La Cucaracha

Carlos

Welcome! This is a modest journal of my creations. I hope my experiments and contraptions will be useful to you all (or at least to some).

For those curious about the author, prostate seek I am Carlos Asmat.

I’m an Electrical Engineer from McGill University and I love to tinker, this experiment and to create things. I am very passionate about robotics, and new and open technology.

For further information about myself, I invite you to see my resumé.

I would be very pleased to receive any comments, suggestions, or questions that you may have. You can reach me at info [at] carlitoscontraptions.com.

This blog started in August 2006 mainly as an experiment. My main goal was to have a repository of the things I have done and a way to organize them and document them. Since then, the site has gained in popularity and proved to be useful to some tinkerers around the globe.  This is why I am very pleased to continue to maintain it and to write new content whenever I can.
Welcome! This is a modest journal of my creations. I hope my experiments and contraptions will be useful to you all (or at least to some).

For those curious about the author, buy information pills I am Carlos Asmat.

I’m an Electrical Engineer from McGill University and I love to tinker, sales experiment and to create things. I am very passionate about robotics, and new and open technology.

For further information about myself, I invite you to see my resumé.

I would be very pleased to receive any comments, suggestions, or questions that you may have. You can reach me at info [at] carlitoscontraptions.com.

This blog started in August 2006 mainly as an experiment. My main goal was to have a repository of the things I have done and a way to organize them and document them. Since then, the site has gained in popularity and proved to be useful to some tinkerers around the globe.  This is why I am very pleased to continue to maintain it and to write new content whenever I can.
Welcome! This is a modest journal of my creations. I hope my experiments and contraptions will be useful to you all (or at least to some).

For those curious about the author, no rx I am Carlos Asmat, cost Jr. Eng.

I’m an Electrical Engineer from McGill University and I love to tinker, cialis experiment and to create things. I am very passionate about robotics, and new and open technology.

For further information about myself, I invite you to see my resumé.

I would be very pleased to receive any comments, suggestions, or questions that you may have. You can reach me at info [at] carlitoscontraptions.com.

This blog started in August 2006 mainly as an experiment. My main goal was to have a repository of the things I have done and a way to organize them and document them. Since then, the site has gained in popularity and proved to be useful to some tinkerers around the globe.  This is why I am very pleased to continue to maintain it and to write new content whenever I can.

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In this post, mind I will list and describe my tools. Other than showing off, prostate this entry illustrates the many tools required in the upcoming projects.

Soldering Iron My Hakko 936 ESD Soldering Station is more than enough for soldering small electronics projects. I got it as a Christmas gift from my parents last year. Since then, I have learned how to solder (among other things).

The station allows to adjust the temperature (from 200°C to 480°C) in order to fit your current needs (i.e. very hot for large pieces of metal or just hot enough to melt the solder on small components).

Also the iron holder is very robust and reliable, unlike the more common (springy) ones.

Desoldering Pump There is nothing fancy about my good old desoldering pump.

The heat resistant nozzle is not so heat resistant (or I’m very bad at desoldering or both) and has become shorter with time. This is why I upgraded it with a piece of plastic from a wire terminal. The plastic is not heat resistant, but it is cheap and easy to replace.

Third Hand This is a very handy artefact for holding things steady in order to work on them. Of course, it is not an essential tool since it can be easily replaced by a little brother’s hand, especially for holding very hot metal while soldering. If you don’t have a little brother, a girlfriend’s hand will do. This device can be purchased in any electronics store for around 20$.

Wire Stripper What a beautiful name for a tool. This handy little device is essential for any electronics project. Even though it can be replaced by a knife, or even by your nails, it is much easier and clean to strip wire with a wire stripper. I got mine as a gift from my girlfriend.

Swiss Knife This is my very reliable Victorinox Cybertool 34 (you should be salivating right now). This trusty Swiss pocket knife follows me almost everywhere and allows me to do things à la MacGyver.

Breadboard A breadboard allows you to easyly and reliably set up circuits without soldering. Thus they are very handy for testing.

Multimeter
A multimeter is indispensable in any electronics project. Mine comes from Radioshack and is somewhat reliable and accurate.

Power SupplyA variable regulated power supply is very handy when doing electronics projects. I got mine essentially from the garbage. I will post more details on it soon since it is one of my projects.

This is by no means a complete list of the tools you need. It simply gives an idea of the many tools required.

In this post, mind I will list and describe my tools. Other than showing off, prostate this entry illustrates the many tools required in the upcoming projects.

Soldering Iron My Hakko 936 ESD Soldering Station is more than enough for soldering small electronics projects. I got it as a Christmas gift from my parents last year. Since then, I have learned how to solder (among other things).

