Saturday, October 22, 2011

Halloween 2011: Arc Reactor Completed!

Original post here.

First, I'd like to thank Barry and Ben for their help on this project.

After helping out with the WISE program in the morning, I got to work on my arc reactor. I got on the 60 watt epilog around 4, and cutting took about an hour. During this hour, I managed to cut all of the pieces out, and also set fire to some of the kibble from others' projects that had fallen through the grate. I didn't notice this when I was actually cutting the pieces, so the fact that my (what were supposed to be) beautiful acrylic pieces had been toasted certainly put a damper on my day... but not for long! I decided that the pieces needed to be roughed up a bit to get the right amount of light out the front of the reactor, so some sand papered pieces did the trick to distract from the burned parts. I didn't take any pictures because I was too busy hurting my wrist trying to hold on to the thing while sanding it.

I tested each of the 12 3mm LEDs from oznium, and then hot-glued them into their respective slots. Several sticks of hot-glue and ~50 feet of enameled magnet wire later, we have something that resembles a whole bunch of acrylic circles stuck together with some wire wrapped around it.

This is taking way longer than anticipated.

I'm glad I found a use for the wire I took off those printer stators.

On to the electronics. The LEDs were soldered together 4 in parallel, 3 in series. Each string of 3 leds was paired with a 180 Ohm resistor, to give about 35 mA per LED strand.

Not pretty at all, but it's 10:30 and I want to get out of here.

After loose wires were trimmed and glued down to avoid short circuits, the back was glued on, the wires to the battery were added, and I was ready to roll. The final step: embed this in my chest glue this to a cheap shirt and become a genius-billionaire-philanthropist.

Alligator clips not used in final version.
A bit thicker than I would have preferred, but a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do.

If only this thing actually did what it does in the movies.

1 comment:

  1. Actually, in the movies it does nothing. Just gets photographed.

    Ha Ha.

    I want one anyway.