Friday, October 30, 2015

Magic Wand Flashlight



This year for Halloween, my son wanted to be a wizard. To go with his wizard costume, I made him a flashlight in the shape of a magic wand. To make it even cooler, I designed the wand so that it is turned on with a magnetic reed switch built into the handle. That way when my son picks up the wand with a magnet hidden inside his glove or on a ring, the light will magically turn on. But when anyone else picks up the wand, it won't do anything. I had a lot of fun making this project and my son had a blast playing with it.

For full step by step instructions on how to make this project, check out the instructable:
http://www.instructables.com/id/Magic-Wand-Flashlight/

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Controlling Halloween Effects with DIY Infrared Remote Controls



Halloween is the perfect opportunity to create fun special effects. When you want to be able to control props and effects remotely, one good option is to use an infrared remote control. So in this project, I am going to show you some simple remote controlled effects that you can set up in your haunted house this year.

For detailed step by step instructions on ho to build this project, check out the instructable:
http://www.instructables.com/id/Controlling-Halloween-Effects-with-DIY-Infrared-Re/

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Giant Spider Web



One thing that a lot of people are afraid of is spiders. So spider webs make great decorations for Halloween. This year, I am making giant spider webs to decorate the trees around my house. These are really easy to make and all you need to make them is a whole of regular plastic shrink wrap.

For detailed step by step instructions on how to make this project, check out the Instructable:
http://www.instructables.com/id/Giant-Spider-Web/

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

System For Automatically Limiting TV Time



Most of us spend far too much time in front of the TV. So I designed a system that will automatically limit when and how much the TV can be on. The system works by controlling the input signal going to the TV. This is done by adding a relay switch to the input cable. When certain conditions are met, the relay is turned on and the TV is able to receive the input signal. Using an Arduino microcontroller, you can program the system to only allow the TV to be on for a certain amount of time each day or between certain hours. You can setup a pin code so that only certain people can turn it on. You could even set it up so that the TV will not turn on unless you have done a certain amount of exercise that day. The system is very versatile and can be customized to fit your needs.

For step by step instructions on how to build this project, check out the Instructable:
http://www.instructables.com/id/System-For-Automatically-Limiting-TV-Time/

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Remote Controlled Halloween Props


Animated Halloween props are a lot of fun. But the built-in motion sensors usually don't work very well (especially in low light conditions). There are a lot of times when it would be much more fun to be able to control these props with a remote control. That way you could set them off exact when you want them go off and actually scare people. So I worked out a simple way to activate Halloween props with a remote controlled relay. To see how to make it, check out the Instructable:
http://www.instructables.com/id/Remotely-Control-Your-Halloween-Props/

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Remote Controlled Confetti Cannon



Confetti cannons are a lot of fun. An explosion of confetti can make any celebration better. But it isn't always convenient to have someone next to the cannon to set it off. So today I am going to show you how to make a remote controlled confetti cannon that you can set off from anywhere.

For step by step instructions on how to build this project, check out the Instructable:
http://www.instructables.com/id/Remote-Controlled-Confetti-Cannon/

Monday, August 17, 2015

High Resolution Panoramic Photography Rig



In this project, I am going to show you how to make an automatic camera rig that will allow you to shoot high resolution panoramas using a cheap point and shoot camera. The camera rig is made from three metal frames and three servo motors. The servo motors control the pan, tilt and shutter of the camera. The metal frames hold all the parts together and allow you to mount everything onto a camera tripod.

An Arduino microcontroller is set up to automatically adjust the position of the camera and takes pictures at set intervals. When the process is complete, you will have a grid or pictures that cover a wide area. These pictures are them stitched together to create a single high resolution panoramic image.

For detailed step by step instructions on how to build this project, check out the Instructable:
http://www.instructables.com/id/High-Resolution-Panoramic-Photography-Rig/