cut a bit of ply for the base. I then glued and brad nailed to the base using clamps to hold in place while nailing etc.
With acrylic unlike PVC acrylic can crack and chip a lot easier so you have to be careful cutting it. You can get special blades but even then you still have to cut very slowly.
You can cut it on the bandsaw again cutting slowly to get a clean cut... If you have an older piece of acrylic you may need to apply a little bit of heat to take the protective paper off it. (if it is brand new then you shouldn't have this issue) Since I work as a plastic fabricator the piece I am using is very old and being lying around our workshop for years.
The LED's I used were plug and play so there was no soldering or wiring which made it very easy.
I painted the inside of the box white to brighten and reflect the light more which did help. I try silver tape but the paint worked better and was brighter.
It is an easy build the hardest part is the mitres, so over all easy. Just take your time with the acrylic.