Dirt Cheap Mod™: Backlit Drivebay cover
(the light is a darker blue than the picture shows)
I started by stretching(width) the picture with a photo program to fit the baycover, leaving enough room around the picture so I wouldn't cut into the perimeter of the baycover weakening it. I cut the picture a little smaller than the baycover and completely covered it with tape to hold the picture in place(side note: I found that while cutting, putting tape over areas I had cut kept the picture from moving around).
The diameter of the drill bit I used was half the width of the smallest width and it was used to cut not drill(like one of those rotary cutters). When cutting I started in the middle and then cut as close to the line as I could without touching the line(the paper frayed a bit so I didn't want cut too deep). After the bulk of the material was removed I began filing, ocasionally holding it up to the light to see if it was even, till I was saticefied.
The hard part was the stripe coming off the X, as it got thinner I had to trim it with the small box cutter. I gently cut the outline of the stripe and carefully removed a little of the plastic at a time(I found flipping the blade of box cutter over[non-blade edge] would remove material without cutting beyond the lines, like a scraper). 200grit sandpaper was used to finish the point as far as I could. A light sanding with 600grit on the face of the baycover took care of any scratches.
For the lighting I used a neon blue 5" coldcathode for cars(the only one I could get locally). I removed the cigarette adapter and replaced it with a molex connector and installed a switch to the +12v lead(I used connectors on the switch instead of soldering incase I needed to remove it) . Then glued some tinfoil to some cardboard(thin stuff) to make a reflector. I cut a piece of white paper to cover the back of the baycover..the paper gives it a more subtle glow. I'm going to try clear plastic one of these days just to see if it looks better brighter...one of these days lol!
At the moment the light is just secured with double sided tape because I'm not totally happy with it's location...that was about 5months ago lol!
*An after thought..this could just as easily be done with 2(or more)baycovers glued together.
1 boring plastic drivebay cover
1 $13&change(CDN) 5"coldcathode for cars(bought at wallmart auto dept.)
1 piece of cardboard
1 piece of tinfoil or reflective material
1 piece of paper
1 pair of sissors
1 spst switch, some wire and molex connector
dremel w/drill bits(the drill bits worked faster than the cutting bits I have)
small metal files(contoured ones will help if you are doing different shapes)
x-acto knife or small box cutter
200/600 grit sandpaper
double sided tape
photo program and printer(I can't draw that well, printing the pic made it easier for me)
the baycover - start to finish maybey 2-3hrs
the light - 30min
light and tinfoil reflector
unsoldered switch connection