Apr 072020

I needed a phase-cage to trap a A tensor varmint outside of normal space-time, so I built this meta-harmonic open-closed cubical spheroid.

That, or this is the same as the hex tube from before, but in black PLA stand and with a cooler tube in the middle. I need to write some cooler FX loops for it, this one doesn’t even use the ‘area’ LEDS, the ones in between the tubes in the LED ring. Can’t really think of anything for the FX right now, but there have to be some cool combos for this configuration.

Plenty of other neat-o silicone\LED nonsense going on, but this is kind of a one-off I figured deserved a post so here is.

Mar 232020

This is a tube of silicone with two bundles of optical fibers and some highlighter fluid. It’s lit from above with a UV LED. There’s a little 3d printer collar that holds the fiber bundles onto 5050 RGB LEDs. I did a few handheld tests with the fibers with a collar and I thought it transmitted enough light to be an interesting effect so I jammed some fiber into some silicone and let it cure.

The results are pretty messy and not really what I had in mind. I cut the ends at an angle to try to make them more visible, but as it turns out you can only really see them from above. I tried to get the bundles to fan out to the sides in the silicone but they broke at too great an angle so they mostly ended up semi-parallel with the tube so their lights are invisible. Also there’s no way to avoid big bubbles coming up through the bundles- silicone finds a way.

It was weird enough to justify documenting, but I don’t think I’ll be gung-ho with the optical fiber. There may still be some uses for it but this test was pretty unimpressive.

The rest of the video are various things in a temporary lighting rig with one RGB LED below and a UV LED above. Not sure any justify permanent builds because of various defects, but they’re part of the learning process.

This is the same balsa tube concept in the fresnel tube rig. I should have made the plane a bit bigger and rotated it a bit so it’s not just going straight. Also the powder smoke effect didn’t work out as cool as the other one but I think I know how that works better now. I sprayed the plane with a good bit of highlighter fluid and it pops pretty well with the UV but it gets washed out by the RGB in the video. I like the general balsa plane in a tube scene concept so I’ll keep working on that.

Same basic idea as the balsa plane but a paper plane also soaked in highlighter fluid. They’re surprisingly hard to fold symmetrically that small. I placed it too far off center so it’s too close to the edge. I also added some dandelion seeds but they squished so it looks pretty weird. I’ll probably work more with the paper plane but this one was kind of a bust.

This one was just stupid and gross. I gathered some little flowers and berries, sprayed them with highlighter fluid, and stuck them in silicone. I guess I was thinking silicone stops time but they continued to wilt but they aren’t drying out so it’s just a mess. The only interesting bit was I just squirted some elmers glue at the top for no reason and it make an interesting ‘concave cloud’ formation that I might try to work with later. Overall it’s just a nasty mess but I wanted to see what it looked like under the light so this is it.

Also if you’re wondering the solder roll at the top is because the temporary rig isn’t secured to anything and the wires pull off the top so the roll is just as a weight.

Mar 162020

I originally wanted to make a sort of ‘flame’ in the tubes but in playing with the fluorescent and silicone I stumbled on a nice floral aesthetic and made these stands to light them. These are lit from the top with one RGB LED and from the bottom with one UV LED.

The ‘stems’ are created by cooling the silicone and injecting warm gelatin\highlighter fluid with 16-18g dispensing needles. The cold silicone makes the gel set up quickly and gives the stems a bit of a texture. The ‘dirt\sand’ is coffee\grits. I thought I needed to leave a hole in the middle to allow the UV LED through so I used straws to leave a hole, but turns out it looks better with the UV on the tube edge so next time I won’t bother with the hole. The ‘flower’ tops didn’t turn out well this round- I let the silicone cure too much so I couldn’t get the ‘ribbons’ that I had in other tests but the next batch should turn out better.

Here are a the tests leading up to the first flower tubes. The bottom One of these tests was the inspiration for the tubes, it just started to look like a flower so I jammed some coffee into the bottom to look like dirt and I figured it looked good enough to try a few more.

And here are the first batch of intentional ‘flower’ tubes. Lots of mistakes but learned a lot and a few of them came out well enough to justify the LEDs.

Aug 132019

I’m getting back around to some of my electronics stuff and I was discouraged that the Lolin32 I was using had been discontinued. In retrospect I probably should have used ESP8266 as the basis for WiFi LED control, but meh.

So anyway, I recently found a new board to get excited about, plus a few battery modules that haven’t actually come in yet. The ESP32-CAM has most of what I’d want in a board for simple bots; camera, wifi, and enough GPIO to control a few servos and an onboard flash LEDs. I got my first one in last weekend and spent it trying to get the basic functions for a FPV bot down.

