Hackaday Podcast Ep18: Faxploitation! Ikea RFID Hacking, Space Ads, Hydrogen Dones, And Blinkies

Hackaday editors Elliot Williams and Mike Szczys gather round the microphone to spin tales from a week of hacks. All the rage are fax-machine-based malware, a hydrogen fuel cell drone, and bringing color to the monochrome world of the original Super Mario Land. There are at least three really cool LED hacks this week, plus Tom’s been exploring space advertising, Maya’s debunking solder myths, and Elliot goes ga-ga for a deep Ikea electronics hack. Closing out the show is an interview with Bart Dring about his exquisitely-engineered string art robot.

Take a look at the links below if you want to follow along, and as always, tell us what you think about this episode in the comments!

Direct download (68 MB of audio splendor)

Places to follow Hackaday podcasts:

Episode 018 Show Notes:

New This Week:

Interesting Hacks of the Week:

Quick Hacks:

Can’t-Miss Articles:


Bart Dring turns out some of our favorite machine builds. You’ve likely seen his work which he publishes on BuildLog.net and his YouTube Channel.

7 thoughts on “Hackaday Podcast Ep18: Faxploitation! Ikea RFID Hacking, Space Ads, Hydrogen Dones, And Blinkies

  1. On the topic of being unable to heat up large pads, etc, it’s better to think of the issue as dissipating energy quickly – yes, one could just turn the soldering iron up to a really high heat but, for all the reasons Maya discussed, it’s not the ideal solution. If you need to heat a large pad or cable that seems to struggle when using your small soldering iron bit (at sensible temperatures) I was taught to use a larger tip to get better coverage.

    Oh, and the bookmarks (well, comments) you’ve added to the SoundCloud listing is a nice touch (not that one should listen to just one bit, unless you’re trying to make it easier to find the quick-hacks intro “music” – I think the jazzy one from EP16? has been the closest to being a ‘pro’ intro so far :)

    Hope the desk is tidy again (loving the outros that are snuck on the end)

    1. The pro tip for soldering heat sinks is to get the whole shebang up to a just-not-melting temperature (150 C? 175 C?) so that less heat flows away from the area where you want it to melt (proportional to temperature difference, etc.). I’ve only had to do that once in my life, but it’s surprisingly effective. Go physics!

      The quick and dirty, pump heat in faster than it leaks out, still works. That was a bit out of the scope of Maya’s piece, but that’s also why you don’t usually get chip damage from wet chips when hand soldering. If you just solder the leads, and you heat them hot and fast, the inside of the chip doesn’t get a chance to equilibrate to the outside, and there’s no water boiling off. Contrast to wave / reflow soldering.


      Glad you like the bookmarks.

      Re: Bloopers in the intro/outro. That started by accident, funnily enough. I was using some 1990s studio gear for our first few podcasts, b/c no good USB interface, and some random comments like “should we start? OK, let’s go!” were on the tape and perfectly in sync with the intro music, so I just knocked the volume down and left them there. Now I have to seek them out and carefully place ’em. :)

      And for the true heads: Mike was bleeped out with DTMF tones.

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