This week is a special one. Not only is Maker Faire Bay Area this weekend, but we had our first demo for the product video that could probably kill someone. We've made a treadmill with a mind of its own, a game of Jenga that plays YOU, and an off-road vehicle with an attitude. But this week, we decided to use some of the new spark gap igniters for an idea I had and it just turned into something scary. Check out the video below.
Vimeo version found here.
I wish everyone could just experience what this thing was like in person. My ears were ringing the whole evening when we were first testing it. It's loud. Loud enough that you can hear it pretty much anywhere upstairs in our building when it's on. And not only that, but the sparks are erratic and after it's been on for a little bit, the whole room smells like ozone and burning plastic. It's, well, just wonderful.
You asked for it, and here it is. This spark gap igniter is very similar to the one used in the SCORPION. Feed it 5 volts and it spews out bolts of electricity. We didn't get a datasheet, so I can only speculate how it actually works. My guess is something to do with the fusion of unicorn tears and Leprechaun blood, but I'm not an engineer. I can say that it can easily spark across a 0.5" gap and will ignite combustible gasses just fine. You have to love a product when it's primary objective is explosive detonation.
And now for something less painful. This little speaker is designed to be mounted to a PCB. With 0.1" spacing, it also works well in a breadboard. It's just small enough to fit into that embedded board your designing. Speakers can be problematic because there's not a great way to mount them. With this one, just mount it directly to your board and you're good to go. It's not terribly loud, but perfectly adequate as a buzzer, warning system, etc.
Sugru now comes in 8 packs instead of 12! You don't have to buy as much and there's less of a risk of expiration with smaller packages. It comes with 2 packs each of red, blue and yellow, and one each of black and white. It has a lot of uses and should be in your tool box if you build a lot of stuff (or break a lot, either way).
And lastly we have a new version of the LilyPad Vibe Board. This one uses an SMD vibe motor which is much easier to solder, making it much easier to produce. Use it as a (nearly) silent alert system, feedback mechanism, or, well, you have an imagination.
That's all we have for this week. Have fun at Maker Faire if you're going. Be sure to check back next week as we're already planning a demo and are getting some other stuff ready for the site. Thanks for reading and see you next week.