Rocking Rooster Radio - Hacking a Radio to Turn on When the Sun Rises

Introduction: Rocking Rooster Radio - Hacking a Radio to Turn on When the Sun Rises

For a University project we were to redesign an existing radio to add value.

I know people like to listen to the radio in the morning when they wake up.The Rocking RoosterRadio uses a light sensor to automatically turn itself on when the sun rises.

This radio is suitable for all users, from students to professionals, young and old. The radio is best kept on a windowsill to allow the light to reach the sensor and if not in use just simply close the door which leads down to the sensor.

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Step 1: The Existing Radio

We were given an existing radio to redesign, it was a Sony ICFS22 Two Band Radio. There were two screws to remove which leaded into the housing. Here I was able to identify the components, all of which I extended except the tuning switch and the jack. The jack is not used but I kept it in the circuit board. 

Step 2: The Housing

The housing I made from wood. I made a Cuboid with dimensions 140mmx70mmx70mm.

The Bottom was 15mm thick to allow for four holes to be drilled to attach the rockers. These are spaced 10mm from the edge of base. Next you will want to sand down the edges to make them nice and curved. 

In the next 3 photos I begin to start making spaces for controls. On one side is the Volume, the other a hole for the adaptor. on the back, there is the tuning control, am/fm switch and the aerial. Also the speaker (50mm Diameter)  

For the rockers I used a radius of 160mm and 200mm. I then measured from the centre, 60mm either side and drilled two holes to attach the rockers to the housing. Then I stained the wood. Then painted the Housing a glossy white (first coat), then I attached 10mm cylinder wood of length 50mm (4 in total, inserted into the holes drilled into the base of the housing) to the housing.

Next you will want to make a lid to fit on top of your housing. I made a lid of 150mm x 70mm. I attached another piece of length 135mm x65mm to fit nicely in the side of the housing. I then marked out a rectangle in the centre of the top, 50mm x 60mm and cut this out, sanded it down and used it for the lid.

For the LDR plate, 90mm x 30mm. I then drilled holes in ldr plate and the bottom of the lid and attached using 30mm x 5mm cylinder wood and drilled a hole in the centre for the ldr, 3mm.

Step 3: The Light Sensor Circuit

I purchased a Light sensor circuit from maplin

That was the one I used. I soldered all the components down and attached the 12V DC mains adaptor. This sensor is suitable for morning use and night use.

For the volume control make a 20mm diameter and attach to the existing control using a screw. Same with the tuner.

Step 4: Putting the Rest Together.

Next you will want to disconnect the speaker and place it in the speaker hole in the front which you have already cut out, and re-solder and apply an adhesive. Insert the volume control and staple to the side. Insert the AM/FM switch. it shud fit nicely in its holder, just trim the legs off if you are using a sony radio. for most of my seals I used white tack.

On the lid drill a hole and attach a piece of ribbon so that the door can be opened easily

The final picture is the LDR which uses the light to turn the radio on.

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