Saturday, December 12, 2009

Prototype #2 Progress

Well Prototype #2 is almost done. Had to stop while I waited for the stain to dry. Prototype #2 will house my Lethal Weapon 3 translite. I like it more for the movie reference then the game reference :) Prototype #2 includes significant changes in
  1. pocket groove joints instead of mitre corners
  2. Due to the pocket joints, only the two vertical inside edges are rounded over
  3. the rear panel is moved in 1/4 in more to give more room for the picture hanger hardware
  4. the light switch is moved to the left side of the bottom panel to be in a darker part of the picture
  5. much more glue in the joints to keep them snug :)
  6. The top is free to be removed (no screws) because the inside 1x2 piece will act as the cross-beam holding the box shape together
  7. uses 1 60 light string instead of two 30 light strings. This set has light modes w/memory unlike the other sets which were stead-on only. But I could not find it in warm white, only cool.
  8. Pine instead of Oak (for costs and easier routing)
  9. Only uses glue and finish nails
  10. Top edge is completely removable without any tools (friction-held only)
  11. LED light control is accessible through hole in rear backboard
The pocket groove experiment actually went very well - even considering I had to do a lot of free hand routing to cut the grooves smaller then 1/4 inch... because I had managed to cut the tongues slightly too narrow. Some shots of the groove and tongues Test fitting... So much tighter then the mitres... and it helps hold the frame together on it's own! A few of the switch hole. See the router errors on my grooves? Oh well, they'll be hidden anyways :) The simple lighting wire and socket used. Same setup used on both prototypes. Using a socket allows me to keep the integrated fuse holders on the LED strings. Staining under way... the soft pine required a pre-stain treatment but so far is looking decent (bad cell phone photo) View of the light board all secured But one should know.. anytime you make changes, new problems will arise..
  1. I don't think I sanded around the glue enough and had some stain issues. But I think those are going away with the second coat of stain.
  2. Tongues too narrow - fixed by free handing grooves so they could be custom fit, but slowed down to do custom cuts
  3. New tight, box with 1x2 nailed at the top holds the shape perfect. But this means the light panel must fit in w/o any fudging of the sides of the box. The 1x2 is nailed in, there is no play, and because the backpanel was moved forward 1/4 inch, there isn't enough clearance for the stuff mounted to the back panel. The 1x2 will have to be reduced in size with my jigsaw to make room.
  4. Don't forget to fill the holes caused by the finish nailer BEFORE you stain the frame dummy.
The good news is Prototype #2 is being built much faster. The first night I cut the plexi and backpanel to size. Second night I cut the 1x4s to size and started the routing. Third night II finished all the routing. Fourth night was gluing the frame pieces together. Fifth night was sanding, then staining. Sixth night was more stain, and assembling the light board. Once the staining is done.. all that is left is final assembly. So besides the gluing and staining waits.. Prototype #2 was built in basically 4 sessions. Hopefully this weekend Prototype #2 will get a chance to be finished!

1 comment:

Dad said...

Looks great. Let me know if you need anything.