Lighting the suit

Lighting the Iron Man eyes

This page is about lighting the eyes, check out the main project index for the rest.

This page is an explanation of how I plan to light the eyes, I will add details here as I go.

Here’s a YouTube video about the faceplate and eye lights, or scroll down for the written version with pictures

Firstly, I have dealt with lighting the eyes in the helmet. There are various ways to go about this, either using EL sheet or LEDs stuck into glue sticks, however in both cases you need to look through a gap under the light to see out. I decided that I’d quite like to make a lit panel that you can also see through, and this is how I went about it.

I got hold of some mirror tinted sun glasses, some 1mm thick polystyrene sheets of plastic, and some scrim fabric which is intended for the veil of a wedding dress. I’ve divided the lenses into two parts and made plastic surrounds from the styrene sheet:

I’ve used the plastic surrounds to hold the scrim fabric in place over the lenses:

I’ve used a cheap string of white LEDs which are already wired with a battery box, although you could wire your own up. Eventually I will remove the battery box so I can interface the lights with the control system for the rest of the electronics in the suit.

I’ve glued the LEDs along the bottom of each eye, and then glued another strip of plastic over the top of them. This means that the light is diffused by the fabric, but you can still see through the lenses – unless it’s really dark outside, in which case you need to flip up the whole faceplate.

Next I made two black plastic borders for the eyes, the lit lenses are then mounted behind them:

Check out my version 2 helmet for a more refined version of the light up eyes.