This project is an introduction to 3D printing and using LEDs, resulting in a fun-looking night light that you can dim and switch on and off.
This Instructable was made as part of the CS graduate course "Tangible Interactive Computing" at the University of Maryland, College Park, taught by Professor Jon Froehlich. Please see http://cmsc838f-s15.wikispaces.com/ for more details.
Step 1: Materials
- 3D printer access (approximately 163g filament used)
- 6 x 5mm LEDs
- 330 ohm resistor
- Toggle switch
- 9V snap connector
- 9V battery
Step 2: 3D Printing
First, you will need to 3D print your rocket! The files can be downloaded from Thingiverse here. The body and wings are printed separately, so you can choose different color filaments for these parts. I recommend holding off on assembling the rocket until you have mounted the inner circuitry.
Step 3: Make the Circuit
The circuit itself is relatively simple, but with six LEDs there are a lot of wires to solder. Make sure to use long enough wires between the components to reach the ports on the rocket! The 330 ohm resistor is used to make sure that the LEDs do not burn out when the potentiometer is set to 0, so you could change this value depending on your LED specs and the desired maximum brightness. You could also forgo the potentiometer entirely if you don't want the dimming feature.
Step 4: Place the Circuit
This step will require some patience, since it may be tricky to get the LEDs to stick in the ports properly. If you have trouble, try using a pencil or similar long object to guide them in place. As seen in the picture, I used tape to hold them in place during the process. Once you're satisfied with the placement, glue the switch and potentiometer in place.
Step 5: Finishing Touches
Glue the wings on to the rocket body, plug in a 9V battery, and enjoy your new rocket night light!