Repurpose USB Cable

Let's start building our circuit by getting an old USB cable. Chances are you have one laying around. We'll use this USB cable to connect our NeoPixel Jewel to the Adafruit Trinket. The length of the USB cable should be somewhere over 15in (38cm).

Trim USB Cable

Next, we'll need to snip off the connectors from both ends of the cable. Our cable should be approximately 15in (38cm) in legnth. Since this wire needs to connet the NeoPixel Jewel to the Adafruit Trinket, it needs to be long enough to go travel through the 3D printed rod and handle. 

Strip USB Cables

Now we'll need to remove insulation from both ends of the cable using either a pair of wire strippers or a hobby knife. Once you remove the insulation, you'll find four individial wires. There's also very fine strandes of wire and a wrapper of sorts. Go ahead and snip these away, leaving just the four wires. They'll most likely be color coded like shown in the photo.

Strip Wires

We'll only need three of the four wires, so feel free to snip it away. Next, use the pair of wire stirppers to remove insulation from the three wires. We'll expose about 5mm of bare wire.

Tin Wires

Now it's time to tin our three wires by applying a bit of solder to the tips of the bare wires. I suggest using a pair of helping third hands to keep the wires steady while soldering. You'll need to do this for both ends of the cable.

Solder Wires to NeoPixel Jewel

Next, we can connect the three wires to the NeoPixel Jewl. Again, I suggest using a pair of helping third hands to keep things steady while you solder. I like to tin the pads on the NeoPixel Jewel first - applying small amounts of solder to the pins labeled Data Input, 5DC Power and GND. Then, use the tip of the soldering iron to heat up the pads while insterting wires into the pad. Feel free to use the same color scheme for consistency (red to power, black to ground, green to data input). With that complete, we're left with a long cable connected to our NeoPixel Jewel.

This guide was first published on Sep 25, 2016. It was last updated on Sep 25, 2016.

This page (Wiring Part I) was last updated on Sep 08, 2021.

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