Portal 2 Gun LED Help Needed


New Member
Hi everyone! While I've turned to this forum for build advice before, I finally joined to create this post and get help from people smarter than me.

My goal to build a Chell cosplay for NYCC this October, and of course I need to have an ASHPD. I've been studying every build I can find, from the OG Volpin props to Odin's mostly foam build and every Instructable in between. I think I have a pretty good plan in place and am cherry-picking the parts of each build that I think I can accomplish based on my skill level (not exactly advanced) and tools I already have.

I haven't started buying/gathering/building anything yet until I'm clear on how the electronics fit into the whole thing. I know I want my gun to light up (not even thinking about sound, as I think that is beyond me right now). I've been trying to teach myself about wiring LEDs and have been reading/watching various resources. This type of thing is usually way out of the realm of what I feel comfortable handling, but I think I actually may have the beginnings of understanding. I could use some advice/feedback to see if I'm on the right track or not though.

Below is my diagram of how I think I need to set the electronics up. I know it's less elegant than a schematic, but it's easier to visualize it when it's drawn out and color coded like this.

I plan to have 12 LEDs (6 blue and 6 orange) in the barrel of the device, with 2 (1 blue and 1 orange) on either end of the core, then another 2 (1 blue and 1 orange) for the indicator light on top. I plan to have it all go to a three way switch that will light up either color depending on which way I push, with the center neutral position being "off."

Here are my questions:
  • From what I've read, a parallel circuit is the way to go to keep voltage even across the LEDs (sorry if my jargon is not correct). From the way this is drawn, is that what I have here? I tried to set it up that way.
  • Assuming this is correct, or will be once I have feedback, when I get to the switch, I think I have to solder the positive wires to each of the "on" positions. That will leave me with 2 negative wires (blue and orange). Can I attach both of those to the middle "off" position?
  • Will my life be easier if I get LEDs prewired with resistors, so there is less math for me? What if resistors aren't actually needed, would the lights still work?
  • I'm also trying to figure out what I need battery wise, these formulas make my head spin.
  • Lastly, I know there are red lights on the front of the device near the claws. Would it make sense to have a separate circuit/switch for those, so I can keep them on regardless of whether I'm throwing blue or orange? Or is there a way to incorporate them into what I currently have.
Sorry for the long post and all the questions, and my rudimentary drawing. Thanks in advance for any advice or assistance!

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