Make an indoor lightning Cloud, hang it up right over your door mat, blast whoever passing under it, feel the the beauty of nature in the house. I've put a video here so you can have a look at it!
Step 1: Get Things Ready
Actually there is a shortcoming here using the Xadow - Main Board as it is lack of a DC power jack and can only be energized with LiPo battery, which is usually not the case a Lamp is powered with. So, a better choice is to get a Seeeduino board + Grove - Base Shield combination, and power the system with a 9 V adapter. In addition, the Seeeduino has a higher output voltage at 5 V while the Xadow works at 3.3 V, which results a darker luminance of the LEDs.
I just happen to have a Xadow so I used it in this project.
- Xadow - Main Board + Xadow - Breakout X 1 OR Seeeduino + Grove - Base Shield X 1 OR Seeduino Lotus
- LiPo battery X 1 OR Wall Adapter Power Supply - 9V C 1A X 1
- Digital RGB LED Flexi-Strip 30 LED - 1 Meter X 1
- Grove - Ultrasonic Ranger X 1
- Grove - Universal 4 Pin Buckled Cables at 20 cm and 50 cm
- Wire Strippers
- 60W Soldering Iron - 110V
- Wire Strippers
- Lead-free Solder Spool(100g)
- Mini Hot Glue Gun
- Structural support like lantern, size in 10 cm or 20 cm
Step 2: Step One: Prepare the LED Strips
To make a lightning effect, it is better we place the LEDs all over the lantern surface before we stuffing it with cotton.
I cut the LED strip into 3 segments while each part contains 10 LEDs. The LED strip is actually sticky on the back if you peel off the covered paper.
With the sticky tape design, we can directly adhere the LED strips onto the lantern surface as images shown here.
IT SHOULD BE NOTICED THAT: The LED strip is a directional circuit, you would have to power it from the 'Din' .
Step 3: Step Two: Circuit Connection
Connect the electronic components as the image instructed here.
In the last procedure we have cut the LED band into three parts, for this we would need three cables to connect them in a parallel way. Lets pick up three cables and cut off the grove connector at both side, then strip off the insulating rubber with a wire stripper to expose the coppr wires. The white wire is needless here so we just get rid of it. Wires with same colour should be twisted together at one side, while the other side is left to be soldered with the LED strips.
A picture is provided here to show a lively making process.
To ensure a firm connection at the soldering, it is better we use the glue gun to glue those weak points. Also the glue gun can be used to mount the ultrasonic sensor at the lantern bottom. For the rest of the circuit, we just stuff them inside the lantern.
Step 4: Step Three: Make the Lantern a Cloud
The last step would be affixing the lantern with cotton to make it looks like a cloud. This may sounds easy, but do trust me, even with the glue gun, it almost drove me crazy messing with those cotton. But still, I finally made it with cotton all over my hair... and clothes. Damn...
Don't forget to leave some space for the ultrasonic sensor, as it may fail measuring distance if it is blocked by the cotton.