Continuing our adventure from last time, I heard back from Saberbay about the LED board not fitting in the heatsink. He directed me to the description on the heatsink product page: “Edge of LED may need to be filed/sanded down slightly as it was engineered to be a snug fit.” So there it is. Time to break out the sandpaper.

I considered using my Dremel to sand down the LED board, but decided to do it by hand this first time to make sure I didn’t damage anything sensitive. Also, I didn’t want board dust flying all over my room since I did this inside. Dremel sanding is not something I want to do around all my computer equipment. It took about 10 minutes of sanding, checking the fit, sanding some more, it almost fitting but getting wedged in at an angle and having to pry it out, and sanding some more before it dropped in. I had already placed the thermal tape, but that got wrecked by the sanding process, so I had to replace it. I’m glad I bought 3 of them, since this one LED went through all of them!

Now that the LED fits into the heatsink, I can finish wiring the LEDs and test them. After threading the wires through the center hole of the heatsink, I clipped the two remaining positive wires and added 1ohm 2watt resistors to each one. I then covered all three with heatshrink to protect them from being banged around inside the hilt. The final step was to combine the three 30awg wires into a single 28awg wire for routing to the next wire junction to the recharge port.

I realized about halfway through that I needed more colors of 28 and 30 awg wire. I only got 3 colors of 30awg, but should have gotten 5 total. And, my 28awg wire I purchased in different colors than the 30awg, when I should have just gotten a bunch of the same colors for both sizes. I did order more from the ebay shop I got the original wire from, but it will be 3 weeks before it shows up via kayak from China. So in this wiring job, I have red wires combining into an orange wire and may have to use 28awg where I should be using 30awg so I don’t accidentally connect the wrong thing to the sound board.

The last thing to do was test, so I inserted the focusing lens (I’ll need to glue it in at some point), connected the wires to the JST connector I made the other day, and plugged in the battery. With all three LEDs on, it was hard to look directly at the light. Intense! I could feel the heat they generated with my hand a few inches away. The heatsink got warm, so heat transfer was taking place.

Once I can hook the lights up to the Nano Biscotte board, only the two blue LEDs will be on when the saber is activated. The white will only come on when the saber detects a hit and flashes the it. So far so good!

I’m debating on whether or not to go ahead and wire the recharge port. I’d like to get it done, but I don’t know how much wire I’m going to need for it in the hilt. And I don’t want to install it on the chassis yet, because I don’t know if I’ll need to sand the chassis down to fit into the hilt.

To add more ambiguity, I just heard today that there’s at least a 2 week delay on the hilt manufacturing, so I won’t be getting it until sometime in mid-May at the earliest. Patience. Patience. Patience. Argh.