Posts with «featured» label

Add an Arduino-based tachometer to your CNC router

In order to get a good cut with a CNC router, the cutting tool speed needs to be properly set. Since his CNC didn’t come with RPM feedback, Troy Barbour came up with his own solution using an Arduino Nano along with an IR emitter/sensor pair.

The spindle was set up with a single reflective surface, enabling it to sense one pulse per revolution that is sent to the Arduino at up to up to 30,000 RPM. To ensure accurate measurement, the device was programmed using an interrupt, meaning that if another process is running, it will temporarily drop what it’s doing and count the incoming pulse.

RPM is displayed on a tiny OLED screen, which shows both an RPM number as well as a dial indicator for quick reference.

Build an optical RPM indicator for your CNC router with an Arduino Nano, an IR LED/IR photodiode sensor and an OLED display for less than $30. I was inspired by eletro18’s Measure RPM – Optical Tachometer Instructable and wanted to add a tachometer to my CNC router. I simplified the sensor circuit, designed a custom 3D-printed bracket for my Sienci CNC router. Then I wrote an Arduino sketch to display both a digital and analog dial on an OLED display.

You can see it in action below, and find build instructions and code on Barbour’s write-up.

Dotter is an Arduino-powered dot matrix printer

While largely supplanted by more modern forms of printing, dot matrix printers still have their fans. Few, however, are more dedicated than Nikodem Bartnik, who constructed his own model that pulls paper up to 55cm wide and as long as he needs under a gantry that stamps each pixel with a marker.

The device is controlled via an Arduino Uno, which takes input from a Processing sketch running on a computer to obtain the image to be printed.

It uses a pair of stepper motors to advance the paper, as well as a third to position the marker to be stamped. A servo motor pushes the marker down as needed, producing a print that, as seen at 5:15 in the video below, is accurate and stylishly pixellated.

Fall asleep with the help of LEDs and an Arduino

While some fall asleep nearly immediately with no assistance, others need the drone of a fan or a dedicated noisemaker to help them relax. The Fall Asleep Device, also known as “FADing,” by Youz takes a different approach. FADing shines an LED onto the ceiling out via a piece of acrylic, so that you can use it whether you like to sleep on your back or side.

An Arduino Nano controls the nicely-shaped wooden unit, and causes light to fade in and out at a pace that decreases from 11 to 6 pulses per minute, prompting you to regulate and relax your breathing accordingly.

After being started by a button below, FADing is kept on by a relay until it finishes, meaning it uses no power in standby. You can check it out in the video below, and find build instructions and code in Youz’s write-up.

Create a custom Kerbal Space Program cockpit with Arduino

When you play a video game, the controls are normally a compromise between what you have available (a keyboard/mouse) and the actions you’re trying to convey. This, however, wasn’t good enough for Kerbal Space Program enthusiast Hugopeeters, who instead of accepting this limited input method, designed a new control panel using an Arduino Uno as its heart.

Notable features of his build include dual joysticks, a throttle slider, a multi-purpose LCD display, LED bars for fuel gauges, and a beautifully laser-cut enclosure.

Want to construct your own? Find more details on the project in Hugopeeters’ write-up, as well as the Arduino code he used and the KSP plugin necessary to interact with his new hardware.

Crawl through a 1D LED dungeon with TWANG!

While video games have grown more and more complex over the last few decades, TWANG takes things in the opposite direction as an Arduino Mega-based 1D dungeon crawler consisting of an RGB LED strip.

The player—a dot—is controlled via an accelerometer mounted to a door spring used as a joystick. With it, the player can move forwards, backwards, and attack by “twanging” the spring to make it vibrate. The LEDs display a wide array of colors, including representations of glowing lava, water, and player disintegration when a mistake is made.

TWANG is inspired by the Line Wobbler game from Robin Baumgarten, and beautifully implemented as shown in the video below by Barton Dring. Code for the build can be found here, and 3D print files for the housing/joystick are also available.

Arduino Create plans for education now available!

Today, we’re excited to announce that Arduino Create is now available for schools with Chrome OS devices in their classrooms.