The station allows to adjust the temperature (from 200°C to 480°C) in order to fit your current needs (i.e. very hot for large pieces of metal or just hot enough to melt the solder on small components).

Also the iron holder is very robust and reliable, unlike the more common (springy) ones.

Desoldering Pump There is nothing fancy about my good old desoldering pump.

The heat resistant nozzle is not so heat resistant (or I’m very bad at desoldering or both) and has become shorter with time. This is why I upgraded it with a piece of plastic from a wire terminal. The plastic is not heat resistant, but it is cheap and easy to replace.

Third Hand This is a very handy artefact for holding things steady in order to work on them. Of course, it is not an essential tool since it can be easily replaced by a little brother’s hand, especially for holding very hot metal while soldering. If you don’t have a little brother, a girlfriend’s hand will do. This device can be purchased in any electronics store for around 20$.

Wire Stripper What a beautiful name for a tool. This handy little device is essential for any electronics project. Even though it can be replaced by a knife, or even by your nails, it is much easier and clean to strip wire with a wire stripper. I got mine as a gift from my girlfriend.

Swiss Knife This is my very reliable Victorinox Cybertool 34 (you should be salivating right now). This trusty Swiss pocket knife follows me almost everywhere and allows me to do things à la MacGyver.

Breadboard A breadboard allows you to easyly and reliably set up circuits without soldering. Thus they are very handy for testing.

Multimeter
A multimeter is indispensable in any electronics project. Mine comes from Radioshack and is somewhat reliable and accurate.

Power SupplyA variable regulated power supply is very handy when doing electronics projects. I got mine essentially from the garbage. I will post more details on it soon since it is one of my projects.

This is by no means a complete list of the tools you need. It simply gives an idea of the many tools required.

I know the Palm IIIc is getting a bit old and obsolete. Still, ambulance
it has many useful functions such as serving as a universal remote control.

Initial State
I got my palm IIIc from my brother’s uncle. When I got it, medications
the case
was cracked, the battery was obviously dead, and the cradle, the charger and the stylus were missing.

The chargerFortunately, I’m very lucky and I found a brand new palm cradle in the garbage (along with many other power adaptors). The cradle has a serial port connection to sync the palm but no power input for charging. I went on looking for the Palm IIIc pinout and found this very useful site.

I learned that the palm IIIc has a built in charger and it only needs a 5V in pin 9 in order to charge. So I browsed through the many power adapters that I had and found a 5V DC power adaptor.

Another option is to use the 5V coming out the USB ports by using a USB cable. But that would waste one precious USB port.

I installed a connector for the power adaptor on the back of the cradle by making a square hole using a drill and a small file. If the hole is tight enough, there is no need for glue (I always try to avoid gluing).
I soldered the connector to the appropriated pins ( + to pin 9 and ground to pin 10). There are holes in the cradle PCB named E1 to E10 corresponding to each pin, so soldering was easy.

The StylusMy brother was kind enough to make a stylus for me. He took a small wood rod slightly thinner than the standard stylus (according to the hole in the Palm), cut it to the right length, sharpened one end with a pencil sharpener, painted it black with a permanent marker, and covered it (except for the sharp end) with heat shrink. I added the tail of a cable tie between the heat shrink and the wood in order to create the little protuberance present in the original stylus.

The soft wood we used is perfect since it doesn’t scratches the screen, we got it from a construction kit bought at the 1$ store.

The Case
Using electric tape in the inside and crazy glue in the outside I repaired the case. Since the bottom screws were missing and the screw holes were broken, I drilled trough the case (and the Cucaracha Negra PCB) where the original holes were in order to put some screws of my own.

The End ResultThe Palm IIIc is now functioning and, the batteries can be easily charged, and the screws in the front are very sexy looking.
In this post, mind I will list and describe my tools. Other than showing off, prostate this entry illustrates the many tools required in the upcoming projects.

Soldering Iron My Hakko 936 ESD Soldering Station is more than enough for soldering small electronics projects. I got it as a Christmas gift from my parents last year. Since then, I have learned how to solder (among other things).

The station allows to adjust the temperature (from 200°C to 480°C) in order to fit your current needs (i.e. very hot for large pieces of metal or just hot enough to melt the solder on small components).

Also the iron holder is very robust and reliable, unlike the more common (springy) ones.

Desoldering Pump There is nothing fancy about my good old desoldering pump.

The heat resistant nozzle is not so heat resistant (or I’m very bad at desoldering or both) and has become shorter with time. This is why I upgraded it with a piece of plastic from a wire terminal. The plastic is not heat resistant, but it is cheap and easy to replace.

Third Hand This is a very handy artefact for holding things steady in order to work on them. Of course, it is not an essential tool since it can be easily replaced by a little brother’s hand, especially for holding very hot metal while soldering. If you don’t have a little brother, a girlfriend’s hand will do. This device can be purchased in any electronics store for around 20$.

