Dungeons and Dragons Dice Gauntlet
The D&D bracer is a fairly quick, fun, nerdy LilyPad project. The final product is a wearable bracer with a display that will randomly generate numbers between 1 and 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 20, or 100 in response to arm movement, so it can effectively replace all of the dice in your bag for a D&D session. It can also serve as a decorative costume piece to get you in character!
This is an intermediate LilyPad tutorial. You can expect to do a fair amount of sewing, moderate crafting, and you’ll need to be able to upload code to a LilyPad arduino board. You don’t have to write the code, it’s been supplied for you. However, if you want to practice or play around with it, there’s room to customize. This circuit and code were adapted for wearables from a similar project by the awesome John Trepke, one of our tech support geniusaints (I just made that word up, but I like it!)
This tutorial requires a mix of both electronic items and crafting supplies. Here’s a fancy wishlist of the electronics:
For the display, I used yellow, but you can swap that out for red, green, blue, or white. The 1000mAh battery was what I had on my desk, there’s no reason you can’t use a smaller one if you’d like to conserve space.
On top of that, you’ll also need some crafting supplies from your local craft store:
- Outer bracer material – This can be leather, pleather, or any stiff material you’d like
- Inner bracer material – I recommend felt- it doesn’t fray, it holds stitches very well, and it insulates nicely.
- 10 Grommets
- Lacing – leather thong, ribbon, whatever will lace the bracer up firmly and look right with your design
- Trim, embellishments, whatever you’d like to give the bracer some character
This project tutorial builds on a few more conceptual tutorials. If you’re not familiar with the subjects below, consider reading through those tutorials first:
- E-Textile Basics – This tutorial should familiarize you with e-textiles and the LilyPad brand of products. If this is your first e-textile project, consider checking out our Firefly Jar project too.
- How to Sew with Conductive Thread – This a BIGGIE! It goes over the do’s and don'ts of sewing with conductive thread.
- How to Use a Multimeter – A multimeter will come in handy if you need to troubleshoot your gauntlet circuit.
- What is an Arduino – The LilyPad Arduino is the brains of our project. Listening to the switch and accelerometer inputs, and controlling the display. If you’re not familiar with Arduino, definitely check out this tutorial.
- Serial 7-Segment Display Hookup Guide – This is the display we’ll use to show our dice roll. If you’re curious how the display works, check out this tutorial.
- Accelerometer Basics – We’ll use an accelerometer to sense when you shake your arm. If you’re curious about how accelerometers work, check out this tutorial!
- Switch Basics – Switches are used to tell our gauntlet which type of dice we want to roll.
- Battery Technologies – The gauntlet will be powered by a Lithium Polymer (LiPo) battery.