And finally realised my mistake. Once I figured that out it was pinned together and ready to sew in a jiffy, but so much wasted time and effort could have been prevented by some simple pictures being included in the instructions!
The lapel point looks shorter than the collar point because I haven't pressed the fold line, I just pinned it for the photo which made it curl back slightly. The two jut out by about the same amount so that's okay, though I may actually have to shorten the collar point, or lengthen the lapel point as Lisa has a shorter collar point on her jacket.">
19th July 2009: A rather expensive failure I couldn't get the light circuit to work in the end. I initially hooked it all up like I had planned, but when the power was running none of the lights ever actually switched off; they dimmed but didn't actually go out. So I went scouting around some electronics forums and somebody told me that the 4017 counter couldn't route enough power to work the LEDs properly and I needed some extra chips. These were a ULN2804A chip and some transistors to switch the power up and down depending on which way the current was travelling - higher if it was heading towards an LED and lower if it was heading back towards the timer and counter chips. They even gave me a new circuit diagram!
But this was where I came unstuck - in the interim period I had forgotten which leads were power and earth on my battery connector. So my lovingly constructed circuit was shorted in a moment. Now there's a big melted spot on my breadboard where one of the timer chips completely burned itself out. Not to be deterred, I bought some more components... but despite replacing everything and confirming which wires were which on the battery connector, I could no longer seem to get anything to work, not even a really basic 555 circuit with a single LED like I started off with originally. And despite following the basic circuit diagram, there was now an odious burning smell whenever I connected the power.
I'm not entirely sure what I've done wrong, which is a pretty good indication that I don't know enough electronics to be able to troubleshoot and fix things, which means that
A) If the circuit stopped working at the con I probably wouldn't know how to fix it
B) My circuit might not actually be safe for a floor costume - heck, I could spontaneously combust!
So with reluctance I've had to abandon the whole shebang and have no lights on the costume. I'm really gutted because I spent a lot of money on components, about £65 all up, and if only I knew what I was doing I could probably pull it off. But it looks like I can't construct a safe circuit, so until I can find someone who can help me in person and show me what I'm doing wrong, I shall just have to leave it.
It would've looked really awesome though... *sigh*
17th February 2009: A working circuit! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QvNJ15qn4UE
This is a 555 timer circuit which has an additional diode connected in parallel with the second resistor. This diode allows the off time for the LED to be greater than the on time. The buttons on Lisa's costume flash on briefly in a sequence, then stay off for about five or six seconds.
See that one LED in the corner that flashes on and off? I had to hook up so many bits just to make that one thing happen. But damn, am I proud of that little LED XD The next step is to take the pulse that switches the LED on and off and hook it up to a counter chip, to convert it into a cascade of pulses. That chip will then be hooked up to a bunch of LEDs to make them come on and off in a wave like Lisa Basil's buttons.
7th January 2009: Electronics Again I bought all the bits. It was a bit more expensive than I anticipated... £20 for all those little chips! All the big bags of resistors and capacitators were out of stock so I had to go for the 'lucky' ones where they're chosen at random. I hope I get the right values I need...
18th December 2008: More electronics Who would've thought making a simple set of flashing lights would be so complicated?
I'm using this tutorial:
to figure out what I have to do. I'm still not entirely sure what I'm doing but it looks like I need the following:
555 timer - this chip emits a series of electronic pulses, the rate of which is controlled by two resistors. I've downloaded a program that tells me what strength resistors I need to produce a particular frequency of pulse so at least I don't have to do any maths!
4017 counter - this converts the pulses emitted by the 555 timer into a series of electrical outputs. By hooking up LEDs to the pins of this counter I can make them flash in succession.
The difficult thing is that Lisa Basil's lights don't operate continuously. They go one after the other, then there's a period of about three or four seconds where they don't light up at all. It looks like to achieve that I'm going to have to use a capacitator to delay the start of the 555 timer's pulse. I think. I should buy two or three of each thing I'm using because I'm 99% sure I'm going to fry several of them in the process of constructing this...!
1st December 2008: Electronics Well, I'm thinking about how to do Lisa's buttons. I was getting some information from a friend who has studied electronics, and apparently I will probably need to buy some individual chips and wire them up myself, rather than buying a microchip and programming it using a special circuit board. Getting individual chips will cost less but it looks like I'm going to need a lot of tuition to be able to figure out how to pull it off. But costing less is good, right? And it would be really great to learn a skill like this - think how many other cosplays I could apply it to once I learnt how to do it!
My friend is going to get out his old electronics books and see what he can teach me. I shall look forward to it :D
I've also finally bought a printer so I can print out the pattern for Lisa's jacket. Now I need to filch some paper from somewhere...
AmethystEyes - 9th November 2008
Oh winness! I was thinking the other week actually 'hmm wonder if anyone's ever done this before?' Looking forward to seeing this!
TheStarlightFairy - 12th November 2008
OMG once again you rule with awesome ^^
Lisa Basil is my second favourite T&T girl~
i wish you good luck ^^
nanahara - 18th May 2009
looking great with the progress
Freyarule - 3rd June 2009
I love Lisa Basil! She's so awesome x3
BladeyCakes - 21st June 2009
Awesome 8D the progress is looking great! Cant wait to see this completed :D
Thanks for your comment on Larry! Though unfortunately, I'm not going to Ayacon T_T would have loved to come along to the panel!
JakeX - 25th July 2009
WOOT!!! its awesome too see a Lisa she is so cool!!!! xD
Tho ill sadly make a power level joke........it looks like shes wearing a scouter xD
Cosplay Island is a news, portfolio and resource site for UK cosplayers. Join for free today, create your cosplay profile and share your photos with other cosplayers, or browse thousands of costumes by our members. Stay updated with all the latest news from the costuming world and cosplay events.