It took over 165 hours to print all the parts of the name sign. By now I have:
And I have 171 LEDs that need to get in there and need to be connected to the microcontroller.
Time to assemble the name sign.Read full article
By now, it is clear how the name sign should look like and we now know how the LEDs behave and how to diffuse the light. And since I did some test prints, I know that the individual parts seem to work. Time to work out all the nitty gritty details of the design and prepare the 3D print files.Read full article
Each character of the name sign will get LEDs to light them up. By now, I know how to control the LEDs using a microcontroller. And I have a LED-matrix that I can use to figure out how much light is generated by the LEDs. It’s time to figure out how to diffuse the light and this is also a good moment to print out a character to see if the parts fit.Read full article
Now that the outline of the name sign is clear, it’s time to look at the next topic: how to add light to it? I want to be able to control the color of the LEDs, I will need to investigate how to do that. And I need to figure out how to make sure that the front of the characters diffuses the light so that the individual LEDs are not showing.
A quick search on the Internet showed that LED strips differ by the amount of LEDs per meter. This means that I also need to figure out which one to buy. Since I have no clue how much light these strips produce, nor how much light will be lost by the front of the characters, I will probably have to experiment a bit to find the answers.Read full article
The project has started! As stated in the previous post, I will use OpenSCAD to create my name sign. OpenSCAD is not a text editor and I have no clue if it can do anything with text and fonts. So, let’s dive into OpenSCAD.
I am not big fan of reading books and long instructions, but I also don’t want to waste my time to find that it was written down in line one of a manual. This learning track was a nice mix of reading, trying, failing, searching, trying, failing, searching and finally: success.
The whole name sign thing depends on the ability to use text in OpenSCAD.
I browsed the OpenSCAD website and found the Cheat Sheet; loved it.
And there it is: the
text module and the documentation states:
“The text module creates text as a 2D geometric object, using fonts installed on the local system or provided as separate font file.”.
Exactly what I need; let’s try this.