Category Archives: Project

De Makerspaces Contest van Instructables

We hadden het al eerder over Instructables: je weet wel, die website vol met uitgevoerde projekten, en instrukties om ze zelf ook te maken. Een leuke plek om ideetjes op te doen en technieken te leren.

Bij Instructables hadden ze van juni tot september een leuke wedstrijd, bedoeld voor makerspaces. Er deden een heleboel groepen mee, de meeste uit de Verenigde Staten. Je kon allerlei gereedschap winnen. En op z’n minst kon je een mooi snijapparaat winnen, een Silhouette Portrait, als je groep minstens tien ‘featured’  Instructables bij elkaar kon tikken. Nou, dat moest ons toch ook lukken?

Net Sinterklaas!

En dat is ons ook inderdaad gelukt! Ons team bestond uit SA007, Jos, Duur, Mack, Bix, Stoneshop, Cooper en ik, en samen maakten we zestien Instructables, bijna allemaal werden ze ‘featured’! Daarom kregen we onlangs in een grote doos toegestuurd: stickers, T-shirts, en vooral een mooie glimmende Silhouette Portrait. Dat was feestelijk uitpakken natuurlijk.

Twee van deze Instructables wonnen ook nog een individuele prijs: namelijk Mega Guide to Macro Photography van Dvanzuijlekom en From blank keys to working keys without dismanteling the lock van Jos.

Ik zou bijna zeggen: alweer een succesvol, en gezamenlijk, Hack42-projekt!

Washing Machine = Patio Heater

Take the TOG test by selecting the correct answer.

Q: Your washing machine dies and you get a new one. What do you do with the old one?

1. When your new one is delivered, let the delivery crew take the old one away.
2. Take the old one to your local WEEE recycling centre.
3. Take the old one apart to see how it works. Harvest all the useful parts and use the parts to make something else.

The correct answer of course is number 3, but you knew that anyway. That makes you the kind of person that would probably like TOG.

So the trusty washing machine from 1996 was getting a bit tired. The drum bearings needed replacing (a relatively straightforward job)…they were squealing louder and louder. The drain pump started to make a racket and wouldn’t empty after a wash…. maybe it was seized or something jammed in it. Looking inside, it was obvious that it was leaking a bit also, probably when it was spinning. Time for a new machine.

Taking apart the old one, there’s a lot of interesting and useful bits. There’s a nice AC motor and an electronic speed controller. There’s some pulleys and a drive belt. There are also assorted hoses, electrical bits and valves. There’s also the stainless steel drum. Removing the drum from its aluminium mounting, and adding a few steel legs….. we have instant patio heater. Who needs a chiminea! Being stainless steel, it wont rust either.

We gave the new heater a test run this week and it worked a treat. Come in and stand around it at the next open social. Lots of pics here

Hard Disk Fun

Having some fun with old hard disks…. by taking them apart of course Hard Disk Fun Pics here.

There’s some interesting parts inside. Some fantastically strong magnets and an air core coil are used to position the heads. Stepper motors are long gone from hard drives! Might try some wireless charging experiments with the coil.

The platters themselves are spun by a type of 3 phase motor. Connected this up to a spare speed controller (ESC) from a model aircraft. Was able to spin it right up to 15,000 rpm using the aircraft remote control. Checked the speed with the trusty laser tachometer. That’s 250 revs per second, or 1 rev every 4 milliseconds. Makes a great sound at full speed.

Now to figure out some use for such a tiny high speed motor. Gyroscopic effects are very evident at such high speeds too. Maybe make some self balancing widget!

Lego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 started

It takes time & certain amount of failed ideas to design anything. Ideas rarely come in a box, they require slow birth rather than rapid unpacking.

STAGE 0.1 Idea

B: “What would you build if I gave you a coin counter?

I: ”Any purpose?”

B: ”Yes, to make a machine so the visitors put money in.”

I: ”hmmm… a Jukebox? … hmm with dancing Ducks…”

STAGE 0.2 Learning

I have decided to build prototype of an automaton from Lego Technic. There were plenty sets & I have never had an opportunity to play with those… ehhh Lego <3

Day 1: some basic Lego models from booklets

Day 2: big bulldozer started – learning Lego

Day 3: BREAK sorting bricks day… too hard too find elements anyway.

Day 4: BREAK DISASTER element needs to be ordered online

Day 5: BREAK unsuccessful at building part replacement from other bricks

Day 6-9: BREAKLego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 started

Day 10: part arrives Lego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 started

Day 11: model is finished… gears aren’t working

Day 12: disassembling Lego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 started

Day 13: Here we go again!

Day 14-15: It works! – Lego lvl Advanced reached.

Day 16: Time to upgrade!

Day 17: I hLego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 startedave decide to add electronics from Lego Mind Storm SetLego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 started

Day 18- 28: BREAK – Dublin Maker




Upon my positive experience with Lego & positive associations towards bricks from public I have decided to build actual Automaton from Lego. Ducks bricks will have to be designed & 3D printed.Lego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 started

STAGE 0.3 3D printing Lego Bricks

Day …XX(lost count, but it’s today) First general Lego Piece was 3D printed Lego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 started

SUCCESS 3D printed Lego piece fits with regular bricks!


  • Build automaton
  • Design Lego Bricks in a shape of Ducks
  • 3D print Ducks
  • program Bulldozer (why not its almost done!)
  • find manual for coin counters…

Would you like to try to create own designs? Come along to our ongoing (every second Monday) CAD workshop in Tog. Looking forward to see you here – next class 17th of August 2015.


