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Hi, we are a couple of college students that are passionate about lighting and electronics. We believe that lighting fixtures should be different and we always like to challenge ourselves to make a solution that helps to make usual everyday light modern looking, modular and easy to use. We got inspiration from HHarry's project (https://www.instructables.com/id/Magnetic-table-lamp/), but when we tried to build something similar, we ended up struggling a lot to make everything precise enough to fit it together nicely and so it could be used in modern house design.

How many of you daily pay attention to the surrounding light quality? How many of you seem to have vision problems because of insufficient lighting? And then the choice of lamps is a complicated and long process because there are so many options.

Our main goals to achieve with this project was to get:

  • high color rendering index,
  • easily customizable design,
  • and portability.

This is not going to be an easy project, but we tried to do our best to make everything as easy as possible at the same time-saving quality and precision.

Step 1: Materials and Tools

Materials for 5 cubes, small and big base:

Tools:

  • Hand mill (copier, 45 °, straight)
  • Stationary drill (2, 3, 6, 24, 64, 74mm drill bits)
  • Bandsaw
  • Electronic screwdriver + 90 ° adapter
  • Sander
  • Sandblast
  • Soldering iron (30W, 100W) + tin, etc.
  • 12V Power supply, multimeter
  • PVA glue, 2 component epoxy, hot glue gun
  • Riveting tool - we made one ourselves from 2 woodworking awls
  • Hammer
  • Caliper
  • Stencils - it is possible to order them from the local factory from steel as we did, but still gonna work out if made from plywood at home (dimensions attached)
  • 3D printing + PLA material
  • Ash color filler/putty for wood
  • 2 cans of varnish
  • Wires
  • Anti-static spray - to protect the acrylic glass from sticking dust and give it a glossy look
  • Painter tape, double-sided tape
ShelbyCharged3 months ago
not including wood or tools, what do you think the cost was?
MarcoM2233 months ago
That's really great! But, I am a bit confused by the first pic, do the cubes have a battery?
nic.bryan.733 months ago
Would this work just as well with triangular pyramids? 4 sides instead of 6.

And would stronger magnets help with the number of parts you could attach?
ralfs.rogalevs (author)  nic.bryan.733 months ago
Actually we have tried to build it as a tetrahedron. You can see it in pictures, but the edges were too sharp and there was no point to build the whole thing like that.

And stronger magnets would be nice but the reason why we went for exactly this size:
1)There is no more place for larger ones;
2)6mm diameter looks the best;
3)stronger magnets start to smash themselves when you attach cubes together
IMG_2359.JPGPHOTO-2017-05-14-19-03-15.jpg
I see what you mean on the size issue.

As far as too strong of magnets smashing each other, if you sink the magnets a little deeper and put the electrical connects in the form of thin metal washers instead, that would protect the magnets from colliding, and the steel in the washers carries the magnetic field through. I use strong neodymium magnets between 8 and 10mm wrapped in rubber, and they'll stick to each other easily, or even to powder coated steel.

And maybe the size and sharp edge issue could be resolved by putting the magnets in the middle of the face, with the transparent part being the edges?
DanPro3 months ago
Ingenious idea.
How about one that houses a fan.
Dark walnut would look nice as well.
ralfs.rogalevs (author)  DanPro3 months ago
Have not tried to build whole thing of walnut, but just cheked out how it might look
PHOTO-2017-10-12-08-42-02.jpg
Nice! Once you put a finish coat on those they'll all look like a million bucks
Randal16283 months ago
I have to be honest, I just sort of browsed through it, but am I right to say that just through the connection of the magnets, that the extended cube will light up, from the contacts? If that is the case is there a limit of how many cubes can be added? Thanks and cool idea.
ralfs.rogalevs (author)  Randal16283 months ago
You are right about that. The cube lights on when magnets are connected. The maximum for 6A power supply is around 6-8 cubes (depends on what LED you use inside).
AnandM543 months ago
Impressive instructables ... WOW ..
qstosz3 months ago
Is this the same idea ? 2010 y., Kuba Jagiello, Construction deconstruction Lamp, presented on

Biennale Internationale Design Saint-Étienne 2013


foto No 9/13. And on facebook : https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=5454848588...
constructiondeconstructionlamp.jpg
ralfs.rogalevs (author)  qstosz3 months ago
Thanks for the reference. We haven’t seen before this one. For sure there have been some similar ideas, but we got inspiration from different instructable project listed at the start of the project.
irishwhistle3 months ago
Easy, hm? Well, I assume it is for somebody! Looks really cool, though. If I ever learn how to do any of this stuff, well... I'd totally make it. It would be pretty fun to have around.
ralfs.rogalevs (author)  irishwhistle3 months ago
Sorry, if there is something unclear with building process. We tried to do our best to make it as clear as possible. Only when we started to write instructable we realizes how much steps there is. But that is why there is so much pictures.
ThummarwitshW3 months ago
This is the best instruction, I ever see. Every detail and bunch of picture. Easy to understand.
Love the idea.
5to9_Living3 months ago
This is really cool! I love the ability to change configurations.
Ham-made3 months ago
Excellent job boys! Rad bit of modular design!
Cheers!
Mr. Ham
M3G3 months ago
That's amazing! I'm a sucker for anything modular.
jessyratfink3 months ago
Now that is stunning! I love everything about this project :D