Introduction: Your Own Operation Board Game

About: ECE student at Carnegie Mellon University.

The board game "Operation" is based on a very simple circuit, so you can build your own and customize it really easily!

Step 1: Intro and Materials

I first made this game when I was around 11 or 12, when I was on some rant about how the original Operation dude didn't wear any underpants. I told my mom she shouldn't let my younger brother play the game because it was inappropriate (I didn't actually believe this, though, I just liked arguing about things back then). So...I made my own (with boxers drawn on) and called it "Disease Remover". it's a very simple game to make, and it would make a really funny gift or practice for people who want to learn more about electronics.


Wire and wire strippers
Shoebox Lid
Metal Tweezers
Small Buzzer
2 AA Batteries and a holder
Drinking Straws
A small bit of spare cardboard

Step 2: Yep, That's All It Is: the Circuit

There is one loop in this circuit, and it makes a complete circuit when your hand starts to get shaky and you let the tweezers touch the metal sides.

There isn't much to explain on this step; just make sure you connect everything with the right polarity as shown in the diagram.

There is gonna be a whole lot of wire hanging off of the negative end of the LED. This wire will make loops around the holes in your board, acting as the "metal sides" like on the real gameboard. Yes, this means you have to do a lot of wire stripping :c)

Step 3: Getting the Board Ready for Wiring

Essentially, the shoebox lid is going to be your gameboard and you will have to come up with a picture to put on the top. As you can see in my picture, I just drew a guy that looked like the original Operation man. You could do anything from putting a picture of your friend to putting a random picture of an animal you would like to "dissect" on there.
One idea I had was to make it a picture of a human heart and then have the player remove pieces of cholesterol from the arteries. Whatever you like.

Tape or glue the picture on the shoebox lid, and trace out the places where you would like to "remove" things from the board. Also trace a place for the speaker and LED to stick out from.
CAREFULLY Cut out these pieces using a knife.

Since most of us don't have a machine to make nice little breadboxes and wrenches and broken hearts and other various things that the original Operation had us remove, we are going to use cut up pieces of drinking straw.
They should be a little shorter than the length of your cut-out holes.

Step 4: Wire It Up!

If you haven't done so already, build the circuit in the diagram on Step 2.

There should be a lot of excess wire hanging off of the negative side of the LED. Strip all of it; enough to wrap around all of the holes in the bottom of your board. This exposed wire will act as the "metal sides" that players will try not to touch.

Using the spare pieces of cardboard, we can make holders for these pieces of straw.
Bend the pieces of cardboard, as shown in the picture, and superglue or tape them to the bottom side of your shoebox lid, over the holes.

Step 5: Finish

Tape whatever of the exposed wire that you didn't use to the bottom of the board, and make sure it isn't touching any other wires.

Attach a wire to the pair of tweezers using tape, glue, or solder. Poke a small hole in the top corner of your board and thread the end of this wire underneath. Connect it to the negative lead of the battery, and you should be in business! Touch the tweezers to the metal sides of the holes and the light should light up and the buzzer should ring. If not, you might want to check your connections and make sure everything is connected in the correct direction.