Introduction: How to Make a Fan POV Display

In this project I will show you how I transformed an ordinary old Fan into a LED POV Display which can present you light patterns, words or even the time. Let's get started!

Step 1: Watch the Video!

The video gives you all the basic information you need to build this project. In the next steps though you will find all the files I created which you can use to create a similar POV Display.

Step 2: Order Your Parts!

Here you can find a parts list with example sellers for your convenience.

Amazon.com:

1x Arduino Pro Mini: http://amzn.to/1XQDzsZ

1x FTDI Breakout: http://amzn.to/1RzVqjb

5x 5mm LED Red: http://amzn.to/1UKHFVH

5x 200Ω, 1x 10kΩ Resistor: http://amzn.to/1XQDRjI

1x Slide Switch: http://amzn.to/1UKIcXH

1x 80mAh LiPo Battery + Protection circuit: http://amzn.to/1UnP79D

1x U18 Hall Effect sensor: http://amzn.to/1XQEJEY

1x Fan: http://amzn.to/1UnPHUV

Ebay:

1x Arduino Pro Mini: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x FTDI Breakout: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

5x 5mm LED Red: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

5x 200Ω, 1x 10kΩ Resistor: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x Slide Switch: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x 80mAh LiPo Battery + Protection circuit: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x U18 Hall Effect sensor: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?...

1x Fan: -

Aliexpress:

1x Arduino Pro Mini: http://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/rBMZ3f2rB

1x FTDI Breakout: http://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/bQnE2Nnmi

5x 5mm LED Red: http://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/Jiy72JIuv

5x 200Ω, 1x 10kΩ Resistor: http://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/NrjaM7qfQ

1x Slide Switch: http://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/EAujuV3Rj

1x 80mAh LiPo Battery + Protection circuit: http://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/2z727Qrb6

1x U18 Hall Effect sensor: http://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/Z3NRNRjy7

1x Fan: -

Amazon.de:

1x Arduino Pro Mini: http://amzn.to/1HwhJ8d

1x FTDI Breakout: http://amzn.to/1yX3CYp

5x 5mm LED Red: http://amzn.to/1PNrrd5

5x 200Ω, 1x 10kΩ Resistor: http://amzn.to/1A2KZzi

1x Slide Switch: http://amzn.to/1UdGgqC

1x 80mAh LiPo Battery + Protection circuit: http://amzn.to/1UdGGgJ

1x U18 Hall Effect sensor: http://amzn.to/1UdGNZw

1x Fan: http://amzn.to/1PtLR4c

Step 3: Create the Wooden Stick!

Feel free to download and use my design.svg file to create a similar wooden stick that I used in the video. Make sure to open the .svg file with Google chrome and print it out without any margins.

Step 4: Build the Circuit!

Use the here presented schematic and reference pictures to create the circuit.

Step 5: Upload the Code!

When uploading one of the three Arduino sketches to an Arduino Pro Mini it is necessary to use an FTDI breakout. After a successful upload the project is pretty much complete.

Step 6: Success!

You did it! You just created your own POV Display!


Feel free to check out my YouTube channel for more awesome projects:

http://www.youtube.com/user/greatscottlab

You can also follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ for news about upcoming projects and behind the scenes information:

https://twitter.com/GreatScottLab

https://www.facebook.com/greatscottlab

Comments

author
jrbums (author)2017-08-13

Thanks for creating a very clear instructable. I didn't know about the hall sensor, and I used it for another spinning electronics project.

author
attanayaka (author)2017-06-23

no hall effect sensor. i have reed switch.how to connect it.and how to programe it

author

Would a 3144 Hall Effect Sensor work? Thanks for all your good work.

author

Not with a LiPo cell as a power source.

author
RealAXZ (author)GreatScottLab2017-06-21

Will button cell work?

author

i used one and it worked just fine !

author
RealAXZ (author)2017-06-21

Can i use another type of hall effect sensor like SS49E or A3144 hall effect sensor instead ?

author
attanayaka (author)2017-06-15

i dont have hall effect sensor

author
KashyapA4 (author)2017-06-05

Hey great scott. Regarding the battery management, do you have a recommended procedure/charger to recharge the battery?

author
UtkarshC9 (author)2016-06-28

Hey great scott.i just wabt to ask that can i use a 9volt battery instead of the lipo battery???

author
FamilyC1 (author)UtkarshC92017-04-06

If the arduino mini can support it, and keep in mind that it will ad a lot of weight to the wooden stick

author
Masud Hassan (author)2017-02-19

Can you code/programme it to act as a clock? Man it would be so cool!!

author
FamilyC1 (author)Masud Hassan2017-04-06

yes, but it can take hours,and you have to adjust the time every time you turn the arduino on

author
FamilyC1 (author)2017-04-06

cool!

author
tooday11 (author)2017-04-04

Nice

author
hot-fresh-rider (author)2017-01-24

I'd love to see this on a ceiling fan with RGB LEDs in time to music.

