Indoor Castle(un)maker Meeting

things that we can tear apart to see what's inside
Come on, admit it!! You’ve always wanted to know what’s inside this stuff… and at our next meeting you can find out!

For our March 8th meeting we’ll be dismantling DVD players & chopping up Cuisinarts. Goal is to find out what’s inside electronic & mechanical devices, toys, and appliances.

We’ll be meeting at 605 Crown Street on Sunday March 8th at 2pm. Bring anything that you have a burning desire to find out how it’s made. Or to destroy (“deconstruct” for you food network folks out there).

Anyone is welcome to join us!

Note: 3/1 meeting has been cancelled due to the snow.

Brushbot Build

Some of the kids try to figure out the effects of toothbrush bristles, we had 3 different designs and a few added toothpick stabilizers. Several tried 2 vibrating motors and different sized batteries, which could change the Brushbot’s path and speed.

Our Brushbot build this last Sunday turned out well. This is a popular kids project, to the point now where you can even buy kits to make them. We did it the old fashioned way with a toothbrush, pager motor, battery and double-sided tape.  Thanks to Dollar Tree and a bulk order of motors from China, they cost less than $1/piece and many of the kids made them with their own toothbrush!

testing brushbots
An old hexbug track made a good testing course for the Brushbots, although several kids also used notebooks and other obstacles on a large flat table to make a track to test different Brushbot configurations.

If you’re like many parents looking for summer opportunities for your kids, this coming Saturday February 21rst, the 26th Annual Summer Camp Fair will be going on from 11-3 in Indianapolis at the Fashion Mall. I try to keep the events page updated with other regional STEM opportunities, if you hear of something you feel others would be interested in let me know.

Also a few of the adults have started building a Robobrrd, a felt-covered interactive robotic bird made of popsicle sticks that uses an arduino micro-controller. At this point it’s still for adults (or older kids) as we figure out how it could best be made by the larger group. Feel free to join us, you’ll be helping other kids down the road. We’re meeting on Tuesday nights at 7 pm, 605 Crown Street at least through March. Again you can always check the events page.

Brushbot Meeting

Brushbot prototype
Brushbot prototype for this Sunday’s build project. Links on how to make them and other modification tips are on our Robotics page.

This Sunday we’ll be making Brushbots using a toothbrush, vibrating pager motors, and a battery. We’ll have a small racetrack to test them, so be thinking about how they can be modified to be more stable along with what kind of bristles would work best and how to steer them.

A very short video of the prototype in action you can view here.

Anyone is welcome to join us, we’ll be meeting at 605 Crown Street at 2 pm on Sunday February 15th.