The Stain Dipper is taking shape one component at a time. We have the servo controller, servo motor, brass for pulleys, bearings, blocks of UHMW Polyethylene for supports, taps, set screws, aluminum rods, shafts, an Arduino Mega, buttons, switches, power supplies, wire, and more…
Here are some views of the upper pulley system.
I was using a piece of foam rubber under my Arduino for the Marble Roller project. Not so nice, right?
Having a brand new MakerBot Replicator 2 on my desk, I decided to, well, make a nice bumper (or 3).
No design time needed as someone else did the hard work: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:26237
Printed out wonderfully. Fits perfectly.
Today we devised a way to (hopefully) raise the marbles from the bottom of the track to the top using a servo motor. It is rather obvious at this point that we did not plan our initial track high enough and the end of it is too low. Oh well, version 1 is usually that way, right?
Here is an update to the marble roller project. We are using foam board and hot glue for construction. This is a surprisingly strong construction method for prototyping and projects like this.
In the foreground is a new stepper motor. Not sure if we will be using it or not for this project yet.
I got a cool little 4-wire bipolar stepper motor and wanted to drive it via Arduino.
I based the design on this reference:
http://arduino.cc/en/Reference/StepperBipolarCircuit (credit for following image belongs there as well)
Here is how it looks for real. Kind of a mess of wires, but you know what? It works great.
The kids and I are building a Arduino powered marble roller. It is a “demo” project for us to learn how to use servos, steppers, input, output, lights, transistors, h-bridges, and so on and so forth.
Hot-glue and foam-board are a great prototyping material!
Well, the fun is increasing with Arduino. We hooked up some circuitry which enables a transistor to switch a fairly large 12V load via a very small 5V digital pin on the Arduino board.
This has been a great learning resource: http://www.kpsec.freeuk.com/trancirc.htm
Basically, we have 12V power going through a motor circuit (protected by a signal diode), and then to the collector of a transistor. The emitter of the transister is connected to ground.
Lastly, the Arduino ground is joined with the emitter, and the transistor is switched by a 5V digital output pin on the Arduino board.
Now, just need to find something useful to do!
Ok, so if you haven’t heard about it, Arduino is a really cool piece of “open source hardware”. In simple terms, it is a single board computer with a number of analog and digital inputs and outputs, that can be programmed from your computer, but run independently.
Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments.
I recently got this starter kit from Amazon.com:
And have since been playing with making different circuits, etc… It has been a good experience in working with lower level electronics (ohm’s law, etc…)
Hope to post more soon!