So Tuesday night was microcontroller night, Chris and Sandy got the WS2803 IC chip driving all six RGB LED’s in various test patterns. The frosted LED’s that Sandy brought worked a lot better than the one we used last week. It’s exciting to see this project come together; it’s going to look really cool when finished. Next step will be to build the frame and work on the power source. We talked about using an old desktop computer power supply since it already has a 5 volt lead and can generate the amperage needed to drive all 174 LED’s.
I am putting forth a recommendation that we etch a custom PCB board to make the LED’s adjustable on the positive power rail. Basically, it would have 7 component lead holes and one large hole to connect a bolt used to pinch the power line to the PCB allowing us to slide the unit up and down or across the anode line, but hold it in place when the right position is found. The other lead holes are used for the RGB lines connecting to the RGB leads of the LED.
The next LED Matrix collaboration is next Tuesday, please come buy and check it out.
Here is a great video on DIY PCB board etching.
While the microcontroller group was plugging away at their projects, several of us decided to expand the workshop another 15 feet to handle more equipment. JC helped Trae and I rip out the shelving and dividing wall between the front room and the current designated workshop. Rick also helped Trae test and identify the power lines coming out of the breaker box.
The nice thing about tearing down walls is we end up with decent wood to repurpose for some heavy duty workbenches. As walls come down we do end up with having to add long bearing headers which we don’t have at the moment. The hallway walls are load bearing and this makes the space awkwardly thin since the space was originally a doctor’s office where they had no need for the rooms to be very wide in the first place.
The new open room looks good, but we’ve run into a problem. As you can see in the picture there is a 3,000 pound safe in the center of the room that we would like to move. Sandy suggested we use a pallet jack, which should work…although it isn’t clear how we are going to get the pallet jack underneath it.
Here is an idea being considered! Maybe we can use Wally Wallington’s simple ratchet technique. If he can lift 19,000 pounds with some rocks, five gallon counterweights, and wooden boards, then we can get this 3,000 pound safe moved 15 feet.
If you have any other ideas we’ve love to hear them in the comments…