Champaign-Urbana Community Fab Lab
Champaign-Urbana Community Fab Lab

Assignment 3 – copper tape circuits

For the third assignment we had to make copper tape circuits. This assignment was pretty different from the past two assignments since it was a lot of hands on / touching, whereas in the previous projects the main bulk of the work was done through a computer software. I was looking forward to this project since I don’t know much about circuits (zero knowledge!!) and I was excited to learn more and feel like a real engineer 😉 

For my quote inspired picture I chose to use a quote by Leah LaBelle that I found online. The quote read “Work hard for what you want because it won’t come to you without a fight. I wanted this to be a fun scene, since the first part of the assignment with the one LED I worked on in class was pretty serious. I began by building the circuit first. I learned that taping EVERYTHING down is the most important step. 

Making the circuit itself wasn’t that bad, but I had to restart so many times because I couldn’t get a good connection between the battery and the tape, the tape and the LEDs, etc. I ended up building the circuit and then putting a clear tape over everything on the circuit to make sure that it would connect.

I drew a person finishing a race with a STOP sign as the switch. Drawing the picture was really fun, since the everything but the eyes were free for me to create whatever I wanted. 

For the final part I decided to go for an origami and created a scene in the background.

I did not take into account the thickness of the paper, so the light didn’t show through. I was really disappointed in this, since I had imagined a really pretty scene for the finished product. I imagined the background to be a washed out dark blue, with two bright objects floating – the ship sailing towards the treasure chest. Putting the LED inside the objects would definitely have solved the problem.

Fortunately the light shows up in a dimly lit room at least, and I’m pretty happy with the finished product! I did not glue the pieces onto the board because I wanted to demo it in class and then tape the pieces flat to the board, so I can hang it on the wall of my room afterwards for a decoration at night!