Final Assembly

We'll use silicone glue / sealant to affix the strips to the inside of the parasol. Silicone glue is about the ONLY thing that will stick to the silicone sleeves on the outside of the strips. Krazy glue won't work. E6000 won't work. Hot glue won't work either. It's gotta be silicone.

My favorite is the DevCon brand, but this kind from Loctite will work too (and it's available at most hardware stores).

Start with your Circuit Playground Express along the outside edge of the parasol, then lay out the strips where you want them. You'll need to do some threading in and between the spokes of the parasol. I found it worked best to place the 8th strip first, then the 7th, and so on, threading the wire all the way around and through the spokes so it all ends up inside the head of the parasol.

Once you're happy with strip placement, glue the strips to the parasol using copious amounts of silicone glue. Don't skimp on the glue. You may need a couple tubes of it, but if you don't apply it thick enough the strips will peel off.

Once the glue is dry, use a sewing machine with a wide zig zag stitch, or a needle and thread, to secure the long wires down along the outside edge of the parasol.

Use hot glue to secure the Circuit Playground Express to the parasol as well. Placing it along the edge gives you easy access to the buttons or capacitive touch pads, as well as the accelerometer inside. We didn't use these features in this guide, but it would be fun and easy to add functionality that triggers when you spin the parasol or press a button on the CPX.

If you're taking this out in the rain or to the Playa, you can place the CPX inside a plastic bag and glue the plastic bag to the umbrella, to keep dust and rain off the board.

Wind the battery extension cable around one of the spokes so the connector is near the center, up underneath the parasol. Wrap a piece of industrial strength velcro around the battery. Place a strip of the soft side of the velcro inside the crown of the parasol and press it down firmly to stick.  

 

Thread the battery up inside the parasol's crown as far as it will go and stick it down with the velcro. It should be very well protected from the elements up there, but still removable for charging.

Now, take your fluorescent pigments and go crazy with your outfit! These are not meant to go on skin, but they work great on fabric. Just mix a bunch of water with a paintbrush and brush it on. You can also add these pigments to dyes or resin to create fancy glow effects.

For skin, there are some really great black light reactive body paints available. My favorite brand is Kryolan - these pigments really pop!

This guide was first published on May 28, 2019. It was last updated on May 28, 2019. This page (Final Assembly) was last updated on Oct 09, 2019.