Picture of Tiny LED Jack-O'-Lantern
Ready to spice up your craft-making skills this Halloween season? Say good-bye to your candles! Here's how to make a small, high-tech, jack-o'-lantern that uses a bright LED.

I was actually inspired by this project:
Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories

I liked the idea, but I really wanted to design my own circuit that I could switch on an off, and I wanted to use a different LED color and pumpkin size.
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Pumpkin Carving Materials

Picture of Pumpkin Carving Materials
Mini LED Jack-O'-Lantern 003.jpg
For this project, you'll need a small pumpkin and some carving tools. This pumpkin was sold at my local store as a pie pumpkin, but it's perfect for carving. Plus, it was less than $2. I also used a $1 pumpkin carving saw and a spoon for all of the actual carving, but just use whatever you'd like

Step 2: Carve the Pumpkin

Picture of Carve the Pumpkin
Mini LED Jack-O'-Lantern 005.jpg
Mini LED Jack-O'-Lantern 006.jpg
Mini LED Jack-O'-Lantern 007.jpg
First, carve out the top of the pumpkin like normal, and remove the innards. Then, carve a face or other design into the pumpkin. If you're not very good at carving faces, I suggest having your spouse lightly draw a face on the pumpkin with a pencil. That's what my wife did!

Once you're done, you'll have a tiny jack-o'-lantern that looks great by itself. But don't eat it, because we're going to kick it up a notch!

Step 3: LED Module Materials

Picture of LED Module Materials
Let's build an LED module to light your pumpkin. For this, I'm going to use the following:

  • One (1) ultra-bright red LED (2.4 V, 20 mA)**
  • One (1) 33-ohm resistor
  • One (1) SPST switch***
  • Two (2) AA batteries
  • One (1) snap connector (typically used for 9V batteries)
  • A four AA battery holder

** This particular red LED provides 5000 mcd of luminous intensity, which is enough for small pumpkins.

*** You'll notice that later in the video I am actually using a DPDT switch. I had a lot of those, but I only had a few SPSTs.
Dorkfish927 years ago
Does anyone know of a good way to make the LED flicker? I wanted to make one of these with and LED so that I can leave it on all night and I think it would look allot better if it flickered.
This should do it.
maybe low frequency ac
greenguy277 years ago
Where is a good place to buy these parts online?
chromebones6 years ago
Even better if you bought ceramic or even plastic jack-o-lanterns so they don't have to be remade
Cameron1007 years ago
benthekahn7 years ago
you also need to make sure the polarity on the led is correct.
lakstan7 years ago
Good and simple example for beginners especially for teenagers who like to learn electronics.
oskay7 years ago
Nice job!
Easy Button7 years ago
Great, but I think a candle looks more realistic.
Realistic? Can glowing pumpkins with faces cut out of them look realistic? ;)