The standard 3" dia. Arc reactor is a bit bulky & heavy for teens, boys and girls. Plus it looks too big on them, being made Iron man sized! Also a 3" disc on the chest is a bit of an issue for women as well. This Arc reactor downsizes its area by 30% for a comfortable fit. LED color is optional.
Folks like to wear these at Halloween or Comicon or Cos-play parties etc. Well, this unit has an audio mode and self calibrates (AGC) to the music's rhythm! Unlike other 'animated' reactors this one behaves like an arc reactor with one touch selectable modes such as : smooth power up pulsing from the center to the perimeter or flickering like a dying unit etc.
To conserve power for later it has a one touch SLEEP and WAKE capability. For flexibility a NB4L Li ion Cell battery is suggested, this integrates inside of the casing and has a charge port to connect to a Li ion 3.7V charger. Alternatively a 3 AA battery pack holder can connect via the 3 pin connector as an external pack.
The PCB is designed and fabricated using my Apache AL13P hackaday mod system. I am doing assembly tonight. Don't have any white/blue Piranhas on hand so I may have to sub parts in for this version. Might have red...war machine style.
The firmware is done. The system can handle up to 8 lighting modes. I have 5 encoded right now. Once they're running I'll be able to tweak the timings better.
For a housing...it uses a trimmed down aerosol spray can cover...from bug spray or spray paint etc. Ya gotta have these around, not so?
All discrete, through hole parts. That made the board a little tight but all's good.
I plan to use some kind of diffuser...scissors cuttable lexan @ 1 mm or .040 stacked two high sandwiching the laser printed transparency as a custom bezel is where I am headed here. A bit of sandpaper to frost the lexan or some Christmas frost spray can diffuse things. it might be simpler to just print the Bezel pattern onto parchment which can already act as a diffuser!
There are 3 pan head 6-32 x 3/4" screws inside the unit to affix the completed bezel with a bit of clear epoxy. The screws allow for 3 point leveling of the PCB and the bezel in the plastic case. you can spray pain the case 'metallic' if you care. Or you may already have a silver or chrome paint aerosol can on hand to snipe the matching cover.
The PCB will be hot glued or epoxied to the inside of the cover. It's flush fit so no lateral movement. Getting a 'button' for the side mounted tactile push button is interesting. I think a dab of epoxy and a trimmed toothpick section (cylindrical) is good here. I might make a nicer button (1/8" dia) by a cutting or paper punching it it out of a disc (1/8" thick) of hot glue rod.