Just a quick little update.
Sewing with stainless steel is an interesting experience. I used super glue instead of clear nail polish to keep the fraying in check. I think that the stitching itself looks pretty good. I left the tails very long and just made large running stitches to get them out of the way (and to make sure that they didn't short to one another).
I connected the FLORA using the alligator clips to the needles still holding the stainless steel thread. Then I took this action shot.
Yes, my fabric is a little strange. I picked up some black canvas with gold-colored strands some time ago, I used it as a backing material since I had it around.
I have a few questions for the readers. My LEDs have been somewhat unreliable. I attempted to seal the contact by applying more superglue to the whip stitched pads (after a successful lighting), but the problems persist. Is it possible/good practice to solder the thread to the pads? Would some sort of conductive ink or paint be better (waterproof of course)? Is this redeemable? I am assuming here that my DI/DO connections are at fault. For those connections, I wove back and forth between the adjacent pads in a figure '8' pattern before tying as securely as I could with a square knot. If I was to do this again, I might try whip stitching one pad and then the other.
So, where are we at?
- Review and test parts - I'll verify that the electronics work and I will run the code from the Adafruit tutorials.
- LED Array - I'll take my first shot at sewing with stainless steel and build a circular, 8-NeoPixel array sized to fit in the palm of my hand
- Accelerometer - The accelerometer will be used to determine if I am holding my palm up or down AND to signal my LED array to turn on if I shake it hard enough.
- Compass - The magnetometer will be used while the LEDs are active to indicate my bearing, compensating for hand orientation
- GPS - The GPS unit will be used to help calculate initial bearings and possibly distance as well. I'll have to see how the device reacts to different orientations and fabrics.
- Physical Layout - I will have to figure out how to fit all of those goodies on the front and back of a glove (while not sacrificing wearability)
- User Experience - This is probably a good time to make the lighting pattern more interesting or informative, iron out bugs, test accuracy and a few failure modes.
- Sewing - This will be an interesting experience, I hope that local fabric stores will allow me to test the light diffusion/transmission of different fabrics I will encase the finalized electronics in. I also have never sewn gloves before but look forward to practicing. A lot. I really want to make this look like a real/well-finished product.
- Light Balancing? - The Lux sensor might help me adjust the brightness level for appropriate day/nighttime use.
- Low Power? - If I have time, I will try to see if there are ways to reduce power consumption.
- Capacitive touch buttons? - If I have time, it would be nice to be able to change destinations.
Just for fun: I see that Leslie is a Game of Thrones fan. I always have pictured myself as more of a Stark.
I have always thought an Iron Man / Game of Thrones crossover could be interesting.