Here is some final documentation of my building process.
Testing the circuit:
My first prototype was made of scrap 3/4 plywood. I used the CNC Router to do a test cut of my gears. The rest was thrown together with any available wood and screws.
Moving on from the prototype I designed a two level box to house my coils. The coils themselves remained in their packaging. I soldered the leads to wire and cut acrylic tubes to size and added rubber end stoppers to house the neodymium magnets.
After staining the wood to a walnut color and drilling holes for all my wire I gave my box a tolex covering:
The synthesizer circuit consists of 3 integrated circuits (IC) in series.
Using the CNC I cut my pedal, baseboard, and under pedal connectors from 1/2 inch plywood. I put sleeve bearings through all bores that house moving parts, and shaft collars to help keep moving parts in alignment.
Watch it go!
Here is my presentation for my Pedal Powered Synthesizer
(skip to the end for circuit drawings and stats)
For the presentation accompanying my Pedal Synth I am thinking about briefly discussing the following points and giving a demonstration of the machine.
1. Goal: Make something electronic, easy to play, portable, and fun.
2. Influences: What has influenced my decision to make this instrument:
- Folk music, punk music
- Common thread: DIY. Pick it up. Do it yourself. Make a sound. Anyone can do it.
- Electronic Music: Even easier to pick up and get started. Push a button make a sound. Infinite possibilities (hacking, algorithms, sampling, internet)
- DIY Electronics Music: Still highly dependent on power.
3. My instrument: Hybrid of energy generation/ transfer and immediate sound production
- energy generated & consumed
4. Demo / performance
My Geared Pedal Mechanism Works! The circuit is generating sound and power, however I am still connected to an external amplifier and need more power to drive my speakers.
Using our CNC router I designed a miniature pachinko game made out of 3/4 inch plywood. The first iteration of this design was pocketed out with with a large bit which caused many of the pegs to rip off.
For the second iteration I redesigned the peg shape and layout. I also stained the plywood and used the laser cutter to etch and cut a face plate to hold in our steel balls and mark the terminals. I decided to go with the mechanism of decision making instead of the usual points system found on most of these types of games
For the laser cutter assignment I decided to make a chore wheel for my house. The wheel is made of laser cut and laser etched luan plywood and acrylic (plexiglas) and it has three layers: one with the names of each of each housemate, one with daily chores, and one with weekly chores.
The first iteration of the wheel was designed to to have a peg and lock system to prevent the three layers from sliding. But after getting a feel for the system it seemed unnecessary.
The final iteration is pressed together with the middle screw.
My 3 coils collectively generate enough power to create musical expressions with the “pedal” motion and sustain sound after a few pumps.
Below are a few of my first experiments with using a Hex Schmitt Inverter (IC 74C14) to make my simple synth circuit. For my generator I alternated between testing with copper wire and magnets and using a wall plug variable power supply that has settings for 3, 4.5, 6, 9, and 12 volts each at 1 amp. Most of the experiments using the plug-in supply were using the 3 and 4.5 volt settings.
For my web final I created the beginnings of a D.I.Y. home monitoring system.
I wanted to create something that would allow me to monitor over the web whether my doors were open or not.
The project uses an Arduino Uno and an Arduino Ethernet shield to read homemade switches and send that information to my server. The server then uses ruby to analyze the data and display whether or not my doors are open.
The Arduino reads the switches and displays a green light when my “doors” are closed and a red light when they are open.
The Ethernet shield then uses an HTTP post protocol to send the correct information to my website, which then displays the state of the switches
Considerations / Next steps:
The next goal for me would be to utilize web sockets instead of a timed refresh to get instant readings. I would also like to connect the Arduino wirelessly and maybe use reed or magnetic switches if i were to actually apply this to my doors. I would also want to create a page for statistics (when was the door last open/ closed? have the doors been open or close and any irregular times? how long was the door open when it was last open? etc..). And ideally I would like to make either a time based alert system that would send a message to me and the other people in my household when the door has been open for too long, or a or user based alert system that would allow someone checking the site to send a text or email from the browser to the residents.