DIY Hatbox Stamps

Matthew Borgatti recently put up an excellent post about the process of creating a hat box stamp for Pork Pie Hatters:

A professional looking tool made from a few simple digital fabrication techniques and some easy hand finishing. I really love when a process can be this straightforward and precise and take the hand crafting out of the equation. Laser cutting allows me to put the time and labor and love in the conception step and not on the execution.

He walks through the details of the aesthetics, design, fabrication and finishing.

Evil Mad Scientist at Maker Camp

Maker Camp Banner

Maker Camp is a virtual DIY camp for teens created by the folks at Make Magazine and Google. It’s free and open to all on Google+. I am excited to be participating in Maker Camp this week as the guest camp counselor on Thursday, July 26.

Electric Origami

The activity I’ll be leading will be Electric Origami. Schedule, materials lists and how to join the camp are all on the Maker Camp site and Make’s Google+ page.

Maker Camp Banner

I’m looking forward to hanging out with the campers! I’ll be posting the direct link to the broadcast and hangout as soon as it is posted on Thursday.

Update: Introductory information has now been posted for the Make G+ hangout, which begins at 12 noon, PST.

Update 2: The stream is up, link is here!  And, there’s a youtube stream, too!

Make your own epic-scale water weenie!

Water Weenie 32

Summer is here, and with it, the advancing aqueous arms race!  Squirt cannons, water balloon launchers, and myriad other technologies for soaking your fellow citizens.

One of the classic squirt mechanisms is the “water weenie,” where the water is stored under pressure in a length of elastic tubing, and the force to eject the water is provided by the restoring force of that tubing. Often the elastic tubing is a simple length of latex “surgical” tubing, or in the case of the classic Wham-O Water Wiennie, a literal rubber balloon.   While people have almost certainly been squirting each other with these things since (we’re guessing about ten minutes after) the invention of the water balloon, the technology has more recently been reinvented as the “constant pressure system” used in modern high-end water guns.

Here is our take on the water weenie: How to make your own high-performance, arbitrary-capacity squirt machine, starting with basic hardware.    Our 10′ version shown above— which you can lift if you’re strong!  —throws water up to 25 feet and can empty over ten gallons of water onto your target in one continuous shot.  And of course, you can make it bigger if you want to.

 

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The Heathkit Build – Part 2 – Building

IMG_2769 - Version 2

Last part we unboxed the Heathkit, looked at all the components, and started to build some of it. Now it’s time to finish off the build with the three main plates. This part is cool as you are able to see the creation come together before your eyes. We even created our own replacement part!

We also saw some cool vintage Heathkits at the Electronics Flea Market, and will show some pictures of those. Read on for more!

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The Heathkit Build – Part 1 – Unboxing & Components

THE BOX!

Ever wondered where some of the kit projects get their inspiration to strive for clear instructions, excellent documentation, and an overall fantastic DIY experience?

Heathkits were electronics kits popular in the late 1940s and 1950s. We have a mint AC Voltmeter kit that we will be building up over the next few days! We plan to document the experience and share it with all of you! Read on for more delightful photos and descriptions!

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Advanced servo hacking: The one-ton linear servo motor

One Ton Servo A

Hobby servo motors are the little wonders that make radio-control boats, airplanes, cars, hovercrafts, helicopters, submarines and robots work. And they are excellent devices for hacking.


Hobby servo motors each contain a little motor, which (through a set of gears) turns the output shaft, which is connected to a potentiometer, which provides position feedback to the controller chip inside the servo, which commands the motor to move until the output shaft reaches the desired position.
We’ve seen all kinds of crazy and wonderful servo modding– from the standard continuous rotation mod to the simple electronic speed controller, to full-on (servo) brain transplants.


Some time ago, I wrote up an article an article in Make Magazine, about how to modify a hobby servo motor to precisely control a one-ton scissor jack. The resulting sub-$100, one-ton linear servo motor can be used for any number of CNC and robotics projects. (For our own use, this was the Z-axis lift motor of the CandyFab 4000.)


We are now pleased to report that this project has just been released to the public over at Make Projects, where they have released a step-by-step version of the magazine article. (So go take a look!) One note: be sure to download the two PDF documents listed under “Files” — you’ll need those diagrams to follow along with the project.

Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories: Year 4

Evil

Happy birthday to us! Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories has now been around for four years. We’ve collected some interesting projects from this past year to celebrate.

