A first prototype was made to start exploring possible lighting solutions. I used a laser cutter to ‘print’ 4mm thick MDF parts and clicked them together. The horizontally oriented partitions (rows) are fixed while the vertical ones are mobile to allow easy modifications. (see picture)
The front of the display are the ‘letters’ (or words). During the design I faced the problem that the letters need to be ’s tencil’-safe in order to laser-cut them. Despite doing this, it failed because the ‘bridge’ to the inner part wasn’t wide enough. Because I don’t like the look of such letters, future version will probably be printed (with a normal laserprinter) on tracing paper so that I don’t need a stencil-font anymore.
1. A double white LED on a wire is placed in the middle of a big box. The back side is coated with an aluminium foil but this is not advisable because aluminium seems to be a good conductor… The four characters in the center are illuminated equally but the light intensity decreases towards the sides.
2. Two superbright LEDs are placed on the outsides of a box to illuminate 4 characters. The sides are coated with aluminium foil (safer) but the letters are not equally lit this time.
3. One (normal red) LED per character: Looks good when it is dark enough but is invisible in bright daylight. The letters are equally lit.
4. One super bright LED per character. The characters are equally lit but in a dark surrounding the light intensity is maybe too high.
- One LED per character gives the best result
- A reflective foil inside the box is not necessary
- The modular system must be improved (number 3 is not good enough). + I would like to have less ‘gaps’ (light leakage)
- The size of the display is ok, bigger is also possible