EL Wire bed lighting

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Lochemage
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EL Wire bed lighting

Post by Lochemage » Sat Dec 07, 2013 3:52 am

Hi guys, I am just beginning to install mods on my new Rostock MAX. I found these EL wire coils (http://www.radioshack.com/product/index ... d=22128556) at my local Radio Shack and thought that it would be a great addition to my printer.

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Here I set up the wiring harness to be used. Starting at the light switch, we follow the coil down to the very first two connectors; These plug into the PSU, providing 12v DC power. Continuing, the coil is then split into two separate parallel circuits, one will be used to power the hotend light, while the other is used for the bed light. In this case, the hotend light I ordered from Trick Laser has not yet arrived so that plug is not currently being used. If we follow the plug that is connected, however, we come to the EL wire's power inverter that inverts the 12v DC power into a 12v AC power in which the EL wire operates. Last, of course, we have our EL wire coil.

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This is the shot of the wire coming from the PSU that is to be used to power the lights.

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Getting everything installed onto the printer, here is a shot of the light switch.

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A couple of different ideas came to mind when routing the EL wire. This is the setup I ended upon, although some parts of it are crude and may be changed in the future. What I did was start the coil in the X-Axis storage area underneath the platform, route the wire up through the slot underneath the platform (the one where the heat bed wiring goes through to get down into the electronics bay), around the outer perimeter of the heated platform, back through the slot underneath the platform, then out of the X-Axis bay door so it can finally wrap around the perimeter of the base plate. Kapton and Scotch tape were used to hold the EL wire in place, and this is the part of the build that I am not completely satisfied with just yet. Ultimately, I would like to come up with a more elegant way to hold the wiring in place, possibly with plastic printed clamps, but I have yet to come up with a design that I like.

Unfortunately, this EL wire isn't very bright, so my initial thoughts of using it to provide a viable light source for the platform didn't work out so well. On the other hand, the hotend light ring I have coming is supposed to be pretty bright and might provide more than enough light already. It does add some character to the printer, though, especially in the dark.

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Thanks guys, and I hope you have enjoyed this upgrade.
- Lochemage

My super cool build stories: Rostock MAX, GUS Simpson

"Give a man a compliment and he'll be all, 'Yeah, I've been working out.' Teach a man to fish for a compliment and he'll be all, 'I feel SO fat.'" - Bob FM

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Toyguy
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Re: EL Wire bed lighting

Post by Toyguy » Sat Dec 07, 2013 8:09 am

This is interesting to see as I was considering doing the same thing with some yellow EL stuff from Adafruit as a decorative effect. They carry flat EL tape, which might make for an easier mounting than the wire. The Trick Laser LED ring is quite bright, so I have enough light. I think the TRON effect would look cool though.

I did like what I saw in another post where someone put bits of LED strip along the lower edges of the 3 extrusion towers. That would drop a little weight off the effector by removing the LED ring and its wiring, although the LED ring is light anyway.

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Eaglezsoar
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Re: EL Wire bed lighting

Post by Eaglezsoar » Sat Dec 07, 2013 9:24 am

It's not very bright but it adds a cool effect to the looks of the printer.
I think one done in blue would look nice but it might give me the blues.

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Nylocke
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Re: EL Wire bed lighting

Post by Nylocke » Sat Dec 07, 2013 8:43 pm

Wow that look sweet. Gives my some ideas for my Ultimaker me thinks.... :)

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CJGerard
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Re: EL Wire bed lighting

Post by CJGerard » Sun Dec 08, 2013 12:20 am

That looks nice man!
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