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Picture of Modular Wall Lighting

This is an idea I had for wall lighting. I wanted modular lights of some kind, and I liked the look of tessellating triangles. I am pleased with the result, as a proof of concept. Eventually I want to scale it up and integrate IOT functionality.

Hopefully the video provides the most concise explanation.

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This is a very straightforward project, and can be scaled or adapted in many ways. The panels are vacuum formed from 2mm HDPE plastic, using a three-sided MDF mould.

I made a very quick vacuum former a while back, and would say that it's probably one of the best shop projects I've done, given how well it works for the time invested making it. It consists only of a sealed box with a series of holes drilled through the top. The only other tool you'll need is a heat gun.

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If you want to 3d print the shapes instead, attached is an example .stl file with the sizing I used.

Step 1: Making the Former

Picture of Making the Former

If you're interested, the base I used was an equilateral triangle of radius 80mm, and the depth of the pyramid is 20mm. You could sculpt a solid block too, but I preferred cutting three equal shapes in MDF and hot-gluing them at the seams. Bare in mind that hot glue could melt during the forming process because of the heat on top. This wasn't a problem for me though.

I then covered the top surface in tape. Note that even small surface features, like edges of the tape, show through when you form the plastic over it. If you want a smooth part, you have to make a smooth former.

A really cool alternative to buying HDPE would be to reuse milk bottles, which can be vacuum formed too (the only limit being the size of the offcuts).

WinsionL9 months ago
Nice Cut , I have better solution for you , can we talk ? google : winsionliang
Turn0nTune1n9 months ago
Really nice Lamp! Did you think about 3D-Printing the tesseracts, or making that an available possibility by adding a Step or STL model to your instructable (though i really like the idea of DIY vacuum forming)?
clarkedesign (author)  Turn0nTune1n9 months ago
Thanks for the suggestion - I've now added an .stl file.

I chose vacuum forming because it's more accessible, and for this project, where you need to mass produce the same part, it's faster and cheaper. It also allows you to scale this up much bigger. Having said that, it is by no means a better approach. 3D printing these shapes would allow for far more complex designs, and by using a low infill, you could help diffuse the harsh light of LEDs, and create really cool light effects because of the internal walls of the print. I would be really interested to see the result!
attosa9 months ago
Cool! Nice video, too. You got my vote :)
clarkedesign (author)  attosa9 months ago
Thank you!
Folded Shirts9 months ago
This is awesome.
clarkedesign (author)  Folded Shirts9 months ago
Thanks!