Here is a technique for attaching and wiring LEDs on the hood of a sweatshirt.
- modular enough to reuse parts, ease troubleshooting, and washing
- bright enough to obscure my identity (cop flashlight effect)
- robust enough for active wear in the desert/camping/warehouse.
- optimize for cost
Step 1: Materials
- a sewing machine and some proficiency with it.
- 12 LEDs
- a "cool" hooded sweatshirt (http://search.ebay.com/search/search.dll?query=hoodie).
- why spend time on something no one would wear?
- a solid color or randomly printed hoodie is nice for covering up bad sewing.
- practice hoodie
- some conductive thread: http://members.shaw.ca/ubik/thread/
- This seller was very responsive and provided great support.
- I'm use this every chance I get.
- a [http://BuckToot BuckToot]: http://www.ledsupply.com/bucktoot.php
- Expensive, but a real gem in any LED craftsmans tool kit.
- I planned to reuse this specifically with reuse in mind.
- many of wires, solder, soldering iron, 9v battery, connectors, switch, etc and some proficiency with them
Step 2: Sewing Conductive Thread and LEDs
The conductive thread needs only to feed through either the needle XOR bobbin. We can choose the other tread to match our hoodie better. If you can thread the needle side of the machine with the conductive thread. This will enable you to better see what you are doing with the Led. My machine, and small needles, jammed too much, so I had to use the conductive thread in the bobbin.
1. Sew all the way around the hood twice with the conductive thread to the inside.
- Use Led to measure how far from edge.
2. Strip the wires a half inch and bend over ends to create lots of source area for sewing.
3. Position the wires with anode (+) futherest from the edge.
4. Sew wires in place and connect with more conductive thread.
5. Poke Led through the hood.
6. Fold over Led leads.
7. Sew Led leads in place and to connect.
Step 3: Attach a Switch in the Hoodie Cuff
1. run two wires through a sleeve from the shoulder.
- I had an adidas sweatshirt so it was convenient to thread the wires through one of the three stripes.
2. slightly rip seem of cuff and bring wires through.
3. Poke switch through Velcro and hot glue in place.
4. Solder wires to leads of the switch.
5. Test with multimeter
6. Sew Velcro in place as shown.