Sketch Outline

 

On a large piece of cardboard, sketch out the rough dimensions of your sword.

Use the NeoPixel strip as a guide for how long to make the sword.

Start with pencil, then define the outline with a dark marker.

Cut & Copy

 

Cut out the outline.

Trace the outline on cardboard to create a duplicate.

Because you're creating a copy of the original outline, you don't have to worry about being perfectly symmetrical. Make it as complicated as you like! 

NeoPixel Supports

 

Cut a variety of thin rectangles of cardboard about the same width as the NeoPixel strip.

Glue these aroundthe sword, leaving about 1/4" from the outside edge.

 

These will act as the backing material to support the NeoPixel strip.

Hot Glue Galore

 

Glue NeoPixel strip around outside edge.

Use hot glue to pin the strip in place by applying it to the outside edge of the cardboard.

Add CPX

 

Affix your Circuit Playground Express on the sword using double sided tape or hot glue.

 

Place it in a location where the alligator clips from the NeoPixel strips can still reach.

Handle

 

Use a cardboard tube to make a handle. 

If you don't have one that happens to be the right size, one can be made from an existing cardboard tube that is cut lengthwise and rolled down to the correct diameter for your purposes.

Touch Sensitivity

 

Make your handle touch sensitive by wrapping conductive nylon tape around the handle.

Start by securely connecting the end of the tape to pad A7 on CPX.

From there, wrap the tape around the handle, creating any pattern you desire.

Time to shine!

Power on your CPX and give it a few seconds to calibrate its sensitivity, then you should be able to control the lights with your touch!

This guide was first published on Sep 18, 2019. It was last updated on Sep 18, 2019.
This page (Design Your Sword) was last updated on Oct 25, 2020.