In this instructable i will make a red mood light out of stuff i had using things i found around the house.

After a particularly long, awkward night entertaining company i found myself in need of a low wattage light source of the romantic inclination. Without one i found myself in the dark and was reminded of Woody Allen's character In Annie Hall.

" Hang in there for a second. I got a
little-little artifact. A little erotic
artifact, that-that I brought up from the
city, which I think, uh, is gonna be perfect. "

The artifact in question was a red light bulb, I think i can do better. Lets get started

Step 1: Make a Base

I found a chunk of sign foam and cut it into a square. Sign foam is a high density urethane foam thats light, easy to work with, waterproof, unaffected by moisture and non conductive. I always find scraps around my house, as should you.

I used a small hacksaw to rough out the shape and 80 grit sandpaper to smooth out the edges. I went with a more organic shape because i didn't want to take the time to get all the edges square. im lazy that way.
If the Ac adaptator is not able to send enough current, it mean that it will : -Over heat a little (and may became hot during summer days) -Not be able to send as much tension (volts) as it should -Will not be able to send a constant tension (it will vary a little bit with the same period as your AC source, 50 or 60Hz) The two last points explains why you leds do not over heat to much (did you try to read the real tension with a voltmeter ?), but there are certainly better way of doind things, like : -Add a voltage regulator before the leds -Add a non blinking led in serie with each the blinking led, hence double the voltage drop (but you'd have to check the specs of the integrated resistor in the leds to see if the voltage drop is not too strong) -Add a resistor (cost about $0.15 !) Anyway, the leds will age faster, but it is not a real problem. Just remmeber to check the temperatur of the AC adaptator from time to time after long use in hot days just to be sure.
Wow, thats a mouthful. And while you are most likely right on several counts, my unflinching laziness makes me not want to do anything at all at this point. A few months back i snipped the wall wort leads and added a 9v battery clip for portability.
My electronics knowledge consists of "find an instructable, watch how they do it, do it, does it work? yay!" In terms of adding a 9v battery clip and making this battery powered, would that burn out the LEDs since it's more voltage than with the power source (which you had at 6v if I remember correctly?) I'm making a robot costume and I don't want to be connected to a wall power source.
DC to DC converter would save you
Why does it blink randomly?? wouldn't the LEDs stay on while there is a power supply?
did you read the whole article? im sure the answer to your question is in there someplace.
schematics of the wiring?
its just a power supply and a load. If you need a schematic for that, perhaps you shouldn't be using power tools called for in step 2. Srsly, did you even read this instructable?
lol yeah sorry. its just that i dont want to burn my poor leds from wiring em wrongly im new in electronics u know. but i found another instructable better explained. sorry for the stupid question
i'm sorry if you already said this but does this blink with the music? also is the pattern random? thanks
See step 6 for epic justice.
does the circuitry in the leds break the connection between the positive and negative terminals of the leds, or do they actually isolate the emitter from the electricity and draw power all the time? if it is the latter, then you can just wire them in series but you need enough voltage for each of them if it is the former , however, there is a possibility that the leds will shut off one after the other if wired in series, kind of like a chase light sequence, maybe because it uses a capacitor combined with the flow of current to time the blinks, but it really depends on the design of the circuitry inside them
If you put them in series, the whole string blinks at once. And they draw way more current then a standard LED by itself. LED throwie tests show only 25% the life of throwies made with "super bright 10mm" LEDs. What does that mean? I dont know.
What neat project and a great video (props for the cover song). It almost appears that the lights are coordinated to the song
Thanks, yeah funny thing is they aren't. and they cant. But it sure does look at way. My theory is with that many lights in a grid, the viewer starts seeing patterns that are totally random. And the guy playing the song, that was totally random to.
The flashing looks nice. But where's the fuzzy logic? I cant find any logic, fuzzy on non-fuzzy. I don't even see any fuzzies on the enclosure/box. Unless.... you count the very imprecise and fuzzy measurements made for the drilling holes as fuzzy ;-) I know how hard it is to drill in neat and even rows using a hand tool. I drilled eighty holes in a board for my upcoming instructable "The Tangible Drummachine" and that was not fun to do....
