Archive for the ‘3D Printing’ Category

Adding an “extra sense” with rangefinders

Thursday, December 1st, 2016

Using ultrasonic sensors attached to a person’s arm, researchers have found a way to let you “feel” distant objects.

The concept of this project is surprisingly simple, but as shown in the test video below, seems to work quite well. Using an Arduino Uno to coordinate everything, when rangefinders see a nearby object, like a wall, the system triggers the corresponding vibrators. This allows someone to sense what is nearby without seeing or touching it.

An obvious use case for something like this would be to help visually-impaired people navigate. Perhaps it could also serve in an application where you need to pay attention to something you can’t quite see, sort of like how an animal’s whiskers warn them of danger before contact is made. (more…)

Harry Potter fans create a fully-functioning smart wand

Monday, November 28th, 2016

In the Harry Potter series, a Muggle is a person who lacks any sort of magical ability. Growing up reading these books, one can only imagine what it would be like to cast spells using a wand. Well, wonder no more as a group of NYC Muggles decided to build their own smart wand that can ‘magically’ control devices over Wi-Fi.

The 3D-printed wand is equipped with a voice recognition module that lets users cast spells of their own with a flick of the wrist, like ordering takeout from delivery.com, turning the lights on and off, as well as playing and silencing music.

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A 3D-printed lunar phase clock for your nightstand

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2016

“Since there isn’t a supermoon everyday, make one for your bedside table!” This is exactly what G4lile0 set out to do using a 3D printer, an Arduino and some open-source tools.

The result was a moon phase clock consisting of a 3D-printed model and an LED strip to create the lunar phases. The lights are driven by an Arduino that precisely calculates which phase to show, as well as controls a 0.96″ OLED display revealing the date and time. Other electronics include an RTC module, a DTH11 sensor, a buzzer, and three push buttons.

The clock also features several modes, including an alarm, a wake-up light, a lamp, a thermometer, and a hygrometer. It can even help set the mood or start your next lunar rave with its relaxation and party-like special effects. (more…)

An awesome 3D-printed Daft Punk helmet

Monday, November 14th, 2016

Though it’s been done before, this 3D-printed Thomas Bangalter helmet is absolutely amazing!

Daft Punk hasn’t toured in over a decade, but their music and general look seems to be becoming more and more popular. Perhaps this is due, in some small part, to the fact that Makers can now build a very good replica of their iconic helmets. Though the design for this helmet is available for download, looking at a design and building it are two different things.

In addition to printing and finishing this prop (no small task), redditor “CrazyElectrum” did quite a bit of soldering. Getting all the electronic components to “play nice” with each other certainly took a good amount of work as well! (more…)

Become a pinball wizard on this 3D-printed machine

Monday, November 7th, 2016

“Tony the Pinball Wizard” has successfully 3D-printed a fully-functional pinball machine.

The retired software engineer provides a detailed writeup, beginning with pinball’s roots in the 1700s to its eventual fall from popularity in the 1990s and 2000s. If you find this interesting, you could likely pick one up on Craigslist, but Tony instead decided to build his own.

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A 3D-printed reimagined Game Boy prototype

Thursday, October 6th, 2016

With a shape reminiscent of a Game Gear, revised controls and hardware, Anthony Campusano’s rig looks extremely fun!

As reported on 3DPrint.com, Campusano’s Game Boy-inspired prototype was quite the crowd-pleaser at World Maker Faire in New York. Although wider than it is tall (like most portables to follow), and with many more buttons, this handheld console still screams “original Game Boy.” Perhaps this is because of its color scheme, or even the angle of the buttons. (more…)

Connected question mark hopes to spark 1 million conversations

Wednesday, September 7th, 2016

Suicide prevention charity R U OK? has partnered with digital innovation agency Fusion to create a fully-connected device in the form of a question mark with hopes of sparking a million conversations throughout Australia. Similar to the Olympic Torch, Quentin will be passed from person to person as it makes its way from town to town starting on Thursday, September 8th.

But unlike the Olympic Torch, the route is not planned. Instead, the journey is determined by the challenge it issues to each new keeper motivating them to reconnect face-to-face with people in their lives. (more…)

A 3D-printed, LEGO-like system for chemistry and biology

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

A team from the University of California, Riverside has developed a LEGO-like system of blocks that enables users to make custom chemical and biological research instruments quickly, easily and affordably. The 3D-printed blocks can create various scientific tools, which can be used in university labs, schools, hospitals, or anywhere else.

The blocks–which are called Multifluidic Evolutionary Components (MECs)–are described in the journal PLOS ONE. Each unit performs a basic task found in a lab instrument, such as pumping fluids, making measurements, or interfacing with a user. Since the blocks are designed to work together, users can build apparatus—like bioreactors for making alternative fuels or acid-base titration tools for high school chemistry classes—rapidly and efficiently. The blocks are especially well-suited for resource-limited settings, where a library of blocks could be utilized to create an assortment of different research and diagnostic equipment. (more…)

Experimental sound generating boxes for Makers, by Makers

Thursday, August 4th, 2016

The brainchild of Tomás de Camino Beck, Polymath Boxes are experimental sound boxes. Using a Genuino Uno and 101 along with some 3D printing, these units enable young Makers and adults to experiment with programming and math to produce noises and tunes, from square and triangular waves to sample players and interactive sound generators.

The boxes were originally conceived by Camino Beck as part of an open-source experimental art project with the goal of stimulating STEAM in education, from high school to college, and to allow artists, engineers and computer scientists, or pretty much anyone interested, to explore programming and digital fabrication. They were developed and fabricated in “Inventoria”–Costa Rica’s own idea of a Makerspace.

More than just a finished project, these boxes are designed to be hacked and to help move away from more conventional ways of thinking when it comes to sound.

These boxes use coding as a way to “write music,” and to take advantage of the diversity of physical low cost sensors to trigger sound. Some of the boxes play with basic waves, just creating basic PWM, and others go from there to create arpeggiator and interactive. They will be used in several workshops and experimental music concerts in Costa Rica.

The little Arduino robot arm that could!

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2016

As its name would suggest, the LittleArm is a mini 3D-printed robot that began as a weekend project. Its creator Gabe Bentz wanted a small arm that was easy to work with, and one that wouldn’t require him to dig deep into his wallet. So, as any Maker would do, he decided to design his own low-cost device.

After showing the LittleArm off, it wasn’t before long that he was approached by some STEM teachers in the area who wondered if the kit was something they could use in their classrooms. Ideally, every student should have one to tinker with, but unfortunately today’s systems tend to be too expensive and quickly loose parts and pieces. This is a problem that LittleArm is looking to solve.

The arm is powered by an Arduino Uno and four identical metal-geared micro servos, while all other mechanical components are 3D-printed. There’s also a modular gripper that’s actuated by a servo along with rigid end-effectors for various tasks. What’s more, a basic GUI enables you to control the arm, its gripper, the speed, as well as use its record function to train the robot to perform a specific task and then watch it play out the sequence.

The entirely open-source gadget comes as a DIY kit that can be purchased or built from scratch. Want one of your own? Check out Bent’z Kickstarter page here, and see the LittleArm in action below (including some of its dance moves).

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