Hello dear readers and DIY !
In this article, the author of the YouTube channel “Inspire Woodcraft” will tell you how to make an interesting lamp – a mirror with an infinity effect.
This project is quite simple to manufacture, and can be repeated in home conditions.
Materials required for homemade products.
– RGB SMD 5050 LED strip with Bluetooth remote control
– Mirror self-adhesive window film
– Power supply for 12 V LEDs
– Grinding discs, cutting off
– Sheet acrylic 3 mm thick
– Double-sided tape, instant glue.
Tools used by the author.
– Orbital sander
– Circular saw
– Bandsaw, band saw blades
– Craft scalpel, scissors.
For this project, you will need two reflective coated surfaces that will be built in two layers. There will be LEDs around the perimeter, directed towards the inside of the structure.
Often mirrors of this type are made from old picture frames or on the basis of a glass top of some coffee table.
The first layer of such a lamp will be an acrylic translucent mirror 3 mm thick.
You can also use a simple transparent acrylic sheet by sticking a mirror translucent window film on it.
An acrylic mirror will serve as a back layer.
The master also intends to make the rest of the acrylic body elements – the side walls. The main reason why the author chooses this material is that he wants to achieve the effect of a matte frame around the perimeter of the mirror.
In addition, there is an idea to insert a small detail imitating a diamond in the center of the mirror. And the edges of this imitation diamond should also be matte, as if touched by frost. In this case, light will be able to get inside its shape.
If you want to cover the side edges of the mirror with something dark, for example, place them in a wooden frame, or in something that can reflect light inward, the effect of glow and reflection of light will be even more pronounced.
So, we need an acrylic sheet, one-way and two-way mirrors. Both mirrors are 200 × 200 mm in size. All of the above layers of material will be glued together with a very thin transparent double-sided tape, 3 mm wide. It is ideal for this task, since the thickness of acrylic sheets is also three millimeters.
In addition, we also need an RGB LED strip to get different colors. It comes with a remote control and a power supply.
The first thing to decide with is the thickness of the lamp frame. When using “infinite” mirrors, you need to remember the following pattern: the greater the distance between the rear and front mirrors, the greater the depth of the infinity effect – it is directly proportional to the distance between the rear and front mirrors.
When choosing the optimal distance between the mirrors, the author stops at 40 mm. In this case, you can get up to 18 repeating reflections of the LED lights, that is, up to 19 rows, before they “disappear into infinity”. Each subsequent reflection loses somewhat in brightness compared to the previous one and thus gradually fades away.
When cutting the acrylic plate, the craftsman will use a saw blade with the following tooth sharpening geometry. This disc has 80 teeth, and it is with such a disc that you can achieve accurate cutting of acrylic.
Of course, you can cut out blanks by scratching grooves in the acrylic sheet, but the quality of the edge will not be very good, and additional processing will be required.
If you have an old circular machine with a deformed parallel stop, a 3-mm sheet can easily slip through the gap under the stop. To prevent this, you should pick up a flat, even board and fix it on a parallel stop using double-sided tape or clamps.
Cutting acrylic with a circular saw is not like cutting wood. It is important to move the sheet not too fast, so as not to chip, but not too slowly, so that the acrylic does not have time to melt.
The overhang of the saw blade is set by about 4 mm, and the cut is performed in one pass.
Acrylic sheets are usually sold with a paper or plastic backing. Try not to take it off as long as possible, so as not to scratch the delicate glossy surface.
Reflective coating on mirrors is usually sprayed onto the surface with a very thin layer that is easily damaged. When working on the machine, place the one-sided mirror with the reflective coating facing up, as this side is the most valuable.
After removing the protective layer from the acrylic cut into thin strips, it should be processed on one side with an orbital sander with 220-grit discs. This will give us matte surfaces.
Further, the outer dimensions of the box in which the mirrors will sit are determined. An LED strip is used as a guide. It is desirable that the same number of LEDs are present on each edge of the mirror, then the symmetry will be observed. Since we are dealing with a square, it is not at all difficult to achieve this: it is enough to remove one size and then transfer it to all other sides.
Now the acrylic strips are cut to length.
In one of the strips, make a small cutout for the connector on the LED strip, if there is one. This can be done with a band saw, or with a file. Now you will have room for the power cord outlet.
Now it's the turn of the double-sided tape. It should be unwound from the skein in a small segment, and immediately glued to the edges of the strips. In this case, the author pastes over acrylic plates, which will be the sides of the artificial diamond. The latter, as you remember, will be inside, in the center of the mirror. It is best to cut the double-sided tape with a well-sharpened knife or scalpel. You must cut through the plastic film completely in one stroke. Otherwise, the tape will stretch (and it is very elastic!) And can carry along the same protective layer, which was discussed above.
Next, the protective film is gently pry on and removed with a knife, and all the elements are glued into something like a box. This will be our artificial diamond. Three of the four corners of the frame are connected in exactly the same way.
Now the LED strip is glued inside the finished frame strictly in the middle of each side. This will result in reflections of the LED rows at the same distance from each other. Otherwise, if the tape is displaced to one of the edges of the frame, the LED rows will be arranged in pairs, and there will be large gaps between each pair.
After installing the LED strip, the wizard glues the same thin double-sided tape to which the mirrors will be attached to all edges of the frame.
The box is measured again and mirrors are cut out according to these dimensions. This operation is performed on a circular machine using the technology described above.
All mirror edges must be cleaned with a 220 grit grinding block.
Then they are very carefully cleaned of dust with a piece of microfiber cloth, and the back wall is glued from a one-way mirror.
The box is turned over and a diamond-shaped figure is glued onto the rear mirror, in its center.
The space in the center can be filled with other decorative elements.
Then the front translucent mirror is glued and the protective film is removed.
The mirror with the infinity effect is ready.
I thank the author for the master class on making the lamp “infinite mirror”.
By the way, in a recent article the technology was described in detail making a somewhat more complex chandelier with a similar effect.
Good mood, good health, and interesting ideas to everyone!
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Author's video can be found here.
Hello dear readers and DIY !