A kit of parts to build the ultimate 'Green' circuit that uses the cells that other people throw away.
The Joule thief is a simple circuit, but it delivers great functionality. Its name is derived from the concept that it's stealing energy (Joules) from the battery that powers it. Nothing special there, except that this circuit will work down to absolute cell exhaustion at around 0.5 volts. Hence the idea that its 'stealing' the last dregs of energy.
Ideal as a short introduction to soldering
Great for Cubs, Scouts, Beavers and Guides to build for a skills badge
Easily incorporated into a packaging project, STEM activity, Young Enterprise etc.
Kit contains printed circuit board and standard components
See Technical Specification table for list of kit contents
Click here to download constructional notes for this kit
The Piggyaxe Joule Thief Kit is fairly easy to assemble. The PCB is of very good quality, there are only 6 parts to be soldered (no coils have to be wound) and the manual is well written. The manual has to be downloaded from the Data Sheet section, a paper print isn't included. The Joule Thief flash light isn't as bright as ordinary commercial flash lights nowadays, but it runs on "empty" batteries (!) and has a nice case with switch. The shipment arrived after 2 days here in Switzerland (DHL courier). Unfortunately, the kit had included the wrong LEDs (red 5mm instead of bright white 3mm LEDs). After getting back at the customer service, the right LEDs arrived after 1 week (free of charge). Summary: the kit is a good project for beginners, with good value for money. It is not very bright but it is novel and comes complete with a proper case.