Wire Stripper What a beautiful name for a tool. This handy little device is essential for any electronics project. Even though it can be replaced by a knife, or even by your nails, it is much easier and clean to strip wire with a wire stripper. I got mine as a gift from my girlfriend.

Swiss Knife This is my very reliable Victorinox Cybertool 34 (you should be salivating right now). This trusty Swiss pocket knife follows me almost everywhere and allows me to do things à la MacGyver.

Breadboard A breadboard allows you to easyly and reliably set up circuits without soldering. Thus they are very handy for testing.

Multimeter
A multimeter is indispensable in any electronics project. Mine comes from Radioshack and is somewhat reliable and accurate.

Power SupplyA variable regulated power supply is very handy when doing electronics projects. I got mine essentially from the garbage. I will post more details on it soon since it is one of my projects.

This is by no means a complete list of the tools you need. It simply gives an idea of the many tools required.

I know the Palm IIIc is getting a bit old and obsolete. Still, ambulance
it has many useful functions such as serving as a universal remote control.

Initial State
I got my palm IIIc from my brother’s uncle. When I got it, medications
the case
was cracked, the battery was obviously dead, and the cradle, the charger and the stylus were missing.

The chargerFortunately, I’m very lucky and I found a brand new palm cradle in the garbage (along with many other power adaptors). The cradle has a serial port connection to sync the palm but no power input for charging. I went on looking for the Palm IIIc pinout and found this very useful site.

I learned that the palm IIIc has a built in charger and it only needs a 5V in pin 9 in order to charge. So I browsed through the many power adapters that I had and found a 5V DC power adaptor.

Another option is to use the 5V coming out the USB ports by using a USB cable. But that would waste one precious USB port.

I installed a connector for the power adaptor on the back of the cradle by making a square hole using a drill and a small file. If the hole is tight enough, there is no need for glue (I always try to avoid gluing).
I soldered the connector to the appropriated pins ( + to pin 9 and ground to pin 10). There are holes in the cradle PCB named E1 to E10 corresponding to each pin, so soldering was easy.

The StylusMy brother was kind enough to make a stylus for me. He took a small wood rod slightly thinner than the standard stylus (according to the hole in the Palm), cut it to the right length, sharpened one end with a pencil sharpener, painted it black with a permanent marker, and covered it (except for the sharp end) with heat shrink. I added the tail of a cable tie between the heat shrink and the wood in order to create the little protuberance present in the original stylus.

The soft wood we used is perfect since it doesn’t scratches the screen, we got it from a construction kit bought at the 1$ store.

The Case
Using electric tape in the inside and crazy glue in the outside I repaired the case. Since the bottom screws were missing and the screw holes were broken, I drilled trough the case (and the Cucaracha Negra PCB) where the original holes were in order to put some screws of my own.

The End ResultThe Palm IIIc is now functioning and, the batteries can be easily charged, and the screws in the front are very sexy looking.
This is a very simple wall adaptor that allows to power USB devices without the need of a computer (e.g. for recharging).

I built this adaptor very quickly since I needed to charge my Sony Clié SJ30 (that I got at the same time and from the same person than the Plam IIIc) in my bedroom (far from my computer) since I use it as an alarm clock (among other things).

Materials:

  • A USB female connector I found in a computer in the garbage.
  • A 5V power adaptor for a cell phone (also found in the garbage).
  • A bottle of soap.

Cut the cell phone connector and solder a new connector (compatible with the USB connector that you have) or simply solder the adaptors wires directly to the USB ports. Since I have two USBs, thumb I soldered two connectors.

In the end, tadalafil the +5V wire (usually red) should be connected to Pin 1 and the ground wire (usually black) should be connected to Pin 4 of the USB connector (see the details for the USB standards).

Build a case using a bottle of soap (or any other source of cheap plastic) in order to make the device a bit more robust and aesthetically pleasant. I made sure to do a lose knot in the cable to impede the small connections from breaking if an excessive tension is applied to it.

This is a very cheap (actually free if you’re lucky) wall adaptor for USB devices.

I’m planning to improve this device by adding an LED that will tell whether it’s plugged or not and by making a nicer and smaller case for it.
A Van de Graff generator (named after its inventor) is a high voltage generator. It basically loads a spherical hollow conductor with static charges which brings the conductor to a very high (or very low) potential. In other words, cystitis it is the metal sphere on a vertical tube that makes your hair raise when you touch it. For more info on this, about it please consult this Wikipedia article.

Inspired by many web sites (1 2 3 4 5), buy more about I decided to build my own Van de Graaff generator. It will not raise your hair but it is fun, easy to build, and very cheap. Also it doesn’t require any glue (I always try to avoid glue).

