Archive for category Trevyn

HOWTO turn a cheap Chinese laser engraver into a pretty good laser cutter

…using only a computer, LinuxCNC, and lots of scrap cardboard.

Every hackerspace needs a laser cutter. Unfortunately, they can be very expensive. Deals like the one Hacklab.to got don’t happen very often. However, there are factories in China turning out laser engravers and selling them on eBay for relatively cheap. We found a local distributor that appears to buy them directly from China, make sure they work, and resell them.

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Team think|haus in the Power Racing Series

At Maker Faire Detroit (July 31 – August 1 2010), the folks from Pumping Station: One have challenged hackerspaces around the world to participate in the Power Racing Series.

The idea is this: buy a Power Wheels car, mod it to make it MOAR AWSOME, and race it against teams from other hackerspaces. Very simple.

We got ourselves a used Extreme Dune Buggy, and let Jason go at it with the Sawzall.

There was much drilling, lathing, cutting, grinding, and welding.

The organising people announced the Early Bird Challenge a few weeks ago – post a video of your car driving 150 feet, powered by the motor you intend to race with. We didn’t quite get the points, but we did post a video:

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MIDI + Mini Piano

Recently I came across an Electron Echo Mini Piano that my brother and I played with many years ago:

I have no idea who made it or where it came from. The interweb mentions it a few times, but there doesn’t seem to be any information about it.

A moment of inspiration hit, and I decided it would be neat/fun/educational to build it into a sort of glorious MIDI-controlled monophonic electronic tinny-sounding synthesizer.

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