Having a bad day? With the press of a button and your small desktop storage container erupts into flames, creating a perfect visual representation of how life often feels, and a cathartic way to express oneself.

How it Works

A servo motor opens the lid of the dumpster and a fan, powered by a DC motor, blows fake flames upwards. A Circuit Playground Express, programmed with MakeCode, controls the motors and illumination.

This project can be easily reprogrammed in MakeCode to take on different functions. A great beginner project, no soldering required!


A Black woman's manicured hand holds a round microcontroller with lit up LEDs.
Circuit Playground Express is the next step towards a perfect introduction to electronics and programming. We've taken the original Circuit Playground Classic and...
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DC Toy Hobby Motor
These are standard '130 size' DC hobby motors. They come with a wider operating range than most toy motors: from 4.5 to 9VDC instead of 1.5-4.5V. This range makes them perfect...
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DC Motor Plastic Mount with DC motor installed
We couldn't let the DC Gearbox "TT" motors have all the fun! If you're using some sort of motor, there's a...
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Sub-micro Servo with three pin cable
This is just about the cutest, tiniest little micro servo we could find, even smaller than the 9-gram micro servos we love so much.  It can rotate approximately 180 degrees (90 in...
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USB cable - USB A to Micro-B - 3 foot long
This here is your standard A to micro-B USB cable, for USB 1.1 or 2.0. Perfect for connecting a PC to your Metro, Feather, Raspberry Pi or other dev-board or...
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3-Bladed Trifoil Propeller Fan for DC Motor
Sprockets, wheels, and gears, oh my! We really like our DC hobby motors but unless you have a 3D printer it can be a challenge to get fun add-ons. That's why...
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Group of Small Alligator Clip to Male Jumper Wires
When working with unusual non-header-friendly surfaces, these handy cables will be your best friends! No longer will you have long, cumbersome strands of alligator clips. These...
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Top view shot of JST 2-pin Extension Cable with On/Off Switch.
By popular request - we now have a way you can turn on-and-off Lithium Polymer batteries without unplugging them.This PH2 Female/Male JST 2-pin Extension...
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Additional Materials

In addition to the electronics, for this project you will also need:

  • Tissue paper
  • Markers and/or highlighters (red/orange/yellow preferred)
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Wooden skewers
  • Access to a 3D printer

Read on to learn how to build your own!

This guide was first published on Nov 06, 2019. It was last updated on Oct 15, 2019.

This page (Overview) was last updated on Oct 15, 2019.

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