Out now: EL coat, Coming soon: EL hat

[Render] says his coat is simply “enhanced with EL wire”, but we know the truth. He’s secretly an alien that can’t block out all of his glowing green skin with a the black coat. No? Fine,

You can put away the sewing machine, [Render] simply used a needle and fishing line to attach ~50-70 foot of electroluminescent wire to the outside of a coat he picked up at a local clothing shop. Solder and program in an inverter and controller board thanks to SparkFun, and you’re ready to go.

Just double check all your connections, high voltage directly on your person is not fun. Trust us.

More automated wire cutting

[MC] realized he had forgotten about an order for 2000 cut wires that was now due in a few days. Rather than dropping everything to complete the task, he whipped up this machine to cut the wires for him. A PIC 16F628 board drives a couple of battery-powered drill motors. One of them powers two lawnmower wheels for the feed, and the other turns a pin that squeezes the wire cutters. It’s not as advanced as the cutter/stripper from last year, but it gets the job done.

After the break you can see it does what is intended. The final product took about $80 and 12 hours of his time to build.  [MC’s] planned improvements include more accurate wire measurement, plus an LCD and button based user interface.

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Hackaday links: June 27, 2010

Precision CRT manufacture

Here’s a great video from Tektronix about building a precision cathode ray tube. The tube manufacture method was developed to use in oscilloscopes and we’d guess it dates back to the early 1960’s. [Thanks Bill]

Snake on an LED matrix

We would have done a full post o this beautifully built LED matrix but we just couldn’t find much information on it. For now, enjoy the video of the device playing the classic game of Snake. [Thanks Xdr]

Wire bundling

We’re not sure if this is brilliant or just snake oil. Here’s a method of bundling wires together by twisting them with an electric drill. We’ve always just used our hands but we’ve never really worked in any kind of volume either. [Thanks Kacper]

Punching accelerometers

Shortly after finishing his Makiwara punching bag, [Abieneman] wired and programmed an Arduino to an accelerometer to find out just how much acceleration (and with some math, force) is behind his punches. The project is simple and would be quick to reproduce for your own measuring and experiments: all that he used included an Arduino, accelerometer (with A/D converter), LED displays (and shift register). We were a little disappointed to learn of how much static the accelerometer produced, so measuring things such as impulse, energy, and pretty much anything not kinematic is nullified. But it makes us wonder, how much static would be in say, a Wii Remote punching bag?

Automated wire cutter and stripper

witecutter

Kit builder oomlout—we’ve featured their servo bot—needed to produce a lot of precut wires. After cutting and stripping more than their fair share, they decided to apply some heavy engineering to make things easier. They constructed a machine to do the job for them. It has three main components: a servo driven wire feeder to measure the length, a two servo wire stripper that uses an exacto blade, and finally a wire cutter made from snips and a drill motor. The machine is controlled using an Arduino. They’ve published all the plans and code to Thingiverse incase anyone else wants to build a similar machine for their own kit shop. A video of the machine is embedded below.

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How-To: Introduction to soldering

It’s been a while since we’ve had a fresh How-To on the Hack-A-Day, and frankly we’ve missed them. To get things rolling, [Eliot] and I wanted to build a good knowledge base to help you hack your own stuff. I know that soldering won’t be new to many of our readers, but everyone has to start sometime. Our hope is simple: that this new series of How-To’s will help inspire new and experienced hackers alike.

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