Category Archives: Projects

Updates!

Things have been busy at the Transistor lately, but many fun and cool updates are on the way! We are currently trying to restructure the space by rearranging the desks in order to create more space. Hopefully this will clear …

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Fun with vacuums

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TheTransistors Red Bull Challenge Entry

The Transistor recently (just a few days ago in fact!) entered in the 2012 Red Bull Creation Challenge. For this challenge we built a fully automated, pneumatic Can Dispenser, Drink Extractor, Drink Cooler, and Can Crushing machine. This ensures a constant stream of Energy Drinks / Caffeine for those late night projects at the hackerspace. ;)

The cans are loaded into the hopper (which holds roughly 16 cans) where they wait for you to press the dispense button. Once the button is pressed, all kinds of magic (errr science) happen. First a pneumatic ram drives a spear through the front-most can, causing it to drain into an aluminum pipe which is wrapped with 10 copper pipes that ice water is circulating through. This effectively cools the drink from room temperature to roughly 40 degrees or less in about 30 seconds (the time it takes the can to drain). From there your drink runs into another funnel and into your cup. Finally a second, larger pneumatic ram crushes the empty can and ejects it out the side. As the ram retracts, gravity automatically loads the next drink into place. (Thanks gravity!)

This project was completed over the course of 3 days. Video below. Thanks for watching!

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CMKT 4 returns! Special classes open to the Public!

CMKT 4 returns to The Transistor, Provo’s Hackerspace Friday, May 25, 2012 7:00pm until 10:00pm!

Join the members of the circuit-bent rock band CMKT4 for a workshop on building your very own EconoMIC Bottle Cap Contact Microphone (from Creme DeMentia). CMKT4 will show you how to solder up a piezo-electric pickup and house it sturdily in a recycled bottle-cap housing of their own design! Stick around for a set from the band as the tool-handle dip on your freshly built contact microphone dries. Additional take-home kits and other surprises will be available, come build a mic and see and hear some of the circuit-bent instruments you’ve read about on www.GetLofi.com up close. Bring your own instruments and objects to amplify!


Build an EconoMIC Bottle-Cap Contact Mic with CMKT 4 $15

Circuit-bending rock trio CMKT 4 will help students build a sturdy, working piezoelectric pickup using components and recycled materials. The band will help you learn to solder and ensure your success in building the kit. The comic book instructions will help guide you through their special process of soldering, drilling, gluing, zipping, and dipping – Voila! You are the proud owner and maker of your very own EconoMIC Bottle-Cap Contact Microphone (from Creme DeMentia). This simple transducer will create an audio signal from physical vibrations – like an electric stethoscope! Stick around for a performance from the band while the tool-handle dip dries!

Circuit-Bending 101: Build a Bending Buddy $15

Circuit-bending rock trio CMKT 4 never want you to bend circuits alone – that’s why they’ve developed The Bending Buddy. Want to learn the basics of circuit-bending but don’t know much about electronics? Building a Bending Buddy will introduce necessary skills for circuit-bending – soldering, reading a schematic, drilling, mounting components, wiring. Once you’ve built your Bending Buddy, you’ll be prepared to embark on a journey of discovery, using it to probe battery-operated circuits and divine new sounds. The comic book instructions and informational packet will help you understand broader concepts of circuit-bending – different types of bends, understanding components, building simple control circuits, bread-boarding and proto-boarding.

Build Mr. Mixer $25

Circuit-bending rock trio CMKT 4 want to introduce you to their new friend, Mr. Mixer. Mr. Mixer is a simple 4 channel passive mixer built from components and recycled materials. Students will build Mr. Mixer from comic instructions with help form the band. Mr. Mixer will allow students to mix together different audio sources to a single audio signal. The kit also introduces students to the magic of CdS or Photo Cells, which translate light into resistance. The Photocells will act as faders on the mixer, allowing students to duck sounds in and out, changing their volume with light!

.:! YOU WILL REGRET IT IF YOU MISS THIS !:.

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New Web Server

Please beer with us as we switch servers. So far it looks like we have broken the calendar. Ooops.

