This week the challenge was to build a flashlight using any material and process, ensuring that the device have a battery and a light. Since I’ve been playing in digital fabrication and wanting to focus on projects within that space this semester, I decided to take a deep dive into creating a piece that snapped together and into place, using no adhesive (other than the hot glue to hold the LED into place on the acrylic).
To start out I did some light research on using the laser to cut the material in order to allow it to bend and curve over a fixed shape. I found this project article on instructables (via the Intro to Fabrication site) outlining different methods on how to make wood bend and different patterns to use.I chose a pattern that looked like it would work for my first go ahead. I planned out all vectors in illustrator and used the Parametic kerf #4 to create the bends.
In addition to the shell I knew I needed to create a supportive frame structure. I decided to create a lite skeleton across the board that allowed for a hollow center for wiring and power source.
I decided to build in the Tandon MakerSpace and I printed on found cardboard in the scrap box at the location and was fairly successful in my conception and completion, mostly. I realized after printing that my measurements were off for the connecting end pieces and fixed the image for the wooden model.
Next, I moved onto the wood. In tradition of ITP this movement was a total failure. When I went to assemble the pieces, the shell cracked and broke into pieces. Needless to say, it was back to the drawing board (errr vector board, aka illustrator).
I was grateful that I was in the Maker Space, where they have several example projects and I was able to find a pattern that bent the way way I was intending. I re-designed and re-printed on a piece of wood I purchased from the MakerSpace store for $2. From there I quickly assembled the wooden pieces and began to cut out the acrylic. I assembled a simple circuit with a switch and 220 resister connected to a 9V battery. And voila!