First Attempt at Christmas Light Show! (part 1)

A while back a co-worker hit me up over the weekend and said “hey! I found this thing you want it?!?”

Once finding out what “it” was I said sure..

Haha.. you know what “it” was, and you wanted it.

Really?  That’s how we are going to start this?

After getting through hurricane irma and halloween season I was able to start looking into this a little more.

It’s this!  A Light-o-Rama 16 channel light sequencer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So it came with software and everything right?  Worked out of the box?  Sweet

Why?  Seriously…

No, it did not come with software.

 

 

But I was able to do some digging and figured out it will work with an RS485 to RJ45 serial connection and using the DMX protocol.

 

 

DMX protocol?  That ^&*% sounds scary.

For once Im gonna agree with you.  Not sure what his “protocol” is but I agree.

So anyways.  I hook it up and …. nothing.  No signal.  Hmmmm.

Time to hit the forums!  www.doityourselfchristmas.com to the rescue.  I found a post that mentioned that LOR (light-o-rama) decided to swap 2 pins.

That’s some dumb shit stuff there..

I know.  But that got it working.  So I have my laptop able to turn some christmas lights on and off via a testing app.  Cool.  But not cool enough.

Next step fool!

So we need to sequence this thing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Different kind of sequence.  Time for Vixen3!!

No! Vixen 3!!!

 

 

Are you for real with this?

Sorry, Christmas.  I forgot.

Thank you.

 

 

 

 

*smh*

 

Anyways.  Vixen 3 is a nice piece of software for doing light sequencing to music.   So I start playing with that and get a few little tests together and run it from my laptop and the LIGHTS ARE WORKING!!!

Enter the raspberry pi!

Ok tons of fun haven’t you had enough pie?

Not that…. it’s a…. shut up.

So with a RASPBERRY PI COMPUTER!!! I load up an image for something called “falcon pi player“.  Configure up my connection to the LOR and click the “test” check box.  ALL THE LIGHTS TURN ON!!!!!  Awesome.  We are SO CLOSE.  So export the sequence from Vixen 3 and upload all the assets (sequence file, media) and create a playlist.  Now lets run it!

Oh man… it’s working.  This is too cool.

I drove past your house, you don’t have any lights up yet.

*deep breath*  Ignore him, he doesn’t exist.

You don’t exist.

You are right.  My lights aren’t up.  But I got everything working and even created a preview!

So next step is the wife has started putting up some lights and we should finish over the weekend!!

Bike generator for 18650 battery packs – Part 1

Part 2 of the Bike generator for the 18650 battery packs. In this one we build the mounting frame for the treadmill motor, 3dprint an axle connecting sleeve and do some tests with the multimeter to see what kind of voltage we can!. Getting closer to starting to record power generation data to the home automation system!

 

 

Bike generator for 18650 battery packs – Part 1

Welcome to part 1 of the bike generator build.

This build will add a pedal powered bike generator to help charge my 18650 battery packs. This will be in additional to the small solar panel currently in use.

The charge controller and statistics will be build on an arduino controller and tied in to my openhab home automation system for tracking and graphing.

The controller will connect wirelessly using mysensors and an nrf24l01 radio.

 

Good Vibes!!!

So… I have a “friend” that asked if I could help with something.

 

She had something called an OhMiBod.  It’s a …. um… it’s a vibrator.

HAHAHAHA

Super mature.  Anyway.  She has this thing called an OhMiBod Club Vibe.  It’s supposed to vibrate to your music  Looks like this.

HAHAHAHAHAHA

Pervert

Dude really?  ANYWAY!

So apparently she prefers to crank her music from her phone to said vibe.  But apparently this thing is when you crank the volume, the primary function of this thing (vibrating to the music) all but disappears and it’s just “on.”  So I was asked to fix it.

I bet you fixed it.  Haha

Don’t you have somewhere to be?

So.  I decided to see if I could knock back the levels on the audio.  I remembered a tutorial I saw once on how to make an attenuator for video to create a safety track on one of the channels.

Really?  Safety Dance?

So I built out a quick little voltage divider.  Started with a 150 ohm and a 1k ohm.  It helped but it got better once I went down to a 150 ohm and a 220 ohm.

Hehe

*sigh*

So I tested everything out using the breadboard and alligator clips.

Nipple clips..

DUDE!

So now it’s time to tighten everything up

….

NO!  Before this guy completely implodes here.

I took a dead marker out of the craft bin and cut it apart.  Put a piece on each side of the attenuator and soldered it up and have a male and a female 3.5mm jack on each side.

Shut it…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once it was all soldered up, I hot glued the pieces together and wrapped some tape around the one end to give the shrink wrap something to hold on to.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now lets throw some shrink tube on it and make it nice and neat.

So I gave it to her and from what I “hear” it’s getting the job done.

And I’m the perv… 

So in all seriousness.  This was actually interesting.  I have never hacked part of someone’s sex life before but this was interesting.  Not my normal stuff, but hey, glad I could help.

You lended a helping hand..

I’m done.

PS.  Is a hackgasm a thing?

Progress on the green sprinkler system project!

I have made some progress on the green sprinkler system project.   I even shot some video recently!!!

