You'll need at least one frequency matched receiver to have any fun at all with your trigger box! What it does is entirely up to you. You can connect many different outputs to the receiver Feather -- it's entirely possible to have one unit for lights, sound, pyrotechnics, motors, door latches, mind controlled shark assassins, music.

For an environment such as an escape room, film set, or theatrical production, you can choose to use multiple receivers. Again, they will need to be the same flavor and frequency, but each can be programmed to interpret commands sent from the main transmitter in any way you see fit!

Here are three examples, one for motors, one for AC power, and one for NeoPixels. 

Motor Receiver

Using the DC Motor + Stepper FeatherWing, you can send remotely trigger small motors, powerful and precise steppers, and even peristaltic pumps!

Without revealing too much, note that a very precise stepper can be used for some very magical illusions that involve steadily winding thread or monofilament...

Solder on the female headers and antenna connector as before to your second packet radio Feather, then connect the antenna cable and antenna.

Solder male headers to the Motor FeatherWing and connect it to the Feather.

Follow this guide for info on wiring and setting up your Motor FeatherWing to drive a stepper motor.

Power Relay Receiver

The Power Relay FeatherWing allows you to turn on and off powerful 120V-250V AC devices such as lamps, fans, and small appliances, up to 1200W! In this case, we'll use it to control a small-yet-powerful spotlight.

Working with high power electricity is dangerous. If you are unsure of what you're doing, work with someone who is experienced with it. Alternately, use the plug-and-play Controllable Four Outlet Power Relay Module shown on the sidebar.

Follow this guide to set up your Power Relay FeatherWing. You'll solder male header pins onto it. Again, solder female headers onto the Feather you'll use, and connect them.

To control the spotlight, first unplug it!, then cut one of its cord wires, and strip a 1/4" of insulation from each of the newly exposed wire ends. Insert one wire tip into the middle screw terminal on the Power Relay FeatherWing, and the other into the N.O. (normally open) terminal. Screw them both down.

Connect the FeatherWing to the Feather. The spotlight is now ready for our software setup later in the guide.

You can use the wires directly, or splice in a short extension of heavy gauge wire as seen here. Or, even better, splice in a pigtail socket so anything can be plugged in!

NeoPixel Receiver

The third example is to drive NeoPixel patterns and colors remotely. You can use any NeoPixel configuration you like, but for this we'll use the 4x8 LED NeoPixel FeatherWing. This was actually the inspiration for building a 900MHz controller system -- I'm building some prop/set lighting pieces using many meters of NeoPixel strips for a touring circus and needed a good, robust way to control them wirelessly.

Follow the guide to set up the board, including soldering on the male headers.

Again, you'll use a matched packet radio Feather with antenna connector, wire, and antenna connected. Plug the board into your Feather's male header pins.

Your receivers are ready to go! Next, we'll program the transmitter.

This guide was first published on Apr 29, 2017. It was last updated on Mar 08, 2024.

This page (Build the Receivers) was last updated on Mar 08, 2024.

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