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Rocket Nightlight

About the project

Every well functioning adult needs a nightlight, and we're building one that's touch activated and space themed!

Items used in this project

Hardware components

ROLL OF COPPER TAPE ROLL OF COPPER TAPE x 1
Fluff Fluff x 1
NeoPixel Ring RGB LED 24 x WS2812 NeoPixel Ring RGB LED 24 x WS2812 x 1
Raspberry Pi 4 Model B 1GB, 2GB, 4GB or 8GB RAM Raspberry Pi 4 Model B 1GB, 2GB, 4GB or 8GB RAM x 1
Adafruit CAP1188 Capacitive Touch Adafruit CAP1188 Capacitive Touch x 1
Lamp Lamp x 1
Spray Paint Spray Paint x 1
Sanding Tool Sanding Tool x 1
Duct Tape Duct Tape x 1

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Hand tools and fabrication machines

3D Printer (optional) 3D Printer (optional) x 1

Story

Project Video

Rocket

It all starts with the bodywork. In this case it's a lamp found in the local thrift store. As most things, it needs some assembly before we get a good idea of what it is.

After a closer look, I have to say that the orange cap is a bit of a colour mismatch. However, it's not the end of the world, after sanding, priming and then painting it bright red, it does fit in perfectly.

Our nightlight needs some electronics to work, and those need to be attached somehow. We 3D printed a little platform, and using the side holes and some bolts we created a nice little nook.

It does look awesome, but it turned out to be a tad unpractical, so in all honesty, you can just duct tape everything to the inside..

Electronics

With our spaceship ready, we move and the the electronics. The main bits are shown in the picture. and they have the following function:

The above links each provide instructions on how to setup and/or connect the components. After this is done, we can run the code attached to this project. This is how it works:

  • Check if the rocket is touched.
  • If so, check the last state (on/off) and do the opposite. This means when it was already on, it will turn off, and vice versa.
  • If no touch is detected, wait for a moment and check again.

Our last to do is attaching everything to the rocket. As mentioned before the original idea was to use a little internal platform. Just taping it to the inside turned out to be easier and more practical...

Result

After adding some stuffed toy filling and popping in the little windows, our rocket nightlight is ready for lift off!

Apparently capacitive touch is super sensitive, you just need to hover your hand nearby, and it will pick you up. Unexpected, but it does add an extra layer of magic!

There is only one way to end a project like this, to say with great confidence: "To infinity and beyond!"

Code

rocket.py

Credits

Photo of 8BitsAndAByte

8BitsAndAByte

We’re Dane & Nicole, two makers that create tremendously terrible tech, which we happily share with you on our channel! https://www.youtube.com/c/8bitsandabyte

   

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