Hey - so after thinking about this for a bit, I think Zachninme and I came up with a way to make this work on pseudo-fuzzy logic. I'd call it more of random chance, but at least it uses standard LEDs. Basically - hook up all of the LEDs in series with self-resettable fuses low-current(20mA), and then in parallel. In (my) theory (and I don't know much....) Current should flow in different magnitudes through each fuse/LED pair due to imperfections in manufacturing. This should sink current through some pairs and not others, but once too much current is flowing through the pairs, the fuse kicks out and a new pair lights with the extra current available. Each pair should repeatedly flicker at some (most likely super-high) frequency. I think we should be able to control that frequency, though, with a capacitor somewhere. What do you think?
Im going to say thats out of my league to comment on. I might, however, be interested in breadboarding it. If i understood the self-resettable fuse part.
I'm not sure if even <em>this</em> is fuzzy logic... just cooler :P<br/>
I guess it could kind of mean pseudo-PWM to reduce the light output to an average of 12.5 LEDs by having them blinking randomly... I don't know. But I do know that I want one. And maybe some other colours of LED for a more Mathmos-y feel...
Not as many colours offered in blinking leds, try ebay. And buy in bulk for the best prices.
You should use resistors to limit the current through the LEDs. Let this calculator do the design for you: <a rel="nofollow" href="http://ledcalculator.net">http://ledcalculator.net</a><br/>
See Step 4 for further info regarding resistors and this project. But i like how your totally plugging your site, great jorb.
Wow, looks cool :) maybe if you sanded the leds a bit that would diffuse the leds and maybe give out a more romantic glow?
[quote=&quot;Pwntalive in step 6&quot;]<br/>This means sudo random effects can be accomplished without complicated micro controllers or programing skills.<br/>[/quote]<br/><br/>The effects are cool, but do they really require root privileges?<br/><br/>;-)<br/><br/>Oh, yeah! I went there. While every other *nix-head fought the urge. I went there.<br/>
&quot;sudo&quot;, &quot;random&quot; and &quot;without...programming skills&quot;.<br/><br/>Sounds like $75/hour contract admins I had to stomach during the last Internet bubble.<br/><br/>I guess it could have been worse. If they *had* programming skills, their sudo-randomness would have been even more efficient.<br/>
I think you missed the joke. I was punning on the authors accidental use of <a rel="nofollow" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sudo">sudo</a> when it should have been <a rel="nofollow" href="http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/pseudo">pseudo</a>.<br/><br/>In all of your usages it should have been pseudo also.<br/>
*I* certainly didn't.<br/>I'm the other technical guy in the country that can actually spell and form complete sentences.<br/>Nice to finally meet you.<br/><br/>My problem is uncontrollable sarcasm.<br/>
dag yo, thanks for catching that. all instances of sudo should be <a rel="nofollow" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judo">Judo</a>, for its gentle way with the ladies. My bad. Seriously though, thanks for pointing that out. LOLz<br/>
I think the bill for this whole thing came to maybe $3. Thats efficient enough for me. And as much as id love to throw in a whole section on multiplexing this whole thing, i was afraid of talking over peoples heads. Check out the comments on "where do i get LEDs" and "are you driving those with AC"
lol >.<
Wow - you are a true geek! I had to look that one up to see what on earth you were talking about! :D
this may be a noobish question, but what type of solder did you use?
Pwtalive, Good work!! I was wondering what the power source was?
check step 4 for epic justice.
Lol! Keep the pith coming!
Pwntalive, Thanks for the info.
Having this light up in time to music would be sexy. Also randomizing a bunch of different colors could be cool too.
This is the best instructable I have read so far!!! Do you make any leds powered by solar?
Try my other instructable, its full of even more pithy goodness.
Awesome. I totally think it's romantic...
I will have to try the copper wire idea for my next LED project!
Agreed... I love the way you ended up doing the wiring. Simple and very clear. You really only have to look at it for a second or two to understand what's going on.
Thank you, instuctables is all about being easy to use
That's really awesome. Great job getting featured, it came out AMAZING. And agreeing with canida, adding the finished product would be great. Nice job! +1 rating.
Additional photos Now up, thanks for the rating
Sorry for multiple comments, but quick question. Did you include an IC, or are your LEDs just the ones that blink? Oh yea, where did you purchase your LEDs? Thanks and nice job, I am thinking of doing this when I have time!
From Step5 &quot;<em>Normally im all about wiring LED's in series, but because these are &gt;blinking&lt; diodes they need to be treated differently.</em>&quot;<br/><br/>So this projects needs 25 self-blinking/flashing leds.<br/><br/>It would probably be a lot cheaper to use 25 ordinary leds and a microcontroller for $2, but that would require a lot of programming and more complicated wiring though....<br/>
Yea, DC current and blinking/flashing LEDs. For those interested, googling 'blinking LED' found many vendors. The one at the top of the list had them for US$.50 each in 10+ quantities. You can probably find them for less. I like them as 'attention getters' where I just don't want to have the issue of putting in more circuitry.
$0.50 is not too bad. Sometimes I wish that I lived somewhere where I could buy electronics stuff without shipping them across half the globe....

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