|LED Jacket with 5x8 array|
Arduino Lilypad - 5x8 LED Jacket (Design and Construction)
Arduino Lilypad - 5x8 LED Jacket (Software)
Arduino Lilypad - 5x8 LED Jacket (Conclusion and thoughts)
This was a concept project.
I work with a First Robotics Team (Team 3662, SnowByte!) as a mentor. Unfortunately, there are usually more kids interested in programming then can really get their hands dirty on the robot.
This project was an experiment in getting some more programming work drummed up that could be done at a high school level (with some mentoring). The idea is that the kids can build stuff they can wear to the FIRST competition, AND practice their programming.
I decided to try my hand at sewable circuit. The idea is to put an LED array on a jacket, and drive it with mininal parts and complexity.
While looking for ideas, I pulled heavily from:
I knew I wanted the following:
- Low cost
- Low part count
- Quick to make.
- Interesting to program.
Looking at the Arduino Lilypad I found that there are 12 usable Digital I/O lines, and 6 Analog lines, which could also be used in a digital mode. This allowed for 18 pins in my project. I wanted to have two push buttons, and one tri-color LED. Each push button took 1 pin, and a tri-color LED took 3 pins. So, I now had (18 - 1 -1 -3 = 13 ) pins remaining. figuring that 5 bits was enough vertically for an array, I was then left with 8 lines for columns on my array.
Since I had a 5 x 8 pin grid, I needed 40 LEDs. I now had a basic parts list.
I ordered most of my parts from SparkFun.
- LilyPad Arduino 328 Main Board ( $21.95)
- Conductive Thread - 234/34 4ply( $29.95)
- LilyPad Tri-Color LED ( $7.95 )
- LilyPad Button Board ($1.50 x 2 = $3.00)
- LilyPad LED Bright White ($0.75 x 25 = $17.00)
- LilyPad LED Blue (5pcs) ($4.95 x 4 = $19.80)
- LilyPad Power Supply ($14.95)
- FTDI Cable 5V ( $17.95 )
I Still needed a few things though.
- A Jacket (Picked up at a local thrift store for about $10 )
- Sewing needles (Picked up at wallgreens for about $3 )
- Puff paint / fabric glue (Picked up at a thrift store for about $2).
- Xacto knife (for cutting out the sewing that I messed up)
- My Lines crossed as little as possible
- I could wire up my Tri-color LED to 3 PWM lines.
I ended up mounting my Arduino lilypad on the back side of the jacket in order to get things to line up correctly. I setup my system so that
- pins A4, A5, 2, 3, 4 were the Row pins connected to the + side of the LEDs.
- Pins A3,A2,A1,A0,13,12,11,10 were my column pins, and connected to the - side of the LEDS.
- Pins 5,6 and 9 are PWM pins, and are connected to the tri-color LED.
- Pins 7 and 8 are connected to the switches.
I then drew out an outline of the Arduino on the jacket with chalk, and using the ruler drew the lines where I wanted to sew. ( Forgot to take pictures, sorry :) ).
Over the next two weeks I sewed the LEDs on. In the process, I learned that I suck at sewing. I also wrote a very simple program that turned one LED on at a time, and switch which LEDs was being driven every 1 1/2 seconds. This allowed me to test out the sewing job as soon as I had my first column of LEDs attached.
|Arduino Lilypad inside jacket pocket.|
Once I had a column of LEDs sewn on and working, I covered the conductive thread with puff paint and let if dry over night. Before I started doing that I had a lot of trouble with lines shorting each other out.
|LED Array (with my poor sewing and puff paint covering the stitching)|
I'll cover the software in the next post, however, here's a video of the text scrolling in action.