Introduction: Avatar's Arrow
If you love the show Avatar the Last Airbender as much as I do, you can make Aang's arrow & have it come to life too! I have been playing around with the gadget, Circuit Playground Express and I've been making it do some pretty cool things- just like Aang's arrow! I have provided all the supplies that you need for this project to come alive as well as the directions. Follow along & try it out yourself! I'd love to see what you have done. Enjoy!
If you have figured out something that could work for this project, please let me know! I'm happy to hear it.
Circuit Playground Express
Battery Pack w/ Batteries
Program makecode.adafruit.com (free)
Fabric (any kind)
Hot Glue (if headband is plastic or metal)
Step 1: Shaping Your Arrow
After grabbing all of your supplies, you can shape your arrow. Take your preferred fabric and cut it down to about 10"x6".
*Remember your fabric does not have to be blue or exact like Aangs'. This is your arrow. For instance, my arrow has flowers all over it, making it match my personality more.
Once you have cut your fabric down, flip over the fabric. This is important so that If you make a happy accident, no one will see it on the side that will be exposed. Measure where the middle is on the short side, ie. 3in, and draw a dot. On the longer side, measure up to 3.5in and draw a dot. Do the same on the opposite sides and connect the dots. On the smaller half, connect your dots by drawing diagonal lines creating a triangle. Next, measure 2&1/4in and 3&3/4in on the inside line and makes dots at those points. Do the same on the opposite edge of the fabric. Connect those dots.
Cut your arrow out and keep the scraps!! Measure your arrow to your head and trim if necessary. I had to trim mine down on the triangle part about 3/8ths of an inch on each diagonal.
Now, did you remember to keep your scraps? Good! Use one of the long rectangle scrap of fabric and sew that to the end of your arrow. Try to center it in the middle since it's wider than your arrow. This is where your battery pack will go/hide under.
Step 2: Coding Your Circuit Playground Express
*Remember, this is your arrow. You can add/change anything you'd like to program your Circuit Playground to do. These are just directions, a sort of roadmap to making your own arrow!
For simple blue light for main setting;
You can do this for any color you'd like!
1. drag over 'forever' loop (green)
2. drag and place 'show ring' (blue) inside the 'forever' loop block
3. on 'show ring' block, click the color blue (or any color you want) and then click the circles to change them to that one color
4. drag and place 'set brightness' block over the 'show ring' block and set it to 128 (blue)
For Avatar State setting;
(I tried this to be a shake sensor, however the battery pack is too heavy for you to shake your head.)
1. drag the input block 'on button A, click' and change to 'on button A+B' (purple)
2. drag and place 'if true then' block inside the 'on button A+B' (light blue)
3. add some sounds! for this, you can choose your own sound to be played. drag and place 'play sound' block (orange) and set your sound. I have mine set to magic wand!
4. drag and place 'set volume' block (orange) under your sound. This will determine the volume of your chosen sound. The Circuit Playground Express' volume ranges from 0-255. I have mine set to 90.
5. to have your Avatar State go for a while, add a 'repeat' loop block (green) and set the number of times you'd like your lights to go off. I have mine set at 5times
6. alright, since this is the Avatar State setting, drag and drop 'set brightness' block (blue) within the 'repeat' loop block and set it on high- 255. This will really show that it's the Avatar State.
7. drag and place the 'show ring' block (blue) and change all the colors to white. *being that this is your own arrow, you can make your 'Avatar State' be any color you'd like.
8. finally, click on the plus sign + on the 'if true then' light blue block to add an 'else' drag and drop an 'stop all sounds' block (orange) in that new spot. This will prevent your sound from repeating over and over again long after you have clicked the two buttons.
Connect your Circuit Playground Express to your computer. Download file, and place into the "CPLAYBOOT" drive on your desktop. Your code should appear on your Circuit Playground and ready for Avatar adventures.
Step 3: Coding Your Circuit Playground Express- Advanced!
Let's add some cool effects! (I really wanted to use the sound sensing feature, however it is super sensitive to any sound)
1. drag and place 2 of the 'on temperature..' blocks (purple) onto your board. You can set it to read what ever temperature you'd like, lets start with;
hot- I have mine set to sense 60 degrees fahrenheit. I have added the 'play sound' block (orange) to play 'jump up'. Within this block, add the 'show animation' block (blue) and set it as 'running light' & too 1sec. Add the 'if true then' block (light blue) and have it surround these two other blocks. Click the plus sign + to add an 'else' spot and add both the 'stop all animations' block (blue) as well as the 'stop all sounds' block (orange).
cold- I have mine set to sense 40 degrees fahrenheit. I have added the 'play sound' block (orange) to play jump down'. Within this block, add the 'show animation' block (blue) and set it as 'running light' & too 1sec. Add the 'if true then' block (light blue) and have it surround these two other blocks. Click the plus sign + to add an 'else' spot and add both the 'stop all animations' block (blue) as well as the 'stop all sounds' block (orange).
1. drag and place the 'on light-dark' block (purple)
2. let's make this one change to all colors. again, this is up to you! place a 'show animation' block (blue) into the 'on light-dark' block (purple) and set it to the 'rainbow' animation and set it too 1sec.
3. to have this animation go one for while, add a 'repeat' loop (green) on top of the 'show animation' block. I have mine set to play 4 times.
4. I found out in my process is you need a beginning and an end to all block groupings. For this feature, add the 'if true then' block (light blue) and have it surround the 'repeat' block. Click the plus sign + to add an 'else' spot. This is where your end will go, which is the 'stop all animations' block (blue).
*Make sure that if you are adding this part, that you add it along with the other codes* Connect your Circuit Playground Express to your computer. Download file, and place into the "CPLAYBOOT" drive on your desktop. Your code should appear on your Circuit Playground and ready for Avatar adventures.
Step 4: Check Your Code!
Double check that your code is right or similar to mine and test it out on your Circuit Playground Express before moving on to the next steps.
Step 5: Sewing Your CPE to Your Arrow
Using your needle and thread, center your Circuit Playground Express on the inside triangle part of your arrow and start sewing it down. The lights should be facing the fabric- see photo for this. Make sure that the battery pack plug is facing towards the back of the arrow.
Step 6: Sewing/Glueing Your CPE to Your Headband
*Look in a mirror. Put your headband on and find the top point of it. Place your arrow on top to find the right placement on your head for it. Now carefully take the headband off, while pinching both the headband and your arrow. Sew the two together and try it on again to check if things are correct or if things have shifted.
Put your headband on and find the top point of your headband and make a mark on that spot. Do the same with your arrow, by placing it upside down on your head tp find the right placement and make a mark on the fabric where the top point of your head is. Carefully hot glue the two together on the marks you have created.
Step 7: Attaching Your Battery Pack
Connect your battery pack to your CPE before attaching to to your arrow. This is because of the length of the cords.
I am not a sewer, so if you know a better way of doing this, by all means go for it! But here is what I did to make a pocket;
1. fold over fabric and clip the battery pack to it.
2. press down on access fabric and sew that together to create a base.
3. roughly draw lines of the size of the battery pack.
4. take scrap fabric (cut from before) and sew that on one side.
5. the other side will connect on its own and then sew that.
6. finally fold over and sew the bottom on to the back for better security.
You can see the photos I have provided of my process.
Step 8: Naming Your Avatar Self
Flip the on switch and try out your new arrow made especially for you!
I am the Avatar of Flower Bending! Thanks to my flower print fabric & my love for flowers.