In it's second revision already it's finally here, the mini digger, executive desk toy. A lazy susan rotary base, and two levers to control the arm, giving 3 joints of movement (move them both together to move the whole arm) (svg here)
Many people came through the Nottinghack tent looking to borrow tools or materials but these guys really stuck with it and decided to make their whole thing with us. When they asked if I had something pulley like I suggested we laser cut the whole deal. I wish I had a video of the final item but hopefully someone can link me over to it.
They were using an app on an I phone that could calculate the distance to a laser dot. They built this turret which would turn the laser dot and the iphone together and shine about waist height. The Iphone fed data back to a laptop which played a note based upon the distance. It worked really well and was very cool when people gathered around it to see what they were doing creating a tune (or at least a not that irritating noise)
A lot of my ESP8266 work creates a local access point rather than connecting directly to the internet so I thought I would release this source code that allows me to do that. It's a simple arrangement that opens an access point and creates a webserver. Once started you're able to change the SSID and Password for the access point from within the browser and if it all goes wrong you can revert to an open network with a known name with a few well timed button pushes. (source here).
A lot of my gadgets only use a local access point, I have this fear that if I gave the 'cake owls' full access to the internet someone will figure out how to hack them remotely and there will be a botnet of cakes before I can stop it. The devices also need to be user friendly because I can't assume anything about the technical skills of the people using them. The admin web page provides a friendly way to input a new SSID and Password for the network but. If the user forgets these values th…
Here is the video of my two laser cutters cutting the same tile side by side. It prompted a few people to ask 'how come the 30W tube is much faster than the 100W tube?'
I picked the new laser cutter based upon speed. It had a few specification stats that suggested it was fast and the photos showed a fairly lightweight head etc. Now that I have the laser in my possession I can see all the design decisions that make it fast. In the case of these Carcassonne tiles I only need the full power of the laser when I'm cutting the tiles out.
The low power engraving lines are done with minimal power, only 8% of the 30W tube. The metal RF tube gives me much more control over the low end power, the head can fly around at 100mm/s, twice the speed of the larger machine. The engraving can be done at 1000mm/s, again nearly twice the speed and empirical evidence suggests that it is actually moving at that speed.
The 30W laser can easily handle the 3mm poplar ply wood at a sensible 35mm/s, t…