Have you ever seen acrylic that’s been edge-lit using LEDs or similar? The light normally just passes through, but wherever there’s a scratch you’ll find that the light refracts and it appears quite brightly. People engrave messages and patterns onto plastic sheeting to make it really stand out when lit. Well, what if you did the same thing, but instead of just etching the surface, you cut sections out of it and then scuffed up the parts that had been cut? Now the entire thickness of the sheet begins to glow in those areas!
Although I used these techniques to create art, the real beauty of this is that you can create any 3D object you want with a laser cutter, whether it’s the object itself, or a negative of the object encased in a block, as I did. In essence, you’re turning your laser cutter into a 3D printer with a resolution limited only by the thickness of your material.
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Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.