Kitt Scanner Computer Mod for Empty 5 1/2" Drive Cover

Introduction: Kitt Scanner Computer Mod for Empty 5 1/2" Drive Cover

This Instuctable is over a Kitt Scanner Computer mod. It was inspired from the NBC show, Knight Rider. I was wanting to mod my PC to mace it look cooler so I started to think up ways to do this.

This project is quite basic unless you don't have perforated board (which I didn't at the time). It is also quite cheap (around $10 - $20).
I have put down two ways to do this project, Electronics and Arduino. If you are doing arduino, it will cost a little more but would be easier to make.

If you haven't set up an Arduino before, follow this link to set up an Arduino Uno.

Step 1: Parts

I'm going to make two versions of this Instructable, electronics and arduino.

Heres the list of parts for this Instructable in electronics version:
20 Common Electrode LEDs (RGB(Red, Green, Blue (such as the COM-10818 from spark fun(costly) or you can get them on ebay)))
One 4017Decade Counter
One 6V 250ma voltage adapter
Two BC547 PNP Transistors
Two 22,000 Ohm Resistors (Color code: Red, Red, Orange, Gold*)
Two 47,000 Ohm Resistors (Color code: Yellow, Violet, Orange, Gold*)
One 39,000 Ohm Resistor (Color code: Orange, White, Orange, Gold*)
One 10uf Capacitor
One 22uf Capacitor
One 4.7uf Capacitor
One 1N4148 Diode
One 1N4002 Diode
One Single Pole Triple Throw or Double Pole Triple Throw Switch
Perforated Board
Electro Magnet Wire (for connecting the lights to the circuit(can buy it or salvage it from an old hobby motor))
22 Gauge Wire (for jumpers and connecting the electronics)
Blank, empty drive cover

Heres the list of parts for the Arduino version:
One Arduino Uno
2 - 20 Common Electrode LEDs (RGB(Red, Green, Blue (such as the COM-10818 from spark fun(costly) or you can get them
                on ebay)))
22 Gauge wire (for connections)
One 1,000 Ohm resistor
One Single Pole Triple Throw or Double Pole Triple Throw Switch
Arduino compatible Voltage regulator or an USB Cable
Perforated Board (used for soldering LEDs to, to hold them in place)
Blank, empty drive cover

Soldering Gun
Solder Flux
Hot glue gun
Hot glue
Drill bits (depends on LEDs and Switch Size)
Sharp Hobby knife or utility Knife
Wire stripper

Step 2: Prepairing the Front Panel

Layout all the LEDs onto the blank cover. drill out the holes near the top of the blank. Hot glue the LEDs to the blank one at a time, assuring that the leds are all upright and aligned to each other. This will make it easier to solder them to the perforated board.

Mark out the area that will be needed to use the switch easily and then drill the end points out (I did mine in the bottom right hand side of the blank panel (from the back it is the left hand side)). Use the hobby knife or utility knife to cut out the rest. drill two holes into but not through the front panel from the backside using a larger drill bit than before. This will serve to help the hot glue hold the switch in place.

Solder On wires to the switch in the correct design making sure the ground wire (-) is soldered to the always connected pin(the pin that is always connected to one pin or another).

Solder on the perforated board onto the LEDs. Then bend the pins in each row over so they touch the one for the next LED (keep each color separate (red to red, blue to blue, and green to green but not the anodes, cut the anodes so they stick about an eighth inch above the rest)). After that take some more wires and jump the LED's anodes on each end together making sure there is a 4 inch piece extra hanging off the ends (don't completely strip off the wires end that has the extra four inches, just slide it down enough so that you can solder the wire to the anode), then do the same for the LEDs second from the end, third, etc until done.

Step 3: Electronics Main Assembly


Lay out the circuit on the perforated board. Lay out the parts and bend over the pins so the parts stay in the holes. Place wires on the board so that all the connections are made. Then solder all the connections making sure that all the connections are well made and that there is a reasonable amount of solder on each joint(though, don't over solder for this can also lead to bad connections).

If you don't want to buy perforated board, it will get more complicated to solder it without having any short circuits. I uploaded a picture of how I soldered it (some connections can not be seen) once this is done, you will need a small piece of paper to insulate the circuit from the LEDs.

Then mount the circuit to the main panels perforated board(you can use wire to connect the circuit(if on a perforated board) to the other perforated board or a couple dabs of hot glue for non- perforated board setups(don't use tape if you can for this could bend the wires and cause a short circuit)).

Step 4: Arduino Coding


Okay, for the main code we will need it to scroll thought he LEDs with a fading action(makes it look cooler). You are going to need to change the code I upload to the number of LEDs you use.

Here's the code:

int timer = 100;           // The higher the number, the slower the timing.

void setup() {
  // use a for loop to initialize each pin as an output:
  for (int thisPin = 0; thisPin < 13; thisPin++)  {
    pinMode(thisPin, OUTPUT);     

void loop() {
  // loop from the lowest pin to the highest:
  for (int thisPin = 0; thisPin < 13; thisPin++) {
    // turn the pin on:
    digitalWrite(thisPin, HIGH);  
    // turn the pin off:
    digitalWrite(thisPin, LOW);   

  // loop from the highest pin to the lowest:
  for (int thisPin = 12; thisPin >= 0; thisPin--) {
    // turn the pin on:
    digitalWrite(thisPin, HIGH);
    // turn the pin off:
    digitalWrite(thisPin, LOW);

Copy and paste this to the IDE and then upload it to the arduino.

Step 5: Arduino Main Assembly


After the arduino is set up, you will need to mount it to the bread board. To do this wrap some of the wire (with insulation) around the Arduinos' screw holes and then tread it through the perforated board about halfway up, then down to the bottom and then back through the perforated board to the back side hole, wrap it around that hole and then run it up to the top of the perforated, thread it through one of the holes and secure it there with hot glue.

I made a quick illustration of how to connect the arduino to the perforated board.

Then connect the LED's' wires to the arduino starting at the wire that connect to the outermost LED's to pin D0 on the Arduino, Then the wire to the next ones in to pin D1, etc until you are all done connecting the LED's.

Plug in the power supply after running it through the PC's case and into the empty port. Lock the newly modded panel into the front panel (mine just snapped in) and you should be done. If you are using a USB cable, see if there are any USB ports inside your computer, if not, connect it to one in the backside of it by ether running the cord through the back grill, popping out a empty chip port cover or any way you can.

Step 6: Finished Project

Here are a couple video's of my finished setup and a few pictures.

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