With Arduino Create, students and teachers will be able to tinker with Arduino hardware and programming in a collaborative, always up-to-date environment. You can learn how to subscribe using this tutorial.

Last June, we launched Arduino Create for Chrome OS; however due to limitations with Google Apps for Education (GAFE), educational institutions were unable to purchase subscriptions on the Chrome Web Store.

The new Arduino Create subscription site allows schools to purchase and manage subscription plans for their students, starting at $0.20/student per month. All you need is a credit card and the email addresses of the students you would like to enroll. We also have a solution for students under the age of 14 who might not have full access to emails.

The Google Admin console can be used by IT administrators to bulk install the app on a fleet of Chrome OS devices.

Arduino Create will continue to be available for regular Chrome OS users at $0.99 per month on the Chrome Web Store. Both versions support the following boards: Uno, 101, Mega, Mega ADK, Esplora, Nano (ATmega328), Micro, Zero, MKR1000, MKR Zero, MKR Fox 1200, MKR GSM 1400, MKR WAN 1300, Pro, and Pro Mini (ATmega328).

Visit the new Arduino Create subscription site to get started. If you have any questions or comments, write to us on this Forum page. We look forward to hearing your feedback!

This Arduino infinity mirror lights up to music

Infinity mirrors, which make light appear to stretch to infinity by bouncing light between two mirrors, are incredible to observe. Hacker “Evocate” decided to go the extra mile and not only illuminate the inside of his mirror arrangement, but used an Arduino Uno and a sound sensor to enable it to react to sound.

In addition to this sound sensitivity, a Bluetooth app controls color and brightness, allowing him to customize the device on the fly.

The mirror also has a built-in microphone which detects sound/music and reacts accordingly by generating eye-catching light strobes on the beat of the music! Simply start up the app, connect to Bluetooth and see the magic happen!

If you’d like to build your own, full instructions along with Arduino and app code are available here. Or you can simply check it out in action below!

Make an interactive coffee table with Arduino and LEDs

Rather than buying a coffee table, Marija from Creativity Hero decided to build her own, adding an array of 45 programmable LEDs on top of a pine base.

An Arduino Mega is used to take input from 45 sensors corresponding to each LED in a grid made with MDF baffles, and commands each light to change colors based on whether something is placed on that square section. The on/off colors used can be selected via a Bluetooth smartphone app, allowing you to customize the furniture to your liking.

This unique LED coffee table can create beautiful atmosphere and will be a real focal point in my living room. I wanted to make a simple design with some interesting features that will take my room to a whole new level. It is controlled via a custom-made Android application, so I can easily change the reactive color, or the background color, and I can even adjust the brightness.

You can find full details on the project here, as well as the tools and parts you’ll need.

Light up the elements with this periodic table display

If you took chemistry at any point in your life, you were exposed to the periodic table, which organizes different atomic structures by their atomic number. It’s an amazing chart, demonstrating just how much “stuff” our world is made up of!

To show off the element collection he shares with his girlfriend, elemental hacker “Maclsk” built a light-up periodic table display with square cubes where each sample could be stored.

What makes this really amazing is that the display uses WS2812B LEDs to light each cube individually. This allows it to produce fun color effects and even categorize the collection by different aspects, like element group, discovery year, or their state at certain temperatures.

Modes are selected via a Bluetooth phone app. Be sure to see it in action in the video below!

RFID-controlled dry cleaner machine displays glowing leaves

While you may not give dry cleaning conveyors much thought, Andrew Quitmeyer and Madeline Schwartzman’s “Replantment” exhibition at the Pratt Manhattan Gallery uses them in an entirely new way, along with glowing silicone molds of leaves from all over the world.

The machine detects when an RFID tag attached to a laundry ticket is nearby, then moves over a lighting arrangement to display the multitude of glowing leaves.

An Arduino and a SparkFun Simultaneous RFID Reader are used for control, with relays taking the place of a foot switch to start and stop the conveyor motors.

You can check it out in action below, or if you are in the New York area, you can see the artwork in person until February 17th.