Main Project – Top 5 Constraints

1.) Budget

Budget is a main concern as the price of acrylic is rather expensive and as an unemployed college student I’m really in no position to spend too much. Although it’s a rather cool project the size of it will make it expensive, not only that but I would also have to find a flashlight strong enough to light the sword up.

2.) Acrylic

Acrylic itself is a decently strong material and is easy to laser cut, however the difficultly of it would be to get it strong enough to withstand me carrying it around. So far I am thinking of 1/4″ acrylic which is actually 0.22″ thick. I’m thinking it’ll be strong enough, however the thicker the material the more expensive it’ll be.

3.) Design

Currently an issue i’m having is how to fit the flat part of the bottom of the edge to a light source. Currently the light source I have chosen is a flash light that outputs RGB colors. The issue is finding something strong enough to connect the two together. This will need further CAD work.

4.) Time Constraint

The project itself seems like it’s a decent amount time and design in order for it to work properly. Something that has been an issue is balancing this project out with senior design capstone, as that seems to be taking a decent amount of my time.

5.) Light Source

Currently I have a flashlight on Amazon which sells for about $15, something I would not be able to test until I buy the flashlight Is whether the light source will be strong enough to go throughout the entire project.

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2 Comments. Leave new

  • Jackson Hootman
    March 7, 2020 10:06 pm

    Hi Kensue! This project sounds like a lot of fun. I agree that 1/4 inch acrylic should be strong enough. If you’re having trouble finding affordable acrylic, Colorado Plastics sells their scrap acrylic for pretty good prices and has monthly sales as well. If you’re looking for a different lighting option, you can purchase Cree light breakout boards (these lights are typical for products like bike lights). How powerful do you think your light source needs to be?

  • Daniel Straub
    March 4, 2020 11:19 am

    This looks really cool. Since you are worried about the strength and the material cost of the acrylic, have you considered scaling it down? I am not sure exactly what flashlight you plan on using and what the mating surface looks like, but perhaps you could 3D print a collar for it that can interface with the flat acrylic sheet. As far as getting the light to refract all the way through the length of the acrylic, you may need to use an RGB LED strip and run it along the length. Let me know if I can be of any help. I am happy to brainstorm and talk through the design.


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