Last night at fire spinning practice at the “City Museum”:http://www.citymuseum.org we got to test a new flamethrower. It was good, because like in any group, tensions can ocasionally get high, misunderstandings can cause hurt feelings, and a group feels growing pains as it trys to find out how it wants to handle the dangers (quite literal dangers, in this case) of having more people around. One of my fellow spinners was not very happy due to the tension, and the fact that his propane tank was empty. He had brought with him version 2 of a large recreational flame thrower that he wanted to test, but was out of gas. The flamethrower design is simple. A standard propane grill style tank is filled with liquid propane. Flexistentialism » Recreational Flamethrowers
Make: Online : LED Wall looks cool, is large
Homemade Gift Series #1: Vanilla Extract For the last few years, one of the most prized possessions in our pantry has been a gigantic bottle of imported Mexican vanilla extract. It’s not that imitation stuff that you get on sale at the store, with weak vanilla flavor and added sweetener. This stuff is pure unsweetened vanilla extract. It makes pies and cookies and homemade ice cream and sweetbreads and cakes and countless other things we make at home sublime. A month or so ago, I noticed that our big bottle was finally running low.
The synpad The SynPad is a position sensitive midi drum pad that you can build yourself using simple materials and tools for around 50 UK pounds (depending on what materials you already have, and how many pads you want to make.) The idea was to produce a pad which can detect where on the pad you have hit it as well as how hard, so that the synth it is driving can modulate the sound continuously according to the x and y coordinates of the strike. The design is pretty simple - you could easily build one over a weekend using basic wood and metalwork tools (i.e. for cutting and drilling). All the software I've written for it is open source, so as long as you have or can set up a linux based computer (or have the skills to adapt the software to another platform), you could get up and running pretty quickly.
Arduino-based talking & remote thermometer March 4, 2009 AT 12:24 am Fun Arduino-based talking & remote thermometer, Solder In The Veins writes - After recently getting my hands on an Arduino Duemilanove, I came across this Sketch on Arduino Playground that allowed an Arduino to function as a temperature measuring device with the addition of a few cheap and easily obtainable components. Deciding to take things a step further, I wrote a Python script to create a DIY temperature measuring device that could be used both locally, via the command line, as well as remotely, using a googlemail account to check the temperature of a room. You can grab a copy of this script, called “Ardthermo”, from the Software page. This article should give all the info you need to know to build this little project for yourself and make use of the Ardthermo script.
Make: Online : $28 huge cheap whiteboards
Just spotted this cool project by the other Martin Taylor in the MAKE Flickr pool: $12 in hardware store bits & pieces, 1 old skate from the basement and a tripod head borrowed from an old tripod. My Labor-day, afternoon, quick, DIY project. It doesn’t look very pretty but it works well enough with anything from my tiny camcorder to my 5D. If, like myself, you don’t know what a skater dolly is used for, exactly, check the embedded vid Martin made to demonstrate. Impressive results for such an inexpensive tool. Make: Online : PVC skater dolly
Make: Online : DIY Van de Graaff generator
Gio, a MAKE subscriber from Winnipeg, Canada, sent us a link to this well-documented low voltage headphone amp project. The tube-based amp uses a single 12AU7 tube for voltage gain and a IRF510 MOSFET to supply current to drive the ‘phones. The small hybrid amplifier operates off a 12V SLA (sealed lead-acid) battery, so there are no high voltage concerns. An LM317 regulator was used as a constant current source to bias the MOSFET into class-A operation. The amp can be built for about $40-50, less if recycled parts are used. (Psyched to see the builder using the Grado SR60 headphones, my all-around, all-time faves.) Make: Online : Low voltage tube headphone amp
:: AVR Freaks
Make: Online : MIDI kit test-drive MAKE contributor Michael Una posted a review of Highly Liquid’s MD24 kit which converts MIDI events over to an array of 24 +5V outputs - The new MD24 falls into the latter category. It takes a MIDI input and gives you 24 discrete +5V outputs that can be used to drive relays, transistors, or servo motors. Functionally, the MD24 is similar to HighlyLiquid’s MSA-T or MSA-R kits, except that you now have 24 outputs instead of just 8- a significant improvement.
Make: Online : How-To: Upright electric bass from a 2x4
Want to fly your plane or drive your car using GPS signals, but finding that your receiver just isn’t accurate enough to make things work? Well, MAKE subscriber Bruce Mueller writes in to point us at an impressive solution: an open-source real time kinematic GPS receiver. Researchers Tomoji Takasu and Akio Yasuda of Tokyo University developed the RTKLIB library to perform the RTK-GPS calculations, and then ported the whole thing to run on a low-cost beagle board and commodity GPS receiver. Want to try it out? Full source code, circuit layouts and instructions are provided on their site. So, how does it work? Make: Online : Regular GPS not accurate enough? Try RTK-GPS!
MirlitronOne explains how to turn a Velleman MK107 LED Running Light kit into a simple 8-step sequencer for use with analog synthesizers. A handy kit hack, but it’s also not too much work to build one from scratch. Related: Sequence it!! BY Collin Cunningham Make: Online : Synth sequencer from an LED kit
Make: Online : Fun with cellphone feedback
Make: Online : Build an autonomous bassline generator
Make: Online : How-To: Transistor tester
Something I’m excited about these days is rhythmically interfacing incompatible musical components like my analog modular synthesizer with a Casio SK1 Keyboard and a Barbie Karaoke machine. One tool that has helped me do this is the 8 step, 4 channel sequencer pictured above. The sequencer is based on a 555 timer and the 4017 decade counter. It’s got a low part count and is easy to build. Mounting all of the switches was by far the most difficult/expensive part but beside that it’s easy/cheap. Make: Online : Sequence it!!
Make: Online : Helping hand upgrade
Make: Online : How-To: Recycled wine bottle torch
Make: Online : Resistor reference card
The Technology of Wah Pedals