Arc Reactor Shirt




Okay so this is my first attempt at "cosplay". Since Halloween is coming up, I figured an Ironman arc reactor t-shirt would be pretty cool. I skipped a few parts to make it more simple. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. I made this from mostly recycled parts and things I found around my room. Let me know what you think, and remember to vote on it!!!!!

Step 1: Tools and Supplies

-Xacto knife

-soldering iron


-wire cutters

-wire strippers

-9v battery

-9v battery connector

-Styrofoam, enough to make a 3.5" circle that's about 1" thick (for light diffusion)

-blue film

-x6 3.3v 5mm LED

-extra wire

-hot glue gun

-fabric glue

-black t shirt

-poster board

Step 2: Homemade Arc Template

  • So the first thing I did was make the front part of the arc. It's important to use a thick material like poster board so that the LED lights only shine through the parts you cut out. I made a 3.5" circle on the poster by using a plastic lid that I found on a jar. I free hand drew the basic outline of the design. I googled a lot of images of similar arc shirts and decided upon a basic design that would get the point across.I used an xacto knife to cut out the stencil. The holes were cut using a drill and stepper drill bit. I cut the holes to be somewhat proportional to the ideal design.
  • I recycled a blue film that I cut off from a "Neuro Sonic Bliss" bottle to provide the blue tint for lighting effects.(I only had 5mm 3.3v [white] leds). You could use blue leds instead, but this was more of an impromptu project.
  • I bought some styrofoam from walmart to help diffuse the light. I found that styrofoam in a thick enough quantity works just as well as a light diffuser, however costs significantly cheaper.
  • The styrofoam that I used was cut to 3.5" in diameter and roughly 1" thick. I also hot glued the blue tint in place with my handy hot glue gun.

Step 3: Wiring

So I wired 6 LEDs in a circuit, 2 sets of 3 in series and then those 2 sets were wired in parallel. I found that the 9V battery would power this system with a lighter power source than using a bunch of "AA" batteries. I mounted the LEDs into the foam accordingly and solder the appropriate length wires away from the device. I hot glued a backing on to the back side of the arc to protect the wires. I just cut a "random piece of cardboard".

Step 4: Finishing

The last part of the project is mostly user preference. You have to mount the newly created arc reactor within the shirt you're going to wear. I cut an old t shirt to make a "pocket" shaped fabric design and glued(fabric) underneath the t shirt, so that I could place the lighted arc reactor comfortably. There are many alternative options, but I found the fabric glued pocket to be the most useful(it also hideS the 9v battery quite well).

DISCLAIMER: If evil villains try to fight you..... RUN! Run away... FAST!



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    2 Discussions

    tech savvy

    4 years ago on Introduction

    Great job and thanks for sharing ,

    P.s your design looks way better then the one on ebay :-)

    Ebay Led Iron Man T Shirt.JPG