Introduction: My Awesome LED Cube (Allspark)
Well, I was one of the first people in Darwin to see the new Transformers movie, 'Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen', and let me tell you, it is by far one of the greatest movies I have ever seen in my life. And, basically, through a couple of favors, I was able to get a seat. To say thanks to the great manager at the local cinemas I am good friends with, I have built this cube. Note: I have done a lot of things for this person, I may put a few up as slideshows soon.
Anyway, I got the idea from This Instructable, but didn't want to plagiarize, so I changed a few things. First of all, I used two LED's, which also fade. Also, I made my cube larger, around 10cm x 10cm x 10cm. Finally, I only used sheet metal as a base, and a soda can as the metal 'Armour', if you wish.
Finally, before we begin, one last note; I didn't realise how awesome this would turn out, so I took very few pictures. I will definitely be making another.
So, get your tools out and lets begin!!!
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Step 1: Tools and Materials
Basically, You will need a few simple things.
- 2 x Colour-Changing LED's ( I got mine here. They are pretty expensive, but worth it)
- Solder (Tool Or Material?)
- Aluminium. I used some nice sheet type for the base, however the panel designs are from a soda can.
- Soldering Setup. (Iron, sponge, sucker, stand, etc. You know the drill)
- Hacksaw to cut the plexiglass with.
- Tin snips. Worked well for the can and the plate alloy.
That's about it. Lets get started!
Step 2: Build the Box.
Unfortunately, this is the step where I took the least photos. Like I said, I'm building another soon, so I will get lots of photos there.
My cube is 10cm x 10xm, but I cut all my sides 10 x 9. This allows for a snug fit. I only cut 5 peices as I wanted a hinged base so I could access batteries, switch, etc.
Before you glue it up, tack all the corners together. Mark the insides and then get some sandpaper and 'frost' the insides. This really gives a nice effect.
Finally, wipe the dust off then glue them up.
Now lets move on to the armour!
Step 3: Armour Plates!
THE METAL TIN IS EXTREMELY SHARP!!! BE CAREFUL!!!
Anyway, go wild with the tin snips here. Let out your creativity. Cut out some really odd shapes. The less you have, the more colour you see, but it looks a bit 'naked', if you know what I mean. Too much and its all metal and no colour. I went a nice medium.
Glue them on. Fire up your hot glue gun, then stick them on. Be sure you glue the corners down so they don't cut someone. Now onto the circuit!
Step 4: Circuitry
The circuit for my cube was very simple. I used a 3v 2AA battery holder, a switch and 2 RGB LED's in parallel.
I originally had a dropping resistor, but I found that the LED's wouldn't correctly fade through all the colours, it would 'flicker'. I think this was a lack of current to the PWM circuitry inside. Also, when the LED's were displaying white (i.e. all LED chips on) it would simply shut down and start over.
Hmm. I had a problem.
So after trying a smaller resistor, I finally gave up on it.
BAM!!! There is so much light being emitted from those little LED's when you take the resistor away, its amazing! The photos really don't do it any justice.
But, once you put it in its little frosted case, it changes to a moderately bright glow. Awesome for a mood light and/or night light.
Now, take the case off, so we can add the hinge and metal base.
Step 5: The Bottom Plate and Hinge.
Unlike the original cube instructable I saw, I wanted easier access to the switch and batteries. So, after much thinking, I decided on a hinged bottom plate.
The aluminium plate gives a nice solid base, whle the top half of the cube folds off it, a bit like the cabin of a truck.
First, get your sheet of aluminium out and place your cube shell on top. Score an outline, then cut it out. I was able to use my tin snips here, but it was tough. It came out nicely though, I must admit.
Find yourself a hinge, and mock fit it up. The only hinge I had on hand was a strange corner hinge, and wasn't ideal. But, it worked.
Once you have worked out if it will work, go nuts on the glue gun. The cube is pretty top-heavy, and I had to re-glue it once, but I didn't use very much glue. It's not coming off now!!!
Step 6: Glue It Down
Glue the circuit to the inside of the metal plate, switch it on, and admire! Looks uber-cool, and guaranteed to impress people.
Step 7: Finishing Up
It you liked it, don't forget to rate and comment on it!
Who knows, maybe it was good enough to get featured! (Please?)
Video coming soon, when I can get my video camera working.