As an entrepreneur, I'm always looking for great projects to share. Myself and two other classmates recently put together a project for our Master's of Engineering program in Technical Entrepreneurship, and we're thrilled to share our vision with you. Remember that old Connect 4 game sitting in your basement/closet/chest/Batcave? You've always wanted to upcycle that into a functioning binary clock utilizing the awesome powers of an Arduino, haven't you? Of course you have - well, you're in the right place!
This is a great weekend project that will provide you with a sleek and nostalgic binary clock all at once. We focused on recycling every part of the Connect 4 game to exemplify our "green" standards, and be as creative as possible. The Connect 4 works superbly in displaying a binary clock because it has perfectly rounded holes to showcase the LED-based binary numbering system.
You don't need many supplies to make this binary clock, and it's a great way to utilize an old Connect 4 game if you've lost some of the pieces, or simply want to show off your mad creative skills. And don't worry about the coding - which we struggled against in an epic battle between sanity and madness - we already have it laid out for you! There's not much of a time commitment and a fun result is waiting for you, so let's get started!
Step 1: Materials
Difficulty Range = Moderate
Time = 2-3 hours
Here's what you'll need to build your very own Connect 4 Binary Clock:
- Connect 4 game (the board is most important, if you don't have the chips or box, that's still fine)
- Drill Bits
- Arduino Uno (or equivalent)
- 7 Red LED's
- 6 Super-bright Green/Yellow LED's
- 13 LED Holders
- Soldering Iron
- Electrical Tape
- Wire strippers
- Wire cutters
- Super glue
- 13x 220 Ohm Resistors
- Any blade (though a box cutter works best)
*Note: Keep in mind that red LED's emit a brighter light than all others. Therefore, we need to up the brightness of the other LED's, so that they'll match the brightness of the red ones. This is why we need to buy super-bright LED's to counter the red LED's. We unfortunately made the mistake of not doing this, and the light wasn't bright enough. However, our errors are your knowledge!