I decided I needed a Circuit Playground and Circuit Playground Express render farm. Here’s the stand I made on the CNC machine.
I designed it in Fusion 360 and then milled it with the Othermill Pro. First, I ran a pocket clearing pass.
Next, I ran a pencil pass to clear out the scooped out slots for the curvature of the boards.
These rough passes left behind a bit of material, as you can see here.
The final cleanup was a parallel pass with a fairly tight stepover, I ran it at 90 degrees from the stock, so it followed the grooves and had longer runs.
Here it is with a Circuit Playground Express nestled in it lovingly.
Here you’ll see some purple prototype boards, and the new red Circuit Playground Classic Digi-Key will be selling as part of the “buy one , give one” donation program for Girls Who Code
Here’s the full set, ready for various tutorials I’m working on with MakeCode, Arduino, and Circuit Python!
My son has been learning to play the guitar. I’m very happy and proud — he’s really into it, practices hard, and he sounds great. I recently borrowed an electric guitar from a friend so my son can practice for an upcoming Led Zeppelin show put on by his guitar school. We needed a stand for the guitar, so I built this one based on plans I saw on Instructables.
I re-drafted plans in Rhino, then laser cut some cardboard as a template. I transferred that to a piece of scrap 1/4″ plywood.
I cut it on a mitre saw and bandsaw, and then sanded it.
It works pretty well, but I’d like to remake it with tighter tolerances so the guitar back sits flush against the stand.
My greatest culinary innovation of the year: coring apples with a 1-1/4″ Forstner bit on an electric drill.
I have just revolutionized apple coring. In my kitchen at least.
Please note, this is a pretty new bit and I cleaned it with soap and water first. And then served apple crisp to our friends last night.
And nobody has died. So, if that’s reassuring enough for you, go for it!
If not, please don’t.
I built a roaring beast device. It detects when a person (or animal, or object) is within range and then triggers an audio file to play through the speakers. Roar!
To place the sensor out under a bush or fence for Halloween, I wanted to run a long length of CAT5 cable from it to the Arduino Uno running things. I mounted the rangefinder (a Maxbotix from Adafruit) to a RJ45 breakout board from Sparkfun, angling it up so the sensor can be placed low to the ground.
In the original application, I was able to hide this under a giant furry Neverbeast head (from Tinkerbell and the Legend of the Neverbeast) coming out of the floor in the lobby of Disneytoon Studios. But now I needed to place on outdoors, so I decided to model and 3D print this little enclosure.
Finally, I mounted another RJ45 breakout in my Arduino/WaveShield case and ran the voltage, signal, and ground wires to the Arduino.
Now, I’ll be able to set this up to scare trick or treaters this Halloween as they get near the house.
Earlier today I had cause to proclaim the following to the world:
“Sorry to yell but OMG I HAVEN’T HAD HONEY SMACKS IN SO LONG AND THEY ARE SO FREAKING GOOOOOOD”
This led me to wonder about the name switch from the Sugar Smacks of my youth:
- 1953-1990s the name was Sugar Smacks
- early 1990’s until 2004 the name was simply Smacks
- 2004 to present the name has been Honey Smacks
- future name: Gluten Smacks?
Thinking about this lead me to go eat another bowl of it,which then lead me to research the box art and mascots of the Smacks cereal line over the years. Go pour a bowl of Smacks and enjoy.
It all began with illustrations of real world Ringling Brother’s clowns.
1953-1956 Clown Paul Jung
Next came an animated seal. Go check out the animated ads, they’re wonderful.
1957-1960 Smaxey the Seal
In came the Hanna-Barbera horse sheriff, Quick Draw McGraw.
1961-1965 Quick Draw McGraw
My daughter loves her new bike. My daughter loves wearing skirts over bicycle shorts. My daughter’s skirts touch the rear wheel and get dirty. I built a rear fender for her bike.
I used aluminum flashing, overlapping three sheets.
I attempted to spot weld them together, but this was too powerful. Mostly, I melted holes through the flashing.
This turned out to be a good way to “drill” holes.
Which I then bored out with an awl and used pop rivets to fasten.
The elementary school variety show producer (yes, producer — we take this seriously!) asked if I could build some lighted magic wand props for one of the acts. “Heck yes!,” I said. I love building props.
Here’s how I built them:
- Start with an LED flashlight for the end cap switch, handle, and battery holder. Doing these things from scratch can be a pain. $5 lights worked great, you may be able to go cheaper.
- Remove the bulb, solder in leads and wires to extend the length, solder on a nice, fat 10mm LED.
- Use three street sweeper blades to form the wand structure, zip tie and tape them to the barrel.
- Heat shrink tubing to hold the LED nicely to the sweeper blade tips.
- Wrap the wand in masking paper. Glue the paper on, being sure to wrinkle and crease it like gnarled wood.
- Stain with wood stain, paint it, dry brush lighter colors at the peaks to increase the read on stage to the audience. Polyurethane the paper.
Here’s a visual guide to my method. UPDATE: The wands survived dress rehearsal and three performances! See bottom of this post for a photo of the young wizards in action.