Introduction: Romantic Homing Beacon

Picture of Romantic Homing Beacon

I was wondering of a cool gadget i could make my girlfriend as a gift. I've thought of many things to make her but then i came up with a great idea, what about a sort of homing beacon for her so she can know how close she is to me. I've made many things in the past but i felt like making an instructible about this, so here goes my first instructible.

Step 1: Tools

Picture of Tools

You are going to need:
♦ LEDs any colour
♦ 9v Battery
♦ battery clip
♦ Wire
♦ Gate remote
♦ Gate Receiver 
♦ Box
♦ header pins

Tools:
♦ Pliers
♦ Solder sucker
♦ Soldering iron
♦ Solder
♦ knife
♦ Tape

Step 2: Lets Get Started

Picture of Lets Get Started

First thing we must do is remove the relay from the receiver, its big black box you cant miss it.
Use your solder sucker and soldering iron to remove the relay from the board.
Find where the voltage comes to the relay and in those holes place pin headers and solder them firmly into place.

You can choose if you want or not to remove the screw crimps. I did it so i could keep them for a later project.
If you have removed the crimps solider the 9v battery clip into the empty holes, if the crimps are still there then just screw the wires tightly into place. It is labeled on the receiver where positive and ground must go

Step 3: The Remote

Picture of The Remote

With your gate remote , you don't have to do anything special I put a nice switch inside so i don't have to hold the button down 24/7. I just bypassed the switch so now i can use both.

Step 4: LEDs Are Great

Picture of LEDs Are Great

Get your LEDs and your PCB, we going to be doing a lot of soldering so be physically and mentally ready for this. I chose a small design but you can use any design you like. Since the gate receiver gives out a very low voltage we going to have wire all the LEDS in parallel. I did 5x5 LEDs as i said you may do anything you like just make sure they in parallel.

Step 5: Put It Together

Picture of Put It Together

Now that we have our receiver, our lights and our remote ready , lets put them together.
Wire the (-) end of the light lead into the (-) output of where the relay used to be and wire the (+) end of the light lead into the (+) output of where the relay used to be. Connect you battery to its clip, you wont see anything happen you might see the LEDs light up but very very feint. Set the code on the receiver the same as the remote. Test to see if everything is working hold the remote close to the receiver and press the button on the remote, the lights should begin to flash quickly. 

Trouble shooting
If they don't:
make sure you have the wires the right way around.
make sure that there is a voltage coming threw
make sure u have a full battery

Step 6: Choose the Right Box

Picture of Choose the Right Box

Find a nice box to place all of this in. The box i found was perfect. Once you have placed every thing into the box workout where you would like the light to come threw, I'm making this for my girlfriend so i cut the whole as a shape of a heart, you may do any hole you like. I placed a cut off piece of paper behind the hole, this is just to evenly shine the light threw.

Step 7: How Does It Work

The remote sends out a pulsing signal, every time the receiver gets this signal it puts a current through the pins(LEDs), turning them on and off. The reason we don't notice this with a relay is because when its off its not really off if you notice the LEDs fade out every time, they don't turn completely turn off before the next flash.
The reason the lights flash slower when the remote is further is because the remote now takes longer to send the pulsing signal to the receiver.

Well that's all i have for you i hope you can have lots of fun with this.

Comments

danzman (author)2014-05-04

Thanks for the nice project. In order for me to do this I need some answers, if you do not mind. In this statement (step 2) "Find where the voltage comes to the relay and in those holes place pin headers and solder them firmly into place." How do I determine this? I have VOM to test if you can direct. Thanks.

13pboys (author)danzman2014-05-04

You could serch the relay on the internet and look for schmatics on it. Then you can back track to where the power is coming from.
I hope I could help.

brado25 (author)2013-03-05

13pboys, I am working on a senior design project for school and I wanted to know where you got the receiver and transmitter. I am looking to buy a transmitter and one or two receivers. I want to use this same idea as a homing beacon for my robot. The receiver(s) will be hooked up to some pins on an Arduino so I can detect the high pulses, and time them to determine how far away my robot is. Any info you can give would be extremely helpful. If you just had the remote and receiver laying around can you tell me what brand or model number they might be?

13pboys (author)brado252013-03-06

The recever and transmitter are simpily the recever from an automatic gate. And the transmitter is the remote. So try looking at a gate store and see if you can just get the recever. And a remote for it.

randofo (author)2012-10-23

Very cool project. One things... Your pics are a bit blurry. It looks like you are not putting your camera in macro mode. You should try that the next time around. I think you will get awesome results.

13pboys (author)randofo2012-10-24

Thank you for thinking this is a cool project :D. I'm sorry about the pictures but you get the point. Next project I'll make sure the picures are better.

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