Cutaway LED Flashlight (solder-free)

by 3DCentralVA, published

Cutaway LED Flashlight (solder-free) by 3DCentralVA May 3, 2012
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5868Views 2037Downloads Found in Electronics


This is an example printed electronic, using the solder-free 3D-PCB library http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:21975

It is an LED flashlight, made entirely out of printed parts and 4 lengths of conductive thread, plus 2 batteries and 4 LEDs.

Detailed instructions for buildling this, as well as for using 3D-PCB in general: http://www.instructables.com/id/3D-Printed-Circuit-Boards-for-solder-free-printab/ , as part of the Make-It-Real Challenge (so your vote would be greatly appreciated!).

Note: If you are thinking to build, I suggest first test-printing the electronics_top, along with a switch_toggle and a peg_cap. I haven't tested it on many printers, and these pieces have the finest tuned tolerances

You can find carrythewhat? on Facebook, too! https://www.facebook.com/carry.the.what.replications


Tools and Materials
Currently, it has only been thoroughly tested on the MakerBot Replicator, with ABS plastic. Support for Up! soon (but the different tolerances prevent immediate support).

I have tried several types of conductive thread, and the best so far (by a wide margin) is: http://members.shaw.ca/ubik/thread/order.html

Print using the standard replicator defaults or equivalent, with no raft or support:
1x electronics top
1x electronics bottom
1x tube
1x cap
1x slide_switch
11x peg caps

Also acquire:
4x 5mm LEDs, you probably want white
2x AAA batteries
4x conductive thread -- 2x~12in, 2x~18in

The uploaded drawing shows how to wire up the circuit; Detailed wrapping instructions can be found on http://www.instructables.com/id/3D-Printed-Circuit-Boards-for-solder-free-printab/step4/Useful-Example-3D-Printed-LED-Flashlight/

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You got my vote!

I just have one, probable stupid, question. How would water affect this circuit? Would it cause the battery to drain or the light to turn off or would it somehow disable the circuit permanently? I'd like to use this library for a bike light, but it rains A LOT in Eugene, OR.

Hey, thanks so much!! You know, that is a very very interesting question, and I actually have no idea. Especially with this circuit's design being open, I imagine the circuit boards will get pretty wet, regardless of preventative measures. All the threads are totally exposed.. but they are also raised off the base, and pretty far apart. Circuit density isn't really great enough yet for a gap to be bridged by a few drops of water, but it might cause other wear.

The conductive thread I use is silver plated, so it should be pretty corrosion resistant. But to be honest, you are presenting me with an amazing use-case! If you want to try the build, I'd love to mail you a few lengths of thread -- I spent some time in Corvallis so I know the condition would be
tested quite thoroughly!

I would love to try. I'll PM you.