Last week Stuart Childs and I ran a set of moodlamp workshops for the National Media Museum in Bradford. It was great fun and we made over 100 moodlamps with the families that dropped in over the 3 days. Stuart has been improving the workshop design and we took another look at how to join the mobile phone wires onto the LEDs that we use inside the lamps. Traditionally we’ll use a soldering iron or a terminal block; depending on the age range of the children and the health and safeness of the venue.
The problem with terminal blocks is that they’re fairly fiddly so we’ve come up with some new ideas to explore. I’m quite excited about using a laser cutter to create wooden circuit boards. Some of the components are pushed through holes and then the legs are twisted together. Joining wires are harder, so I developed a push fit peg that holds the wires in place. Hopefully the pictures show what’s going on. If you want to have a go yourself, the files are here.
I think this method has some good potential for more complicated circuits. One I’d like to try soon is a moodlamp that turns on at night, so it can be left plugged in.