This is basically the Flash Nap project with a few extra features and some work.
It's also a minimal version of "Light/Sound" hypnosis machines that cost hundreds of dollars,
but if you have parts, this one will cost just a couple of bucks. NO PROGRAMMING REQUIRED!
It's definitely mildly hallucinogenic.
Warning, if Pokemon gives you seizures, this will really give you a fit!
Everyone else, don't worry, it's just a cool kind of strobe light, not a weapon.
I am making one now because I want one.
Step 1: Go to the El-Cheapo (99 penny) store and get some Sun Glasses
If you have some already, go anyway.
You never know what kind of fun Stuff you can get for just a buck.
Here are my 0.99 soon to be psychedelic shades.
Step 2: Get some parts ready!
You need RED LEDs. You can try other colors later but red is the best.
Orange is kind of good too.
Yellow I think is lame.
Green is ok, the really bright green would be equal to the red
...except that your eyes will (should) be closed, and red goes thru eyelids the best.
Blue does incredibly nothing. It might make a difference with alternating colors
but I don't think that will be part of this project.
White is good, but only because the first time I made these I used white backlights,
EL type from little LCD screens, and it was actually interesting to stare into those
with eyes open.
You need a 555 timer chip. The flashing will have adjustable rate about from 1 to 20 Hz,
and a duty cycle of almost 50% on and off. Also both eyes will get flashed at. I once had
a switch to make the flashing alternate, but it required another chip, and gave me a
headache. Only one good use is that if the hallucination wears off, a few seconds of
alternating lights would temporarily prolong the effect. Another use for that would be
alternating colors, but there is a reason that that may not be a great improvement...
The alternating color effect can be hallucinated with the red alone. You'll probably
see many different colors.
You need a Pot, AKA a Volume control. Resistance 10K or a little more.
And find a nice a knob to control it with.
I don't recommend "smoking the pot" because only the current will get "high" and you'll ruin the project.
My Pot turns on and off. I just remembered all the times I fell asleep with one of these
turned on and wasting the battery a little. A good way to prevent that is use a button
that's easy to hold down that you will let go of when you snooze, and the machine
will instantly go off. Unless you want to use it for lucid dreaming practice.
I never worried about it before because I used rechargable batteries.
A circuit board would be nice, unless you're the guy who said
"the bigger the Globs, the better the Job". Sure it's possible to solder all the other stuff
on the chip and hot glue it in... the box. I really think I want this to look nice on the outside
at least, (not sleeping is making me silly) but I guess you can drill holes in the glasses and put
all the parts there, and run headphone wire to your ALTOIDS battery, and save an un-cheap box.
Then you'll really look like a Borg. Anyway I'm not really sure my battery and Pot will fit in
that box with the circuit. Of course I'm going to cut and not use most of that board for this.
Well the circuit works on a bread board now so I'll draw a schematic and "use the breadboard" now,
since it's way past time to sleep. The LEDs are the same distance apart as my eyes.
Here's all the parts I got ready already. I think all I didn't mention was a few resistors and
capacitors and maybe a diode so we don't get stupid and reverse the battery.
2x330 ohms resistors 2x1K ohm resistors 2 Red Leds One 470uF cap One 10uF cap
One 2N2222A (or any other cheap NPN transistor ... BCxxx or 2SCxxx) One 10K switch-pot
One 9 volt battery - yeah I have clips made from dead batteries but not using them today.
Step 3: Still working on it. Schematic!
No actually I'm snoozing with the board.
Now making the schematic and putting it here.
1.Notice that pins 2 and 6 are connected together under or over the IC.
2.An additional pot, perhaps 1K, can be put in series with the LEDs,
because changing the brightness has noticeable effects.
3.A headphone cord can be used to connect glasses LEDs to circuit box.
Obviously the glasses might not be in the circuit box so the connection points are marked with X.
4.You can obviously use a wallwart instead of a battery if you're not all wet.
5.At this point I have not decided whether to add more LEDs
or which side of the sun glasses works better.
Translucentifying the lenses and putting the LEDs outside may permit use with eyes open,
if it works well that way.
