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Time
30 mins

A simple light up christmas card
I am going to walk through how to make a simple light-up Christmas card using LEDs, copper tape, and a battery.

WARNING: I do not recommend mailing these cards, never know what will happen if the circuit is live the whole time it is going through the postal system.

Posted by Tyler H. Published See Tyler H.'s 4 projects »
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  • How to make a greetings card. Home Made Electronic Christmas Card - Step 1
    Step 1

    First step is to look at the LEDs you plan to use. The shorter of the two leads is going to go to the negative side of the battery.

  • How to make a greetings card. Home Made Electronic Christmas Card - Step 2
    Step 2

    You can test the polarity of your LEDs directly by placing a watch battery between the two leads and seeing which orientation causes the LED to light up.

    NOTE: Some LEDs work both ways.

  • How to make a greetings card. Home Made Electronic Christmas Card - Step 3
    Step 3

    Here is a simple circuit. The negative terminal of the battery is on the copper tape leading to the negative lead of the LED. The positive lead is connected to the copper tape heading of to the right of the battery. All it takes is one little fold and...

  • How to make a greetings card. Home Made Electronic Christmas Card - Step 4
    Step 4

    ...eureka! The circuit is complete! So far I have shown the leads being taped over the copper tape, but depending on the copper tape you use you may be able to affix the leads under that instead.

  • How to make a greetings card. Home Made Electronic Christmas Card - Step 5
    Step 5

    If you want to use multiple LEDs, they will have to be setup in a parallel circuit like what is shown here.

  • How to make a greetings card. Home Made Electronic Christmas Card - Step 6
    Step 6

    And here we see the two LEDs lighting up when the circuit is completed.

  • How to make a greetings card. Home Made Electronic Christmas Card - Step 7
    Step 7

    Here are these principles applied to simple card design. I used a bit of tape to make sure pressure was required for the battery to make full contact with the copper tape.

  • How to make a greetings card. Home Made Electronic Christmas Card - Step 8
    Step 8

    Here is another one. Better circuit, same sub-par artwork by me. :P

  • How to make a greetings card. Home Made Electronic Christmas Card - Step 9
    Step 9

    Here is the backside showing the circuit. Scotch tape is placed between the two overlapping pieces of copper tape to prevent a short circuit.

  • Step 10

    Anyway, that's the basics of it. Best thing to to is sit down and play with the idea. I suggest finding some images online if your artistic skills are similar to mine.

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