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Hey, Whats Up all my Instrucatables Buddies!!
       Just to start and let you all know this is my very first Instructable EVER.. so please bear with me!

I'd like to introduce to you all, "BRAINS" my zombie head key chain that is actually a MINI TV Remote Control.

Its kinda cool to have your TV Remote dangling on your keys just in case you ever misplace that huge one that always finds its way into the deepest crevice of your couch or chewed up in the dogs mouth..

Ahhhh, you can finally relax knowing you'll never lose that remote again.. unless of course you lose your keys but then you have much more severe issues anyways!

And the Coolest part of it all is that you can have your very own and modeled to look like absolutely anything, like a Portal Turret, Finding Nemo, Pikachu, a Hamburger, or even Hello Kitty... and I'm going to try to my very best to show you how!

Step 1: ASSEMBLE MATERIALS

THE PARTS LIST:

1x- Sacrificial $1.00 universal remote
           (99cent Store)
5x- Tactile switches
           (I already had these in my project stash. They do not need to be surface mounted)
1x- PCB Project Board
1x- 3v Led
           (I think blue makes it look more futuristic -inside secret!)
1x- 3v Lithium CR2032 Battery Cell
           (lithium is not necessary but way more rad when you brag about it and in my theory lasts a big deal longer)
1x- 3v CR2032 Battery Holder
1x- 18pin IC Socket
1x- PC Ribbon cable
           (Recycled tiny gauge insulated wire)
1x- Chunk of Oven Bake Clay
           (SCULPEY IS MY FAVE!)
& Miscellaneous Paint w/ Brushes
           (to finish the project off just right)



TOOLS USED:

Soldering Iron
           (with solder and flux)
Wire stripper/cutter
Hot Glue Gun
           (& Glue)
Super Glue
Exacto Knife
Kitchen Oven
           (with a cookie sheet that I designated for clay use only)

Step 2: Disassemble REMOTE

First things first:
   
(I just realized that saying looks funky when typed)

Add some batteries to the sacrificial remote and test it with the handy little code booklet it comes with.
    IT WORKS!!!

Gently remove the guts of the remote by either giving the plastic casing a little twist or your handy flat head screw driver.
Try your very best not to damage the circuit board inside because this will be the heart of your project.

FIND YOUR BUTTONS
   Write down the numbers used in the appropriate code for the remote to work with your TV. Also remember to include the buttons used in the code set up process. In my case the SET button must be held until the LED is lit and the the TV button must be pressed, 4 digits and then the ENTER button.

DRAW A DIAGRAM
   Each button has two traces that must be connected for the remote to recognize a button being entered.
Follow each trace to as close to circuit boards IC as possible while leaving room to later solder wires to.
Drawing a diagram is more than just useful, I'd say its absolutely necessary!! SO DO IT!!
THIS PART TAKES TIME..

Its like doing 10 of those little maze things in the news paper.. Remember those?

ALSO DONT FORGET TO DESOLDER YOUR INFRARED LED!

Step 3: HACKING!

LOOK at you over there.. youre now a HACKER

Now that you have traced back the bottons on the remotes pcb and labeled them on your diagram it is now safe to literally hack the remote into pieces..

The CUT:
   I used a marker to mark a line where I'd like the cut to be and used a bandsaw to do the job.
A great thought to keep in mind is to keep it slow and controlled  and you'll have better results and its a lot more safe for your fingers..
Don't forget you safety glasses!

Traces:
   Once cut down to an easier to handle size use your exacto blade to carefully scratch off the top coating on the traces to expose the copper.
With a toothpick clean the copper traces with a very small amount of flux and gentely pre solder.
Also take this time to pre strip all your wires and pre solder their ends.

Take your time and gentely solder each wire to each trace one at a time.
It was helpful for me to line up the wires end with the trace and barely heat the wire with the soldering iron and not the trace itself.
Take your time!
The traces can cook and lift off the board.. Its honestly the most frustrating part but you can do it!

Its also a good idea to add a bit of Hot Glue to secure the wires from wiggling off your pcb.

Step 4: BUTTONS, BUTTONS & LEDS

Design a button layout
   The layout is ultimately up to you but remember to connect the appropriate wires to the traces
(I will try my best to update later with a detailed circuit diagram of my button layout)
Most of the traces are used with several different buttons so take advantage of project board by build connections with solder to minimize the use of jumpers.

Draw out different layouts to help visually prepare for the easiest assembly.