6.If the 10K knob turning clockwise slows down the flash speed, reverse it's wires if you want.
7.Although the LEDs are shown inside the schematic, I am running wires outside the unit
to the LEDs on the glasses.
8. The Anti-Idiot Diode prevents damage from reversing the polarity as long as the idiot didn't
install the diode backwards. Any cheap diode may be used.
9. The CMOS version of the 555 is ok to use and probably even better.
10. Sorry for the messy schematic. It looks more complicated than it is.
UH OH - BIG OOPS! THE 1UF CAPACITOR SHOULD BE 10uF!!!!!!
The 1uF capacitor will not work!
Step 4: Putting it together
I ran into a few unexpected things but mostly my board is laid out like my schematic, except
for I left the 330 ohm resistors on the board. I rearranged my three connection points so
that the "ring" of a headphone cord was a common and a negative for the LED's.
This effectively resulted in moving two X's to between the resistors and the LED's,
and one on the Collector of the transistor.
The headphone cord had 30 gage manget wires inside it, which is rather annoying,
but I stripped it by scratching the wires with a sharp blade, and then I knew that
it was off when I was able to tin it by dipping the wire in a hot solderball. Some
headphone cords are better, with coaxial stranded wire pairs. Another option for
the cord is ribbon cable and a "new" headphone plug.
MAKING THE LED CORD:
The negative for both LEDs is the back of the plug. The tip of the plug is positive for one LED
and the thing in between is positive for the other LED. You should be able to test the other
end of the cord to see what part of the plug it connects to. A good headphone cord has an
outer bare coaxial shield that is connected to the common, and you can unzip the end to
place the LEDs apart because both wires have the common, which is negative.
LEDs should be tested with a lithium coin "throwie battery (see Make)" to make sure that
the polarity is normal. MOST LED's have a shorter lead for negative, and that lead also
is recognizable as being L-shaped within the LED, even if the LED has identical length leads
because it was used before and you salvaged it. Some rare weird LEDs don't follow these rules.
I used gray ribbon cable for connecting the switch-pot and the headphone jack,
in this case the LED-glasses jack. It is easy to find on old hard drives, but it
may be nicer and easier if you happen to have color coded ribbon cable laying around.
Taking a picture of the board is hard but I made it really small so it fits in that
case with the battery and the switch-pot and the headphone jack. It fits in
a slot of the black box.
Step 5: Finished - except glasses still experimental
It works like it always did, although right now I have the LEDs taped
to the lenses with paper labels to experiment with translucent light
for eyes being open. The effect seems to be the same as eyes closed,
which is fine, if you want to take a nap it works both ways.
I could drill holes in the plastic lenses and solder the LEDs right on
the glasses, that was my plan.
Here is how it went together (see pictures).
I drilled holes in the box for the control and the headphone (LED glasses) jack.
I mounted the jack and the pot.
I put the board in a slot in the case and stuck it there with hot glue after a pre-test.
(It blinked so it was working.)
The battery has been connected already for a while.
HOW TO USE IT:
Turn it on and up to full speed. You should see just red or white.
Turn the speed very slowly down.
First, you might see lots of tiny dots or something.
Then you might see unexpected colors and shapes, which change at different speeds.
At the slowest speed you might just see red-blue-red-blue-red-blue, and fall asleep.
Try it with mellow music that has no words. A certain frequency might be synaesthetic,
meaning you might see stuff that follows the music like your computer does when you play music.
Results vary depending on your personality.
If you don't even have dreams, this may be the most boring thing you'll ever see.
This project does not make music; that's a future project, so use your own ipod , mp3, or walkman.
Step 6: Other experiments
I might follow up on this project with a binaural beat box project.
maybe ... Make a "dreamachine" out of paper like in the picture,
cut holes and roll it into a tube,
and put it on a turntable and put a light bulb inside it,
and stare at it with eyes closed. (mid 1900's invention)
Step 7: Old psychedelic glasses I made around 1992
These had white EL panels. No better effect than cheap red LEDs.
They also had an alternating eyes mode. Wasn't worth the extra chip.