Category Archives: learning

Come Learn Something

 

Tuesday meetings often turn into training night at the Makerspace.  So many members come the the weekly meeting that it can be easy to find something new to learn.  Last week was no exception when Pete gave an intro to screen printing.

Come Learn Something

It seamed like a straight forward process and I would encourage people who want to try making a tee shirt to email Pete to get checked out on the machine.

Come Learn Something

After walking the class through the basics of preparing the silk with the design. Pete set up an example print and let his small class of makers give it a try.

Come Learn Something

Leafing with the Mogul

Before #1: Your basic 3/8″ plywood

Before #2: My front door, in need of paint, some aesthetic happiness, a fixed doorhandle, and summer. My desire to add a little decoration to the door is, in part, what led me to the Makerspace. I had an idea for panels to go on either side of the door, but no equipment for making what was in my head. When I saw that the Makerspace had cnc routers…

Leafing with the Mogul

 

IN THE MIDDLE

I took photos of leaves from the oak tree in our yard:

Leafing with the Mogul

I traced the leaves in Illustrator, and — by looking at the structure of the tree — made my initial design. I exported the file into svg (with hints from Shane), and Ed helped me use Cambam to convert the svg file into the gcode that the Mogul desires.

Leafing with the Mogul

After generating the gcode, we cut the first panel. For me, watching the cutting was like Christmas: exciting — while for Ed, stepping me through the process, this must have been like a long slooooooooow Christmas, watching the design appear through the three passes the router bit made to cut each (complicated) path. (In truth, Ed’s patience and help were the real Christmas present for me.)

Leafing with the Mogul

This panel was an experiment for me, to learn about how thin and delicate the connecting pieces could be in such cutting. And I learned: what you cannot see in the picture above is how two of the leaves broke off quickly.

In the next Illustrator file I made (which I then cut on the Mogul with Steve Pilon’s also very generous and patient help), the leaves overlap and made their stems thicker. You might be able to see this in the final picture below, which shows the panels painted and mounted. Merry Christmas!

 

THE END

Leafing with the Mogul

Hands-On Radio Hacking

CRASH member Samy recently gave a talk at Defcon about car/radio hacking and would like to do a more hands-on version at CRASH Space.

WHEN: Friday, Sept 18 8:00 – 10:00pm
WHERE: CRASH Space
HOW MUCH: FREE!

Some topics we’ll go over and live demo as much as possible (legally, of course):

  • low-cost hardware and open source software for radio exploration (RTL-SDR, HackRF, CC1111EMK, IM-ME, etc)
  • sniffing and deciphering unknown radio signals
  • reverse engineering hardware (using logic analyzers, determining unmarked chips, etc)
  • wirelessly reverse engineering radio hardware (like cars and garages)
  • methods to attack and exploit radio communication (like unlocking cars and garages)
  • exploiting mobile device trust + exploiting mobile apps by performing SSL man-in-the-middle attacks, DNS spoofing, automated HTTPS injection/traffic manipulation
  • security measures to consider for more secure designs in the future

Samy will demonstrate all attacks from start to finish, and encourages you to bring any of the following low-cost hardware and go through the entire process with him:

  • $22 – RTL-SDR (hardware dongle for software defined radio, allows sniffing radio frequencies up to ~1.7GHz). This is a great buy and very powerful
  • If you’re comfortable with Arduino and coding, this $9 CC1101 radio (sub-GHz RF transceiver) goes well with an Arduino or Teensy and is very potent /li>
  • I would NOT suggest you buy this $75 CC1111EMK (basically the $9 chip above without a processor) because better/cheaper hardware is coming out soon, but we may use it for those who don’t want to build their own device (sub-GHz radio transceiver and MCU)/li>
  • Bring a logic analyzer if easy to and you have one — while I prefer Saleae, there are much more inexpensive ones out there, and you can even turn your Arduino or Teensy into a low-speed logic analyzer/li>

Also, you’re welcome to bring:

  • your own devices that sniff or emit radio (such as garage door openers, car keys, etc) and inspect them live! (It’s okay if you don’t want to, as Samy will bring a bunch of his own that you can hack.)
  • snacks and drinks
  • smiles
  • laptop
  • anything else you want, really

Hope to see you there!

Zero to Hero Class: Pirate Box Edition.

I'll be teaching a class on how to setup a Pirate Box at the Generator on March 22nd. Check out more info and sign up here.

Want to carry around a world of important data, like Wikipedia, and health guides?
Need a way to share a bunch of files with some folks?
Come learn how to make a PirateBox a tool for sharing information in a secure offline manner!

PirateBox is a DIY anonymous offline file-sharing and communications system built with free software and inexpensive off-the-shelf hardware. Perfect for public spaces as a means of sharing interesting data and having offline discussions.

Zero to Hero Class: Pirate Box Edition.During this quick 4 hour  class students will learn how to build a Pirate Box. This class will guide students through the process of converting a plain TP-Link MR3020 and USB thumb drive into a Pirate Box.

$50 lab fee covers purchase of Pirate Box and all necessary materials (MR3020 & USB Drive).

Quick-Fire Lessons Tuesday Weekly

Hey folks! Simply drop in to soak up the knowledge – for free! This week’s Quick Fire Lessons will take place at 091 Labs at the regular time of 6:30pm on Tuesday. Our next class will see us focus on JavaScript were we will introduce node.js. Keep an eye on our social media for updates. […]

The post Quick-Fire Lessons Tuesday Weekly appeared first on 091 Labs.

Our woodshop has a Router table!

