Step 5: Oh Right, The Electronics.

We're already at step five sooo ... We must have covered all the hard parts, right? Oh. Yeah. Soldering.

This is the hard part. Or at least, the most grueling, horrible, and obscenely-underestimated-and-badly-planned-for part. This is the part where we go from 40 or so chintzy electronic dice to the greatest chess playing computer the world has ever seen.

We are talking ((27 dice x 7 LEDs each x 2 Leads) x 3 solders steps) = 1,134 solder joints.

And that's just for the LED step. It's doable. And totally worth it, though.

"This will only take a few hours, we'll just do that the day of Halloween." Bad idea. I recommend a couple weekends free for this part. And a lot of fresh air breaks for recovering from the solder fumes.

Incidentally, I did construct a rudimentary solder fume removal device out of an ac fan, copper tube, and some dryer ducting. It ran from my workstation to the oven vent. I recommend either that, or working outside. Seriously.

The pictures run through this step by step, but here's a summary of what needs to be done:

  • Disassemble all the dice. Remove the batteries and pzieo buzzer.
  • Mark the polarity and desolder the LEDs and the spring jiggle switch.
  • Solder wires to all the LEDs. I used purple for the marked side, and white to the other.
  • Resolder the newly elongated LEDS back on, matching polarity to the dots on the circuit board.
  • Resolder the battery cases.
  • Wire the left terminal of the switch on every circuit board to the left terminal on all the others, and repeat for the right terminal. They will form a long daisy chain, each on soldered to the next and the last item in the chain is the switch, wired the same way.

For comparison, here is how the dice start out (a huge pile of them chirping wildly):

And here is what they look like when I tested them all wired up for the first time:

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skipernicus4 years ago
It strikes me you could have used red LED Christmas lights if you could rig up some sort of portable power supply.