Creative Cover for Notebook

Creative Cover for Notebook

by srodan | updated November 26, 2013

To introduce myself, I'm going to personalize my engineering notebook! I've got a ton of spray paint, and I just learned to make LEDs light up with copper tape...



To introduce myself, I'm going to personalize my engineering notebook!  I've got a ton of spray paint, and I just learned to make LEDs light up with copper tape... 

October 30, 2013 at 12:25 PM
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So a little background story to this - I was enrolled in an Intro to Design class for  school, but because it was so overbooked I was one of the unlucky few not to get accepted :'(

BUT!! I got a fancy-dancy sketch book out of it, and I've decided to keep the notebook and cover up the class' name in a rather creative approach.  I'll be using various colors of spray paint, sharpie, stickers and basically anything else I can find that would add an interesting effect.

November 4, 2013 at 5:20 PM
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With a little help from my friend, Scientiffic, I was able to cut out the perfect hole for my battery!  I half-measured the geometries with a broken ruler, but the dimensions were PERFECT.

If anyone would like to know, those 3V circular batteries are 1cm in radius, and like .25cm in height (but that didn't matter).

November 25, 2013 at 12:14 AM
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these LEDs are tiny!!! It definitely took a while to get all the rascals on there, but I did!  All of the LEDs will be in parallel, and all but one will be red!

November 25, 2013 at 11:46 PM
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Different than the other tutorials I've seen, I found it easier to put one side of the copper tape down FIRST! (Pic 1)

Pic 2: I slipped in the LED using a pair of tweezers 

Pic 3: I crimp the sides down with tweezers

Pic 4/5: the disc battery was really useful to flatten the copper tape as it had a perfect right edge and the circular shape made things very smooth


In the end, I needed to solder everything to ensure a good connection.  The combo of itsy-bitsy LEDs and copper tape does not make for the best electrical connection...

November 25, 2013 at 11:50 PM
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nice! this technique of securing LEDs under the copper tape seems really useful. I wasn't sure if the tape was conductive enough through the sticky side to light up the LED, but it seems like it worked!
about 3 years ago

So the dot for MIT's "i" doesn't turn on...

I wanted that dot to be white, darn it!  I think if it was red the MIT wouldn't be distinguishable, so I just left it as is.  Other colors just weren't doing it for me.


Notice how I soldered every connection point!

November 25, 2013 at 11:53 PM
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The LEDs needed coverage if I wanted to spray paint, and so did the electrical connection parts at the bottom.  Painters tape is definitely the best to use for this.

I spray painted it outside and ended up doing two layers of "White, Rust-oleum 2x ultra cover paint + primer"

November 25, 2013 at 11:56 PM
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Tape job numero dos!

Evenly spaced out painter's tape at a 45 degree angle.  Just kinda throwing in designs as they come to me, thought this would prove to be a cool background

November 25, 2013 at 11:59 PM
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I thought it would be really cool to center the focus towards the battery.  I really like cosmology and thought a twist on the Japanese flag could be cool.

I used a separate piece of paper, something with a circular base and a ruler to make the drawing, and then cut it out using scissors.  Try to include features that prevent loose, flappy ends.  The spray paint will definitely go under the stencil if you don't use something stiff enough

November 26, 2013 at 12:04 AM
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nice! cool that it ended up working with a regular sheet of paper. I usual see stencils cut out of thicker card stock, but this worked well!
about 3 years ago

This whole spray painting two coats every time thing is getting tiresome... but definitely worth it for a good color.

November 26, 2013 at 12:06 AM
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this gold paint looks sick.
about 3 years ago

This is what my battery holder looks like!  It's a fully cut out circle with the copper tape running under.  The positive terminal is facing down.

The connection will be made with a paperclip-button or any conductive thing that I desire.  The top (negative) side of the battery will connect to the bare copper tape to the right of the "sun."

November 26, 2013 at 12:15 AM
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Using a paint pen to add the lines and my name, this is my final result!  I'm considering something to make the "MIT" more noticeable, but for now I'm pleased :)


I wish I were more careful with smudging the paint :'(

How should I clearly print my name? Sharpie? Paint pen (not so legible)? Stickers? Any others?
November 26, 2013 at 12:17 AM
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Wait, how did you do your name? It looks neat enough to be printed, but I can't see the paper outline.
about 3 years ago
Ahh you caught me. I threw that in with photoshop because I didn't trust the paint pen to clearly write me name. Any suggestions?
about 3 years ago
you could potentially cut a stencil with the laser cutter and then fill in the letters. the only issue with that is you'll have to use certain types of fonts that can be cut well. maybe you can just add your signature in sharpie?
about 3 years ago