Intro: Make a MakeyMakey Wire Maze
Here at the MakerSpace, the MakeyMakey is one of our favorite tools to play with electricity and electronics: it's fun, it's versatile, and the projects you build with it can be as simple or as complex as you need them to be - everything a Maker could want!
In this Instructable, we will show you how to make a quick wire maze game out of everyday items - let's go to the next step for a complete list of tools and materials!
Step 1: The Things We'll Need
Aside from a MakeyMakey and a computer, you will need:
- A wire hanger
- Some cardboard
- Some duct tape
- Some sandpaper or a sanding block (any grit will do)
- A pair of flat pliers
- A pair of cutting pliers
- An X-acto blade or a box cutter
- A hot glue gun and glue sticks
You have everything on the list? Then let's prep our wire hanger!
Step 2: Prepare Your Wire Hanger
First we'll give the wire hanger a light sanding to check whether it's painted or not: if so, we're going to sand that paint away! The coat of paint is enough to block the conductivity of your wire hanger, and you might not be able to use it as is with your MakeyMakey.
When you’re done, clip your wire hanger close to the hook twist - but don’t throw the hook away, we'll use it later!
Now that our wire hanger is all prepped, time to bend the maze into shape.
Step 3: Bend Your Wire Maze
Now grab your pliers and bend your wire hanger!
You can follow the pattern shown in this step or come up with a pattern of your own. Just remember to leave enough space for the hook to be able to travel - whether that’s between sections of the wire maze, or between the wire maze and the surface of your table.
Once you’re done, we're going to give your wire maze a stable base!
Step 4: Add Your Base Plates
This step is pretty easy: print out the patterns included in this step, glue them on cardboard and cut them out with an X-acto blade or a box cutter.
Poke your wire hanger through the center mark of your first plate, mark it and bend to the left and around the center. Do the same with your second plate, only this time bend to the right.
Glue the wire hanger to the bottom of the plates with your hot glue gun, then add the edge of your base plates to prop up your maze and keep it stable. All done! Next, we are going to close the hook around the wire maze.
Step 5: Close Up the Hook
Another pretty straightforward step: with the wire maze finished, take your pliers and close the hook loop around it (without making it too tight for the hook to travel).
Adjust according to the difficulty level you're looking for and give it a duct tape handle: we can now connect your MakeyMakey to the wire maze in the next step!
Step 6: Connect Your MakeyMakey and Escape the Maze!
For this project we're using only two gator clips - one for the wire maze and one for the hook.
Connect the first clip to the wire maze and the Earth on the MakeyMakey, then connect the second clip to the hook and one of the arrows or the Space clips on the MakeyMakey. Make sure that the clips bite in places where there is no leftover traces of paint to prevent conductivity! Sand down your wire hanger some more if needed.
The MakeyMakey's LEDs will turn on every time the hook touches the wire maze but if you want to have a sound warning, you can use the MakeyMakey Piano demo like we did in the video above - just make sure not to use the Click input of the MakeyMakey.