THIS PROCEDURE WILL HELP YOU CONSTRUCT A FIBER OPTIC IMAGE PIPE, WHICH CAN TRANSMIT IMAGES AROUND CORNERS.

 

 
WARNINGS: BE CAREFUL WHEN WORKING WITH MATCHES.  IF I GET SUED 'CAUSE SOME IDIOT TORCHED HIMSELF WITH A ZIPPO I'LL BE SOOOOOO PISSED.


D
ESCRIPTION

FIBER OPTICS ARE LIGHT PIPES WHICH CAN TRANSMIT LIGHT THROUGH THEIR LONG AXIS.  AN ARRAY OF FIBER OPTICS CAN BE USED TO CREATE AN IMAGE PIPE WHICH WILL TRANSMIT WHOLE IMAGES IN THE SAME MANNER.  A FINISHED BUNDLE IS FLEXIBLE, AND CAN BE BENT IN ANY DIRECTION AND STILL TRANSMIT AN IMAGE.

THE IMAGE PIPE TRANSMITS AN IMAGE PIXEL BY PIXEL, JUST LIKE A COMPUTER MONITOR.  THE RESOLUTION OF THE IMAGE PIPE WILL DEPEND ON THE DIAMETER OF YOUR FIBER OPTICS.  SMALL FIBERS WILL MAKE A HIGHER RESOLUTION BUNDLE.  THIS DOCUMENT PREPARES AN 11 X 11 IMAGE PIPE.

MATERIALS        

-FIBER OPTICS, ABOUT 100 FEET TOTAL
-SUPER GLUE

EQUIPMENT        

-MATCH / LIGHTER
-BENCH VICE

PROCEDURE

 

WHY?

1.   START BY PREPARING ABOUT ONE HUNDRED 1' SEGMENTS OF FIBER OPTIC.  CUTTING WITH PLAIN SCISSORS IS FINE.  THEN TAKE TEN OF THEM AND SANDWICH THEM IN THE BENCH VICE, WITH ABOUT 1/8" PROTRUDING FROM THE TOP OF THE VICE.

THIS WILL HOLD THE FIBERS IN POSITION WHILE THEY ARE FUSED.
2.  USING A MATCH OR FLAME STICK, RUN A FLAME BACK AND FORTH RAPIDLY OVER THE EXPOSED PART OF THE FIBERS.  WHEN THEY HAVE SHRUNK TO ABOUT 1/16" YOU ARE DONE.  IF THEY BUBBLE OR TURN BLACK, YOU'VE OVERDONE IT.
THE FLAME HAS TWO FUNCTIONS.  FIRST IT CREATES A DOME OF PLASTIC AT THE END OF THE FIBER, WHICH TRANSMITS LIGHT MUCH BETTER THAN THE JAGGED EDGE LEFT BY CUTTING.  ALSO, IT MELTS THE FIBER TO THE FIBERS SURROUNDING IT.
3.  BRING ABOUT .5" OF THE BUNDLE UP THROUGH THE VICE.  APPLY SOME SUPERGLUE TO THE BACK OF THE STRIP, AND GLUE A STRIP OF PAPER IN PLACE AS SHOWN. THE PAPER WILL PROVIDE MECHANICAL STABILITY TO THE BUNDLE, WHILE ALSO AIDING WHEN EACH STRIP IS JOINED TOGETHER.
4. WRAP THE PAPER AROUND TO THE FRONT OF THE STRIP, AND HOLD IN PLACE WITH MORE GLUE.  
5.  WHEN YOU'VE COMPLETED TEN BUNDLES, YOU'RE READY TO START ASSEMBLING THE PIPE.  SIMPLY GLUE THE PAPER WRAPPER ON EACH END OF THE STRIP TO ANOTHER STRIP.  BE SURE THAT YOU HAVE NO TWISTS IN THE CABLE, OR ELSE PARTS OF YOUR IMAGE WILL APPEAR DISTORTED.  
6.  WHEN ALL THE STRIPS HAVE BEEN STACKED AND GLUED, PUT THE ENTIRE BUNDLE BACK INTO THE VICE.  ONCE AGAIN QUICKLY RUN A FLAME BACK AND FORTH ACROSS THE EDGE OF THE BUNDLE.  REPEAT FOR THE OTHER SIDE.
AS SHOWN IN THESE PICTURES, THE ENDS OF THE BUNDLE WILL NOT LIKELY BE LINED UP PERFECTLY.  MELTING THE PLASTIC WILL HELP LINE UP THE ENDS OF THE BUNDLES, AS WELL AS MELTING EACH LINE TOGETHER.
7.  ALL DONE!
AT THE OTHER END OF THE IMAGE PIPE IN THIS PICTURE IS A PIECE OF ELECTRICAL TAPE OBSCURING HALF OF THE PIPE.  THE IRREGULARITIES IN THE IMAGE ARE CAUSED BY POOR ALIGNMENT WHEN GLUING THE STRIPS.

RESULTS

    THE MORE CAREFUL YOU ARE WHEN GLUING THE BUNDLES, THE BETTER THE IMAGE WILL APPEAR WHEN TRANSMITTED.  ALSO, THE SMALLER THE FIBERS YOU USED, THE MORE DETAIL THAT CAN BE TRANSMITTED. 

HERE IS A VERY LARGE (35MB) UNEDITED VIDEO OF THE IMAGE PIPE TRANSMITTING MOTION.  CLICK <LINK TEMPORARILY REMOVED SINCE I CAN'T UPLOAD SUCH A BLOATED VIDEO WHEN I'M SO FAR AWAY FROM MY SERVER ::grrr::>
 

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