For a while I have wanted to improve the lighting on my desk. I didn’t really know what to build until I came across Opossums’ amazing LED bridge lamp on Thingiverse. It has a great design, but for my application I needed to make some modifications. I use an L-shaped desk and when necessary I want to be able to illuminate the small extension of the desk. To solve this I designed a base that allows the LED strips to be rotated towards the part of the desk that I want lit.
The base gives the lamp 100° of rotation. For smooth rotation a 3D printed thrust bearing is incorporated into the base. All components for the base are 3D printable, except for the 10mm steel ball bearings that are used for the thrust bearing and the three M5x30 bolts+washers that hold the assembly together.
I also added a strain relief component to prevent the solder joints on the LED strip(s) from cracking. Without this the leads of the LED strip(s) would pull on the solder joints every time the base is rotated. Over time this would cause the solder joints to fail.
The strain relief component also has space for a decoupling capacitor and resistor, which I used in connecting one of the two LED strips in my lamp (a WS2812B RGB strip).
The base can be fastened to a desk or other surface with double sided tape or by using 3 screws.
Below I have described how to build the desk lamp with rotating base, as well as the materials and tools that are required.
- 1x Base
- 1x Bearing cage
- 1x Top plate
- 3x Clip
- 1x Strain relief
- The desired number of curved segments, I used 4 per lamp
The links to the 3D printable .STL files can be found in the Files & Print Settings section below.
Files & Print Settings
The .STL files for the base are available for download on Thingiverse.
The .STL files for the curved segments can also be downloaded on Thingiverse.
I printed the parts with 2 shells, 25% infill. All parts can be printed without support material, as long as the 3D printer used deals okay with bridging.
The lamps work exactly as intended and I am happy with the result. I had some concerns beforehand about how the smooth the thrust bearing element would be, but it is very smooth. The next step for me is to design and build a control panel to hook all LED strips up to, so stay tuned for a post on that!
If you liked reading this article or have any questions about this project then feel free to leave a comment or check out some of my other projects linked on the all projects page.