Step 2: Salvage The Solar Lights
Inside each of these lights is one 3.5 volt Solar Cell, one AAA NiMh battery, one LED, one transistor, and one resistor. That is honestly worth more than $1 when making projects. Plus I can always make runway light patterns across my backyard and see if anyone will try and land there.
If you can't find these solar lights, you can find them in bulk on ebay. You can also just use a couple of regular NiMh AAA batteries and any old solar cell 4 volts or above, but it will cost you a little bit more than $3.
Take apart the head of the solar light. Be careful to remove the little circuit board for future use.
Snip the wires going to the solar panel. Depending on your solar light you can either pry it out with a screw driver or push it from behind. I used a nail to push from the underside. The glue they use isn't very strong and the solar cell is quite sturdy.
The only danger is that you break off the little solder point on the solar cell. If you do this just throw it away and take apart another solar light.
After doing this to both lights you'll now have two solar cells and two AAA batteries.