Tag Archives: servo

Resolved Technical Prototype

After the success of the servos working together with the LDR’s we have been able to start combining our spiral form with our electronics. Below is the first run with us connecting our sculpting arms with the servos.

From this prototype test we were able to make the most informed adjustments. We designed another set of sculpting arms for variety and that better connect with the clay. The programme was also altered to react every 2 seconds rather than a quarter of a second as before. This was to reduce strain on the servos and also create a groove effect on the clay. ¬†Below is the improved prototype playing to Aloe Blacc’s – I need a Dollar.

Our next step is to strengthen the servo motors and create supports for them. When we are satisfied with their strength we can begin creating outputs from clay!

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Technical Prototype

This is our technical prototype for our project to make sure it works before we put it all together. Using the SoundView app we can generate an equaliser from the music coming from anything (in this case, an iPhone). There are 4 light sensors mounted on the screen to detect when the bars are high. Using a Picaxe we can then process the information from the sensors to drive the motors. Check out our video below to see it in action!

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MAKE cont.

Last week we posted a panicked blog about all the stuff we have to do. I am happy to report that we are right on schedule. What’s more, we’ve even been given an extension on our deadline due to our ordered parts not turning up! It is in our best interests to stick to the original plan as much as possible since the deadline for the press release, including 90sec video and images, has stayed the same so any extra time we use for MAKE is only eating away at our allocated TALK time.


So here is where we are with the making of our prototype. We’ve decided to build a spiral structure to house the sculpting arms which will be controlled by servo motors. It’s a bit more complicated to achieve but will do more for the aesthetics we believe. To do this, we’re using thin strips of plywood which we then glue together before wrapping them round a couple of cylinders made out of blue foam. Left overnight, the glue should set and the spiral will maintain its shape.


As for the electronics, we’re still waiting for the parts to show up. After a monster struggle last week we finally managed to get the servo motors to work. We still don’t know what the problem was. We followed the help tutorial word for word and double checked our circuitry but couldn’t get it to work. We sought out the help of a Year 4 PD student who had some experience in servo motors whose solution was a different Picaxe altogether. Funnily enough, it worked without any problems so we’ll be going with that. In summary, we have a fairly good idea how to write the code, all that’s left is to wire up the parts and hope for the best.

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