May in Updates. . .

Well, I sat down to dig through the camera for blog pictures and found that I had 213 pictures to choose from since the last update . . . might be time to ‘hire’ a journalism intern for the summer! No shortage of cool things to write about.

DLP projector from SWAP was reduced to a color wheel and an optical path. Turns out there’s a little mirror tunnel in there that will collapse if somebody drops it, easy to fix :-)

A Xilinx FPGA development board from TGIMBOEJ was not only working, but generating audio and full VGA.

A microfilmer (takes documents and receipts and archives them into microfilm) was reduced to rubble. Amazing to see a product where everything was custom machined and manufactured from metal:

Fume hood was fashioned out of a kitchen range hood and an unused gas heater vent, works nicely but we’re not doing anything scary under it to necessitate a face velocity certification:

Sector67 competed in the Redbull Challenge, to create something larger than a bread box, smaller than a box truck and incorporating an Arduino microcontroller. We chose to rework the soda machine to run on an Arduino and mix a custom mix of soda flavors. We didn’t place in the top 10, but enjoyed competing and wish the finalists luck in the 72 hour straight live hacking competition!

Designing pot knobs for the Makerbot:

and printing:

and getting the knobs to fit properly at the last minute:

Initial prototype:

After some additional debugging:

We were ready for a real front panel:


Front end looks ok:

Just don’t look at the back yet:

Of course this brings us to the stage of real life testing, where a bucket is employed:

Break in the day to catch a major accident, someone passed out at the wheel and pulled some amazing physics in a car. That’s a solid limestone pillar balanced behind the other beam, crane was subsequently called in to stabilize but driver was lucky it got hung up or the car would have been completely crushed. As it was the cornice came down in the vacant passenger seat:

Flatt Cola restocking run:

May meeting had a ton of great presentations:

and Carol took some time to tame the wall-wart bin:

RepRap under went final assembly and is now printing parts!


Good use for business cards around the space, RepRap shims:

Board game night:

Sector67 also competed in the Great Global Hackerspace Challenge, competing to create something using a microcontroller, portable power supply and:

* How reproducible is the final project?
* How easily can the parts be sourced in locations around the world?
* How low cost is the final output?
* How well are the plans documented?
* How relevant is the project to the educational goals of schools today?
* How inventive and creative is the design and build of the project?

We took the competition rules to heart; creating an ultra low cost, globally sourceable product – leveraging the most common cell phone batteries on the planet for power. Our creation was a data-logging weather station that educators could use to teach about data collection and the power of tracking weather patterns, which is incredibly relevant globally:

Wrenching:


Calibrating:


And some last minute patchwork:

We didn’t make the final three but had a great time and won the consolation prize of EagleCAD and some soldering goodies (in addition to the $900 cash to build the project).

Art metal project:

Segway rides:

(not off a cliff. . . – - – - – - – too soon?)

Lastly, we’re gearing up for the next competition – POW POW Powerwheels Racing Series for the Kansas City and Detroit Maker Faires:

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