I have changed the name of the “Hex Light” to the “Honeycomb Light” because I am making single hexagon lights as well, and I wanna call *them* the Hex Lights, instead. Ha – So, the animated light with the integrated 16 hexagons on them will become the “Honeycomb Light”… cuz the name fits a little better.
Speaking of the Hex Light (errr…) Honeycomb Light!…. (my bad)… I stained a whole bunch of different birch wood panels using 4 different stains this weekend. I had never stained wood before (that I can remember). It was a pretty cool experience – except for the dangers of the exothermic reaction / spontaneous combustion taking place with the oily rags after you’re finished. The care and maintenance during the cleanup and after-care was a bit of a pain. The guy at the Home Depot skooled me in the basics when I bought the gear. But, nothing caught fire, though. And, it was fun.
Anyways, I tried water-based and oil-based stains, along with a clear coat, to treat the new cutouts of my light frames. They’re lookin’ good! It’s another step toward making the case holding the electronics look super good! Or, in other words, it’s starting to finally look like art augmented by electronics 🙂
I have already cut another set of wood panels for a second Honeycomb Light. This one features a deep, dark stain on the backing panel and front hexes with their edges sanded down. It’s kind of a nice effect. I’m also making this one look and act much better than the first one I built. The backing wires are now nice, clean ribbon cable, the switching mechanism is a rotary encoder with a massively good feel to it – that “clicking” action when you turn it. And, the individual hexes are cut with much more precision this time. That’s the thing I had hoped would happen – I’d learn each time I did a revision and make the next ones consistently better. It requires a lot of thinking and planning – especially for the electronics, but it’s fun, and worth it. I’m having fun with this. 😉
I’m working on a few circuit boards for the whole bunch – the Arrow Light, the Hex Lights (the single ones [micro, mini, and macro]), the Tri-Wing Light, and the Honeycomb Light. I want them to be able to share modules and components as much as possible. I’m talking about matrix combiner boards, RGB LED driver boards, main MCU boards with optional modules, electronic components, common C libraries, bulk part orders, etc – I’m ramping up to build like 20 of each. Plus it’s a chance for me to write and design the stuff as I come up with it. As I get the PCBs ready, I’ll assemble the lights and see if any other improvements can be made and try to get some good stock, and to get in a “rhythm” with the refined process so that it’s easy and fun.
It’s exciting. Soon enough, I’ll have the experience required to get even more creative with them, and to practice up for more involved projects as well.