Kids Night Lamp

A Upcycling Project with a old RGB Computer Mouse.

creator: x14km2d | build: 2021-11-05 | update: 2021-12-26


I have an old box on which I wrote sort with a marker. Actually, it is a garbage box. Every time I have a new creative wave, I blindly reach into the box and build something new from the component I randomly grab out. I bought a cheap dollar store mouse1 years ago that had super nice RGB LEDs. But it broke very quickly and could not be repaired. I didn’t throw the board away, but packed it in the box mentioned above. Now the old mouse board lay on my desk.

Within a few minutes my creative booster kicked in and I had an interesting idea. Why not build a kids lamp out of the old RGB mouse? I know these lamps from my childhood that were usually plugged next to the on / off switch in the nursery, so I could turn on the light when I had to go to the toilet at night. In addition, it was then not quite so sparkling in the room and I was then less afraid of monsters under my bed. The current children’s lamp should also become a monster, but a friendly one that protects me. Even though I am now old enough to no longer be protected by monsters.

Now that I have a 3D printer, I was able to quickly build a case for my project. Unfortunately I was so deep in the zone that I didn’t document the 3D part. But I will upload the 3D parts back to the archive so that they can be downloaded there. So far I consider this just a fun project and provide all the information for it, if someone also wants to build a night lamp for kids from his old RGB mouse.


To be able to work well with the old board, we have to break off all superfluous components. This includes the mouse wheel and the push buttons, because we only want to keep the resistors and the RGB LED. The laser thing in the middle of the mouse I didn’t take out, so I don’t have to solve too many bridges with cables. On the upper photo you can see how I created such a jumper with a black cable. You just have to follow the traces and look where an interruption has taken place.

Actually I thought that the board of the mouse is symmetrical, but it is not. The left side is a little thicker and therefore the bottom of the case didn’t fit anymore. So I had to saw off more of the board so it would fit back into the case and I could continue working. It’s always better to mark parts when you’re going to saw them off. It is super easy to saw something off, but quite difficult to glue sawed off parts back on. Better to think once more about what you want to do in the next step. This will save you trouble and frustration on the project.

The marking where I want to separate the board, I have also transferred to the other side. There I have then made cuts with a modeling knife in the tracks and looked where I have to solder bridges again. I marked the points with a yellow marker. Unfortunately, the board is so cheaply produced that it broke apart after a few seconds. Instead of a small piece I had broken off the whole left side. But that was no problem now and later it turned out that it was even quite good.

Something that still bothered me was the electrolytic capacitor2 on the top of the board. There it took a lot of space in the height and I had to reduce that. I simply cut off the old component with a small side cutter and soldered a new capacitor. Please pay attention to the polarity, which was marked on the board with a small cross. I simply bent the capacitor around the outside of the board, so that it doesn’t take up so much space. This doesn’t look nice, but nobody will see it later anyway.

In between I created my case for the project and tested it again and again. For example, I adjusted the size of the bottom3 again, so that I have a little more space for the board. Then I created the wall4 and looked how I can best insert the board. Since this is a prototype, I didn’t use screws or clamps for the components, but glued them together with superglue. As I mentioned above, I could now use the left side for the cables and connectors. For this I had to cut a hole in the wall with a small side cutter. Overall, however, it all fit together quite well and there were no problems I had to deal with.

What I had not considered so far, was that I had to hang the kids night lamp somehow. I wanted to do this with a small nail, had not provided a hole for it in the 3D model. I then simply marked a spot with a pika ink marker and drilled out with a hand drill.


This project was so much fun even if the result is not perfect now. The idea is interesting and I learned a lot about 3D printing when I built the case. In addition, I find good that I have now thrown less in the trash again and that is also important to me. We humans throw away far too much, even if we could repair or recycle it. I don’t think that’s good and neither is our environment. It is also important to me to show that you can create something new and super great with a little work, if you only give yourself enough effort.

Version Two

After testing the project one night, I noticed something that bothers me5 The RGB LEDs are really bright and blind me when I leave them outside the case. So I printed out another 7mm wall and glued it to the previous wall. Then I glued on the lid without drilling holes. Now the RGB LEDs can show their happy play of colors, but do not dazzle when I look at the lamp.


  1. Esperanca, Lightning Mouse, Max. DPI 2400, VROHS, EGM211 R-T, Z:2640.↩︎

  2. The values of the electrolytic capacitor were 47 uF and 16v. When you buy electrolytic capacitors, do it in big packs. it’s really not worth buying four or five individual components because that gets way too expensive. buy it in big boxes with different values so you cover a wide range of values. I just ordered five big boxes online and that will last me the next ten years. You pay $100 once but then save for a long time. You should also do this with other small electronic components, because if you order large quantities, the prices also become much cheaper.↩︎

  3. The brown spots on the white bottom are heavily melted residue that stuck to my extruder. I had forgotten to clean it before printing. The residues collect, burn and then turn brown. Eventually they fall on the print and are incorporated into the material. That doesn’t look nice, unless you want to do something with art. So always clean the extruder of your 3D printer.↩︎

  4. If you need to print out walls for a prototype, don’t do it in the original size. I always make walls to 2.0 mm so that I can test whether they fit. This not only saves you time but also material and therefore money. If the wall then has the right size, you can print the right height.↩︎

  5. No matter how good your idea is, it will never work in the first version. When you’re young you tell yourself that if you try hard enough it will all work the first time, but that’s only partially true. Yes, it can work the first time. But especially in science and engineering you have to test, test, test and test again. An electrical engineering project that works the first time is rare, and then it’s just luck.↩︎

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