555 Timer Decorations (Monstable)

This project shows how to make simple light-up decorations with a 555 timer.

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physicsUofRAUI has 0 orders / 0reviews
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I wanted to learn more about making circuits with a 555 timer and thought that it would be fun to make a light-up Christmas tree decoration that lights up when a button is pushed. I have ended up learning more about 555 timers and brushed up on my knowledge of capacitors. I also learned to check my components more closely before making a PCB (you'll see in the logs).

The only version that exists right now is the easter egg one, but it is likely that I will make the Christmas tree one and others at a later date.

Let me know if you think a project like this is as fun as I think it is!

The PCB for this project is stored here:


Schematic for the easter egg version

Adobe Portable Document Format - 157.43 kB - 03/05/2023 at 20:38


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  • Working Prototype!

    Kody Alan Rogers03/05/2023 at 20:34 0 comments

    I have my first two prototypes that are functioning and working well. The way I have configured the circuit you press the button and the LEDs stay on for about 43s (if the resistor and capacitor were perfect). You can of course make it longer with a larger resistor or capacitor in the timing circuit.

    The main issue with the last iteration is that the footprint for the push button switch was done wrong so that the trigger pin was always pulled low causing the circuit to always be triggered.

    Enjoy the demo video below:

  • Second Build

    Kody Alan Rogers01/20/2023 at 22:11 0 comments

    Today I built the second iteration of my timing circuit. It turns out a problem I was having with my first circuit still exists with this circuit because that has to do with a misunderstanding of how the tactile switch I'm using works. I thought the big separation between two prongs meant that the two prongs on one side were connected,  but it turns out the long way is how they were connected. Not sure if that made sense but hopefully the attached photos will help.

    This first working build was made by soldering jumper wires to the switch so that I could put them where they are supposed to go. 

    I also had two capacitors malfunction on me and I am not sure why, but it could be because my soldering iron gets too hot.

    Now I will go and fix up my schematic for my next order and take this as a lesson to triple-check components.

View all 2 project logs

  • 1
    Place and solder the timer

    Shown above is the Christmas tree version but it is the same for the other versions. It mounts on the side without the picture on the silkscreen. Ensure pin one is oriented correctly.

  • 2
    Place and solder the Battery Holder

    Again the Christmas tree version is shown. The Easter Egg version is different in that it has two battery holders. Note that positive and negative ends are pointed out and the positive end of the battery holder is the one that has the square back.

  • 3
    Place and Solder the Resistors

    Shown is the Christmas tree version, but the other versions are very similar. All resistors are the same except for the timing resistor with is 10M Ohm.

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