A CD Changer Made of Wood

Although this is by no means a new hack – it was made circe 2002 – this wooden CD changer is an interesting piece of machinery. The whole thing is a simple pick-and-place device. The gripper is brilliant in it’s simplicity, using only a rubber band, wood, and a solenoid. It grips the CD by the middle hole, picks it up, and the assembly then travels to the CD tray or the stack. Everything works with DC motors and string, and several micro-switches make sure everything is picked up and dropped in the correct position.

Although we may think this is a pretty cool device, [Matthias] is quite humble about his machine’s abilities. In his estimation, although one could probably duplicate 12 CDs with relative ease, if you really wanted to duplicate a large number, it’d be best to buy one. Maybe he works in manufacturing.

[Read more...]

Powering kids’ toys by hand

hand_cranked_toy_piano

[Dominik’s] daughter had an old toy piano that she loved, but when the batteries started to die down, it played awful tones and sounded generally out of tune. While this is likely something our circuit bending friends might be interested in, [Dominik] preferred when things sounded more cheery.

He considered simply replacing the batteries, but it seemed like a far better idea to do away with them altogether. he hunted around for a solution, and eventually found one at the local IKEA store. He grabbed a LJUSA hand-powered flashlight and disassembled it, saving the crank and circuitry.

He installed the crank on the back side of his daughter’s piano, and mounted the electronic bits inside the toy’s shell. The crank spins a brushless motor, generating an AC current which is rectified to DC before being stored in a capacitor. He says that a 30 second crank will play just a few tunes, which isn’t ideal, though it is better than frequently replacing batteries.

[Thanks, Roger]

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