Hey there guys! How are you? Good? GOOD CAUSE I’M GOOD. A few weeks ago I completed a new project. I call this one the Rainbow Roadblazer.
I looked at my fixed gear bicycle and thought to myself, “JESUS this bike looks lame. It needs some lights!” So that is exactly what I did. There is an event that happens on a weekly basis here in Michigan called Slow Roll Detroit. It’s an event where thousands of people come down to Detroit to ride their bikes through the city. You start at a different area every week and take a hour long bike ride through the streets of Detroit. It’s an awesome event. I wanted to do it, but I didn’t want to have an ordinary bike. I had some leftover neopixels and flora boards from my last project. So I picked up some hot glue and wire and it was time to work!
If you have an interest in checking out the Twitch live streams where this project was worked on, you can check out Day 1 and Day 2 by clicking on those links! Alternatively, if you would like to see all of the images for this project on Imgur you can do that by clicking here.
If you like working on Adafruit Flora boards and you don’t have this book yet, GET IT. It’s a great resource. Anyways, I started with some Neopixel strips from Adafruit. Amazing parts from an amazing company. I highly recommend them.
Everything I used in this project can be found on Adafruit’s website.
- NeoPixel LED Strips
- Flora LED Controller
- 2500mAh Lithium Ion Polymer Battery Pack
- 4400mAh Lithium Ion Polymer Battery Pack
- Battery Charger
- Black, Red and Green Stranded Core Spool Wire
Once I got the strips cut and leads soldered to the strips, i had to figure out how to gee the strips onto the wheels. BUT, i wanted it to look pretty. I’ve seen lots of projects where people use zip ties or velcro and just stick everything onto the spokes. I didn’t want to do that. So, I took some plexiglass that I had laying around and cut very thin strips of them. The plan was to hot glue them to the wheels, and then use some adhesive or transparent tape to secure the strips to the plexiglass.
Then, because I had to mount the board and battery to the wheel itself, I had to get that hardware mounted as close to the center of the wheel as possible to minimize wheel wobble. Didn’t want the weight of this hardware to throw off my balance. I cut two squares of plexiglass and then hot glued those squares to the inside of the hubs. Then used velcro to mount the battery and LED controller to the wheel hub via velcro. It worked perfect.
And just like that it was done!
Now, the next part of the bike project I did not document very well. I did this all off-stream, and forgot to take pictures as I went along. I was just so excited to get this project done I forgot to get the camera. That will not happen next time! So, I took the rest of the Neopixel strips that I had, and mounted them on the frame of the bike. Took my second Flora board and another LED controller for the other lights. The battery and controller both got mounted underneath my seat.
4 hours later, the project was done!
I have yet to get any footage of me riding this bike at night, but I would really like to do that soon. Once the sun starts to set earlier in the day and the Detroit Slow Rolls happen at night time, I’ll get some awesome footage and post it for you guys to see. I hope you enjoyed this project! If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below or feel free to email me at GeekmaticTV@gmail.com
Thanks for checking this out!