Super Throwee!





Introduction: Super Throwee!

About: just another wacky planetarium employee...

This is my first instructables so be nice.. it's my first time ;-)

Throwees are cool little LED lights that are made from a coin cell, an LED, a magnet, and some tape. The idea is to make a disposeable light that you can toss onto a steel object and have it stick. One by itself is not very impressive but a whole slew of them can make a rather dull object look interesting.

This instructable takes the throwee idea and puts it on steroids! I'll show you how to make a blinking throwee that will easily run for over a week.

Step 1: Bill of Materials

You'll need a couple of items to put this guy together.
1) LED blinky light. Can be obtained free.. I'll explain a little later
2) lithium camera battery
3) rain proof container
4) basic geek items.. tape, soldering iron, wire, solder

First you'll need to get the blinky LED light device. You can buy one (un-resourceful of you) or, you can get tons of them for free! How to get them free? LED body lighting has become very popular in the night club scene. People buy them for $5 or so and eventually just leave them behind at the end of the night. A buddy at a nightclub, specially the cleaning staff can produce bags of these things!

The lithium battery. These are expensive but some ebay searching can produce really good deals. I bought as bag full of duracell 223 camera litiums for $5 plus shipping. These sell for about $7 or so each at the local drugstore. Ideally you want a battery like the 223 because its actually two 3v litiums in one package.

Rain proof container. Whatever you have on hand. I used a baby food jar since its what i could find. Plastic would be better for places were falling and breaking could be an issue.

Stuff you should have on hand if your an electronics geek.. thin stranded wire, solder, soldering iron, electrical tape.

Step 2: Electrical Assembly

Keep in mind these instructions are merely a guide based on what i had on hand to build this!

First hack the battery apart! BE CAREFUL! Litiums get very angry when shorted and can explode. Be nice and patient!. If you look closely at the battery pack you'll see a seam. With patience and a cutting tool you can crack the seam and then pull it apart with needle nose pliers. Once the bottom of the pack is pulled off, use a non conductive object to push the cells out of the pack.

Once out you'll notice that the 223 pack is actually (2) cells wired together. Cut the strip that joins both batteries in half so you have something to solder to. You'll need to connect a positive lead and a negative lead to each battery. The strip that joined the batteries can be soldered to if you're a good solderer and dont overheat anything. Too much heat and the battery can explode. I'm very proficient at soldering so I soldered to the tabs on mine then lightly scored the top cap on the cells and quickly soldered leads on them. You may want to try another method such a modified battery holder if you feel queasy about soldering onto batteries!

Once the leads are in place you need to note the polarity and placement on the batteries that came with your LED light thingy. Once you figure out how its wired, pull the little batteries out and solder your leads from your big batteries to the circuit board on your LED thingy. Make sure you've got your polarity correct, do it wrong and you've burned up your throwee! The particular LED blinky I was using used two 3v litium calculator batteries. What we are doing is replacing the calculator batteries with something thats got much more capacity.

The new pack should make your LED throwee last for weeks if not a month or so! Tape up the pack so it cant short on anything.

Step 3: Pack It Up!

Time to pack the thing up! I used a baby food jar since thats what I had on hand and I wanted to deploy it tonight. Plastic clear containers are a better coice since they don't break. A third option is to go without the container and cover the whole thing in RTV silicone. Due to its battery life, you want to rain proof it!

Step 4: Deploy!

Time to deploy! These can be attached to your target surface a number of ways. Magnets are great for metal surfaces. This is heavier than the usual throwee so attaching to moving objects requires a really strong magnet. Old fashioned string is another option. Don't overlook aquatic deployment! If your throwee is in a waterproof container you can tie a string to a rock and heave it out far enough to where most folks cant get to it. Make sure your string is longer than the depth of the water and use a plastic container. You know people are gonna try to pummel the flashy thingy in the water with rocks!

I wanted to have fun with the drunks that sometimes wander down my street so I put my throwee in a tree on the easement. I used an automotive hose clamp that was pulled open to serve as a kind of hook and attached it to the throwee container with about 3 feet of cord. Toss the whole thing into a tree and it stays put.

Now it's just a matter of sit around and wait for the drunk to spot the UFO in the tree!



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    20 Discussions

    Let me get this straight. You're telling me it's not litter because if it lays around for a few weeks a city worker will clean it up? Are you kidding me?

    4 replies

    Hmm... I'm not sure what I was thinking at the time. Maybe I was tired or something. I'm guessing what I meant to say was that they really won't cause a problem with the environment. A lot of people say that the batteries will get into the water supply or leak into the soil. And that's what that response was really about. Littering that hurts the environment instead of just trash being thrown around in a city. In a way I suppose it is littering, it just depends on your point of view. Some people are fine with it as a decoration, others aren't.

    that sounds really excitng to watch if your like 7 years old

    1 reply

    and is the blinking a function of the diode array ? or is that something you have done... (( also if you dont live in a large town with a 'club scene' any suggestions on where to get diodes ? ))

    I have made a color changing throwie using a color changing pen led.

    If your using that battery pack Im not sure how much it can be considered a throwie. You try throwing that you might kill someone.


    11 years ago

    littering is so awesome!

    So you sacrifice the whole portability and the fact you can get it into otherwise in-accessable places for a longer lifetime, and flshing lights? I guess it's an idea.


    11 years ago

    so would all the "nice" folks that just commented be all spiffy if i removed the the first line on the instructable? come on guys.. get a grip! so its a silly comment.. life goes on!

    "This is my first instructables so be nice.. it's my first time ;-)" STFU stop saying this shit come on!!!

    1 reply

    Oh... and woops... Chill mate! Its not the end of the world yet, and we are not trying to drive new guy off the club... Not just yet...

    god damn, white boy. you trying to give us radiation poisoning?

    1 reply

    Hey chill! Anyway, this instructable is not too bad. Although there exist a particular aspect of this instructable, that we are likely to not be quite so appreciative of. In this case it is "This is my first instructables so be nice.. it's my first time ;-)" This particular quote cited by many new organism in a cohesive group, often incite anger and threats from other older organism of the same species. Hope you understand this particular idea and apply it to you daily methodology. And? Keep making! (There really should be a page for new people dont you think? A page that all people would see when they sign up)