Archive for the 'Nonsense' Category

Apple infused Pumpkin

Delicious Apple Infused Pumpkin using an Common Household Air Cannon

Lego Self Resetting Target Range

One of my hobbies is taking out the Airsoft gun and picking off innocent Lego bricks from a shelf. Eventually I got tired of picking up my fallen victims and decided to turn the Lego’s into a self resetting target range. Continue reading ‘Lego Self Resetting Target Range’

Homemade BB Gun using a One Way Valve

I got bored and decided to make a BB gun using my air compressor. The secret sauce is a one way valve that blocks air from the firing chamber but allows air in the other direction to rapidly propel ammo into the gun. This allows me to tube fed BB’s, even when the gun is inverted. It’s also much faster than gravity feed versions. Watch the video for some action shots and how to make the valve.

The Mega Claw – Summary (9 of 9)

We took the Mega Claw to Maker Faire on Friday and it was amazing. We had a great time in the pre-events, plenty of free food, free beer and samples, yum! We also got to play in the hall of science’s playground without those pesky kids in the way. The machine took us hours to setup, but it was all in good shape. Things didn’t break until Saturday.
Continue reading ‘The Mega Claw – Summary (9 of 9)’

The Mega Claw – Maker Faire (8 of 9)

The Night Before Maker Faire

‘Twas the night before Maker Faire, when all through the house
Not a motor was spinning, not even gauss;
The sensors were mounted, on the joystick with care,
In hopes that Bre Pettis soon would be there;
The engineers were nestled all snug in their beds,
Whiles visions of tesla coils buzzed in their heads;
The prizes were ready, some were wizard caps,
Some were inflatables, but none are pure crap.

Happy Maker Faire!

Continue reading ‘The Mega Claw – Maker Faire (8 of 9)’

The Mega Claw – Prizes (7 of 9)

So what kind of prizes does a massive claw machine have? Well we all chipped in and bought over $700 in prizes for Maker Faire. All the earnings will be used to power Splitreaction’s web fees, projects and cost of the machine. We certainly like the prizes. We hope you guys will too! Also since we hate unfair claw machines, the MEGA CLAW will be a PRIZE EVERY TIME!

Continue reading ‘The Mega Claw – Prizes (7 of 9)’

The Mega Claw – Electronics & Software (6 of 9)


This is the block diagram, some of the things may have changed since we first worked with it. The Mega Claw is an Arduino Pro Mini with some Sabertooth Motor Controllers and a PC communicating over serial.
Continue reading ‘The Mega Claw – Electronics & Software (6 of 9)’

The Mega Claw – The Frame, Sliders and Prize Bin (5 of 9)


For the frame of the Mega Claw we figured we would start with a regular canopy. It was affordable and much more portable than the original one we started working with. In this segment We’ll talk more about how the main structure was put together and why it was designed that way.
Continue reading ‘The Mega Claw – The Frame, Sliders and Prize Bin (5 of 9)’

The Mega Claw – Joystick (4 of 9)

The joystick was a definite must.  We had talked about it and stumbled across Mary Flanagan’s giant joystick and it was final, we needed something epic. Just like her’s, ours is modeled after the Atari days of joysticks. It’s human sized and enough to be a project itself. We’re hoping that we’ll be able to use this to play games as well.
Continue reading ‘The Mega Claw – Joystick (4 of 9)’

The Mega Claw – Claaaaw (3 of 9)

So I designed the real claw in Google Sketchup, a 3d design tool. I decided to make it out of 1/4in plywood and to add a skate bearing at every joint to reduce any friction or strain on the motor. In hindsight this cost a lot more and probably wasn’t necessary. Continue reading ‘The Mega Claw – Claaaaw (3 of 9)’