Materials

  • A soft drink can.
  • A Gatorade bottle (or any bottle that, at some point, has a bigger diameter than the can’s diameter).
  • A small piece of tubing ( PBC if you’re fancy or just a cardboard roll from aluminium foil).
  • A block of wood.
  • A small DC motor (from a toy).
  • A switch (not mandatory).
  • A wide rubber band.
  • Another rubber band (a standard one)
  • Some pieces of thick cable.
  • Some pieces of thin cable.
  • Some screws.
  • A 3.7V power adaptor that I found in the garbage (or some batteries and a battery holder).
  • A small nail.
  • A small plastic cylinder from a wire connector.
  • A plastic bottle cap.
  • A metal or plastic strap.

General Idea

The idea is to have a belt moving inside a tube (4 and 5). The belt rubs two metal combs (2 and 7). One of them is connected to ground (7) and the other one to a metallic sphere(2). The belt takes the charges from ground and carries them to the sphere. The sphere gets charged and voila! you get a high voltage.
The design

In this design (this is not my design), the wide rubber band is the belt, the soda can is an approximation to the metal sphere, the combs are done with a spread stripped wire, and the a PBC tube is used as… a tube. The belt is hold in place by a nail insulated with a piece of plastic at one end, and by the motor’s shaft at the other end. All these pieces are attached to a wood base for stability.
Putting it together
The base:
The wood block will serve as a base. Drill a hole of the same diameter than the tube trough the center of wood block. Then sand it to make it nice and smooth. The tube should fit tight in the hole (see pictures).

The sphere:
Open the top of the soda can using a knife, tough scissors, a very powerful laser or a small nuclear explosion.

Cut the Gatorade bottle at it’s horizontal indentation so the can fits tight in it (see pictures).

Drill a hole of the same diameter than the tube at the center of the Gatorade bottle cap so it fits tight around the tube (see pictures).

The tube:
Cut a piece of PBC (or cardboard) tube so it is a bit longer (~ 1cm longer) than your rubber band at rest.

Drill a small hole through the tube (slightly bigger than the nail’s diameter) near the top of it.

Drill a larger hole (~5mm diameter) at the place where the motor shaft is inserted into the tube (at around (thickness of the block of wood + motor radius) from the lower end of the tube, ~ 2 cm in my case). The shaft and the nail must be parallel.

Opposite from the motor hole, drill another 5mm hole but lower. The hole should be a (wood thickness) from the bottom.

The combs:
Take two pieces (~15 cm and ~10cm) of thick insulated copper wire (inside, it must not be a solid copper rod but many small wires) and remove the plastic insulation from both ends (or just from one end because your lucky and you have some sort of connector at the other end).

For both wires, spread one of the striped ends in order to form a kind of comb.

The Motor:
If you’re unlucky and your motor’s casing is broken, build a new case around it so the motor is firmly held together. I used a calcium tablets package for this purpose

Assembly

  1. Insert the tube in the base hole.
  2. Put the motor’s shaft in its hole and attach the motor to the base with a metal (or plastic) strap and two screws.
  3. Insert the tube into the caped Gatorade bottle (the cap should face down).
  4. Insert the nail and its insulation in the tube’s top hole. The wide rubber band should hang from it (inside the tube).
  5. Attach the comb end of the shortest wire to the top of the tube with a rubber band (I know, I should have found a better way to attach it. Anyways, it turns out to be very robust). The comb should gently caress the rubber band.
  6. Insert the can and make sure the other end of the wire makes a good contact with it.
  7. Pull the rubber band from the bottom of the tube so it hangs between the motor shaft and the nail. I think the motor shaft should be insulated but mine is not and it works perfectly well.
  8. Pass the other comb end wire trough the remaining hole (5mm one at the bottom) so it caresses (lots of caressing going one) the bottom of the rubber band. Fasten the wire to the base with a piece of plastic and some screws, for instance.
  9. Add a switch, a power source (you can case the switch with a plastic bottle cap).
  10. Voila! It’s done (you’ll have to tinker with it until everything works fine, but that shouldn’t be too hard).

Now enjoy your Van de Graaff generator (try putting some tissue strips or small strings on it and turning it on).

A Van de Graff generator (named after its inventor) is a high voltage generator. It basically loads a spherical hollow conductor with static charges which brings the conductor to a very high (or very low) potential. In other words, cystitis it is the metal sphere on a vertical tube that makes your hair raise when you touch it. For more info on this, about it please consult this Wikipedia article.

Inspired by many web sites (1 2 3 4 5), buy more about I decided to build my own Van de Graaff generator. It will not raise your hair but it is fun, easy to build, and very cheap. Also it doesn’t require any glue (I always try to avoid glue).

