Hacked Gadgets Forum

September 7, 2015

Calculating pi with a Pendulum

at 5:16 pm. Filed under Complex Hacks


Pi is a very interesting number that comes up in many formulas. Did you know that you can calculate it using a swinging pendulum?


September 5, 2015

Colour Injector – Arduino Mixing Colour Lamp

at 4:49 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets



This is a great looking lamp that allows the users to interact with the lamp colour in an interesting way.

“Colour injector is an interactive multi-coloured lamp designed as a physical expression of the way red, green and blue light are used in digital interfaces to create a full spectrum of different hues. Syringes suspended below the lamp are connected to another set inside the body using clear tubes so that the ink can be seen moving towards or away from the lamp. The handles of the syringes inside the lamp are attached to sliding switches connected to an Arduino microprocessor that controls the colour output of rings of RGB LEDs. The system allows people to gradually change the colour of the lamp light in an unconventional way by providing a simple and intuitive interface.”




September 3, 2015

Car Instrument Cluster Clock using CAN Bus

at 11:35 pm. Filed under Cool Gadgets


Instrument clusters are no longer truly mechanical analog gauges connected to sensors directly in your car. The car is a big sensor network which communicates to the dash board instruments. This means that you can re-purpose them like Esko Haas has done with his 2003 Fiat Stilo closk. If you want to build on his work you can find his code here

“By the way, I’m using this board for connecting: http://www.ittgroup.ee/en/mikrokontrollerite-arendusplaadid/545-avr-tlcd-128can.html It’s compatible with Arduino Due and the CAN-bus shield from Seeed Studio, but is somewhat cheaper and much more compact than the combination of these. Got the tachometer and the temperature gauge working. The trick here is again to send all the parameters in a single message, not separately. Took a example from the first line here: http://www.fiatforum.com/stilo/174029-stilo-can-bus-question.html#post1874182
This also cleared some of the warning lights.”

September 1, 2015

POV Hard Disk Drive Clock

at 3:44 pm. Filed under Computer Hacks, Cool Gadgets, Electronic Hacks


Using an old hard drive, some 1 watt LEDs, a complete redesign of the hard drive motor drive circuit and an Arduino Marcin Gosiewski (damago1) has built a great looking clock. The display is nice and compact since he is using a 3.5 inch hard drive as his base.

“The project involves controlling HDD motor (3 wire brushless dc electric type BLDC) using open loop control without feedback, and using back electric motor force feedback to synchronize engine pulses with optimal point in time for them. Digits are displayed by flashing 1W power LED-s behind rotating disc with painted digits. Each flash is circa 150 microseconds. Due to POV (persistence of vision) effect the digits look very stable for the user. I am not using any special controller. Only Arduino, H-bridges for driving motor coils, and circuit for obtaining BEMF (back elecric motor force) from each coil and converting it to digital (high/low) signal to drive Arduino interrupt. I have designed my own custom board which is a modified Arduino (something between UNO and PRO NANO) + added additional parts including real time clock. It is designed to fit on the back of a standard 3,5″ HDD. Software is very dependent on interrupts. I am using not only officially available interrupts (attachInterrupt) but also additional libraries to use all available timers and interrupts.”

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