These gloves were a lot of fun to make, and a neat experiment with some new super cool electronics stuff! The Tensor gloves are a creation of author Brandon Sanderson, from his young adult novel Steelheart (which is awesome, go read it - actually go read everything he's written!). They are described as "thin glove[s]...[with] lines of metal along the front of each finger. The lines joined in a pattern at the palm and all glowed softly green."
This commission was for my brother, who had made a set before but wasn't too happy with it. We collaborated on the plans, and he bought and shipped me the materials he wanted me to use. What you see here was the fruits of our discussions! We opted for:
Adafruit Green Sequin LEDs
Adafruit Conductive Thread
and a 2-pack 2032 battery pack to power it all.
Once it all arrived, I got to work!
These suckers are bright! The thread sews really well, though if it frays it's hard to get it into the needle (can't wet it and twirl it like normal thread). And yes, that's totally done by hand. Took forever! I highly recommend both of these products, since they're so easy to use and work so well. The thread doesn't shock you, and only has issues if you try to ball your fist, since the wires cross at that point. Luckily the battery packs have on/off switches, so you can turn them off and eat, buy things, you know - the important things. :D
Did some readjusting with the threads after some wires ended up not working well, and finally got all the fingers attached! Dabbed a tiny speck of superglue to where the thread connected to the LEDs just to make sure they didn't come untied - no soldering here, didn't want to burn the gloves!
Once the fingers were done, I threw on the next five lights, this time in the palm.
That one light gave me grief until the very end, when I finally gave up and added some solder to get the connection going. I also wrapped the wires to the battery with electrical tape to keep them from touching and shorting out. Left the wires hanging out though, to give it the hodgepodge wires 'n' metal look they're supposed to have. The wrist part of the glove was secure enough as well to hold the battery pack underneath and out of the way.
One glove down, on to the other!
The great thing about this build is it can totally be adapted to other genres. People were suggesting magic effects from various games and movies, and even my Mass Effect peeps were saying they were perfect for biotics! Future ideas..... ;) Anyway, my brother loved them, and most importantly the author himself loved them! My brother showed them to him, cosplaying as one of the main characters, Prof.
All in all, a fun, simple build!