War of the Worlds Radio

War of the Worlds Radio

This was a display piece that I built for use thought out my display over the years. It uses the case from an old style radio that I removed the electronics from and replaced them with a new setup to make it to do what I wanted.

The main parts that I used were:
A small amplifier with a built in SD card media player
A 120 volt light organ
A set of C9 incandescent lights
A speaker
A 12 volt power supply

The first step is to assemble the light organ. These are used to convert an audio signal in to pulse that can turn an ac light on and off. You can but them fully assembled or in kit form. The ones the I purchased were in kit form. They only took a few minutes to actually solder everything on to the board and test.

The next step is to lay out everything in the basic spot you will want them to be in the case. I stacked the power supply with the light organ in a plastic enclosure and the amp was mounted next to that. To attach the lights I choose I used staples, One on each side of the sockets, This will hold them upright and make everything look just a little neater.

Wire everything up. The wiring isn’t to complicated. You need to have 120v going to the power supply and the input for the light organ. The light organ connects directly to the lights. You will hook the DC side of the power supply to the amplifier. Since the amp provides two channels I connected one to the speaker that I mounted to the front of the radio case and the second channel is connected to the audio input of the light organ. That is all the connections that you would need to make in this prop.

Select and load your audio files. You can load pretty much any files that you want the radio to play thought. I selected the war of the worlds broadcast. I had 3 files loaded to the SD card that I could choose from. The entire broadcast, A shorter edited one to play the highlights and a very short loop that was just the exciting parts. Since this was used to entertain in the line I kept the second one playing for most of the night.

Test and use. Once you start you file the lights should flash along with the audio. This can be adjusted using the dial on the light organ to cause them flash more or less depending on the look you are after.