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Maker & DIY Posts - Page 4

Element 14 launches Raspberry Pi sound card

If you are the DIY sort that is always tinkering with One project or another, you may be familiar with the Raspberry Pi. This cheap little developer board has found its way into many a cool project since it launched. One thing that the device has been missing is its own sound card.


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Element 14 has announced the launch of a sound card for the Pi to fill that gap in features. A Wolfson audio processor is integrated into the sound card and supports audio at 24-bit/192KHz. It can be directly connected to an amp using a 3.5mm output or a digital S/PDIF output.


The sound card also handles audio recording using a pair of onboard MEMS microphones. One of the nicer features of this card is the price. The Wolfson Audio card for Raspberry Pi sells for $33. Affordability is one of the hallmarks of the Pi and its accessories.

Continue reading 'Element 14 launches Raspberry Pi sound card' (full post)

Awesome dad creates electric batpod replica for his kids

If you gauge a childhood on how many awesome things your dad built you, mine was horrible. My dad was unable to sit still long enough to help with Legos before he had to go watch football. This dad is definitely doing it right when it comes to awesome creations.


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The dude built his ten and 12 year old boys a small replica Batpod. It doesn't look much like the one from the flick, but it is awesome nonetheless. We will have to look around the fact that the kid appears to be riding it in shorts and Crocs; at least he has a helmet.


The bike was a custom build and is powered by four car batteries that use lead-acid. Those batteries hook to a Mars ME0709 electric motor and the powertrain uses an Alltrax AXE 4844 controller. None of that will mean much to most of us.

Continue reading 'Awesome dad creates electric batpod replica for his kids' (full post)

Afinia launches its new H480 desktop 3D printer

This morning Afinia announced the launch of its next-generation 3D Printer that features several innovative new features included automatic bed leveling and nozzle height detection. The new Afinia H480 is the successor to the popular H479 which was the company's firs desktop 3D printer and quickly grew in popularity with makers everywhere.


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The new Afinia H480 features a printing envelope of 5-inches cubed, a build envelope of 5-inches cubed, and features a heated build platform. The entire printer has a footprint of just 9.6-inches by 10.2-inches by 13.7 inches, allowing it to fit on any desktop surface. The inclusion of Automatic Leveling takes the H480 a step above the competition as it removes one of the tedious setup task that can consume valuable time. Automatic leveling works via a detachable Platform Calibration Probe which measures the build platform at nine different locations to ensure a perfectly level printing surface.

Continue reading 'Afinia launches its new H480 desktop 3D printer' (full post)

Make homemade wine with The Miracle Machine

There are gadgets out there for just about any need you can think of. If you are a fan of wine, a new gadget has surfaced that claims to let you make water into wine in your home. The gadget uses technology to speed the wine making process.


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The Miracle Machine has a bunch of sensors inside a carafe along with heaters, pumps, and transducers that can make wine quickly. The gadget also promises to be economical. The people behind The Miracle Machine say that you can make a bottle of wine each week in the machine for about $10 per month.


The Miracle Machine itself isn't exactly cheap at $499, but if you want to make your own wine that might not be such a bad price. The ultrasonic sensor in the device is able to speed the flavor development of the wine according to the designers.

Continue reading 'Make homemade wine with The Miracle Machine' (full post)

HobbyKing launches RotorBits, a new line of multi-rotor parts

HobbyKing is the biggest name in the radio-controlled hobby world, and the company continues to blaze the trail in making the RC hobby more affordable. This week HobbyKing announced its new RotorBits lineup of chassis and parts for DIY multi-rotors. The RotorBits line revolves around a modular design that allows users to build a multi-rotor using common 10mm square shafts and molded plastic parts.


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Kicking things off, HobbyKing has launched three DIY frame kits that will allow customers to easily build a TriCopter, QuadCopter, or Hexacopter in less than an afternoon. The modular system utilizes zip-ties as easily breakable fasteners. This allows the frame to survive light crashes with only cheap ziptie to replace. The company has a full lineup of spare parts, accessories, electronics, and mechanical parts for the RotorBits line and allows users to mix and match parts to build their own creations.

