Circuit Scribe Flickering Lantern

Introduction: Circuit Scribe Flickering Lantern

About: Circuit Scribe is a rollerball pen that writes with conductive silver ink. It makes creating circuits as easy as doodling! Visit the Circuit Scribe site to get your own pen!

Amp up your Halloween decor with our spooky DIY lantern. Read on to learn how to create a flickering light effect using two Blinker modules!

Materials used:

Circuit Materials:

  • Circuit Scribe conductive ink pen
  • 9V Battery and Battery Module
  • 2x Blinker Modules
  • 2-pin Module and white LED
  • Steel Sheet
  • Circuit Stencil

Other Materials:

  • Black cardstock
  • Scotch tape
  • Vellum or parchment paper
  • Cutting tool (Silhouette plotter, X-acto knife, or scissors)
  • optional: lantern design (available in Step 4)

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Step 1: Simulate the Circuit

Here's a 123D Circuits project, illustrating how the Flickering Lantern works. You can press "Start Simulation" to try it out.

You can use the gray dials on the blinker modules to adjust the individual blinking rates.

  • Turn the one on the left completely clockwise to produce the slowest blinking rate.
  • Turn the one on the right completely counter-clockwise to produce the fastest rate.

Under these conditions, the LED will flicker quickly for a couple of seconds, then turn off, then repeat!

Step 2: Draw the Circuit

We provided a circuit diagram, above, to show another representation of how the circuit works.

  • Blinker 1 flashes on and off at a slow rate.
  • When Blinker 1 is ON, it activates the second blinker by providing 9V to the VCC terminal. Blinker 2 flashes quickly, creating the flickering effect.

Copy the circuit like the image shown above, using the stencil to create solid circles for the module feet. Be sure not to connect the circles within the same component or you will short the circuit!

Step 3: Assemble the Circuit

Place the components on your circuit to match the image. Turn on the battery by flipping its switch. You can alter the blinking/flickering speed by turning the dials on the Blinker modules.

1) Set the blinking speed of the first blinker to the slowest setting by turning the knob all the way to the right.

2) Set the blinking speed of the second blinker to the highest setting, all the way to the left.

3) Place the white LED in the 2-pin module so that the ground terminal is connected to the ground foot of the battery.

**If any of the components do not light up, try re-tracing the line and make sure there are no gaps throughout the entire circuit**

Step 4: Create the Lantern

Cut out our lantern template on black cardstock using the Silhouette plotter. Our file is attached to this step! You can also print out the template on an inkjet or laser printer and use an X-acto knife to trim out the pattern.

Cut squares of vellum paper (or parchment) to cover the empty spaces in the lantern where you want the light to shine through. Tape the vellum onto the lantern, and fold lantern so that it can stand on its own. Tape to secure.

Step 5: Make the Lantern Flicker!

Place your lantern over the LED in the circuit you've created and adjust the blinking speeds. Add other creepy accessories as needed, and take a video in black and white (don't forget to share it with us on Twitter and Instagram @electroninks). Happy Halloween!

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