SOLDER IT UP
   Solder the tactile switches to the PCB.
Solder the Infrared LED to the top of the circuit board with enough of it projecting outward to fit through a hole that will be drilled through it.
Solder the appropriate trace wires to their respected buttons on the PCB
Solder battery holder
Solder 1/2 ic socket

TEST
   Test continuity using a multimeter!

Everything works!!!

Step 5: PROGRAMING THE CODE

THE IC SOCKET
   Take the IC socket and cut it in half with an exacto knife because we only need to use one side of it.
Solder the Socket to your Project Board and connect each pin to a button trace that is used in your programming code.
Also connect the the SET button traces and the TV and ENTER traces to the Socket pins.

Typically many of the same traces will be used in different pairs to signal different button presses..
For exacmple the button 4 could use trace label 3 and 7 while buttone 6 could use traces 3 and 6.
..this helps by not taking up a bunch of traces which would take up way to much room!

After the traces have been connected to the IC Socket make sure to label them.. I Alphabetized them.

Once all the soldering has been done it is now time to pop in the battery and test your circuit.
The LED should lite Blue with every button press.
Also if you take you camera phone and direct the IR LED into the lens you should be able to see the LED lite!

JUMPER
   Use a jumper wire to connect the appropriate IC Socket Pins for SET mode and Hold until LED lites.
While lit use the jumper to connect the TV pins.
Using the jumper wire connect the appropriate IC Socket Pins to enter each NUMBER of your TVs CODE. The LED should BLINK to signal the number has been entered.
Then jump the ENTER pins and the LED should blink twice and unlight to signal the code has been entered..

Aim your circuit to the tv and give it a test!

Success!!!

Step 6: MAKE IT LOOK RAD!!

Form The Form
   Using a ruler measure the dimension of the circuit you've created and crumple up tinfoil into a block that is about 1/8th inch larger in each direction.
It helps to smash and rub the tin block against your cookie tray (That you've designaged just for clay use) to smooth out its sides which will help later with removing it from the clay sculpture once its baked.
Take your clay and form it around the tinfoil block leaving enough thickness to maintain structure and strength once baked.
   (I kept a 1/4th inch thickness around my tinfoil block)

SCULPT IT UP
w its time to sculpt some AWESOMENESS!!
Use your imagination and sculpt your clay block into which ever design your heart desires.

BAKE IT UP
   Once youve sculpted your design around the foil block bake it in the oven to the clay manufactures suggested time and temperature on your cookie tray (which will forever now be your clay project tray).
After it has been baked make sure to let it cool, because trust me it will be very hot!
   (I like to let my baked clay sit in a bowl of water to help cool it a bit faster)

CUT IT UP
   Cut the cooled sculpture in half with your exacto knife and remove the tin foil block.
There may be some rough edges inside due to the crumpled foil and do your best to clean it out and smooth the inside using your exacto knife (A dremel with a sanding bit would work awesome in this situation)
Mark all the button and LED locations onto your sculpted case and drill openings.

DECK IT OUT
   Give your creation some color and bring it to life with PAINT!

GLUE IT UP
    With a Hot Glue Gun squirt a bead of hot glue into the bottom of your clay housing and insert your circuit board.  
Glue together the two halves of the sculpture with Super Glue .
Fill in the the Blue LED opening with Hot Glue
   (When the Blue LED is lit it will Illuminate the Hot Glue which looks pretty cool when you get to show it off!)

OPTIONAL KEYCHAIN
   Drill a hole into the top of your clay creation.
Make an eyelet out of a thick gauge of copper wire and insert the wire ends into the drilled hole.
Open out the wire ends (As if it were a brad)
You can even solder the copper wire ends to help secure the the wire ends from pulling through.

KICK BACK ON THE COUCH, POINT YOUR MINI REMOTE SCULPTURE TO THE TV AND TUBE IT UP!
You have my tv remote
Brilliant! Can't wait to give this a shot. I'm gonna try a girlie skull and bones motif or maybe the Hello Kitty design you'd suggested.
Hello, just wanted to say thanks! I'm planning a Steampunk Remote and your instructable is just what I needed to get my head around the technical bits.
This is an awesome instructable! Great job on your first instructable, I know my first was a far cry from your crisp photos and clear instructions. This is a great idea as well, I'll have to think making one of these.
<strong>Thanks, that means a lot!</strong>&nbsp;Id like to add some videos soon going over some tricky spots that should help a lot with making your own creation.. I was just scared to add them after the Big &amp; Small contest deadline in fear of it not counting.. I'd be happy to help with any questions along your way!

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