Archive for August, 2011

Kleebtronics August: Programmable Synthesizer

August 16, 2011

Alright, getting things done early! For August, I took an Arduino shield Steph got me for Christmas from Critter and Guitari, programmed it, and built it into a case so I could use it on the Fundustrial Revolution Tour, which departs tomorrow. Anyone reading this from Boston, Providence, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Richmond, or NYC should come and check out the mayhem.

Anyway, here is what the synth looked like after I put the kit together:

You can see that the pots just sort of hang out at the top and the buttons are those really tiny momentary switches. Sure, it sounded cool, but not very practical for a touring setup.

So I decided to build an enclosure:

Nice, easy plywood enclosure. I didn’t have any scrap metal lying around for the top, but I did have some plexiglass. Let me tell you, drilling through plexiglass is NOT a fun time:

This probably took longer than anything else related to this project. We actually had to spray water on the plexiglass as we drilled to prevent cracking.

Next were the buttons. Now, the surface-mounted buttons were not going to cut it, so I needed something that would press down on them from the faceplate. I ordered a 1/8″ wooden dowel from mcmastercarr, along with some rubber washers to keep them in place. Steph glued the washers on the bottom side of the dowel pieces and we dropped them into the plexiglass holes:

After adding a 1/4″ jack in the side, the synth was almost finished:

I decided to finish the wooden case with a layer of Tolex. After a fun night with glue, the finished Arduino Synth was ready for the road. Here’s the video demo, as promised:


Kleebtronics July: Bass Drum Wine Rack

August 10, 2011

July and August have been quite busy, as I’ve been multi-tasking getting ready for the Fuck Ton tour in two weeks. While my July project may be a tad late, my August project will be done by tomorrow, complete with videos. For July, I re-purposed an old bass drum and turned it into a wine rack. I figured it was time to stop stowing wine under my bed and make something to hold not only the bottles, but the glasses as well. This may have been partly sparked by a half dozen broken wine glasses last year.

First, here is the drum sans head when I started. This was taken from an old Pearl Export that has been sitting abandoned at DBA for a few years (if anyone needs a floor tom or rack tom, get at me).

In the end, we ended up with twelve slots for bottles. I would hope that will be enough, but hey you never know.

I ended up lining the top shelf with some black fabric and used an old rim and batter head as a door:

Yes, those are blue LEDs lining the inside. I wired them to a 9V battery and switch built into the top:

To keep the drum closed, I had to install a latch on the opposite side:

And that was it! The circular shape definitely presented a challenge, but this was a pretty easy and straightforward project. I also have to say, after a weekend at the Fly Creek Cider Mill and the Ommegang Brewery, we managed to fill the entire drum and have a few bottles to spare!

At least now that this blog is finished, we can finally start drinking it again.

Coming soon – Project August!