Introduction: Illuminated Badge
We received Chibitronics peel-and-stick electronics for crafting circuits for an Instructable Build Night. These circuit stickers allow anyone to add effects to just about any item you can think of using lights (LEDs).
I thought it would be fun to take an everyday work item, a badge, and give it some pizzaz.
Step 1: Collecting the Parts
For this project you'll need:
- Plastic card or paper card stock
- 2 Chibitronics LED stickers
- Copper tape
- Coin battery
- Binder clip or paper clip
- Invisible tape
Step 2: Around and Around the Badge We Will Go
As you can see from the front of the badge, there is one strip of copper tape that goes across the bottom. It appears there are two shorter pieces above the bottom strip.
Actually, the two shorter strips are the ends of a much longer piece that goes from one side of the front of the badge, over the edge to the back and continues to the front again.
- This design requires the path of the positive (shown as +) copper tape to go across the bottom of the badge, then proceed over the edge and runs about 1/2 the way across the back of the badge.
- The path of the negative (shown as -) copper tape starts on the front of the badge, then proceeds over the edge, goes 1/4 of the way across the back.
- To complete the connection to the battery, a part must be added to the back of the badge. It must also be attached so it works like a hinge. If the + part of the battery touches both the + and - copper tape paths, the circuit will short out. The same is true for the - side of the battery.
- It is necessary to insulate the circuit paths with invisible tape where needed so the + side of the battery does not come into contact with the - and vice versa.
Step 3: Time to Go to Work
This is much easier to do if you look at the images of the front and back of the badge. Explaining it step by step makes it look hard. Read the steps below before applying the copper tape. There are a couple of tips.
There are a few steps to creating the hinge:
- Put the badge on a work surface with the front of the badge facing you
- Take the card, lay it on the badge so one edge is 1/4" to 1/2" above where you want the top of the LEDs to go
- Mark the card just inside of the badge outer edges
- You want to cut the card so it is not as wide as the badge
- Flip the badge over
- Place the card on the back of the badge and tape it down
- The card now acts as a hinge, flip it over and tape it down
- Press firmly on both sides of the card where it is taped again
- On the front of the badge, start on one side where the bottom of the LEDs will be and apply the tape
- Go across the badge, continue to the back, go about 1/2 of the way across and cut the tape
- This is the + path, so mark it with a + (see image)
Now for the negative path:
- This piece of copper tape is longer, starts toward the center of the badge and goes to the back, makes a - battery connection and then back to the front.
- Leave a 1/4" space between the + and - copper tape paths on the front of the badge.
- The tape may be sticky when attached that is will be difficult to move and may break so I suggest you use the 1/4" on fron and back (see images).
- On the front of the badge, starting toward the center where the top of the LEDs will be start, apply the tape.
- Go over the edge to the back and stop where you plan to connect to the battery.
- You will now want to move the path of the tape to the hinged card so as to make the - battery connection.
- To make a clean, flat corner, fold the tape away from the desired direction. The sticky side will be up.
- Now fold over the tape, the sticky side will get folded on itself, causing a tight, square corner once you flatten where the tape turns directions.
- Continue to the edge of the hinged card, make a turn, another quick turn, and then back along the card till you get back to the badge where you left.
- Make another turn. Continue along the back of the badge, keeping the 1/4" space between the two copper paths.
- Go over the edge to the front of the badge and continue toward the center of the badge where the top of the next LED will be.
- Cut the tape when finished.
- Remember when I said "It is necessary to insulate the circuit paths with invisible tape where needed so the + side of the battery does not come into contact with the - and vice versa." No, well I am saying it again.
- On the back side of the badge, where both the + and - copper paths run next to each other, when you put the + side of the battery down to power the LEDs, it will touch both the + and - copper paths. It is called a "short."
- Not an issue, take a 1 1/2" - 2" piece of invisible tape and cover only the - copper tape. It may go over the hinge tape and continue on the card.
- If you look at the image of the back of the badge above, you will see the tape looks different with the invisible tape on it.
Want to see the PIZZAZ?
- Install your battery between the back of the badge + connection and the hinged card - connection
- Attach the binder or paper clip to the front of the badge and the back of the card
- This will make a tight connection to the battery and the lights should be on
Time to gone to work so you can "SHINE"