 

Here is some testing of the water quality…. WHO PEED IN MY BARREL!!

 

Now for the big update!!! Built a battery from recycled 18650 laptop cells.  Hooked it to my pump.  Drained my rain barrel!!  Then charged the battery back up via solar!!!

Man I am feeling kind of green!

Like this guy?

Oh and I am the one that peed in your barrel

Oh %^&* you’re back too huh.

You do realize I am you, you are me right?

Man I had a long night last night.  Don’t do that deep %^&* on me.

Ok Ok.  Check out his (my video)

Rain Barrel Growth Check!

My last barrel was the white kind and it did not do well at keeping light out so there was a swamp monster in it when I checked it.  Glad I wasn’t using it for anything, that water was gross.

 

I switched over to these blue barrel’s in hopes it would be better.

Got a cool endoscope camera from amazon

Amazon

With this camera I figured…. where can i put this….

STOP THAT!!!!

 

 

 

 

Check out my youtube channel for other project videos!!

Cranky Coder Youtube

 

NO!!! I want to print more!!!! or Offloading octoprint timelapse videos

octo

I use octoprint to manage my printer.  When I can, I batch print.  I will literally print things back to back. But I also love the timelapse and we have all seen it….warning

 

But I have more robot stuff to print!!!!

Settle down there smart guy.

Nobody asked you!

Ok, interruptions aside.  Running octoprint on an original pi is a little slow.

Did you say apple pi?

captain-picard-facepalmI don’t like this guy.

I said ORIGINAL pi.  Yes, old school slow.

So what happens if you try to print again while it’s rending a timelapse… well, you get a lot of stalls on the print, meaning the head sits over the print causing some unnecessary melting.

So how do you fix it if you are so smart?

Well, you would offload it.  I have a linux box that handles all sorts of random tasks.  It could do it.

So here is how I offload it.

  1.  setup an NFS share to a nas/other server
     192.168.X.XX:/mnt/vol/dataset1 /home/pi/fs nfs nouser,atime,auto,rw,dev,exec,suid 0   0 
  2. Configure octoprint to store the timelapse pics on this NFS share.paths
  3. All that is doing is changing the location of the timelapse, not offloading jerk.
    I KNOW!!!  I’m not done!
    Sorry
    So now we need to setup the exact same share on the other linux box.  If I had thought about it early on I would have changed the path on the pi to be something like /media/share/ instead of /home/pi/fs
    So we put the same path on the other linux box.
    (see 2.)
  4. Now the fun stuff.
    Finally!
    I created a small shell script on the PI.

    #!/bin/bash
    ssh root@192.168.X.X "ffmpeg $@"
    if [ $? -eq 0 ]
    then
    # everything was good
    exit 0
    else
    exit 1
    fi
    
  5. Set up your pi to be able to login with no password (using keys instead) so that the ssh connection will not hold anything up.
  6. Configure octoprint to use this new script as your ffmpeg path.
    2016-11-07-19_03_42-octoprint

So let me walk you though it.

Good idea.

Are you being nice all of the sudden?

No.

Anyway.  So octoprint is now setup to store your timelapse images on the network somewhere.  Linux box is setup to have the exact same path.  When your print is done octoprint executes the timelapse.sh script thinking that is ffmpeg.  So it runs it waiting for it to exit with a success or failure.  So in the script, we ssh to the linux box, tell it to run the ffmpeg with the $@ which means everything octoprint wanted to pass to ffmpeg locally we are passing to the remote ffmpeg.  The other box does all the heavy lifting and returns an exit code, we pass that exit code back to octoprint.  It’s none the wiser.

The cpu is next to nothing because we are just waiting for the ssh command to finish.  So I have started additional prints with minimal issues.

I have noticed that if you keep your filenames short and sweet it helps.

Is this a great solution or what?

No.  Buy a better pie.

Don’t you mean a “pi?”  Haha.  Jerk.

pievpi

Time lapse in new printer enclosure

surprised-rainbow-faceSo awhile back I came across an instructables article regarding using some ikea lack tables to make a 3dprinter enclosure…..

I love ikea….

So this was the project.  http://www.instructables.com/id/3d-Printer-Enclosure-from-Upcycled-Furniture/

I went to ikea.  Got 2 lack tables and put them together…. I want my printer higher up.  ELEVATE TO THE LEVEL OF THE GODS!!! no.  just high enough I can watch it cause I like to watch it go back and forth while I make printer noises.

So I ordered a 3rd table.  Put it on top.  Sweet.  Much better.  I moved the printer into the enclosure this weekend (no sides put on it yet) and decided I needed to get the lighting in place.  So I took some neopixel strips I had laying around and hooked them up to an arduino.

13694706_1455593267790887_1215760066_nOk, so that’s now how I am leaving it 🙂  but it did look cool.   Now I can set the colors.  Plain white for printing.  I am trying to figure out how in octoprint to get a hook in to detect when it’s heating up.  That way I can turn the lights orange or red to indicate heating phase.

 

 

So I did a timelapse and a vid.   The vid of the whole rig setup

Here is the timelapse test print

 

I am working more on trying to get some good photo and video in with these projects too.  If you like the videos give a thumbs up and a subscribe.