Micro:Bit RGB LEDs

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Introduction: Micro:Bit RGB LEDs

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Create a cheap and easy accessory to use with the Micro:bit!

You'll need:

🔴 A cheap reel of 5v RGB LEDs. You can get them fairly cheap on Amazon, so have a shop around!

🔴 Old Crocodile clips to chop up

🔴 Soldering Equipment

🔴 Heat Shrink

Step 1: Prep

This is the tricky part of the make!

Start by chopping three crocodile clips in half. Try and get three different colours as it's easier for the students to use.

Use a pair of plyers and strip to the ends to reveal the wire inside. Set aside.

Next get your RBG LED strip ready. Chop off a length from your reel, no more than 8 or 9 other wise the Micro:bit won't be able to power it.

Step 2: Soldering

You might need some practice/solding skills for this part.

You need to carefully solder the 3 crocodile clips to the 3 end points on the LED strip. this can be quite fiddly, so I'd reccommend using some clamps to keep everything in place.

When you've finished you can add a small piece of heat shrink to protect the joins. This makes it a bit more durable in little hands!

Step 3: Connecting to the Micro:Bit

Now that you've built the strip you can connect it to the Micro:Bit and get tinkering!

You need to get the crocodile clips in the right order on the Micro:Bit for it to work.

Each of your three crocodile clip wires will connect to one of the three points on the Strip. You will find Di, 5v and Ground (this might just be show as a -).

They connect on the Micro:Bit as follows:

Di ➡ Pin '0'

5v ➡ '3v'

G ➡ 'GND'

Make sure these are in the right order!

Step 4: Playing With the Code!

Now you can get tinkering!

When you are on the Make Code website you need to add the NeoPixel extension to get the blocks you'll need.

Have a play with the examples in the pictures, then see what you can create yourself! Rainbows are always a winner!

Step 5: Take It Further

Once you've got it all working you could think about what to do with it next. The beauty of the Micro:bit is that you can power it via the battery pack and completely disconnect it from the computer.

Where could you put the lights? So far I've used them to light up Jack-O-Lanterns and to make unique Christmas decorations!

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    4 Comments

    0
    LearnAtLaunchpad
    LearnAtLaunchpad

    1 year ago

    Thanks for posting this!! So economical. I can't wait to use with my students!!

    IMG_0855.JPG
    0
    AlwaysComputing
    AlwaysComputing

    Reply 11 months ago

    They look great!! Thanks for building them!!

    0
    MicheleG56
    MicheleG56

    Question 1 year ago on Step 2

    Would electrical tape work just as well in place of heat shrink?

    0
    AlwaysComputing
    AlwaysComputing

    Answer 1 year ago

    Yup that would work fine. I just find that heat shrink gives it a smoother finish.