Here is the second version of Solar T-Shirt with components directly sewn on with. It is also using slightly different circuit than the other solar t-shirt.
The new schematic is the following. Please not that it is using FLED (Blinking LED) instead of diode on other one. In this example I used 2N3906 as PNP transistor and 2N3904 as NPN transistor.
Download PDF >>solar_Tshirt_schematic.pdf
This circuit is based on the suneater BEAM bot circuit. From this link, you can see the original circuit schematics and the detail explanation of how it works.
Here is how to make the solar t-shirt
Solar Cell (4V)
Capacitor (2200uF) *2 (or 4700uF *1)
FLED (blinking LED)
2.2k ohm resistor
small piece of form sheet
small piece of
small piece of normal fabric
plastic flower (or feather.. something light for decoration on motor)
2 pairs of poppers
iron and iron board
thin nose plier
hot glue and hot glue gun
hammer or popper fastener
Decide the circuit layout on the t-shirt and mark the circuit traces.
Glue on the fusible interfacing (iron-on) on the back of the conductive fabric by ironing on with backing paper. Cut the conductive fabric into the desired shape and place it on the T-shirt as you planed the circuit traces. Fix it on the place with iron.
When two traces over wrap, use normal fabric with fusible on the back to cover the bottom conductive trace. Then place the top conductive trace. Fix them firmly by ironing each layer. The normal fabric layer isolates the two conductive fabric traces that are over wrapping.
Make a small loop with a wire and secure the connection with solder. Cut it in short pieces to make an extension legs with loop. This will be the part you will be sewing to the fabric with conductive thread. Connect the legs to the component’s legs with soldering iron. If the component’s leg is long enough, you can directly make a loop on their legs and secure the connection with solder. (see the picture of resistor and LED legs). It is easy to make loops with thin nose pliers. For Solar Cell, I also added extra extension legs on top side with hot glue, so you can fix it on T-shirt from 4 corners.
Now, to make a holder for the motor. Take a small piece of form sheet ( I’ve bought A4 sheet of it at local stationary shop for 60 cent) and wrap around the motor. Fix it tight with sticky tape.
Place a small piece of coper tape beneath the power tab, and solder it together to extend the power tab to the copper tape.
Take small Neoprene piece. This will be the shell of the motor holder. Mark the coper tape location, and drew the outline of the motor holder on the neoprene. place small pieces of conductive fabric where coper tape will be located.
Make sure that coper tape and conductive fabric are facing each other. Sew the edge of the neoprene together with normal thread to close it.
Place some hot glue on the tip of the turning head, and stick the ornament. In this example, I used plastic flower, but you can also use feather or other light weight objects. Fasten poppers on the motor holder’s tab for connection to the t-shirt. You can also directly sew them onto the t-shirt.
Place the motor in place.. and finish!
The flower turns as you stand in the sun. And if you cover the solar cell, or go into the shadow, it stops turning.
(Thanks to the model: Andy!)
Here is the layout of this example project.
You do not have to layout it the same way. As long as you stick with the circuit schematic, it is free to layout it the way you like it.
Download PDF >>Layout example
Here is the other layout example.