The woodshop now has a Rockler router table! Thanks to Bill M for donating the table and James for adapting the plate to an existing Craftsman router we can now use this fantastic router table. The table has a convenient switch(visible in the picture with a large safety STOP button), an adjustable fence, anti-kickback finger, slots for jigs, and is conveniently placed on wheels so the whole unit can be wheeled to where ever it is needed. If your wondering “what the heck is a router table, or a router for that matter” then check out the links below to get started.

Some great information on using a router table from Rockler is available here:

A great video for absolute router beginners, Steve Ramsey also has a bunch of other great woodworking videos:

How to make a picture frame using a router table, another Steve Ramsey YouTube video:

An overall pic of the router table.

Our woodshop has a Router table!

A tight picture of the top of the router table showing slots for clamping jigs, fence, and anti-kickback devices.

 

Our woodshop has a Router table!

A close up shot of a craftsman router mounter under the router table.

Emergency Heat

With some inspiration from the potential snow storm last week, I endeavored to test my emergency preparedness for heating my apartment when the power is out.  I never did lose power, but the test was successful and I am happy to know that if I did lose power in the winter, I can keep warm at home.

I attached an inverter to a marine battery, then plugged in my Rinnai heater and it ran just fine.  The Rinnai does buzz a bit loudly, but that's because the inverter does not produce a "true-sine-wave" signal.  I tested the setup with a box-fan attached to the inverter as well and it worked fine.

With the fan and the heater both running on LOW the draw was 115W. Some quick and super dirty math approximations tell me that the battery (if fully charged) will run this about 11 hours. This would be longer if the box-fan isn’t running (less power would be used).

105 Amp hours (sticker value, full charge)
105 Amp hours x 12v = 1260 watt hours (approximate average voltage)
1260 watt hours / 115 watts = ~11 hours

Of course, the inverter can be run from any 12V source.  My Honda Civic has an alternator with a faceplate rating of 70Amps.  Some quick math tells me how much power this can potentially provide.

70 Amps x 12 Vdc = 840 Wattsdc

I believe the inverter is well within the ability for the alternator to run.  So the car could potentially run the inverter as a generator as long as there is gasoline in the tank.

Check out the rest of the info and pictures at my blog.

Inverter attached to battery

Emergency Heat

Rinnai heater on extension cord w/ box-fan

What is a trolley? (link)

I recently found a great set of posts about what a trolley is and how they work at Nathan Vass' website.  The short version is that a trolley is an electric bus that gets its power from overhead lines.  There are many advantages to using a bus with rubber tires over a train (can change lanes, can avoid obstacles, climb hills without wheel-spin) and many advantages to using an electric bus over a diesel bus, the main reason being torque to climb the hills of San Francisco.

Part i is here
Part ii is here

I originally became interested in the topic last year when I visited San Francisco.  There were many things I liked about the city that appealed to different interests of mine (city planning, green spaces, diverse cultures), but one of the things that stuck out to me was the infrastructure for the trolley system.  This was not something I had expected.

When you look up while downtown, just below the common sight of power lines at the top of the utility poles, you see what looks at first like a rats nest of electric wires.  This is especially so around intersections in the road.  But upon further examination, patterns emerge.  I noticed that the wires were running in pairs of parallel tracks, and where one track crossed another, one of the pairs would have some extra hardware.

What is a trolley? (link)

I only spent a moment trying to figure out what they could be used for when one of the Muni buses (a trolley) passed me on the street.  These are quiet, exhaust-smell free giants of public transportation that I was instantly in love with.  And this post isn't about public transportation overall, but if you need an explanation as to why it is good and how a bus can greatly reduce congestion, this GIF explains it beautifully.

What is a trolley? (link)

Adding More Temp Sensors

Since my previous post I have added a couple additional temperature sensors to my piHouse project.  One is an outdoor temperature sensor that I previously programmed but never installed outside, and the other is a new sensor in my bedroom.  This involved some hardware planning and effort installing because I had to run a cable through the house and outside, but once I tested the new cable run, it was relatively simple to duplicate the software for the sensors I already had.

The part of this that took the most time was pulling the cable and then soldering the connections.  The biggest problem I have is placement of the outdoor sensor.  I am having issues with direct Sunlight.

Here are some highlights, you can find the whole story here.  This time I also include some examples of the commands I use on the raspberry pi to obtain the data.


When testing my hardware connections, I use this command to ask the pi to take a reading and then display the result to the command line:

house@raspberrypi ~ $ cat /sys/bus/w1/devices/28-00000512f401/w1_slave 2>&1

 

ROOM TEMP lowered during day, OUT temp. sensor moved outside

Adding More Temp Sensors

Three-way splice for room temp.

Adding More Temp Sensors

Added bedroom plot, outside sensor in sun

Lab B at Champlain Mini Maker Faire 2014

Laboratory B is all set up and ready to see you at Champlain Mini Maker Faire this weekend!  The event is on Sat. October 4th 10am - 5pm,  and Sun. October 5th 11am-4pm at Shelburne Farms in Shelburne Vermont.

Lab B has been at the Maker Faire since it started 3 years ago, and like last year and the year before, we'll be teaching kids & adults how to solder! FairPoint Communications made a donation to help provide kits, and we have four kits from SparkFun in the mix this year; Weevil Eye, Big Time Watch, Simon Says & Mr. Roboto.

From our excerpt in the schedule:

"Join the folks at Laboratory B for a self-paced soldering workshop. We bring the soldering irons and the kits, you bring the desire to learn.  We will have kits from SparkFun and all the required supplies and safety gear for you to sit down and learn how to solder, and when you finish you take the kit home!  Have you soldered in the past but are not familiar with some of the newer techniques such as surface-mount soldering?  No problem!  There will be beginner kits, intermediate kits, and advanced level kits to fit all skill levels."