Haunted by LED clothing

Oh, man. What a whirlwind lately! It’s crazy how busy your life can feel when you devote it to one thing for a while. For me, it’s training for RAGBRAI: 500 miles to bike across Iowa at the end of July. But what in the world does that have to do with LED clothing? Well, I am still a geek and geekcrafter at heart, no matter how many miles I put on that bike. So naturally, I want to sew LEDs into our team jerseys.

It all started with this, a turn signal LED bike jacket from Instructables (and MAKE, pretty much the center of the geek universe):

Inspiration: biking turn-signal jacket that this bright crafter stuck into my head.

So now, I’m sitting up nights trying to figure out if I can indeed pull off this LED trickery for myself and my bicycle team.

Let me back up. This isn’t just because I want a safer way to train on my bicycle after dark (and therefore when it’s not a zillion degrees), but because the team my friend formed for RAGBRAI is named “Stars at Night are Big and BRAIt”.

That’s right. Texas representin’ in Iowa. And what better way to show off those stars than with sparkling LEDs on our jerseys?

Here’s the jersey:

I can't wait to wear this jersey!! I'm thinking some reflective tape across the lower back would be just the ticket.

So, maybe some twinkly LED stars in there, eh? Are ya feelin me? This is the kind of stuff that keeps me up nights:

  1. How should I sew in a Lilypad or Sparkle arduino controller so it doesn’t chafe on a 70-mile day?
  2. Should I make it switch or motion activated?
  3. Should I program a blinky light like the LED bike jersey? Should I just make for the sparkles?
  4. Should I just sew the lights into a t-shirt instead? The amount of washing (and stretching, and water exposure) a jersey would have is way more than a t-shirt would. I think that would be better for the wiring and parts.

And then I saw a project someone completed with fiber optics built into a skirt. How effing cool?

So let’s recap, for my own sanity:

Oh man. If I can pull this off… epic.

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2 thoughts on “Haunted by LED clothing

  1. Just a drive-by comment to let you know I remembered your url! 🙂 And, returning the favor, here’s mine: thoughtorama.blogspot.com/
    Come by and say hi… ~ Lord Steven

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