Picture of Musical Altoid tin
I've seen projects similar to this but the trigger mechanisms didn't seem too reliable. So this project is how to install a pressure switch to make your Altoids tin musical. If you haven't tried soldering before this project should be a good start. It only has four simple solder joints to make.
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Step 1: Everything you need.

Picture of Everything you need.
For this project you will need

Musical greeting card.
Altoid Tin
Soldering Iron
Micro switch (radioshack $1.69)
18 or 20 gauge solid core wire
Spool of Solder
Wire cutters


Solder station with helping hands.

Step 2: Disassembly of card

Picture of Disassembly of card
Open card, lift up the inner fold until card is flat don't worry about the sides ripping.

Remove the circuit with battery and speaker.

Locate metal tab that was used by the card as a switch. Bend tab back and forth till it comes off.

Step 3: Configure the switch

Picture of Configure the switch
Cut two pieces of wire each about 2 inches long.
Strip about a quarter of an inch of the wire insulation off each end of the wires.

The pressure switch has three terminals; n/o, n/c and C they stand for Normally Open, Normally Closed and Common.

One wire will always be attached to the Common terminal. The other wire determines how the switch will act. Since I want the music to trigger when the tin is opened I'm going to attach the wire to the n/o (normally open) terminal. That way the circuit is open until the switch is pressed.

Slip the wire through the terminals and make an L shaped bend to hold it in place.

You can test that you have the switch configured correctly by touching the two contacts on the circuit board with each of the wires. The music should start and if you depress the switch it should stop.

If everything checks out remove the battery from the circuit to make it ready for soldering.
tom tom4 years ago
You should get one of those recordable cards. Put in a false top with mints and say "Get away from my Altoids,"
TSC5 years ago
good job
girrrrrrr28 years ago
the chocolate covered ones are the best kind so far...good job on teh instructable...first to post!!!
your not first. pwnzrd!
liik at the time links on the page... i was about 2 months ahead of him... so yeah.
i reuse my altoids tins for other projects.......I have the same, yours looks good mine looks like its been, lit on fire, ( i carry heavy things sometimes in it) dropped a few dozen times, blown up, drilled, and cut way too many times...