author
Jasmeeet Singh (author)2016-09-23

That was a great project!! Nice work
Can you please tell me how can I display images or animations through the LEDs??

author
UtkarshC9 (author)2016-06-28

Hey.i made a pov display just like u showed in the video but it isnt working.when i turns the switch on it just flashes a red led in the arduino mini.plzzz help me i am stuck

author
Botanali (author)2016-06-07

Great scott i want code how

author
GreatScottLab (author)Botanali 2016-06-08

By downloading it

author
HaythamL (author)2016-05-01

:s i hoped that you can explain the code and how to can make letters

author
ThomasVDD (author)2016-05-01

Nice build! I'm gonna try to make one with wireless power transmission to the rotor instead of the battery, based on schematics from the german Make magazine :p

author
AllenInventions (author)2016-04-12

The arduino code to write Hacked and Great Scott! no longer open. I have already bought all the parts and am almost done. Please fix it soon:(

author
Maciek. (author)AllenInventions2016-05-01

Try to delete "!" :) That'll help

author
Maciek. (author)AllenInventions2016-05-01

Try to delete "!" :) That'll help

author

There is nothing to fix. It works without a problem.

author

um where do i put the
LEDs?
can I use arduino Uno?
and can I use a 9v battery?
can I change the code part from.great Scott to
ROLLTIDE or something?

author

mine just says failed to open the sketch whenever I try. Any way you could copy and paste the "HACKED!" code in the comments or on the instructable? Thanks (Love your videos and have been following, learning from, and making some of them for over a year)

author

No, I will not do that.

author
OliverH34 (author)GreatScottLab2016-04-18

it dose not work for me.

author

the triangle wave will open but the other two won't

author

You can use Notepad to view the code.

author
Joeybloos (author)2016-04-27

Hi there! First off all, great instructable! Nicely done! But how would I modify your code to display other words or numbers to make a clock of sorts?

author
WisterDeisgns (author)2016-03-27

Wow that's really nice, Where did you learn how to make one like this?

author

I learned about electronics in university and through my job training. So when I saw other POV displays I wanted to create my own design with the concept. That is the result. Basically I learned how to make it by myself ;-)

author

How many years did you study in the university and what kind of job training did you do?
Thanks!

author

what name of university?

author

In which university do u study and what is name of course?
thanks..:)

author

Person is able to learn electronics by himself? If yes how to do it?

author
Veda88 (author)WisterDeisgns2016-03-29

Learning something always costs some money. Go ahead and buy an arduino, some leds and some resistors. Now try to make a looplight (you know that thing Kitt has on front of the car in Knight Rider?). Just search for a tutorial on how to do it. But make sure that you understand what is happening. Now try yourself and change the way it works. Maybe you can change the speed? So go and buy some sensor that can change the speed (A pot meter? A light meter?) Search for a tutorial that uses such a sensor and learn how it works. Now try to combine these 2.

Do this a lot. Start with something small and go bigger once you have learnt some more. I personally like to see results fast. So try to think of some small things that can finish fast. Grow bigger over time. Don't try to do the hardest thing first. You will fail many times and give up soon.

author
RogerF29 (author)GreatScottLab2016-03-29

Could you add in some sort of wireless connector [NRF24L01 maybe?] to allow it to stream fresh information?

author
KazimR (author)2016-04-22

hey scott please help me i buy every thing u said but my adrino light is not blinking please reply me as i have to submit my project fast waiting for your reply

author
DoyDavis (author)2016-04-19

is one of the best pages of electronica, this is what I was looking for to time ... you're great.
success

author
AllenInventions (author)DoyDavis2016-04-20

Could you paste the "HACKED!" code in the comments? It won't let me open it and I've already built the project. Thanks.

author
NLTerminator (author)2016-03-29

Hey Scott, I have a question. I have just started to learn electronics as a hobby (I love to learn) and I bought myself an arduino. Do you jave tips/sources from where I could information so I can learn how to do it. And where did you learn how to program an arduino, and to make circuits. Thanks in advance.

author
Evekites (author)NLTerminator2016-03-29

Hello Scot, great project, I'll try this out soon.

Hi NLTerminator If you like some free document to learn Arduino, I've written something useful. bit.ly/eve_arduino (shortcut for https://www.dropbox.com/s/tfrm06f0tt8fdik/Arduino%... ). It's about 350 A4-pages, written in English (Jammer genoeg voor jou niet in het Nederlands).

author
seadanzig (author)Evekites2016-04-13

the arduino book you posted is great thanks

author

I can tell u 3 Java.instuctables! but most if not all arduino boards use language C: I no a great book u can get on Amazon or maybe even books a million if I would like? or I could just share both with u?

author

I do I actually know 3 great 'ibles if u would like to know?

author

but arduino boards use language C: but I no a book u can get on language C if u want? or I can tell u both?

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