It looks like an ordinary toolbox, but when you open up the Arduino Launch Control System, you’ll find a safe method for triggering model rocket launches. The system uses two separate power supplies. Both must be on for a successful launch and one requires a key. To trigger a 10-second countdown, the operator must hold down two buttons. Releasing either button will stop the countdown.
Besides safety, the controller tracks mission elapsed time and can read weather information from a few sensors. A good-looking build and we like the idea of building inside a toolbox for this sort of thing.
Continue reading “Arduino Is Out To (Rocket) Launch”
It’s not news that EVGA is getting out of the GPU card game, after a ‘little falling out’ with Nvidia. It’s sad news nonetheless, as this enthusiastic band of hardware hackers has a solid following in certain overclocking and custom PC circles. The Games Nexus gang decided to fly over to meet up with the EVGA team in Zhonghe, Taiwan, and follow them around a bit as they tried for one last overclocking record on the latest (unreleased, GTX4090-based) GPU card. As you will note early on in the video, things didn’t go smoothly, with their hand-lapped GPU burning out the PCB after a small setup error. Continue reading “The Tale Of The Final EVGA GPU Overclocking Record”
Hearing is one of our most precious senses, and yet many take their hearing for granted, exposing themselves to loud noises that do lasting damage. [Jonathan Levi] of The Next Level does no such thing, at least not anymore. He’s even gone so far as to have custom acrylic earplugs made, which he carried around for two years, finally had them tweaked to be perfect, and promptly lost them. Rather than shell out another $150-$200 for another pair, [Jonathan] decided to see if he could make some himself.
While it’s true that [Jonathan] got a head start by asking the earplug company for the STLs they created back when he was fitted, he goes through the ways that one could mold and then scan one’s ears at home for not a lot of money. There are even kits for squirting that quick-setting goo into your ear to get just the right shape. Once you’ve got the ear canal positives, some quick photogrammetry work with your phone camera and a lazy Susan should be enough to get a model going in Blender.
[Jonathan] had the good sense to label left and right on the 3D printed mold, and furthermore added some small 3D printed screws that are color-coded to help him keep them plugs straight, and give him something to grab on to when it’s time to take them out. Be sure to check out the build video after the break.
Continue reading “DIY Custom Earplugs For Pennies Per Pair”
If you’ve been looking for a practical example of using GNU Radio, you should check out [Daniel Estévez’s] work on decoding telemetry captured from the Lunar Flashlight cubesat. The cubesat is having some trouble, but the data in question was a recording from the day after launch. We aren’t sure what it would take to eavesdrop on it live, but the 3-minute recording is from a 20-meter antenna at 8.4 GHz.
The flowgraph for GNU Radio isn’t as bad as you might think, thanks to some judicious reuse of blocks from other projects to do some of the decoding. The modulation is PCM/PM/bi-phase-L. Nominally, the speed is supposed to be 48,000 baud, but [Daniel] measured 48,077.
Continue reading “Listening To A Flashlight — Lunar Flashlight”
Riding a bike is a pretty simple affair, but like with many things, technology marches on and adds complications. Where once all you had to worry about was pumping the cranks and shifting the gears, now a lot of bikes have front suspensions that need to be adjusted for different riding conditions. Great for efficiency and ride comfort, but a little tough to accomplish while you’re underway.
Luckily, there’s a solution to that, in the form of this active suspension system by [Jallson S]. The active bit is a servo, which is attached to the adjustment valve on the top of the front fork of the bike. The servo moves the valve between fully locked, for smooth surfaces, and wide open, for rough terrain. There’s also a stop in between, which partially softens the suspension for moderate terrain. The 9-gram hobby servo rotates the valve with the help of a 3D printed gear train.
But that’s not all. Rather than just letting the rider control the ride stiffness from a handlebar-mounted switch, [Jallson S] added a little intelligence into the mix. Ride data from the accelerometer on an Arduino Nano 33 BLE Sense was captured on a smartphone via Arduino Science Journal. The data was processed through Edge Impulse Studio to create models for five different ride surfaces and rider styles. This allows the stiffness to be optimized for current ride conditions — check it out in action in the video below.
[Jallson S] is quick to point out that this is a prototype, and that niceties like weatherproofing still have to be addressed. But it seems like a solid start — now let’s see it teamed up with an Arduino shifter.
Continue reading “Smart Bike Suspension Tunes Your Ride On The Fly”
Mattel holds a fond place in most people’s hearts as they made many of the toys we played with as kids. You might remember the Thingmaker, which was essentially an Easy Bake Oven with some goop and molds that let you make rubbery creatures. But back in 2016, Mattel had an aborted attempt to bring 3D printing to kids under the Thingmaker label. You can see a promo video of the device below. You might not have seen one in real life, though. The product was delayed and eventually canceled. Even so, we frequently see press releases for “kids printers” and we’ve been wondering, should this be a thing? Continue reading “Ask Hackaday: Do Kids Need 3D Printers?”
Join us on Wednesday, January 25 at noon Pacific for the Vintage Electronics Hack Chat with Keri Szafir!
The world of the hardware hacker is filled with smells. The forbidden but enticing waft of solder smoke, the acrid bite of the Magic Blue Smoke, the heady aroma of freshly greased gears, the unmistakable smell of hot metal — they all tell a story, sometimes good, sometimes bad.
But the smell inside a piece of vintage electronics? Now that’s a complicated story indeed. It might be the wax of the old capacitors, the resinous scent of well-baked resistors, the enameled wire in transformers, or just the smell of the hot glass of the vacuum tubes. Whatever it is, once you smell it, you’ll never forget it
For some of us, that first whiff starts a lifelong passion for vintage gear. Keri Szafir knows quite well what it’s like to be bitten by the vintage bug, so much so that she goes by “The Vacuum Tube Witch” over on her YouTube channel. Her projects include repairs and restorations of vintage amps and radios, and even new builds with old tubes. She’ll stop by the Hack Chat to talk about vintage electronics, tube
hoarding collecting, and even her new interest in retro display technologies. Where there’s a tube, there’s a way!
Our Hack Chats are live community events in the Hackaday.io Hack Chat group messaging. This week we’ll be sitting down on Wednesday, January 25 at 12:00 PM Pacific time. If time zones have you tied up, we have a handy time zone converter.