Create your own Interactive LED Beer Pong Table!
This instructable will guide you through all of the steps to in order to create a one-of-a-kind beer pong table complete with cup detecting RGB pods, automatic ball washers, a 32x12 ping pong ball LED grid, side LED rings for spectators and an RF interface to communicate wirelessly with a PC! It will teach you everything from theory of operation to modifying the table to suit your needs. First, I will take you through the modification and wiring of the table before we dive into the software side of things.
The toughest part about this project is just getting it started. There is a lot of prepping and labour to do before you can get anything real exciting working. However, if you can stick it out until you get the 32x12 LED grid in place, you will do just fine. Once you get up to that point, you can really start to see the potential for the table and it makes working on it a lot more enjoyable. I worked on this table on and off over the course of one year. If I were to build another one and had a set schedule of 8-hours per day to work on it, I could easily finish it within one week. The majority of the time that I spent on this project went into prototyping, development and writing the software rather than actually assembling the project.
Now come and take a tour with me through this Instructable and let us find out if you are up for the challenge!
Daily Planet on the Discovery Channel did a short segment with me on this project. If you are interested in seeing it, check it out here .
I have found a great place to get professional PCBs made at a reasonable price. I have created and tested out multiple breakout boards already and even got a quick run of RGB pods done. Everything has turned out phenomenal and I couldn't be happier with the boards. Lately, I have been working on a newer version of the Interactive LED Beer Pong Table. I will spare the details for now, but I will not be making and selling PCBs for this version of the table. All of the gerber files are available for download for this version of the table in case you want to get the PCBs professionally made yourself though! When I first made this project, I just used parts that I already had on hand. Since then, I have specifically ordered new parts for this table that will suit it better and take up less room on the PCBs. This allowed me to reduce the need for four controller boards and instead combine them into one PCB, which is a huge cost saver. I will have more details to come in the future, but it can be a long and slow process when it takes around 3 weeks per set of PCBs. Stay Tuned!