In late June, Ralf Schultz from Denmark posted a brilliant home design, on Thingiverse, for a 3D printed scissor lift to help conceal his home projector. Utilizing the motor for a car’s wide screen window wiper, wires and various 3D printed objects connected to form a scissor lift, Schultz was able to retract and lower his projector from a panel in his ceiling. While the lift provides balance, it also adds a bit of flair to the projector presentation.
The instructions, though a bit streamlined for someone like myself, involve the following steps: print one of each slider, two of each slider pins (4 in total), two slider pin spacers, as many arms and rivets as required for your particular scissor lift, then glue them together to fix the rivets. A video reveals the final product and parts involved to make the scissor lift operable:
The 3D printed scissor lift may be seem uninteresting to the uncurious mind, but it serves an almost essential purpose. A novel ceiling appendage, such as a scissor lift, functions much better when hidden during disuse. The nature of a projector as an object is not the focus, but the means by which the focus is flung away from the projector in the form of an image. As the projector serves no aesthetic function, the scissor lift allows the projector to stay out of sight and out of mind until needed. And, when the projector is finally lowered, the scissor lift exudes a machine-like sturdiness that is more appealing to the eye – if visitors happen to glance back at it – than a simple plank topped with a box and lens hanging like a 7th grade Peter Pan left dangling from wires as a prank after rehearsal. Really, there is an experience fully formed with the scissor lift; something akin to the curtains lifting at the theater, with the screen rolling down, the lights dimming, and the projector descending from its hidden space ready to dazzle.