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Weekend Workshop: Make any pair of headphones wireless

Need something to keep you busy this weekend? We’ve got you covered. The Weekend Workshop is our weekly column in which we showcase a badass DIY project that you can complete with minimal skills and expertise. We’ve dug through all the online tutorials and gone the extra mile to pinpoint projects that are equal parts easy, affordable, and fun. So put on your work pants, grab your tool belt, and head to the garage. It’s time to start building!

Owning a reliable pair of Bluetooth headphones is downright life changing. From that very first moment you’re able to ditch those pesky headphone cords, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without a cordless pair in the first place. Thing is, you probably already own a pair of wired headphones you love. So why not turn those wired sets into fully-functioning Bluetooth headphones?

Well, thanks to some savvy engineering by an Instructables user known as silentbogo, anyone with an old pair of over-ear wired headphones can fashion them into a Bluetooth set with a bit of tinkering. In other words, anyone with a few hours on their hands, a soldering iron, some wiring, and a cell phone battery, among a few other materials, can easily enter the 21st Century of portable headphones.

To help you get started on the project, we’ve gone ahead and sifted through silentbogo’s Instructables walkthrough to see the exact materials list needed for pulling off the build. As is the case with any Weekend Workshop project, it’s imperative you have a common understanding of how to use the tools required for construction — such as a soldering iron, rotary tool, and small drill in this case. If you don’t feel comfortable using the tools listed below, we recommend finding someone to help or skipping this project altogether. With that said, here’s what you’ll need to get started:

Tools:

  • Philips screwdriver
  • Flat head screwdriver
  • 40W soldering iron
  • Multimeter
  • Scissors
  • Tweezers
  • Wire cutters
  • Rotary tool with cutting and grinding bits
  • Small drill bit for PCB holes
  • Mini-USB cable
  • Cell phone charger

Materials:

  • Headphones
  • Cell phone battery
  • BLK-MD-SPK-B Bluetooth module
  • Li-ion battery charging module
  • 3.5mm mini Jack (2, male and female)
  • Power switch
  • Small push buttons (2)
  • 1mm wire
  • Single-sided PCB
  • Soldering flux
  • Solder wire
  • Solder wick
  • Electrical tape
  • Hot glue gun with hot glue sticks
  • 2mm LED lights (1 red and 1 blue)
  • Iron (III) Chloride or Sodium Persulfate
  • Acetone-based nail polish remover

With all the necessary tools and materials at the ready, it’s now time to get started on piecing together these innovative DIY Bluetooth headphones. Simply follow silentbogo’s Instructables walkthrough and in a matter of hours, you’ll be kicking that cumbersome headphone cord to the curb. Happy building!

The entire walkthrough for building these DIY Bluetooth headphones can be found over at Instructables.