I am working on a project involving 14 sections of EL tape. This is a circular array that incorporates a chaser effect with two lights lit on either side. originally I had found a small diy LED sequencer board that controlled both speed and brightness from 2 POTs.
Now I am attempting to adapt this to activate 7 relays (in place of the LEDs) which will in turn divert the power of the EL inverter to the tape sections. Each relay is the connection of 2 EL panels to the (+) of the sole EL inverter while its (-) is hardwired in parallel among all the panels.
These are all small panels cut from a 3m length and have worked using this inverter independently both full length and cut. through some trial/error as well as some brightness and speed tweaking I have made this system work for a panel or 2, sometimes more, but other times the inverter and relays are working by the sound of it but the lights are not lighting or when they do they are skipping. It's intermittent too sometimes swapping panels works but at times it looks like the socket may be bad and the light is good other times it's the opposite even with the same pieces.
I have considered the sparkfun sequencer and it would most certainly save the day except that along with space being an issue my device also incorporates a few other Arduino devices including 2 servos, a sound module and a push button to start the sequence. however the sequencer doesn't seem capable to run 7 el connections as well as 4-6 other operations. is there a simpler way? Am I missing components between my relays and lights? Could I use my Uno in place of the sequencer? or can I expand the number of pins on the sequencer?
I would like to avoid daisy-chaining arduinos/boards as much as possible and even break down the number of separate boards I already have. I am trying to run this off of a single 9v and maybe a pair of button batteries.
Unfortunately I can no longer find the exact sequencer I am using but there are many 8 channel led chasers (w/o Brightness control) similar to mine on ebay.
Any help, insight, coding, recommendations anyone can offer would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks in advance.