The Cramp: A MSP430-powered crane lamp


If you think your last project required a lot of soldering, take a look at [Multivac’s] remote controlled and fully-articulable desktop crane lamp. Sure, it’s a 430 microcontroller combined with an LED driver, 32 LEDs, PWM control, and some moving parts: but take a closer look at the structure. The Cramp uses an old HDD as its base, with the crane spinning around the main bearing that previously supported the platter. A system of spools and pulleys provides a reasonable range of motion to the rest of the build. Relocating the entire assembly, however, is evidently an unpleasant task.

[Multivac] based his design on a Liebherr LR1750 Crawler Crane, which he meticulously pieced together using leftover copper salvaged from an upgrade to his home’s mains wiring. A mountain of solder secures what must include several hundred joints—possibly more. The head of the lamp is an elegant exoskeleton-interpretation of industrial designer Eero Saarinen’s TWA Flight Center. You can see the Cramp in action in the video below.

[Thanks JP]

17 thoughts on “The Cramp: A MSP430-powered crane lamp

    1. it moves smother, though i need to work on the firmware a little bit. most of the swinging in the video is because i was shooting the vid and couldn’t control what i was doing very well. cheers

  1. So err before I talk about the post I just wanna say sumn here yes.
    Two new writers and no formal introduction wazzup with that I mean I know H.A.D got new ownership but come on least ya could do is introduce these new folks.

    Tis a pretty sick build that must have took a damn long time and much concentration I commend thee good sir.

  2. Very impressive. Echoing DosX, we see two new chaps, and two impressive hacks (this and the $5 ARM board) – have they been given the cream of the crop, or do we expect this to continue? :-)

  3. Nice write up Josh!

    This is Josh’s first post and I’m happy to have him join the team. He’s got an English degree (as well as post graduate degrees in Computer Animation and Performance Studies) so watch out grammar trolls!

    He also built this awesome single-wheel balancing skateboard but we don’t think he ever tipped us off about it. Tsk tsk.

      1. yeah, good clarification: two wheels, one axle

        I’ve already pestered Josh about a feature on the thing. I think he’s working on a round-up which we’ll publish in the next few days.

  4. Very cool. I will definitely be building something like this now. Probably a mix of paperclips and 3D printed parts. Even more motivation to get my Printrbot simple properly calibrated.

  5. Hackaday shold start a competiton named “Damn now i have to build one” wich show cool toys/tools/projects that readers shold make and complite with. This is going to one for me, i am going to dublicate this method in my projects.

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