This is just a small project, it was originally intended to be a part of the Seussical show, but many other things took priority, and by the time these were finished, it would have been hard on the kids to add them to the show.

Nevertheless, I am excited to have these and plan to find a good use for them, perhaps they will end up in Headless Horseman?

They are made from a pair of strong stepper motors controlled individually by Arduino Nano microcontrollers interfaced with DMX plugs, so a light board can be used to set the speed, forward or reverse.  It does a great job of pushing or pulling a long peice of fishing line, and if both are moved in opposite directions, an object suspended between them can be made to rise and fall in addition to moving it back and forth.

One lesson that was learned here since my last experimenting with motor controllers was how to get nearly silent operation out of the controllers by altering the microcontroller’s PWM frequency.

These controllers have 8 DIP switches on the side that can be used to set any DMX channel between 0 and 255.  This isn’t strictly needed since I could hard-code any channel I want in the program, but I thought it was a nice touch, a nod to commercial theatrical equipment conventions.

 

I worked with Director Rick Bronson on this giant 6’x8′ storybook to drive the narrative of his play, Polish Joke.  I contributed the idea of using large-scale paper-mache techniques, sketched draft drawings on standard paper, copied (more or less) the sketches onto the giant sheets of paper he, myself, and volunteers created using newspaper, white glue, and muslin, and finally painted/inked in with the help of talented artist Rose Gillespie.

For the Gulfport Community Players’ Junior Stars children’s theatre production of
The Phantom Tollbooth, I created this vehicle.  It was based on a powerwheels vehicle intended for 2 children, but I have hot rodded the heck out of it!  I cut it in half, added length with 1x2s and plywood, swapped the stock accellerator switch for a PWM motor controller for variable speed, forward and reverse, added a big 20W speaker and on-board sound effects, fully dimmable headlights, tail lights, animated under-mounted light strips as well as independently rotating hubcaps to simulate motion when the car is not actually moving, and even a motorized fog FX spraycan actuator that can create a spray of exhaust.  All of these features can be triggered with a touch-sensitive remote control I built.  This was a really fun project!

This necklace was made to imitate a character from a popular TV show.  It was 3D printed from a clear filament, tinted with markers, and fitted with an LED.  the necklace is actually a pair of wires that connect to a watch battery holder in the back.