Laser Cut Arc Reactor Replica


We’re starting to become a repository for Arc Reactor replica projects. The one shown above uses mostly laser cut components. We missed it back in May when [Valentin Ameres] tipped us off the first time. But he sent it in again after seeing the 3D printed version earlier this month.

Our biggest gripe is that we don’t have our own laser cutter to try this out on. Everything has been cut from 2mm thick acrylic. The black, silver, and copper colored components were painted to achieve this look. Many of the clear parts also had a dot matrix etched into them to help with light diffusion.

Basic assembly just required the parts be glued together. The finishing touches include wire-wrapping the slots of the outer ring and adding LEDs and current limiting resistors.

The plans are not freely available, but the 3D printed version linked above doubles as a 123D tutorial. That should help get you up to speed designing your own if you are lucky enough to have time on laser cutter.

31 thoughts on “Laser Cut Arc Reactor Replica

  1. I really don’t get why people think these are cool. There are probably hundreds, if not thousands of ‘arc reactor replica’ projects online, and only a few do it right. This one does not. It does not look like the actual thing. It looks like a poorly made knockoff done by some kid.

    1. I’m pretty bored of ’em. This is like the 5th or 6th on here. The films were shit and technically nonsense. Can’t kids start making batarangs or something? Maybe try replacing their skeletons with exotic metals? Cos perspex rings with copper wire wrapped round have bored the piss out of me.

  2. Good attempt, however I’m with haybales… What’s up with all the arc reactors?

    Now if someone were to create a real power system out of the ficitonal equipment, or somehow put a arduino in it.. there ya go!

  3. There is a self-powered magnetic generator that looks just like an arc reactor, you only spin it to get it started. I forget what it was called. Some people called it a russian generator but I don’t think the inventor was actually russian…

    You could put LEDs on it and it’d look the same..

      1. While the decay of a magnetic material may appear to be non-existent, it does occur…however, in any motion generated power source it is FRICTION of the bearings that will keep it from becoming perpetual power.

        1. Telsa did it, it’s just not popular because of manufacturing costs are too high for the output it gives. On top of maintenance, when the sleeve or ball bearing gums there is a coefficient..

          These idiots who said it’s fake obviously didn’t know this though..

          1. Wait, are you saying it’s possible to get more energy out of a system than is put into that system, perpetually? And the only reason it’s not done is because of manufacturing costs?

          2. You’re not the only person who ever thought Tesla invented perpetual-motion machines using magnets, or that magnets are a source of energy. It’s just all those other people are wrong too. That’s why it’s not in the history and science books. Not because it’s a secret.

        2. No, it isn’t. If a machine could put even 1% more energy out than it took in, it’d be a miracle. It’s NOT friction. Friction produces heat, which is useful in people’s homes, for instance. If a machine gave 101% energy and lost it all to friction, it’d make a fantastically economical heater.

          The reason perpetual motion machines don’t work is because their designs are flawed. They are based on physical ideas that are not those of the Universe we live in. The overbalanced wheel is not actually overbalanced. Etc.

          The magnetic ones are popular among idiots and armchair physicists, because those people don’t understand how magnets work. It’s a spooky invisible force that moves things without touching them, so people think there must be some arrangement they can put magnets in that will make things move forever.

          And of course it’s much more exciting, for people who are stupid, to imagine Nikola Tesla, the heroic loner, and confederations of oil barons going round the world silencing people who even mention perpetual motion. If there are, I wish they’d do a better job.

          Poor Tesla was an eccentric and a genius, but he knew his basic physics. Why does his name have to be dragged through the mud in association with lies and ignorance like this?

      2. Even if you do assume perfect magnets and perfect bearings, that doesn’t allow the device to be “self-powered” that “you only spin it to get it started”. It the device is doing work, which it must be doing to be a generator, then something else must be doing work on it as well. Even if you had current flowing in an ideal super-conducting loop, the best you could achieve is conservation, or later extracting the same amount of work that went into getting the current circulating to start with.

      1. To flabyn : several devices featured in HaD, Engadget and even an article from Nathan in Sparkfun, without mentioning a couple of interviews for the Helsinki newspaper… Sorry, don’t mean to brag but you asked…

  4. It seems that one could actually wire the coils up and with the addition of a simple armature you could get some stepper or 3 phase motor action….just my 2 cents worth….

  5. Bah, I’m tired of the decorative coils. Since it isn’t worthwhile to deviate from my present projects which are admittedly just as senseless just more complex/ornate, I’ll provide my idea of a more interesting design.

    1) 3D Print, mill, hand carve from soap, preferred method of choice the body of the thing.
    2) Make silicon mold of the model. Smooth-on has sample/test/trial size material packages that are appropriate for this size project. I’m sure other brands do so shop around and pick you favorite it you don’t have one.
    3) The interesting part. Give those coils a function! Instead of LEDs use an EL plate and maybe some EL wire if your want more zazz, except don’t use their attached/embedded wires to drive them. It is much cooler if you suspend the panel and wire where you want the illumination to be inside the silicon mold, then use a clear cast resin in the mold. Then just paint up the model, wind up your the coils, and drive the coils with an appropriate invertor. The EL wires and panel will not illuminate uniformly unless you went crazy with the coils or used their original wiring, but that non uniform glow will give a much more unique effect and very unique construction AND functional coils.
    4) Scoff at all the replicas that went with LEDs.

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.