3D Printing and LEDs

This past class we got a tutorial on 3D printing, and we were able to use a individual letter from our faceted model of our type lockup. Results were mixed.

Just beginning.

Just beginning.

Further along printing.

Further along printing.

Finished 3D test print still on the print bed.

Finished 3D test print still on the print bed.

The points of the facets were rather rough, it seemed that when the extruder tip was probably not hot enough and thus the filament didn’t adhere to the previous layer very well while the extruder made small circles, and as such the just-extruded bits tended to gather.

It was brought to our attention that we may find better success, and certainly much faster results if we were to mill our letters on the CNC mill out of a dense foam (that we can easily and very cheaply acquire from Home Depot or Ace hardware). The level of detail we could achieve on the mill looks to be pretty fine from examples we were shown, and we could possibly then also mill letters for EACH of the various marquee walls and not just this one window display in Fox. Exciting!

Additionally, we wired up an LED strip to an LED driver and a dimmer. Results were good and it looks like we can get a good range of brightness levels from full-power down to the lowest power level before cutoff.

Cool white LEDs. ~16 feet with 3 LEDs per inch segment.

Cool white LEDs. ~16 feet with 3 LEDs per inch segment.

For plexiglass, we found a pink semi-opaque plexi sample that would be perfect for out final construction. We just need to order a batch up now, though first we need figure out exactly how large we will need these circles.

We found a near perfect pink plexiglass to use.

We found a near perfect pink plexiglass to use.

Rough sketch of what our circuit to control the LEDs through the arduino will look like.

Rough sketch of what our circuit to control the LEDs through the arduino will look like.

MJE3055T - Transistor that should handle the power needed to supply two small strips of LEDs.

MJE3055T – Transistor that should handle the power needed to supply two small strips of LEDs.

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