Laser Cut Portable ‘Fireplace’

For this project I wanted to see if I could use the interesting lighting properties of acrylic, where you could light up all the edges of the acrylic using a light place at one of the edges. I planned to utilize this concept in conjuction with NeoPixel LEDs to create an interesting fireplace-like affect in a portable housing.

Here is the electronics arrangement for the project: Arduino in acrylic case, portable USB battery, and a breadboard with a Neopixel array on top. The LED effects are programmed in Arduino C, and don’t have an on or off switch visible on the housing. Bonus easter egg: the laser cutter Google Calendar visible on my computer.

Unfortunately, when it came to laser cutting for the project I was a lot less successful. With the 75 watt laser cutter being out of commission and the 60 being used by someone else, I was needed to use the 50. I tried different settings and patterns, but it either seemed to not be doing anything or was just melting the acrylic. Eventually the 50 watt broke as well, and I couldn’t figure out how to get any part of it cut properly.

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