Lego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 started

Latest decision –  to add Arduino & remote controller to Bulldozer Lego Automaton Jukebox – stage 0.2 incomplete, stage 0.3 started

Playing with the IMAX charger

Got an IMAX B6 mini charger to play with. Pics here. This charger will charge and discharge lots of different battery chemistries. We recently acquired some 6-volt lead acid sealed lead acid batteries….believed to be from a UPS.

Two of them powered our buzzer game during the recent Dublin Maker. We’re using the discharge function to test their capacity. It will be interesting to see what capacity they have left.

Drop in if you’d like to try the charger or some other electronics.


Vintage Electronics 2

Following the build of our 1978 Metal Detector, next up in our Vintage Electronics series will be a Digital Bicycle Speedometer.  In the March 1977 issue of Popular Electronics, they published an article for a digital speedometer complete with red LED displays. This will be a build from the original magazine which we have in TOG.

You can get an LCD digital bike speedometer nowadays for as little as 5 euro. These multi function devices can do much more than speed. Back in 1977 however, this thing must have been space age…..  red LED displays and all!

We think it will look suitably retro on a modern carbon fibre road bike Vintage Electronics 2 We will be building the speedometer over the next few weeks. Come in and join in the build, or keep in touch with the build online.

It’s Alive!

More progress with our vintage metal detector today. Fired up the oscillator section of the PCB and its working away at 126kHz…. very close to design frequency.


We’re going to continue to work on it, with the intention of having it ready for Dublin Maker in less than 2 weeks time. Pics of the ongoing build here.

Lasersaur, Android Netrunner & laser cut tokens…

In recent weeks, a few of our board game fanLasersaur, Android Netrunner & laser cut tokens…aLasersaur, Android Netrunner & laser cut tokens…tics have met on Friday evenings in Tog. We have played some games, we laughed & decided to utilize laser cutter to make extra sturdy Acrylic tokens for a game called Androind: Netrunner. A good bit of graphical artwork was already online (thx for a great design) and after some manipulation it was ready to be cut. Other designs had to be done from scratch. So far we have designed & prototype cut all the regular size tokens. There is a plan to cut large size Credits Sets as well.

Android: Netrunner is an asymmetrical Living Card Game for two players. Set in the cyberpunk future of Android and Infiltration, the game pits a megacorporation and its massive resources against the subversive talents of lone runners.Lasersaur, Android Netrunner & laser cut tokens…

Corporations seek to score agendas by advancing them. Doing so takes time and credits. To buy the time and earn the credits they need, they must secure their servers and data forts with “ice”. These security programs come in different varieties, from simple barriers, to code gates and aggressive sentries. They serve as the corporation’s virtual eyes, ears, and machine guns on the sprawling information superhighways of the network.

In turn, runLasersaur, Android Netrunner & laser cut tokens…ners need to spend their time and credits acquiring a sufficient wealth of resources, purchasing the necessary hardware, and developing suitably powerful ice-breaker programs to hack past corpoLasersaur, Android Netrunner & laser cut tokens…rate security measures. Their jobs are always a little desperate, driven by tight timelines, and shrouded in mystery. When a runner jacks-in and starts a run at a corporate server, he risks having his best programs trashed or being caught by a trace program and left vulnerable to corporate countermeasures. It’s not uncommon for an unprepared runner to fail to bypass a nasty sentry and suffer massive brain damage as a result. Even if a runner gets through a data fort’s defenses, there’s no telling what it holds. Sometimes, the runner finds something of value. Sometimes, the best he can do is work to trash whatever the corporation was developing.Lasersaur, Android Netrunner & laser cut tokens…

The first player to seven points wins the game, but likely not before he suffers some brain damage or bad publicity!

More about the game:, Android Netrunner & laser cut tokens…rd-game/

Would you like to try to laser cut your own designs? Come along to our ongoing (every second Monday) CAD workshop in Tog. Looking forward to see you here – 6th of July 2015.

Pizza Oven 1.1

Our pizza oven was built as a bit of a hack over Christmas and New Year. After 5 months of operation, a bit of maintenance and a few minor mods were in order. A better flue, some re-jigging of insulation and foil and some re-pointing of bricks were done.

On Saturday 20th June, we fired it up for our regular open social event. It all worked as good as usual and everyone got fed! We had plenty of first time visitors to TOG too, who got the grand tour of the space. They’ve been keeping in touch with us on meetup and twitter. Pics of the maintenance here.

Vintage Electronics 1

ETI Electronics, February 1978, IB Metal detector Mk2. This is the first in a series of ‘vintage’ electronics projects that we hope to build at TOG. We have the original magazine, so why not get building. There are some amazing projects in the electronics magazines from the 70’s and 80’s.

Update…. The build is in progress. Pics here.

We hope to be doing the PCB assembly for this project on 6th July, as this date is the 6th anniversary of TOG’s first electronics night. In the run up to 6th July, we’ll be preparing and gathering all the parts. As well as everything we need to do the electronics build, we have our workshop to do all the mechanical assembly and search head too.

We’re talking pure analog electronics here….. there won’t be an Arduino or line of code in sight Vintage Electronics 1 Although this project was first published in 1978, all of the components are still readily available. Come in if you’d like to see the build. Visitors are welcome and there’s no charge to attend. Even if you don’t know much about these kind of projects, you can still learn a lot by keeping in touch with the build. Should be great fun.