Took me a while to cobble together the functions I needed from available docs and example code, but I’ve got a sketch that does the following:
~Connect to WiFi (SSID\PW hardcoded for now)
~Start camera stream
~Start UDP listener, parse and process incomming packets
~Servo motor control (2) currently
~LED control, onboard RED (ON\OFF) and WHITE (PWM)

Here’s the code I’ve got so far- be warned; like all my code- it’s a nightmare, but it works for me. I left some notes and links to other code I scavenged, but there’s a lot more to do and I honestly don’t even get how the camera stream is working in this sketch, but it does, so good enough for now.

The biggest downside of this board for me is it doesn’t have a built in USB interface so I have to use TX\RX pins to load code, but that’s not too big a deal. Though since only have the one ESP32-Cam at the moment and I’m leaving that one the breadboard for testing. I’ve ordered a few more since they’re so cheap- next one I get will go on this little robot platform I found online and printed. I actually found this design online some time ago and saved the files, but now I can’t figure out where I found it, so if anyone knows this design and has a link to it please let me know.

Hopefully I’ll post more because hopefully I’ll do more, but this is something and I figure if anyone else out there is messing with an ESP32-CAM out there they may find this marginally useful. If by some chance you are working with this board feel free to contact me, it’s got some great potential.

Jun 212015

It’s Fathers Day and mine recently created something pretty darn poignant regarding the treatment of the U.S. Flag. You should watch it.

There is a lot of lip service about patriotism these days, and very little genuine understanding about America as a people, a nation, a government, or even just a freaking geographic area for that matter. Fortunately we still have a solid foundation that we could pick ourselves back up from and maybe one day- learn to stand tall and be proud of ourselves as Americans for the right reasons. I know we still have a chance because I can still love and publicly criticize America right here within it.

We’ve got a lot of work to do to make this place anything near worthy of how well we market it to ourselves, but in the meantime, we can at least show respect to those who helped build America’s legitimate foundation by doing what my father suggests in this video, just doing the darn housekeeping for crying out loud.

Happy Fathers Day Dad, and Pop and DeeDee, I know they appreciate this video a lot. I think this video is kind of a fitting fathers day gift for them too. I know this little diatribe doesn’t quite fit with the simple purity of your message in the video, but I don’t think you’ll mind me stepping up on my soap box for a minute, you did kind of help teach me about the whole free speech thing and using my brain and whatnot, can’t unring that bell- lol.

God Bless America, and also teach us to share ALL of our blessings with the whole world, like our fathers shared their blessings with us.

Sep 202013

If you need a band name, pick one and send me $5.00.

If your band is already named one of these- give me 30% of your gross earnings or I’ll club a baby seal!

Baby Seal Club
Baby Seals Revenge
$5 Band Name
Made with Real Cheese
Edible Death Trap
Origin L
Gross Earnings
Hippocratic Oats
Custard and Fishsticks
The Frontmen
Vacation Layaway Hangover
Size Matters
I am not an Animal
Dr. Mustard and Gas Masks
These are the Voyages
Copycat Rematch
Breath Damn You, Breath!
The Fundamentals
Night Dream Day Mare
Are You My Mummy?
Ed Scissorhands’ Funeral
Passionate Regressive
Fruit Is Not a Verb
Take Two and Call Me in the Morning
Hammer Fist Shakedown
Oil Shake
Parking is never Free
The Lawyers of Destiny
Mistaken for Kindness
Redeem This!
Kung-Fu Checkers
Book Exchange Enforcement Officers
Bandcamp Shortbus
Books on Tape
Haircut Malfunction
Reused Coffee Grounds
Handshake Grudgematch
Psycopath Collection Agency
Eat or Die
Escape Velocity
Shark Ninety-Nine
Georgia Gemstones
Stellar Cartography Overhaul
Incogneto Browser
North Korean Space Agency
Choose Your Own Adventure
Baritone Eunuch Choir
Peroxide Faceplant
Sound for Sale
Chest Monkey

I’ll also gratefully accept bitcoins sent to: 1K5Yy77ejes2FZrHBG5fns3QAicnwZcduq

Dec 272009

These are some sets I designed for a friends script ‘Suntan’ quite a while ago. These were never built, but they were fun to design (made in Sketchup) Just putting these up in a pre-dated post for posterity. And while I’m at it, here’s a link to a little short animation I made forever ago using these 3D sets after I found out they were never going to be used for anything else – ‘The Internet Explorers’

[nggallery id=6]


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