Materials

  • A soft drink can.
  • A Gatorade bottle (or any bottle that, at some point, has a bigger diameter than the can’s diameter).
  • A small piece of tubing ( PBC if you’re fancy or just a cardboard roll from aluminium foil).
  • A block of wood.
  • A small DC motor (from a toy).
  • A switch (not mandatory).
  • A wide rubber band.
  • Another rubber band (a standard one)
  • Some pieces of thick cable.
  • Some pieces of thin cable.
  • Some screws.
  • A 3.7V power adaptor that I found in the garbage (or some batteries and a battery holder).
  • A small nail.
  • A small plastic cylinder from a wire connector.
  • A plastic bottle cap.
  • A metal or plastic strap.

General Idea

The idea is to have a belt moving inside a tube (4 and 5). The belt rubs two metal combs (2 and 7). One of them is connected to ground (7) and the other one to a metallic sphere(2). The belt takes the charges from ground and carries them to the sphere. The sphere gets charged and voila! you get a high voltage.
The design

In this design (this is not my design), the wide rubber band is the belt, the soda can is an approximation to the metal sphere, the combs are done with a spread stripped wire, and the a PBC tube is used as… a tube. The belt is hold in place by a nail insulated with a piece of plastic at one end, and by the motor’s shaft at the other end. All these pieces are attached to a wood base for stability.
Putting it together
The base:
The wood block will serve as a base. Drill a hole of the same diameter than the tube trough the center of wood block. Then sand it to make it nice and smooth. The tube should fit tight in the hole (see pictures).

The sphere:
Open the top of the soda can using a knife, tough scissors, a very powerful laser or a small nuclear explosion.

Cut the Gatorade bottle at it’s horizontal indentation so the can fits tight in it (see pictures).

Drill a hole of the same diameter than the tube at the center of the Gatorade bottle cap so it fits tight around the tube (see pictures).

The tube:
Cut a piece of PBC (or cardboard) tube so it is a bit longer (~ 1cm longer) than your rubber band at rest.

Drill a small hole through the tube (slightly bigger than the nail’s diameter) near the top of it.

Drill a larger hole (~5mm diameter) at the place where the motor shaft is inserted into the tube (at around (thickness of the block of wood + motor radius) from the lower end of the tube, ~ 2 cm in my case). The shaft and the nail must be parallel.

Opposite from the motor hole, drill another 5mm hole but lower. The hole should be a (wood thickness) from the bottom.

The combs:
Take two pieces (~15 cm and ~10cm) of thick insulated copper wire (inside, it must not be a solid copper rod but many small wires) and remove the plastic insulation from both ends (or just from one end because your lucky and you have some sort of connector at the other end).

For both wires, spread one of the striped ends in order to form a kind of comb.

The Motor:
If you’re unlucky and your motor’s casing is broken, build a new case around it so the motor is firmly held together. I used a calcium tablets package for this purpose

Assembly

  1. Insert the tube in the base hole.
  2. Put the motor’s shaft in its hole and attach the motor to the base with a metal (or plastic) strap and two screws.
  3. Insert the tube into the caped Gatorade bottle (the cap should face down).
  4. Insert the nail and its insulation in the tube’s top hole. The wide rubber band should hang from it (inside the tube).
  5. Attach the comb end of the shortest wire to the top of the tube with a rubber band (I know, I should have found a better way to attach it. Anyways, it turns out to be very robust). The comb should gently caress the rubber band.
  6. Insert the can and make sure the other end of the wire makes a good contact with it.
  7. Pull the rubber band from the bottom of the tube so it hangs between the motor shaft and the nail. I think the motor shaft should be insulated but mine is not and it works perfectly well.
  8. Pass the other comb end wire trough the remaining hole (5mm one at the bottom) so it caresses (lots of caressing going one) the bottom of the rubber band. Fasten the wire to the base with a piece of plastic and some screws, for instance.
  9. Add a switch, a power source (you can case the switch with a plastic bottle cap).
  10. Voila! It’s done (you’ll have to tinker with it until everything works fine, but that shouldn’t be too hard).

Now enjoy your Van de Graaff generator (try putting some tissue strips or small strings on it and turning it on).

Based on a circuit I found in this website, epidemic
I built a very simple thermometer. The major thing I added to the original design is a nice case.

Materials:

  • 1 Diode
  • 1 Thermistor
  • 1 Capacitor
  • 1 Serial cable (or plug)
  • 2 Plastic bottle caps (one slightly bigger than the other)

The Circuit

Digital Thermometer Circuit Schematics
Digital Thermometer Circuit Schematics

I salvaged all the parts from old electronics (found in garbage) so they were free. All the parts are very easy to find except for the thermistor. I did not get precisely a thermistor but a very close approximation to it. In fact, cystitis
I’m not very sure of what it is that I used.