Microcontroller and Electronics Projects:

Tabletop Pong
Tabletop Pong

Breadboard
Moving from breadboard to protoboard

Revenge!
Revenge of the Cherry Tomatoes

drink making unit
Drink making unit

pin 1
Finding pin 1

xmega - 2
Say hello to xmega

Peggydot
Adding a Chronodot to Peggy 2

Meggy Twitter Reader
Meggy Jr RGB Twitter Reader

twisted wire bundle
Twisted Wire Bundles

LED graph
Some thoughts on throwies

rovin pumpkin
Rovin’ pumpkin

ADXL335 - 10
Accelerometer with an AVR (updated)

LEDcalc - 20
Wallet-size LED Resistance Calculator

Science:

seeing magnetic fields
Seeing Magnetic Fields

Ice Spikes
Ice Spikes

opposition effect in clover
Opposition effect

Kitchen Science 18
Litmus Candy

Beans day five
Gibberellic Acid and Giantism in Sprouts

Simple LED Projects:

fake seven segment display
Fake seven segment display

LED-lit sea urchin
LED-lit sea urchins

Edge Lit Cards
Refining edge-lit cards

Food Hacking:

Ice Cream Gyoza -13
Ice Cream Gyoza

Lemon Pickle
Lemon Pickle

The array
Spices

coffee bean cooler
DIY coffee bean cooler

Marmalade 30
Marmalade: easier than it looks

AtomicCookies 7
Atomic Cookies

asteroids cookies
Asteroids (the edible kind)

Crunchy Frogs01
Crunchy Frog

Kit Projects:

tortiseshell
Bulbdial Clock Kit

Peggy2le-end
Peggy 2LE

Scale
LED Hanukkah Menorah Kit

Larson Scanner
Larson Scanner

D12 bag8
Handbag of Holding Kits

Crafty Projects:

arecibo 2
SETI Scarf

scrap acrylic
Scrap acrylic shelf

Tombstone
24 hour tombstones

ipad 3
iPad lap stand

Custom iron ons 10
Custom iron-on techniques

Geek Design:

symmetrisketch
SymmetriSketch

Typographic Coasters
Typgraphical Character Coasters

Ornamental Components 08
Ornamental Components

Cat String 6
Radio controlled string

Bookend - 9
Bookends for physics geeks

Lego business cards-2
Lego Business Cards

Tie Stools2
Portable Stools

And, don’t forget, you can win a Peggy 2 or one of 13 other prizes in our clock
concept contest
, going on this week.

Related:

DIY Fever: Heading to Maker Faire

See us at Maker Faire!
It’s a busy week at the labs here. We’re getting ready for Maker Faire this weekend in San Mateo, CA– the biggest, baddest, and most awesomest DIY festival of the year.

We’ll be showcasing an updated version of our mechanical Pong game. We’ve added a curved playing field, new user-friendly knobs, and a host of other improvements that we’ll plan to write about at a later date. We hope you’ll come by and try it out–we’ll be on the west side of the Expo hall.

Tabletop Pong - 92
Some of the other projects that we’ve taken to Maker Faire in the last few years include our Interactive LED Dining Table, CandyFab, Bristlebots, Interactive LED Coffee Table, Peggy 2, and Meggy Jr RGB.

We’re also participating in the Open Source Hardware Panel, on Saturday at 1 pm at the Innovation Stage at the south end of the Expo Hall.

Eggbot kit - preview 1

We’ll have much more to say about this later, but we’re thrilled to announce our new collaboration with Bruce Shapiro, Ben Trombley, and Brian Schmalz. While we’re demonstrating the Tabletop-Pong game, Bruce and friends will be giving a sneak peek at the results of our collaboration: a fantastic new version of the Eggbot kit, which we are preparing for release as an open source kit sometime this summer.

Eggbot kit - preview 2

You can sign up here for more info about the kit, and you can try out the Eggbots– or just see them in action –in the center of the Expo Hall.

Lastly, to help get everyone else in the DIY mood, we’re having a DIY Fever sale over at the store, with 20% off of Evil Mad Science open-source kit favorites such as the Larson Scanner, Meggy Jr RGB and the Bulbdial Clock, and 10% off of everything else!

Happy hacking, and we’ll hope to see you all at the Faire!