Solar monsters… you know… for kids!

Teaching kids to solder using kits is a fun time, but most of these beginner kits are a bit mundane. Not this one, it’s a solar-powered monster project. The components and their wiring connections are printed on a sheet of paper along with a background for that particular monster. The base of the paper is glued to a block of wood and at each solder junction there’s a copper nail. This way the kids can line up the components, check the picture to make sure the polarization is correct for each, then solder onto the large and stable nail head. As you can see in the video after the break, when the solar cell collects enough electricity the transistor triggers a motor to spin the monster.

But don’t get the idea that kits are only for kids. If you haven’t tried your hand with SMD soldering yet, this kit is for you.


  1. Hirudinea says:

    The layout reminds me of a “Boradcast your Podcast” transmitter.

  2. b3ans says:

    Interesting project but monsters only come out at night.

  3. snake says:

    A definite step-up from the projects of old, hats off to you!

  4. Eirinn says:

    @b3ans just use the same concept as garden lights – they use a photocell and only completes the circuit when it’s dark’ish.

  5. ANDREW says:

    I like the use of an LED in a potential divider to turn the transistors on.

    Circuit diagram is hard to follow though.

  6. Drake says:

    @HaD – cleverly placed reference to the Hudsucker Proxy

    My spin on this would have information on the sheet explaining the reason for each component in the circuit.

  7. KC2PHO says:

    Nice ‘Hudsucker Proxy’ reference!

  8. mi6x3m says:

    Thank God, microcontrollers are not everything!

  9. J. Swift says:

    Hah! That’s what I figured–it looks like a FRED solarengine, based on the circuit diagram.

    Personally, I think making symets (google it) would have been a lot more fun.

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