Continue reading 'HobbyKing launches RotorBits, a new line of multi-rotor parts' (full post)

Lulzbot unveils new flexible 3D Printing filament and filament guide

Lulzbot is one of those companies that blaze the trail in innovation and openly share their findings with everyone else. Their philosophy of Free & Libre, hardware and software is a business model that I feel more companies need to follow. Recently Lulzbot released a new video showing their new Taz 3 3D Printer printing with the companies new Ninja Flex Thermoplastic Urethane-based flexible 3D printer filament.


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NinjaFlex is the stretchiest 3D printing material on the market at the moment and Lulzbot offers it in several colors including Red, Pink, Green, Blue, White and more. Because the NinjaFlex filament is so stretchy, Lulzbot has had to design an entirely new extruder to allow the filament to be completely constrain the filament as it enters the heat chamber. Lulzbot is calling this the new Flexstruder, and has based it on a Greg's Wade-style design.

Continue reading 'Lulzbot unveils new flexible 3D Printing filament and filament guide' (full post)

Sixense launches MakeVR campaign on Kickstarter

By now most of you know that I live, eat, breath and sleep 3D printing, and its a hobby that I have enjoyed for the better part of a decade now. A few months ago during an interview with Sixense CEO, Amir Rubin, I was let in on a little project they were working on called MakeVR. Then just a few weeks ago at CES 2014 I had the chance to take a private demo of this software, and it turned my idea of 3D modeling for 3D printing upside down. Today Sixense launched the crowdfunding campaign for MakeVR on Kickstarter.


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If Sixense's STEM system revolutionized the way we play games in Virtual Reality, then MakeVR will forever change the way we model 3D objects using VR. MakeVR is being billed as the worlds first immersive 3D modeling application that makes content creation for 3D printing natural, intuitive, and most importantly, fun! Over my years in the hobby, I have used or tried to use just about every 3D modeling program out there, and what I found is that many programs require a degree from a university just to be able to create anything more complex than a cube or sphere. With MakeVR things are so simple and natural that a kid can use the program to create very complex objects with little instruction.

Continue reading 'Sixense launches MakeVR campaign on Kickstarter' (full post)

Stratasys unveils Object500 Connex Color, a multi-material 3D Printer

Today Stratasys launched what it is calling the worlds first multi-material, multi-color 3D printer that can print in several different materials and colors simultaneously. The new Object 500 Connex 3 3D Printer allows for "virtually unlimited" combinations of rigid, flexible, and color rich printing to be completed all on the same machine at the same time, and will allow engineers and designers to test multi-material prototypes right in the lab almost instantly.


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The printer features six palettes for the new rubber-like Tango color lone which includes opaque, transparent, and solid variations. Stratasys says that the new Object Connex 3 is designed with the automotive, consumer, sports, and fashion industries in mind, and the addition of flexible materials will only serve to make 3D printing an even more valuable process in every design and engineering workflow.

Continue reading 'Stratasys unveils Object500 Connex Color, a multi-material 3D Printer' (full post)

XYZ Printing shows off its sub $500 da Vinci 3D Printer at CES 2014

CES 2014 - 3D Printing was arguably the hottest category at this years Consumer Electronics Show, and we got the chance to stop by their booth on the show floor where XYZ Printing was showing off its sub $500 da Vinci 3D Printer. XYZ Printing is owned by the New Kinpo Group, a company that has been making normal printers for decades.


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Pooling from its years of experience, XYZ Printing developed what can only be considered as one of the most refined consumer level 3D printers on the market today. The da Vinci's exterior is something that would look at home in anyone's workroom or office and would fit in alongside any other office machine. Furthermore, the da Vinci is fully enclosed which lends for a better build environment as well as acting as a safety barrier when the machine is running.


The da Vinci is a FDM-based printer and utilizes proprietary filament cartridges, which enable the company to provide consistent printing results and negates the issues with consumer supplied filament which might be of lower quality and cause issues. A build area of 7.8-inches cubed allow for large model creation, and is large enough for almost anything you need to print. XYZ has also built a "Cloud Database" which contains thousands of printable models, so users get a truly plug and play experience.

Continue reading 'XYZ Printing shows off its sub $500 da Vinci 3D Printer at CES 2014' (full post)

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