Fab Lab

All things fabrication

For the fabrication final, I thought I would use some of the tool I had yet to use this semester. The bandsaw. To do this I could use up the dowel I had from last week’s not so dumbbell project. I am going to make a robot.

I am beginning with a dowel and a wire hanger both of which I cut to small pieces.




Then I drilled the holes to plug the wires into. I ended up with something like this.




Then I apply the paint.


Then some JB weld to connect the parts together on a more permanent basis.


Also, I found out that I needed to use JB Weld from the thistothat.com website which lets you know how to attach one material to another.

Finally I add some special components to the robots and this is the final result.





For this week’s assignment I was going to make a dumbbell since the project requirements were “make anything with two different materials…NO acrylic NO plywood”

So I started out just fine mixed some concrete as you will see in the video I once again had to rig up some tools since I did this project from home for the most part.


I ran into problems due to the change in weather here in NY.  It decided that it was going to be a proper fall and the temperatures this week have been pretty chilly therefore the concrete took way longer to cure than the expected couple of hours or so.  So I had to decide what the dumbbell was going to be.  So it became a stylish key holder for my desk.


I belt sanded the end of the dowel added some screw hooks and stained the little guy with some cherry stain.  See the finished product below.




I was going to do an enclosure for my cooking with sound midterm this week but I didn’t like the materials I had on hand to use for it so I decided to make a simple enclosure out of an egg salad sandwich box.


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It was a good exercise for whipping something up quick to hold a few circuits.

Using an LED strip and some wires and a 9 volt battery and a panel mount switch well you can pretty much see what’s going on in the pics.


The “hardest” part about this project was deciding if I was going to mount the 9v to the top of the box along with the panel mount switch.

For my cooking with sound midterm I wanted to do something with additive synthesis and phase shifting oscillators.  Due to the criteria of the project I need to make a sound by analog means.  I have the idea of using singing bowls and motors in a enclosure to try to kill several birds with one stone so to speak.


So here is the plan…

Plans for Cooking WIth Sound Project

I will make a mount for the bowls and the motors to exist in, along with a design element of the ohm symbol.

Fab lab laser cutting project… check.

Then, I will make an enclosure with a false wall to house the wiring and breadboard for the motors and LEDs.

Fab Lab enclosures … check.

P-Comp Analog Serial communication … check. (I will update with pictures of the lab that I will be using to do the serial communication with the motors later this week)

Then hopefully the motors will spin felt balls on strings in the singing bowls and make a phase-shifting dual oscillator.

Fingers crossed, Cooking with Sound MidTerm … check.


Here is my laser cutting template …

Template for Cooking with sound Project long.psd

I have already made a test run of this in cardboard,


and had to make adjustments due to not having the specs of the motor mount measurements and the size of the bowls I will have access to.

This template is the template adjusted for the correct motor spindle and motor mount tolerances.  I will likely update this version again when I can get my hands on both of the singing bowls later this week.

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Progress on the stand for the bowls.


It looks like I am going to need rubber feet since the bowl makes contact with whatever surface the stand is resting on.

Also there was a fair amount of cardboard prototyping to get the servo motor opening right, but a little tinkering in both directions and it is finally right.

More pics to come tomorrow.



It took me a while to get back to this since I have been so busy with prepping for midterms but I have some videos to show the “finished” product of this project.

I will post some proper photos of this later this week.

In thinking about what to do for the multiples assignment, I came across a tutorial on making a cube within a cube  (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfV_APBk16Q) .  I thought that this would be a novel idea for this project, since there would be multiples within each object.  So I wanted to do a cube within a cube, within a cube.

I began by cutting down a 4x4x8′ into a several 4″x”4″x 4″ blocks. Using a clamp and a block to move the source wood into made this process easier and the blocks pretty uniform.


Next I moved onto the drill press to cut out the cubes inside these cubes.  I made another jig to place each block on the press to get uniform results and using two forstener bits.  The picture I took of that jig is missing from my phone documentation. 🙁

During the process of making the second cubes in the series of blocks I began to experience catastrophic failure due to the softness of the wood.



Good thing I made lots extra. Multiply by Pi



Make a flashlight:


I found this pretty cool flashlight diy video and tried to adapt it to my needs…



I made my flashlight with one light to save space withing the body of the light and to save on voltage for my led.

I first had to learn how to solder, which was sort of a trick.  But I made the contact leads too long on the light string which gave me problems later.  I also changed the type of switch to a tiny toggle switch that is only on while depressed, to mimic a little thumb light I used to have and still miss.  This change, however minor,  was  going to end up being a tricky situation to contend  with as well.

The switch I used was really small so there was not much to solder to once the leads were put through the end cap of the light.  Moon, (a resident), gave me some advice about working with such a small connection which turned out to be very useful indeed.  The result of the long leads coming from the LED was to unpin the leads from the battery every time I attempted to close the light, but with a little tinkering and a lot of patience I was able to get it closed with the light working.


I really found out some of the strengths and weaknesses of the fabrication lab in this project.  Buy your own tools if at all possible, and keep a good stock of your own tools in a sizable toolbox. Don’t count on something being there for use even if the shop usually has it. Buy your own supplies if at all possible, and keep those supplies in your own toolbox.  Anyway, here are some photos of the materials and the process.