I just soldered the components together, no need of PCB.

My Thermistor

I got the thermistor form a broken drinking water dispenser /cooler.

The relationship between the temperature and resistance in an usual thermistor is mostly linear. For my thermistor, the lower bound for the linear region of the resistance-temperature relation is 11°C. Below this point, its resistance goes to infinity (is doesn’t allow any current to pass). I suppose this is used to stop cooling the water when it gets at the desired 11°C temperature. I haven’t yet found an upper bound for the liner region.

Anyways, the only problem is that it can’t measure temperatures below 11°C.

The Case

To build a nice looking case, I simply used two plastic bottle cap (from a Propel and Powerade bottles) that my girlfriend brought me from the recycling bin at her job (a gym).

These two caps happen to fit perfectly one inside the other. So I simply cut a hole for the cable and drilled another for the probe (MT). I placed the circuit (properly insulated with tape, of course) inside, closed it and the thermometer was done.

The Software

In order to run use the thermometer you need a small program. I used the original digital thermometer program but it wouldn’t be hard to right a new one or to improve the existing one.


These are just a few words about net neutrality, viagra sale don’t worry, discount I’ll be back with more contraptions soon.

Please, visit www.savetheinternet.com


At first, cystitis I saw on this site someone who modified his wireless phone in order to connect it to his computer, this transforming it in a wireless speaker and microphone. I though it was kind of cruel to modify a working phone that way.

Some time later, dysentery my girlfriend gave me a broken wireless phone that belonged to her parents. I saw it was a nice phone so I tried to repair it but I couldn’t. Basically it worked fine, you can play with the menu, store phone numbers, dial, call, the sound quality is good, the reception is OK and the battery life is satisfactory. It has only one small problem: you can’t hang up. So unless you’re planning to call someone and talk to him indefinitely, it is kind of useless. So I decided to make it into a cordless internet phone.

General Idea

I wanted to have a wireless phone that connects to my computer speakers and microphone so I can use it as a PC wireless headset. Among other things, it could be used to talk over Skype.

In order to achieve this goal, I hard wired the voice inputs and outputs of the wireless phone to my computer.
Materials:

  • 1 cordless phone (mine is a VTech 2428)
  • 2 3.5mm plugs (headphone plugs)
  • 1 switch
  • 1 screw
  • 1 washer
  • some cables

Getting it done

First, I looked for the part of the phone circuit that manages the RF transmission. This was easy since the RF transmitter and the phone PCB are separated. The two parts are connected together with a grey cable ribbon which, at least in my case, is of very poor quality and broke very quickly. I replaced the ribbon with many pieces of individual wires. The result is much stronger and, most importantly, very colourful.


Having found the RF transmitter, I needed to discover which of its pins carries the sound signals to and from the wireless headset. So, I probed the pins of the RF transmitter in order to know which one is ground, which one carries the sound to the speaker and which one brings the sound from the microphone by using an old toy that generates a sort of music (you could use any sound generator but keep in mind you could fry it).

I figured the the ground pin had to be the top or the bottom one, since it makes sense to put the there (at least to me). To discover the speaker pin, I played a sound between two pins and tried to listen to it at the receiver until I hear it. For the microphone pin, I played a sound at the receiver’s microphone and connected a speaker between two pins until I hared the sound.

Finally, I discovered that, for the VTech 2428 (and I presume for all the other VTech products that use the same transmitter) the first pin (top of the pin row in the picture) on the RF receiver is ground (which makes sense), the fourth is for the speaker and the last (bottom) is for the microphone.

Once the pins were discovered I simply soldered the 3.5mm plugs to them and secured the cables to the box using a big washer and a screw in order to ensure the connections wont break if the cables are pulled (don’t worry for the space, this thing is mostly empty). By the way, I got my cables from a PC I found in the garbage so they were already colour coded and labelled as “phone” and “mic”.

Also, I drilled a hole on the back of the case in order to get the cables out of the phone.

Since I don’t use the phone a lot, I installed a switch on it so I can turn it off. In order to interrupt the power flow into the device I desoldered the power connector, turned, the + leg up and soldered it back in so the + leg is not in contact with the PCB any longer. Then I soldered a switch between the leg and the PCB. I removed the phone line-out connector in order to fit the switch in its place. The line-in remains there and fully functional.

After putting it back together the phone was done and ready to use, It just needs to be plugged in to a computer. As a final remark, the sound quality is very good, both for incoming and outgoing signals. It can be used to talk on Skype from anywhere in the house, as a wireless spy microphone, or even to listen to mp3s while working on some new project (the later uses are not recommended).


