Analog robotic concepts

Everyone’s getting on board with the 555 timer projects. But [Tom] didn’t just come up with one project, he shared a slew of ideas related to analog robotics. They’re center around servo motor control. You can see in the video after the break he has a pleasing way of sharing a lot of details while also making an easy to view demonstration video. He’ll put up a schematic for about one second and then move on, saving those that don’t care about the details by not droning on.

The first schematic that flashes by is the main circuit for controlling the servo motor. The rest of the concepts build from this circuit, using light, sound, flex, and other sensors as inputs. For instance, the setup above is using a light sensor. When the ball blocks the light the servo moves that vertical rod hitting it out of the way. When it swings back the process repeats. It’s striking how lifelike the reactions are, reminding us of insect movements. But this is really just the tip of the iceberg as he’s got a lot of future video ideas that we can’t wait to see.

[Read more...]

Boom goes the dynamite – murals made with precision explosives

explosive_artwork

[Alexandre Farto] is known for some off the wall art displays, but his newest work takes the phrase literally. Using precisely placed explosive charges, he has been sculpting portraits and other murals on walls in various places around London.

The detail at which he is able to produce these images is incredible, considering he is blowing chunks of plaster and brick from walls to form them. We can only guess as to how much preparation time is required to finish even one of these images, let alone to amass the stunning portfolio he has put together.

He has also recently teamed up with musical artist [Orelha Negra] to produce a cool video of his work as it was being sculpted, which is certainly worth the three minutes it takes to watch. The video, embedded below, is chock full of slow-motion shots of the demolition/sculpting in progress.

If you have a few minutes, be sure to check out his site to take a look at some of his work, we think you will be impressed.

[Read more...]

DIY lightning special effects

Halloween may have come and gone but thats no reason not to take a look at this neat little special effects setup.  Basically it uses an analogue circuit to monitor an audio signal and triggers some camera flashes using 5V relays.  The idea is that you can play lightning strikes and other spooky sounds, and the system will trigger camera flashes to coincide with the lightning strikes. Adding in some color organs in addition to the camera flashes will dim your lights to help achieve a thunder like effect. Unfortunately there aren’t any schematics for the color organs (which technically might be just light organs) but that doesn’t detract from the seemingly well designed analogue signal processing. Check it out in action after the break.

[Read more...]

Screen tracking projector

[Jon Howell] came up with what he calls a gratuitous project which projects his name on his office door. The thing is, his office door slides on tracks so he made a projector that can follow the movement of that screen. He used a laser printer to make a black and white pattern that indexes the movement of the door using a quadrature encoder. When it senses door movement a servo motor rotates the projector to match the change in the door’s location. As you can see in the video after the break it works even if the door is moved quickly.

We do agree with [Jon], this is a bit much. But it might be something to build into smart white boards that are mounted on sliding tracks. We guess that if you don’t plan to change the message being projected, which is the case with [Jon's] office door nameplate, this would be a great way to use the image projector build we looked at yesterday.

[Read more...]

Entrust you kid’s life to a homemade roller coaster?

So you fancy yourself as an amateur engineer? Been working on those welding skills for a while? The real test is to trust your children’s lives on a roller coaster you’ve designed and built (translated).

Now we’re not talking some tired old carnival ride like the teacups. This is a full-blown roller coaster, complete with an upside-down loop. The ride starts off with a chain-lift to the top of the garage/barn roof. From there it’s off and away on the single-rider train. We’d recommend keeping your hands and feet inside the car… if there was a car. The ride utilizes an automobile seat, but you’ll have to settle for a lap-belt as there’s no shoulder restraint here. We’re a bit wary of the track footings – we’d bet they’re not well anchored in the ground – but the fact that the entire length of track has been painted makes us think that [John Ivers] might have known at least a little bit about what he was doing. Don’t forget to catch the video below the fold.

Update: Much better video now embedded after the break thanks to [Tom 101's] link in the comments.

Update: Source link changes to the original thanks to [Mike's] comment.

[Read more...]

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 97,790 other followers