If you do not wish to buy the CALEIDUINO pack but want to make your own digital kaleidoscope inexpensively and in an easy and simple way, on this page we will explain how to build a CALEIDUINO DIY, using recyclable materials that everyone has at hand at home , Such as cardboard, wood and acetate.

The kaleidoscope has two parts. The first is the electronic part and the second is the structure and the external casing. Here are the components and materials required for each:

1º) Electronics

  • Arduino board UNO
  • Accelerometer GY-61
  • 1.8’ TFT screen
  • Switch
  • 9V battery with an adaptor
  • PCB nylon separators
  • Cables

2º) Structure and external casing

  • Cardboard package of no more than 2mm (any type of cardboard will work)

  • A small MDF board 2 to 3mm thick, or methacrylate

  • 3 25 x 3 cm mirrors, 2mm thick, made of methacrylate. You can use glass instead, if you are unable to find methacrylate

  • Transparent acetate

STEP 1: The first step is to construct the body of CALEIDUINO and the interior structure using the cardboard packaging. Follow the outline of the file in Adobe Illustrator and have it cut with a laser cutter, or draw it, trim it with a cutter, fold it and paste it with white glue:

Download the file in Adobe Illustrator.



STEP 2: Start constructing piece 1. Fold it and paste it by the gray tabs. Once glued, screw it to the underside of the 9V battery adapter, using the nylon separator screws (in default use metal):

STEP 3: Continue installing the Arduino UNO in the upper part using the same separator screws (5mm in height) leaving a space between the board and the cardboard:

STEP 4: Now, begin to make the connections of the electronic components according to the diagram below, using Dupont pin type connectors:

Fritzing UNO

STEP 5: Next, begin to assemble the rigid structure and the mirrors that will support the TFT screen in the form of a triangular prism. For this you need to cut 3 pieces of DM wood of about 3 mm. Below you can see how the Arduino board has been screwed into the TFT screen and hold the mirrors in place. Cut them with a blade or, if you are lucky enough to have one, using a CNC machine. For the latter, download the file in Adobe Illustrator:

File in Adobe Illustrator

Placas metacrilato2

This is how the structure should be screwed in place. Follow the order of placement of parts A-B-C. As you can see in the photo, you will need to use different spacers for each height (5, 10, 50 mm):

STEP 6: Now cut piece 2 of cardboard. Make the appropriate folds and introduce the mirrors previously mounted with adhesive tape  through the triangular hole:

STEP 7: Now all that is left is to mount the main structure (piece 3). Glue the grey area and fold both lids.

STEP 8: Insert the structure with all the electronic components, place the switch in its corresponding hole, check that the USB output of the Arduino board matches the USB window and close the lid with the window sticking a piece of acetate inside so that no dust enters in the mirrors.

Remember that once you have built your CALEIDUINO DIY, you need to download the program to the controller using a USB cable. Begin the adventure of building your own CALEIDUINO and share your experience with others in our Google+ forum.