2016.04.02

decagon

One of the projects I’m working on for Maker Faire Milwaukee is something I call the “DecaLight” which will (hopefully) consists of a decagon-shaped structure with ten light bulbs that are controlled by a set of relays and can turn on and off in pre-programmed sequences. For those unfamiliar with the Decagon, it’s a 10-sided polygon (sometimes called a “10-gon”) and this specific model is a 9-simplex.

Design

Etched Wood

While I started with building a quick and dirty prototype I also decided to build a scale mode. I used the laser cutter at Brown Dog Gadgets to etch and cut a piece of 3mm Baltic Birch plywood.

LED bulb

While the full-sized version will use light bulbs, the scale model will use 10mm LEDs. I just drilled holes for the LED leads since I never got around to adding holes to the laser cutting file.

Painted

Sometimes printmaking techniques come in useful when not making prints. I spray painted the wood and after it dried I rolled on some black ink to make a pure black and white version. For the full size version I’ll be using a CNC router to cut grooves (pockets) and then paint those white while the top surface will be black.

Wood

Here’s the bigger prototype I worked on, which just has a piece of plywood with lamp sockets attached. I got the sockets for cheap from ebay, but they’re terrible.

Sockets

I later spotted some nice ceramic (rather than plastic) lamp sockets at Menards that were just a bit more than the crappy plastic ones, so I’ll probably switch to those.

Hopefully I can get the prototype working in the next week or so. I’ve still got plenty of time to complete the full-scale version, but even with 174 days until Maker Faire Milwaukee, that time will go fast!

A video posted by Pete Prodoehl (@raster) on

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