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1000% funded on my Kickstarter

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My kickstarter campaign continues to tick over in the background, amazingly I just reached 1000% funded. I shall have to make another 6-700 puzzles next month in a similar scale to the previous campaign. All of this work and secret escape room projects and large cake projects are keeping me all rather busy at the moment. There are lots of things I mean to write about but am just not finding the time, hopefully I can squeeze some of those things in too.

Ninja Warrior Button

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Over the last few weeks I've been playing around at Ape Index Leicester, it's like a ninja warrior training gym with a climbing wall. I'm mostly playing but I've certainly been getting fitter because of it, I was talking to the owner who discussed a big red button project like they have at the end of the ninja warrior course. Wiring one up is tricky because the place is so big so it sounded like a perfect match for some of my ESP8266 work.

It's a simple browser based stopwatch app written with javascript, this is served up from the ESP8266 as an access point. A websocket is opened to transfer data too and from the browser without refreshing the page. When you press start on the screen the light on the button becomes illuminated, when you push the big red button the timer stops counting, so you can start the system from one end of the course and see what time they get at the other end.


This is very much a fun project I threw together in an hour this evening while c…

Oversized Chess Set

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I did say that this Oversized Chess Piece was the start of something bigger and here it is. There are a few tweaks and changes such as the arrow points on the base to show the forward direction and these are about 20% bigger again.

What good is an incomplete chess set I hear you ask? This one has been made specifically for one of the puzzles at Escape Asylum. We recently went to visit and completed Riiitual, escaping with time to spare. We've done a few different escape rooms and I think I liked this one the best, it was definitely challenging, the puzzles fit the theme of the room well. 
The only thing that let it down slightly was a plastic chess set with some manhandled broken pieces. Being a local nerd with a laser cutter I thought it only fitting to offer some decent wooden replacements that can take the punishment. Once I got started there were quite a few things that could be upgraded so I've now made a few new props for them which I will never be allowed to show you.
I…

Fractal Puzzle Kickstarter Success

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The first time I ran a kickstarter I just kind of launched it and told a few people once I'd done it, the whole thing funded in 24 hours which was great news. This time around I was a bit more prepared, I contacted people in advance, sent out some samples for review and generally made people aware that it was going to happen. This time I was 100% funded in 1 hour 58 minutes. I realise I was only asking for a paltry £1000 each time and it doesn't really bear any relevance to the amount required to complete the task but it's still nice to see that people were keen to be involved this time. We hit nearly £4K in 24 hours which is a promising start, now I need to push it a bit to keep up some of that momentum. In general though it looks like it's going to be another successful campaign and I'm going to have another busy month.

Fractal Puzzle Kickstarter has been launched

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I just launched my new kickstarter campaign for the second set of fractal puzzles, now is a good time to jump on board and grab yourself an early bird bargain.
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/msraynsford/wooden-fractal-tray-puzzles-2

Kickstarter at the ready

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With my Kickstarter campaign ready and waiting for approval from Kickstarter I can positively say that my new puzzles are going to launch any day now. With the puzzles so close I can also announce that there will be another set of four puzzles based on the Peano curve and variations of it known as the Wunderlich Curves. 
Curves 2 and 3 are very standard puzzles compared to the original set of four, I simply found the repeating sections and subdivided the puzzle accordingly, it makes them just as tough as the originals to solve. The Peano curve and Wunderlich Curve 1 were quite a bit harder to create and I had to wait for inspiration to strike. The repeating section on those puzzles is obvious but it was hard to find 13 different ways to split the puzzle without making it too simple. I'm sure you'll appreciate the solutions I found and enjoy their fiendish new complexities.
My extended family were subjected to timed testing a few weeks back and nearly all of them gave up withi…

Light bit of repair

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There was a single row of leds mounted under the gantry on my laser cutter, over the years the LED's have slowly stopped working and they were in a bit of a sorry state. I'm going to be installing a new camera into my laser cutter at some point and lighting is always important so it was a good time for an upgrade. Instead of one strip of light that moves and creates ever changing lighting I thought it would be better to put two static strips one the Y rails. I pulled the LED strip off the bottom of the gantry, it was pretty badly stained from years of laser cutting. The new lights are weatherproof, silicone coated so they should stay cleaner and functional for a lot longer. They are wired into the existing switch so they can be turned on and off from the outside of the machine.
The existing power supply is only rated for 1A at 24V so it was worth taking a few seconds testing the lights to make sure they didn't draw too much current. In hindsight I would have made the stri…