Saturday, January 17, 2015

Coloured Marbles on the Staircase

Just before the holidays, I started another coloured marbles project. I didn't do an Instructables for this one because it relied on us having an unsightly gap on our staircase. I hope that unsightly staircase gaps are not common enough that people are looking for attractive things to do with them.

But we had an unsightly gap. We also had one of those solar powered garden lights that had stopped working, a lot of coloured marbles, some plexiglass, wood screws and washers. And I had a little bit of time.

I took apart the solar powered garden light and removed all the circuitry. To my surprise it had a rechargeable double-A battery inside it. I put the battery in my recharger and it did not recharge. So I plugged in a battery that was charged and the LED lit up.

I don't actually know if the tiny solar panel ever worked to recharge the battery, or if it just gave a signal to turn off the light. When I put the circuit in a sunny window, the LED turned off. But a cynical person might figure the manufacturer just put in a battery that would power the light long enough that the purchaser wouldn't return it.

I cut and drilled two pieces of plexigas so they would cover the unsightly gap.

I arranged the circuit so that the battery would tuck in to a place where I could replace it, the solar panel would be exposed to some light (although I don't think it will make any difference) and I can easily switch the light off and on.

Then I packed in a bunch of marbles and screwed the plexigas so that it would hold the marbles in place. Turned on the light and the gap is now beautiful instead of unsightly.


Manon said...

This art installation also has a practical side. It can be used as a night light for guests to illuminate their way up the stairs to the washroom.

Betsy P said...

Happy New Year (belatedly), David! This is very clever. I like it.