Author Archives: joel

Carter made this sculpture recently as well, from another tutorial from the same guy on YouTube - although this one is decidedly more creepy than the owls! It was her first time working with an armature and creating fabrics folds and wrinkles - it came out pretty good!

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Army of Owls!

Carter has been looking for something to do this summer, and I mentioned that I had seen a YouTube video of a guy making a cool little owl out of clay. She decided to give it a try, and it went really well - so she's been slowly amassing a small army of them!


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KSP Control Panel – Part 2

I've done some more work on the KSP control panel - I've connected up all of the button and switches on the first two panels, and have them talking to an Arduino Leonardo. The bottom pic shows the first custom PCB I've ever designed and had made. It's basically some shift registers and pull-downs to support 16 buttons/switches per PCB, will connections to allow chaining multiple copies together. It was a cool and pretty inexpensive experience - I think I might try to make more custom boards in the future. For example, a lot of my neopixel-based clock ideas are essentially the same circuit every time. I might try to design an Arduino Shield with that circuit on it, to make my designs cleaner and faster to build.


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KSP Control Panel – Part 1

Sean and I play a video game called Kerbal Space Program, where you build things and send them to space - everything from simple orbiters, to space stations, to landers and rovers to other planets. What's cool about it is how it tries to keep things pretty realistic - you have to learn a bit about orbital mechanics in order to be successful, for example. One thing we noticed online is that some people build these elaborate control panels and connect them to their PC to play the game - lots of switches, LEDs, etc. - just like a real control panel. That sort of project is right up my alley! Sean and I have started working on one. We're still in the early stages, but I'll try to share some photos as we go.


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Word Clock

Yup - another clock. :P This one reports the time in five minute increments, but uses words - as in, "it's half past three o'clock". It's not as blindingly-bright in person - my camera makes it look a lot brighter than it really is. For the case I used some awesome tiger maple that I've been hanging onto for a while. It doesn't come across in that dark photo, but in person it looks awesome!


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Salt Cellar

I made this little salt cellar to go beside the stove - it's glazed with the same glaze combo I used for the set of plates I made recently. I need to make some more of these little covered containers, as Lori wants a sugar bowl to put next to the coffee maker.


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Guitar Strap

I few weeks ago I felt like doing a leather project, and made this leather guitar strap. It's decorated with ladybugs, as our attic (where I do a lot of my projects) was being overrun with ladybugs at the time, and Carter and I thought we should commemorate the occasion. It fits pretty well, and is fairly comfortable. I still need to slick the edges before I would call it 'completely' done, but it's working well enough for now that I'm not sure if I'll bother.


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Chef’s Knife

I made a small camp knife a few years ago, and have always wanted to try something bigger - like a kitchen knife. With all the free time I've had lately I decided to give it a shot. This knife is made from O1 tool steel, with a blade about 8 inches long. The handle is spalted hickory I milled from a tree that fell at our old house. The wooden sheath has rare earth magnets embedded inside, to hold the sheat on securely. The sheath is made from the same spalted hickory as the handle. After it's initial sharpening, it was sharp enough to shave the hair off of my forearm. Now we just need to wait and see how well it holds that edge.


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MHAL T-Shirts

This one is sort of an inside joke at work. At one point someone made a joke about putting it on a t-shirt, and I threatened to do it for real. Then suddenly I've been stuck working from home for months and decided, "why the hell not?", and actual made some real shirts. Once it's safe to go back into the office I plan to hand them out to everybody in the know.


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Wooden Clamps

I've been trying to come up with projects I can do with the materials I already have at home, and found some plans online for making wooden f-style clamps out of scraps. So I made this set of a dozen from scraps and offcuts from when I built my workbench - as a woodworker, you can never have too many clamps! These worked out well enough that I made another set of six that are longer - although I haven't taken any photos of those ones yet. I'm actually considering making yet one more set of six, at an even longer length, to round out the collection.


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