Taking robotics this year has taught me how to use computer science and technology to make cool and interesting projects. Using what we learned from the class, my partner and I were able to create a cool and simple little decoration that you can put up on your lawn, door, or most whatever you want to.
Step 1: Step 1: Acquiring the Materials Needed
1)Flashing Led Kit ( $5 at frys.com)
2)CR2032 3v Lithium 2032 Coin Batteries (2X, Buy pack of 20 on amazon for $6)
3)Foxnovo Breadboard Jumper Wires (5 on Amazon)
4)Pcs 2xCR2032 Coin Button Cell Battery Holder Case on/off Switch ($4.45 on Amazon)
5)Prop of your choice(pumpkin, skeleton, cauldron, ect..)
Equipment: Tools You'll Need
1)Soldering Tip Cleaner
Step 2: Step 2: Soldering Beginnings
The first step of the soldering process is to assemble the PCB (Printed Circuit Board). Inside the LED kit there is a 9 volt battery clip that you do not need for this project. You won't need this because it is bulky, and it doesn't have the on/off switch that the cell battery case from Amazon has. Everything else from the kit will be used. But, Don't Follow All Of The Directions Directly. There are some things that you will have to do in order for it to work with this project, and I will tell you when you need to do something that differs from the directions in the kit. To get started you need to plug in and heat up your soldering iron, then proceed and follow steps 1-4 of the instructions, and stop at step 4. After you're done with this, your circuit board shouldn't have any LED's, battery clips, or wires on it.
Step 3: Step 3: the Adding: LEDS, Lights, and the Battery Clip
You have gotten up to step 4 in the instructions manual that came with the LEDS. Now STOP. We will not be following the rest of the steps in the manual. Now the time has come to attach the LEDS and battery clip. The manual shows you where to attach the 9 volt battery clip. So instead if adding the 9 volt battery clip add the battery case from amazon instead. Now to attach the LEDS. The jumper wires get attached where the LEDs are supposed to be attached in the instructions from the kit. Then, the LEDs can be attached (with no solder) to the ends of the wires. This allows us to move the LEDS around because they are attached to wires instead of directly to the circuit board.
Step 4: Step 4: the Testing
Now it is time to add the two cell batteries. If the LEDS don't start the blinking process then double check the batteries to make sure they are in the right way. Then if they still don't work make sure each component is added to the circuit board correctly and that no solder is touching other solder where it shouldn't be touching. Now, once your circuit is working, the LEDs may be blinking rather slowly. If you want them to blink faster then you can adjust the trimmers. The trimmers are the large blue boxes on your circuit board. They have dials on the top of them them that can be adjusted with a phillips screwdriver. Adjusting the dials will either increase or decrease the speed of the blinking LEDS.
Step 5: Step 5: the Preparing
You can pretty much go out and buy any little $5 Halloween direction and it will work for this project. Just get a decoration and release your creativity. For mine I chose a small little bat lawn stake. In order to add the circuit board and LEDs to your prop, you need somewhere to hide the circuit. Luckily for me, the back of the stake is hollow, so the board could simply be stuffed into the back and hot glued there. But, before you put the board into the prop, you need to drill out some holes where the LEDs will go. I drilled out the eyes of the bat, so that I could put the LEDs in the eyes and make its eyes blink. Then, I found a way to fit the circuit board and all of it's wires into the back of the stake, and hot glued it all down so that none of it was visible from the front. That is all you have to do for this simple project. Let your creativity soar with this one for whatever you want to do.
Step 6: Step 6: the Setting Up
Set up your decoration however you like and enjoy!