A flashlight

Sooo for this project I started off by quickly sketching as many of the ideas I had as possible. I had a few materials I could potentially work with – an old candle, an acryllic tube, some led strips….

So I picked a few ideas and got to prototyping! I started with the candle since that was simplest

Then I found some heavy duty, long cardboard and tried out another tabletop lamp-esque thing

Then I made my cube concept, and really liked it!

The imperfections let light out in a nice way. But I wanted to try another ‘pinhole’ concept where light was coming out in a concentrated way. So I lazily wrapped it in contact paper to try and cover the seems, then poked a hole in it.

My previous taller tabletop lamp thing was not as messed up so I simply drilled a hole into it (it was some heavy duty cardboard!).

The light from these was interesting but I’d need a much brighter light to have it look cool. Plus I really liked the cube concept – mostly because its imperfections let light out of the edges in an interesting way. So I took this concept further; I built a new cube, split into two pieces, so the user could adjust how the light seeped out. Plus I figured my shotty woodworking would help this effect.

I messed with it some more – trying a cut in one of the sides, but I didn’t like it as much… so I settled on the split cube and got to work! Roland was kind enough to give me some plywood and I got to work on the band saw.

From there, I chopped it up on the miter saw. This was a poor choice because it was far less precise than the band saw…but I already started so I finished it out the best I could….

So I took my cube faces and quickly propped em up to see how it would fit together…

I was unsure how I wanted to account for the thickness of the plywood, and I just rearranged and stared at my pieces waaaaay too many times… plus my crafstmanship was a bit shoddy and they weren’t quite square enough to fit nicely… I made some more cuts to my ‘bases’ on the band saw, but I really had no plan. I needed to sleep on it.

I finally decided I would arrange the wood like so…

The bases would have room on one side for the other half to ‘fit’ in, but I still wasnt sure this would work… So now I just needed to clean up my pieces, sanding a little bit to get them to fit better, and start glueing. The first side I did two at a time

But the next go around I got impatient and glued all three pieces together at once..

Aaaand now its basically done! It didn’t quite fit together, but that was expected. You can turn the pieces around to get different effects with the light seeping out.

To finish it out, I attached a white led to my coin cell holder with some electrical tape (very fancy! :p )

And here it is all cleaned up. I like it.

Things I learned:
Boxes are hard
Use painters tape to write on/mark wood because erasing stinks
Wordpress is very stingy about image sizes

One thought on “A flashlight

  1. Nice work. I really like that you prototyped a couple ideas first before you got going on one.

    Yes, boxes are hard and our shop is not exactly the best for fine wood working. Getting straight cuts can be a challenge. But don’t worry, we’ll cover ways to get the best results.

    I think a coat of paint could make this project pop. Maybe black on the outside and white on the inside? Could make the opening a bit more dramatic.

    Great documentation.

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