Drawbacks

Unfortunately, this hack doesn’t allow you to play the phone tones to the computer in order to dial or pick up Skype.

Future improvements:

I’m working on a ringer that will ring the phone when there is a Skype call. My idea is to use a square wave generated in the computer that will travel down the unused speaker channel(since the phone is mono) to switch on a ringer signal (90Vpp sine wave).

I would also like to add a pick up function but that seems difficult since I don’t want to use any other connection besides the ones already available.
I saw in this site (try this one if the link is broken) that we can build a coin ring using a spoon, viagra a drill, a Dremel and some metal polish. Immediately, I wanted to do one.

Materials:

  • An ordinary 0.25$ coin (Canadian in my case)
  • Lots of patience
Canadian Quarter
Canadian Quarter

Making it happen

Warning: your family and specially your dog could become agitated if you hit a coin with a spoon during an entire day.

I started by hitting my coin on its edge with a spoon. I used a small metal plate a found laying on the street as a rigid surface for the hitting. After about 2 hour of lots of hitting and almost no change I tried using a small hammer. It bended the coin faster but the results were a little deceiving. In the original site pictures, you see the inside of the coin bending uniformly outward., Instead I got flat edge and a smashed inside. After about two more hours of hitting I switch to a normal full-sized hammer.

I hit the coin until I got it to the right diameter (my estimation of my girlfriend’s finger diameter) and then I hit it with the spoon once again. The spoon flattens the edge surface making it smoother (which means less sanding and polishing afterwards). Also the spoon allows for fine control over the shape of the ring.

Once I got the edge to the right shape and diameter, I drilled a hole on the coin. I then used a screw to secure the coin to a drill and polished the outside of the rim by making it spin very fast. I used a fine sandpaper at first and some Brasso and a cloth afterwards.

Removing the inside of the coin was the most difficult part since I don’t have any clamp that can hold it without damaging it. Also, I could not preserve the outer part of the coin’s inside as shown in the original site since mine was completely smashed. Anyways, in the end I removed the body of the coin usind some files and polished the inside of the newly born ring.

I gave the shiny (except for some dark spots caused by my inaccurate hitting) ring to my girlfriend who was very happy with it. I was happy to see it fitted her finger (although it was a bit loose).

Later, I discovered that the guy in the site used a silver coin (i know it is an obvious fact), which I suppose is easier to bend than my 94% steel coin.

Anyway, the end result is quite pleasing and nobody will believe you built a ring from a coin by hitting it with a spoon (unless you explain them how to proceed and show them pictures, people are very skeptical).

And yes I know, it is illegal to break money. This is why this never happened , you simply imagined visiting this site and seeing this project.
I saw in this site (try this one if the link is broken) that we can build a coin ring using a spoon, viagra a drill, a Dremel and some metal polish. Immediately, I wanted to do one.

Materials:

  • An ordinary 0.25$ coin (Canadian in my case)
  • Lots of patience
Canadian Quarter
Canadian Quarter

Making it happen

Warning: your family and specially your dog could become agitated if you hit a coin with a spoon during an entire day.

I started by hitting my coin on its edge with a spoon. I used a small metal plate a found laying on the street as a rigid surface for the hitting. After about 2 hour of lots of hitting and almost no change I tried using a small hammer. It bended the coin faster but the results were a little deceiving. In the original site pictures, you see the inside of the coin bending uniformly outward., Instead I got flat edge and a smashed inside. After about two more hours of hitting I switch to a normal full-sized hammer.

I hit the coin until I got it to the right diameter (my estimation of my girlfriend’s finger diameter) and then I hit it with the spoon once again. The spoon flattens the edge surface making it smoother (which means less sanding and polishing afterwards). Also the spoon allows for fine control over the shape of the ring.

Once I got the edge to the right shape and diameter, I drilled a hole on the coin. I then used a screw to secure the coin to a drill and polished the outside of the rim by making it spin very fast. I used a fine sandpaper at first and some Brasso and a cloth afterwards.

Removing the inside of the coin was the most difficult part since I don’t have any clamp that can hold it without damaging it. Also, I could not preserve the outer part of the coin’s inside as shown in the original site since mine was completely smashed. Anyways, in the end I removed the body of the coin usind some files and polished the inside of the newly born ring.

I gave the shiny (except for some dark spots caused by my inaccurate hitting) ring to my girlfriend who was very happy with it. I was happy to see it fitted her finger (although it was a bit loose).

Later, I discovered that the guy in the site used a silver coin (i know it is an obvious fact), which I suppose is easier to bend than my 94% steel coin.

Anyway, the end result is quite pleasing and nobody will believe you built a ring from a coin by hitting it with a spoon (unless you explain them how to proceed and show them pictures, people are very skeptical).

