In this instructable I will show you how to make a Lite Brite clock using a Lite Brite, an Arduino, 46 LED's and a few other miscellaneous parts.
This project is an upper-beginner level project. The most difficult part of building the Lite Brite clock is the soldering. The soldering is fairly detailed and intricate. You can very easily short two leads or two wires together, or break solder joints when you're closing the project up. You need to be very precise and detailed in your inspection of your work.
The code I wrote is fairly straightforward, and you can either just use my code, or use it as an example to come up with your own. I don't claim to be a programmer, but i get by.
You can find more about the Lite Brite clock at my blog at http://www.meanpc.com/2012/08/arduino-lite-brite-clock-project_3.html
Ready to build? Let's go!
I documented nearly the entire build with a video camera and photos. Watching the video is not necessary if you follow the steps, but it might help you through some tricky parts. Always be sure to defer to the written instruction when there is a difference. I changed my mind about several things during the build and they had to be redone - but I left the video intact so you could see the entire process.
Step 1: Parts and Tools
1 Lite Brite
1 Arduino Uno or equivalent.
46 LED's - I used 5mm. Diffused LED's will save you some work.
Twelve 100 ohm 1/4 watt resistors
Hookup wire - 20 or 22 gauge, or both. For wires connecting to the Arduino, I recommend 20 gauge for a tight fit.
Small perfboard, breadboard or whatever you would like to use to mount the 12 resistors feeding each column of LED's. I used a small piece of perfboard.
Velcro - applied to the back of the Arduino and perfboard and the inside of the Lite Brite to secure the electronics.
Black construction paper - alternatively, you could use some of the paper that came with the Lite Brite if you still have it.
Needle nose pliers
Sandpaper or sanding block if you don't use diffuse LED's. I used a 320 grit sanding sponge.
Optional - alligator clips - I found these very helpful when testing the LED matrix.