We’ll fix it soon. :)

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Hack This: 24 Incredible Hackerspace Projects from the DIY Movement

Hack This: 24 Incredible Hackerspace Projects from the DIY MovementI wanted to take a second to mention a fantastic book that was just released. This book has been “in the works” for about a year now.

The book is Hack This: 24 Incredible Hackerspace Projects from the DIY Movement by John Baichtal. It features 24 hackerspace projects and a few other sections on things like how to start your own hackerspace. It even includes a quick write up on theTransistor’s MAME cabinet.

Overall it really is a good book full of interesting projects from many hackerspaces. The best part is that right now you can pick up a copy over on Amazon for $15. I highly recommend this. :)

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Hacking cheap RFID readers


RFID readers on prototype supply places are expensive. There are many cool applications for the technology, but cheap readers that include documentation and a standard interface are impossible to find.

I decided to confront this problem. I found and ordered a cheap 125kHz reader off  eBay for around ten bucks.

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Prusa

Tim has completed the Prusa! Bill (the authority on 3D printers in Utah) came down to check it out and gave his seal of approval. The prints are already impressive quality.

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Vacuum Forming – First attempts

Here are some of the initial pictures from our vacuum forming table. Stay tuned over the next couple weeks as we ‘finish’ the project.

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CMKT 4 Visits theTransistor… and ROCKS!

We recently had the pleasure of having CMKT 4 visit our hackerspace.

They are touring around the U.S. right now and offering workshops complete with electronic kits and AWESOME live music (ask for the song about Waffles!) for the fantastic price of $15. This is helping to fund their trip, and is EASILY worth it. If you get the chance to attend one of their workshops, DO IT ! Here’s their schedule.

Thanks again guys, everyone had a great time.



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Transistor Contact Mic Workshop

Join the members of the circuit-bent rock band CMKT4 for a workshop on building your very own EconoMIC Bottle Cap Contact Microphone (from Creme DeMentia). CMKT 4 will show you how to solder up a piezo-electric pickup and house it sturdily in a recycled bottle-cap housing of their own design! Stick around for music from the band as the tool-handle dip on your freshly built contact microphone dries. Additional take-home kits and other surprises will be available, come build a mic and see and hear some of the circuit-bent instruments you’ve read about on www.GetLofi.com up close. Bring your own instruments and objects to amplify!

The workshop is $15, additional kits will be on sale for $10, and we’ll have fully assembled mics in several varieties for sale as well. We’ll have some other fun goodies also. Interested onlookers are encouraged to donate if they don’t want to build a kit.

CMKT 4 are Austin Cliffe, Zach Adams, and Jeff Cox. The circuit-bent / rock trio has made it their mission to leave no hackerspace behind on their way to their next Maker Faire; they want to bring new devices, sounds, and ideas to your town. They are constantly working to make new and interesting devices and music.

You can find them at http://www.facebook.com/cmkt4

Workshop Details:
TUE MAY 10
Contact Microphone Workshop and Performance
The Transistor
560 S 100 W
Provo, UT 84601
$15, 7pm

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MAME Cabinet Complete

Our “Keep The Change” MAME cabinet has been completed since the end of December, however we felt we should post at least one picture of the finished project. We will be posting autocad / sketchup files, a full parts list, software configurations, and a complete write-up in the next couple months (other projects getting in the way). If you can’t wait a couple months, feel free to ask questions in the forums.

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Introducing the Gorduino!

Peoples of the Internet, the Transistor is happy to introduce our first official board design release: The Gorduino. Designed by tT member Gordon Cooper, it is our favorite way to build a quick prototyping board out of one of our Minimalist Arduino Kits. Head over to the Project Page for schematic downloads and look below for pictures of the first production run of the Gorduinos.

The Original Gorduino

[more images after the break]

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Spooky Mummy Drink Dispenser

For our Halloween party this year Deven and Gordon decided to make a spooky drink dispenser. It featured a mummy and a cannibalized water cooler/heater jug assembly. We routed the hot pipes separately from the cold and served hot cider and cold punch. These are some of the build pictures.

Functioning Tubes

[more images after the break]

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Making of Zombie Laser Tag

While a bit late, here are some of the many pictures we have from the Zombie Defense game we did for the Take on the Machine competition back in October. Enjoy!

Zombie Gun Interior

[more images after the break]

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