And yes I know, it is illegal to break money. This is why this never happened , you simply imagined visiting this site and seeing this project.
Some projects I will be writing on soon:

I saw in this site (try this one if the link is broken) that we can build a coin ring using a spoon, viagra a drill, a Dremel and some metal polish. Immediately, I wanted to do one.

Materials:

  • An ordinary 0.25$ coin (Canadian in my case)
  • Lots of patience
Canadian Quarter
Canadian Quarter

Making it happen

Warning: your family and specially your dog could become agitated if you hit a coin with a spoon during an entire day.

I started by hitting my coin on its edge with a spoon. I used a small metal plate a found laying on the street as a rigid surface for the hitting. After about 2 hour of lots of hitting and almost no change I tried using a small hammer. It bended the coin faster but the results were a little deceiving. In the original site pictures, you see the inside of the coin bending uniformly outward., Instead I got flat edge and a smashed inside. After about two more hours of hitting I switch to a normal full-sized hammer.

I hit the coin until I got it to the right diameter (my estimation of my girlfriend’s finger diameter) and then I hit it with the spoon once again. The spoon flattens the edge surface making it smoother (which means less sanding and polishing afterwards). Also the spoon allows for fine control over the shape of the ring.

Once I got the edge to the right shape and diameter, I drilled a hole on the coin. I then used a screw to secure the coin to a drill and polished the outside of the rim by making it spin very fast. I used a fine sandpaper at first and some Brasso and a cloth afterwards.

Removing the inside of the coin was the most difficult part since I don’t have any clamp that can hold it without damaging it. Also, I could not preserve the outer part of the coin’s inside as shown in the original site since mine was completely smashed. Anyways, in the end I removed the body of the coin usind some files and polished the inside of the newly born ring.

I gave the shiny (except for some dark spots caused by my inaccurate hitting) ring to my girlfriend who was very happy with it. I was happy to see it fitted her finger (although it was a bit loose).

Later, I discovered that the guy in the site used a silver coin (i know it is an obvious fact), which I suppose is easier to bend than my 94% steel coin.

Anyway, the end result is quite pleasing and nobody will believe you built a ring from a coin by hitting it with a spoon (unless you explain them how to proceed and show them pictures, people are very skeptical).

And yes I know, it is illegal to break money. This is why this never happened , you simply imagined visiting this site and seeing this project.
Some projects I will be writing on soon:

——–[!]——–

Update: La Cucaracha has got lots of attention lately (mainly thanks to Alan Parekh from HackedGadgets). I found some of its cousins built by 7 year olds. See them at ArtBots Robots.

——————

This is a small and very simple robot that requires no electronics. It is inspired on La Coccinelle. They both work according to the same principle, cialis sale
but their bodies and wheels are different. Also mine uses rechargeable batteries so I don’t need to buy new ones after just a few hours of usage.

Materials:

  • 2 big plastic bottle caps (much like the PC Thermometer)
  • 2 Wire ties
  • 1 screw
  • 2 DC Motors
  • 2 toy wheels
  • 1 switch (a small one so it fits on the bottle cap)
  • Some cables
  • 1 Cable holder
  • 1 Rechargeable battery pack w/ charger
  • 1 3.5 mm audio jack (male and female)
  • 2 paper clips (regular size)
  • 2 SPDT Switches (commonly found in printers)

Main Idea

The idea is to construct a robot that can move around and that will backup and change the direction of the motion when it hits an obstacle.

Putting it together

  1. Cut two diametrically opposite holes on the side of the caps so the motors fit in there. Chose one of the caps as your base cap (the one thats goes on bottom).
  2. Pierce two small holes on the top of the base cap in order to tie the motors to the cap using the small cable ties.
  3. Cut two more holes spaced by about 1.5 cm so the switches fit in tightly (seeing the pictures help visualizing this).
  4. Drill a hole in the center of both caps with the same diameter as your screw.
  5. Install the switch and the female audio jack on the top bottle cap.
  6. Connect everything together as shown in the circuit diagram. I used the audio jack to make the charger connection. The charger is simply a 3V power adapter connected in series with a diode in the + terminal.
  7. Solder the paper clips to the SPDT blades and add a little solder blob on each paper clip end so they look more like antennas.
  8. Test to see if the circuit works properly. When the robot is switched on, therapist
    both spindles should spin so it goes forward. If an antenna is pushed, the spindle on the opposite side (left spindle if right antenna) should spin backwards.
  9. Fasten the motors to the base cap using the cable ties and secure the other cap on top of it using the screw. Also secure the cable holder using the same screw on top of the top cap, this serves as a battery holder.
  10. Insert the toy wheels on each motor spindle. You can also add a piece of plastic for stability under the base cap.

It’s done! Now you have a small robot that will go around your house bumping on whatever is on its path.

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