Introduction: Bionic Louise Belcher and Firefox for the Rest of Us!
Being Louise in pink as a 45 year old dude is just not right...
Yes I hear what you said just now!!!
The ears are pose-able and mandatory!
I guess that it is time to make this sucker bionic... Super hearing with attitude... What could possibly go wrong???
that being said... here it comes.
Plus did you know that changing the material and ear profile completely changes the persona?
Did you know what was being said across the room??? not for the weak of heart!!!
The ears are moldable and yet retain the bionic listening capabilities despite the free forming.
I have modified my previous Instructable to include the males that want to embrace the teachings of Louise.
No tolerance, up front, and obvious!
The ears pull us together and the attitude lets us rise above...
I have a disproportional melon so that gives me a... New Cut! Extreme new cut is for smaller melon .
The first of 3 major changes are the more radical cut on the front of the 4 cowl pieces shown the the downloadable pattern.
Firefox is the Cowl PDF while the other two are for the Bunny!
OK so you got this far. Print out both the patterns, decide if you need the new cut or traditional, then cut and assemble the pattern as shown HERE
Step 1: As Before
You will need to prep and cut your material of choice. This one is brown fleece. A guy wearing bunny ears is weird enough but if they were pink, that just screams white van!!!
Careful inspection will show that I the more drastic profile on the front cowl tucks the front down and creates a more form fitting tribute to Louise!
The orange is for Firefox.
I chose brown fleece for my remake for obvious reasons. And the Tech, well these ears will give you bionic hearing
The wire loop for supporting the ears has been enlarged slightly and now also goes all the way to the tip of the ears. This allows the ears to be bent into attitude positions. Further the ears are not sewn shut so that the plastic mesh is still accessible from the inside of the cowl. This one location where you will be needing to insert electrics.
Finally the larger wire loops from the bottom of the ears are bent reward. Before I fastened the loops into the top cowl seam. This step has shown to be not necessary. The loops simple bend down along the profile of your head and gravity holds them in place. The ears to flop a little more but still remain upright regardless of head tilt and position. The had will not even fall off of my head in prone positions.
I have found that you do not need to fasten the wire ear loops into the top seam. they will play nice without it. one less step more fun. make the loop at least 4 inches in diameter. I am typing here wearing mine at this very moment!!!
Now I'm listening to soothing metal through the LB hat!!!!
Step 2: As Before So Shall This Be
From my previous sewing instructions make this one the same, only leave the opening in the back, well... open.
The outer cowl and ears on the Firefox are larger than the inner. this allows the material to fold over and create a more organic colour scheme. The more radical colour scheme seems to draw a lot more attention.
On the Firefox model there are no electrics This is where the plans deviate...
Step 3: Make It Loud... Make It Right!
To make the world a little more(or less) noisy I chose to use the LM386 standard circuit with amazing results.HERE!!!
We will be inserting a headphone.
Plus, and YES, some amplification circuits and microphones to allow for super hearing and normal headphone use. BTW I had the electrics exit from the left tie.
The headphone and microphone cords are hidden from view through one of the drawstring ends. Normal use works fine but amplification is perhaps one f the boldest features ever suggested in this medium...
I cannibalized an existing headphone system for both the speakers and wiring.
Carefully locate the center of your ear and mark the location for speaker installation. this is done by wearing the hat and poking the center of your ear with your finger. make note of the position and fasten the appropriate speaker between the layers of the hat facing your ear.
The circuitry for amplification is contained outside of the hat, that way you can use it as a simple headphone.
The microphones are an electret type housed in the base of the ears. there are two which will allow for perceptual location.
Since the hat is fabric, simply glue the headphone speakers to the inner layer next to and facing your ears. I used EL6000 adhesive and 1/2 inch carpet tape to accomplish this.
By the way, it's fleece... don't worry about cutting holes.
Step 4: The Circuit
As shown the circuit is a simple amplification device. This allows variable volume in the direction of the ears.
Should you just want to use headphones then simply plug the shown red headphone lead into you music player for soothing music...
Looking at the Amplifier chip...
Connect Pin 1 to Pin 8 Through a 10uF ceramic Capacitor, this will reduce the chip noise...
Also this needs 2 channels so 2 amplifiers...
Connect Pin 6 to Ground
Also connect Pin 6 to ground through a 10uF Electrolytic Capacitor.
Connect Pin 2 to Ground
Connect Pin 4 to Ground
Attach a 10uF cap to pin 5 and leave the one leg open. Connect this to a headphone socket, use standard convention for left and riight channels.
Connect pin 5 to ground through a 10OHM then 0.047uF Film Cap to ground.
Connect pin 1 to 9 VDC through a 4700OHM resistor
Connect Pin 1 to the positive input of the Amplifier use pin 3 through a Volume adjustment POT
Connect pin 2 to the ground as well as the amplifier ground
Connect pin one of the microphone to a 10K pot through a 0.047 uF film cap to Pin 3 of the amplifier.
connect the microphone ground to pin 4 amplifier digital ground.
Breadboarding is now done. test the circuit then transfer it to a solder board.
make it real and put it in an enclosure. I suggest using external pots to allow for microphone volume.
The microphones are placed at the base of the ears.
If you use a 1/4 inch plug for the input then this will also work nicely as a guitar amplifier.
power laces are next(not quite but we can dream)...
Step 5: What Did You Just Say???
At the base of the ears, Place one each, electret microphone facing forward. Now we can begin!!!
From here you can inject the microphone input to the amplifier circuit There are a couple of standard circuits that you can use. The final board circuit shown here tends to be a little big and messy.
The first board in the pictures after the circuit diagram has a preamplifier circuit in it, this did not work out so well ant is seemed to pick up and amplify a local AM radio station.
It was redone without the pre-amp with way better results.
Now I can actually hear whatever is said around me. You can try modifying the standard LM386 standard circuit. This is done by using web resources which are too numerous to list here!!!!
The LM386 is a very versatile amplifier allowing for a gain of 20 to 200.
check out this circuit then get back to here!
The dual microphones enter through a 3 pin plug, amplifying up to about 35 feet.
In Canada if you are part of the conversation then it is legal to listen and record!
You may recognize this circuit since I make use of it as an audio device from my guitar amplifier.Check this out at@@@@@@@@!
The variable gain is then sent to the speakers in the hat. This allows you to listen to conversations that are a little too far away to hear normally.
The input here is from the microphone and is coupled to the output speaker.
Orange is live and Brown is gain. These go to the speakers and white and green are ground. This is the basic circuit from the datasheet.
Step 6: Beyond the Prototype
I decided to make the circuit a little more compact.
One noticeable change is that I have included 2 individual audio POTs to work a volume control, this tied the amplification of both ears together yet still allows for individual circuits. It is really spooky to have the microphones be able to pick up audio yet still allow for differentiation location of the source of the sound.
Again the circuits are contained in the box device. I just connected orange to positive and green to ground as shown. be careful to get left and right to the proper orientation.
The more compact circuit is housed in a Hammond 1500 series case that has a 9V battery compartment. I can easily put this one in my pocket with no chafing.
In this case the white/pink lead comes from the microphones and must go through the circuit that is inside of the black box as previously discussed. The red lead goes directly to the headphone circuit. The microphone volume is controlled by the 2 audio pots that are on either side of the mic input.
The wiring will have to be cleaned up as it looks somewhat messy in it's current configuration.