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Acrylic Resin and LED's

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  • Acrylic Resin and LED's

    I have an idea for some accent lights where I'm wanting to put some LED's and accompanying circuitry in acrylic resin and my question is about light dissipation. In what way, good or bad, will this effect the light thrown out by the LEDs? Also I don't think it will, but any chance circuitry (i.e. some resistors) be affected by the acrylic resin after it dries?

  • #2
    Well, I think a lot of how the light will dissipate will depend on where you place the leds, as well as the surface texture of the the part you are lighting. If you place the leds on the edge of the piece, and the surface texture is smooth the leds will light the edge of the acrylic and not much else. It you rough up the surface, the light will scatter off the surface and light up the part better.

    A lot will also depend on the optical clarity of the resin you use and how well you get the air bubbles out.

    Oh, and I don't think you would have to worry about messing with the circuity if it is cast in the resin. Plastics are typically poor conductors of electricity.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by LYHTSPD View Post
      Well, I think a lot of how the light will dissipate will depend on where you place the leds, as well as the surface texture of the the part you are lighting. If you place the leds on the edge of the piece, and the surface texture is smooth the leds will light the edge of the acrylic and not much else. It you rough up the surface, the light will scatter off the surface and light up the part better.

      A lot will also depend on the optical clarity of the resin you use and how well you get the air bubbles out.

      Oh, and I don't think you would have to worry about messing with the circuity if it is cast in the resin. Plastics are typically poor conductors of electricity.
      Ok, so what I'm trying to do is make the leds just shine through the acrylic and not really light the acrylic up, if possible. I mean I know the plastic will glow alittle but I'd like to keep it at a minimum. So according to the above I should just keep the resin untouched instead of sanding the surface?

      Here is a crude illustration of how I want the leds aligned.

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      • #4
        Yes, if you keep the surface clear (untouched) and mount the leds perpendicular to the surface, they will shine through (just like glass).

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        • #5
          Originally posted by LYHTSPD View Post
          Yes, if you keep the surface clear (untouched) and mount the leds perpendicular to the surface, they will shine through (just like glass).
          Perfect! Thanks lyht!

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          • #6
            Just remember, the more imperfections in the resin, the more the light will scatter. You want it to be as clear and as smooth as possible. Good luck, and post results!

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            • #7
              Try to grind the LED heads flat, but not so far as to get to the diode. This is dispurse the light come from the LED into the acrylic and will virtually elimate any hotspots.
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              • #8
                Originally posted by InfiniteReality View Post
                Try to grind the LED heads flat, but not so far as to get to the diode. This is dispurse the light come from the LED into the acrylic and will virtually elimate any hotspots.
                I don't think he was wanting a dispursed light from his posts.

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