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Author Topic: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board  (Read 26985 times)

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Offline Obi_1

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #30 on: July 28, 2017, 12:54:28 AM »

Which software do you use?

As to the FastLED lib, at least the FX-SaberOS developer community decided against it due to it being quite storage space intensive, as opposed to the one currently used. With all the latest improvements in the Arduino IDE it could just be that we can accommodate now the FastLED lib, so feel free to experiment and let us know the results.

As to freeze, in my experience it's always because the board has a memory overflow.

Offline Azsde

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #31 on: July 28, 2017, 04:33:23 AM »

Which software do you use?

As to the FastLED lib, at least the FX-SaberOS developer community decided against it due to it being quite storage space intensive, as opposed to the one currently used. With all the latest improvements in the Arduino IDE it could just be that we can accommodate now the FastLED lib, so feel free to experiment and let us know the results.

As to freeze, in my experience it's always because the board has a memory overflow.

I'll let you know.

Do you think removing jukebox related features can free up some space to avoid memory overflow?

Offline Obi_1

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #32 on: July 28, 2017, 08:27:31 AM »
We already freed up in preparation for the FX-SaberOS v1 a lot of dynamic memory by restructuring sound font handling. Jukebox does not eat up any memory, and anyway it can be disabled by simply disabling the compile option.

BTW, I would like to suggest to move open source software questions to GitHub and steer back to the original purpose of this thread: to discuss neopixel blade topics.

Offline NobAkimoto

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #33 on: January 16, 2018, 02:16:57 AM »
I've been experimenting a bit with neopixel sabers over the last couple of weeks (made MUCH easier by the DIYino Stardust and FX-Saber OS).

Been starting with various premade blades I got from a grabbag and a Corvin style blade from TCSS - a thicker layer of diffuser film definitely helps I think on removing the visible LED segments, and the foam works to some extent...

But I'm curious what JBKuma said about wrapping it with TP or some other form of thin paper. I've tried it a couple times and the TP just tends to fall to pieces as I try to put it into the blade tube.

Offline jbkuma

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #34 on: January 16, 2018, 06:30:41 AM »
It's not practical in any way. It will be almost impossible to get a seam that doesn't have ugly gaps and overlap.

Offline SA22C

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #35 on: January 16, 2018, 08:59:55 AM »
I got really good results on my neopixel blades with the following:

7/8 thin-walled clear blade and tip
TCSS diffuser tube for 1 inch thick-wall blades (same ID as 7/8 thin wall)
3 feet of craft wrap
6 inches of 1/32 packing foam.
2x 'skinny' SK6812 strips (8mm wide, 144 LED/M)

Measure out the strips to ensure they're cut to length to fit the blade length you're going for.
So, put the strips back to back and use clear packing tape to attach the strips to the foam.  This helps in making the foam wraps nice and tight.  Secure the ends of the foam with clear packing tape.
Put the diffuser tube in the blade (it'll be snug, but moving slowly and with a piece of scrap to help, you can tap it in.)
Drill out the tip so two strips will fit into the tip (remove the mirror, of course)
Roll up the craft wrap and insert into the diffused blade
slide the foam-wrapped strips into the blade, ensuring that they go right up to the drilled-out tip.

This combo results in a bright and even blade that doesn't have any shadows or corncobbing.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 09:02:28 AM by SA22C »

Offline NobAkimoto

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #36 on: January 16, 2018, 06:34:19 PM »
Could you link to an example of the craft wrap you use? I'm uncertain what you mean by craft wrap, so would like a little confirmation.

Offline jbkuma

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #37 on: January 16, 2018, 07:29:50 PM »
The same sort of wrap folks use to diffuse "fancy flashlight" style blades.

Offline NobAkimoto

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #38 on: January 16, 2018, 10:10:11 PM »
Is there an actual commercial product name for that stuff? I know I can buy it as blade supply, but I wasn't sure if it wasn't available cheaper (or at least quicker) at a local crafts store.

Offline NobAkimoto

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #39 on: January 16, 2018, 10:14:20 PM »
Separately - so far I've found that aviation connectors are better suited for blade connections than the contact pads that TCSS is now offering. I've also tried with JST connectors for blades that weren't really meant to be removable - which wasn't a problem given that most strips come with that equipped.

Right now I'm aiming toward making a "budget" neopixel blade - has anyone experimented much with trying to use a single strip and maybe trying to twist it like a screw and hoping it'll diffuse enough along the blade to give a reasonably even glow?

Given that the actual neopixel strip is one of the most expensive blade components at ~$30-40 a pop, was wondering if that shortcut would give you a mid-grade blade that's brighter than a LED star, but still cheaper than the high-end neopixel blades.

Offline SA22C

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #40 on: January 17, 2018, 05:54:35 AM »
Any craft store should have clear gift wrap. I don’t think one brands is any more suited than the other. I’ve used some from hallmark or micheals with no difference in effect.

So far as ‘budget’ strips go, you really can’t twist these strips very much. While they are attached to a flexible pcb, the connections between leds can and will break due to excessive bending or twisting.

I’d say that cost really isn’t that huge of a factor. It’s only $20-30 more to do a neopixel bladed saber over an inhilt led.

Offline NobAkimoto

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #41 on: January 17, 2018, 07:36:26 AM »
Can you do a drop-in replacement of WS2812 strips with SK6812s? Or do the SK6812s have a different API?

Offline SA22C

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #42 on: January 17, 2018, 09:40:04 AM »
They’re compatible. There are some timing adjustments that need to be made on the config files for plecter  boards, but in my experience those adjustments don’t really make a difference. I’ve interchanged 2812 and 6812 strip blades without adjusting timing and both seemed to function normally.

The skinny strips are MUCH easier to work with and diffuse, particularly in a 7/8 blade, but they’re probably 1-5-2x the cost of the ‘standard’ wide strips and not nearly as widely available. Just make sure that the sk6812 strips you purchase are RGB and not RGBW.

Offline NobAkimoto

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Re: Neopixel blade assembly - an experience exchange board
« Reply #43 on: January 17, 2018, 01:57:39 PM »
Do you have a particular source you buy your strings from? Looking to buy a few more strings, so I'd like to to compare 6812 and 2812 strips to see which I like working with better.

Offline SA22C

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