My next lighting project will be for the new 1:32nd Cylon Raider kit just released by Moebius. I’ve been thinking about this since seeing the 3D printed prototype Raider at Wonderfest last year, but I’ve been rather worried by the size (or lack of) of the head and the space within it for the electronics.
I started reducing the circuitry down to the absolute bare minimum – starting with a simpler ATTINY 2313 microcontroller. This will run happily on 3v using the on board oscillator so no external timing components are required. It will only be driving one LED per output so no additional drivers are required. That leaves just the controller, one decoupling cap, 8 eye LEDs, 2 engine LEDs and 10 resistors.
A quick bit of coding provides a nice sweep effect for the eye, and a little bit of random flicker for the engine leds:
The next stage was to somehow cram this into the head of the Raider. Using all surface-mount components, I have drafted up a PCB That is just 50mm long and 12mm wide. This will have end-facing SMD LEDs on the end so that the whole board can be dropped into the head cavity as a complete unit. A small amount of surgery may still be required to get the board to sit at the right angle. The only additional wiring will be for the battery (external) and to the engine LEDs which will be mounted in the body.
Here’s a printout of the board in situ: