Wednesday, February 8, 2017

DIY clock kit from China build timelapse.

Last days I get DIY clock kit from China and this video is a build timelapse.

Overall this kit is really nice. Clock is small and compact.
It seems to be transparent since only digit face is visible.
It will track date, day of the week, time and two alarms that you can switch off and on individually.
In addition to this clock can display ambient temperature and have dim functionality for low light conditions.

What we have inside this kit?
Not much so it is easy to build.
You will need basic soldering skills but there are some tight places so I don’t recommend this kit as your first build.

I really enjoyed building this kit.

Carefree Melody by Twin Musicom is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Christmas Star Ornament made using Arduino and WS2812b Strips.

Fifteen years ago I build DIY Christmas Star Ornament using 4060, LEDs and simple square wave generator based on 4011. Below you can find photo of it. Last year I made 3D printed case for it to look even more attractive.
Today I build different version of it using Arduino and WS2812b Strips. Of course it is too big to put it on Christmas Tree but will work well for house decoration.

I get star template from internet, scale it up and transfer it to the thick flat Styrofoam coffer ceiling tile. I made border using masking wooden strips. I cut them step by step going around the star. I painted wooden strips using red mordant. I use some ribbon, bauble, and small silver stars to decorate it.

When star was ready I started to work on electronics. I get 5 WS2812b led strips and Arduino Pro Mini. I connected all strips in parallel and connect 5V power source to led strips and Arduino. All data lines I connected to Arduino digital pin 2 and that's all folks.
To program some effects I use Arduino Light Animation (ALA) library.

#include <Ala.h>
#include <AlaLed.h>
#include <AlaLedRgb.h>
#include <ExtNeoPixel.h>
#include <ExtTlc5940.h>
#include <ExtTlc5940Config.h>

#include "AlaLedRgb.h"

#define DELAY_TIME 5000

AlaLedRgb rgbStrip;
int animation = 0;
int palette = 0;
long startTime;

int animList[12] = {

AlaPalette paletteList[5] = {

void setup()
  startTime = millis();
  rgbStrip.initWS2812(10, 2);

void loop()
  // time action
  if (millis() - startTime > DELAY_TIME)
   startTime = millis();



void updateAnimation()
  rgbStrip.setAnimation(animList[animation % 12], DELAY_TIME / 2, animList[animation % 12] == ALA_FIRE ? alaPalFire : paletteList[palette % 5]);
Hip Hop Christmas by Twin Musicom is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license Artist:

Thursday, February 12, 2015

My C64 use 12V DC (battery) power source now.

I would like to show you my new update to my C64 project. Shortly speaking it IS portable, battery powered C64 personal computer. I am a big fan of the C64 device. My coding begun on this device. I have one C64G device which I will modify a lot :) and I will post here a description of my work progress.

So what we have now?

  • SD2IEC - I made it myself.
  • Mini LCD screen - Simple small rear view car LCD screen
  • Build-in stereo amplifier with nice speakers
  • Stereo SID - I made it myself.
  • C64 original ROM and JiffyDOS OS with OS switch that auto reset on change.
  • 12V DC input - I can power my device using any common 12V 2A power source or RC Li-Poly battery.

Last days I do another round of upgrading my C64. I installed two pulse converters to get 5V and 9V DC to power my device. I decided to use DC to DC converters because I planed to use battery to power the device and I don't want to loose any energy from it. I added 12V power socked and RC Li-Poly battery socked. My C64 is fully portable device now. Common 2200mAh RC battery is enough to power C64 for 1.5 hour. To protect Li-Poly battery from discharging it to low I added simple RC voltage monitor that will buzz if voltage is below 3.3V.

Info about previous modifications you can find here:

Some actual photos:

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

3D Printed eggbot clone to make Christmas ornaments.

Happy Holidays! This is a result of my modifications made for existing eggbot clone to decorate Christmas ornaments (8cm+).
At the beginning I was inspired by the Sparebot project.

I build my first 3d printer some time ago so I started looking for 3d printed version of any eggbot clone project. I found one here. Unfortunately this hardware was designed to work with small objects so I needed to modify it and adapt to work with 8cm+ Christmas ornaments.

Control board was made according to the Sparebot documentation using Arduino UNO and 2 Stepstick step motor drivers. I found big error on Sparebot schematics. To enable micro stepping mode you need to connect MS1, MS2, MS3 to +5V signal not to the ground! After this change control board is working great.

I am using Inkscape to design patterns. This is really great open source vector graphics editor. I am using inkscape-unicorn plug-in to export final designs to the gcode format. If you have troubles with python when using this plug-in install original eggbot software first. It comes with useful effects like hatch fill, etc.

Designing Christmas ornaments was really fun! And below are some results of my work. I made really nice Christmas gifts.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Top Secret game project using Arduino and Hackvision.


Last days I came out with the idea of doing a game using AVR.
I start looking for existing systems and I found Hackvision board.

This is open hardware project that I really like. It merge all existing open hardware solutions to one board. You can build your own pcb like me or even use it on breadboard.

So first step was to do hackvision board and below you can find some photos of it. Soldering for double sided pcb is always problematic on non tinned board for me. Sorry for so bad soldering on this board :) Next time I will use Lichtenberg's alloy to tinn the PCB. I put some elements on bottom side since I am plan to do 3d printed case for this device.

One of the first screens below.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

My C64 mods :)

Hello All,

I would like to show you my new project. Shortly speaking it will be portable, battery powered C64 personal computer. I am a big fan of the C64 device. My codding begun on this device. I have one C64G device which I will modify a lot :) and post here a description of my work progress.

Small video.

So what we have now?
  • SD2IEC
  • Mini LCD screen
  • Build-in amplifier
  • Stereo SID
Planned to do:
  • JiffyDOS
  • Battery power
New photo
I connected cheap lcd car display used for back camera. This device have AV input so it was really easy to connect it. I removed all not necessary stuff and left lcd panel and electronics board which is mounted inside the C64. The lcd is powered from C64 board from 9V DC source used mostly for SID. If I have some time I will post photo where you can find this on board. Ok, so here you can find photo of the power source.
I mounted sd2iec on prototype board to check if it is working correct before I will make this device on PCB. I mounted this version.
Most updated version of firmware you can find here. I used LarsP version of firmware which is correct for this layout. First you need to burn bootloader (newboot* file). I used this avrdude command to burn it : "avrdude -c usbasp -p m644p -U flash:w:newboot-m644p-larsp.hex:i -U hfuse:w:0x92:m -U efuse:w:0xFD:m -U lfuse:w:0xEf:m". After doing it put latest *.bin file to the root directory of the sd card and after turning on the device it will update the firmware. Board is working correct so I am planning to build one layer PCB for it. Ok so here is a current PCD work progres :)
I am almost ready with my layout. The thing is to use not smd elements but to get small compact board that is possible to do by thermic transfer.
This is final version of the PCB. The idea of this board is "use what you need". If you plan to use SD card reader and slot from it connect directly to the pins on the left side and connect sd card detect and sd write protect pins and 3.3V source from reader (remove Q1). If you plan to mount sd slot on pcb then solder it on right side and connect by wire sd7, sd5, sd2, sd1 signals from left to right. If slot have "card detect" and "write protect" pins connect it to the corresponding pins on top. For most of the MMC slots and some SD slots you should be able to solder it to PCB. After first run I found small error in PCB. Boards below are OK. Please make sure that you solder Q1 correct because I mess up pin layout.
R1, R2, R3: 1.8k R4, R5, R6: 3.3k R7, R8: 560 C1, C5: 100n C2, C3: 33p C4, C6: 2.2u Q1: 3.3V Q2: 8MHz IC1: ATMega644P (5V)
This is PCB done by thermic toner transfer.
This is PCB after painting with the paint for glass. This is the trick to make DIY solder mask.
And finally PCB after removing paint from solder pads.
Here you can find current board look.
This is fully mounted device.
Ant the place where it will be mounted.
Some links and places from where I get inspiration for my project: (PL) (EN) (EN)

3. Stereo SID
I have found some time at weekend and mounted Stereo SID module. Available addresses for second SID are: d400, d420, d500, de00, df00. I was thinking how to mount preamp for second SID and came out to the idea of cutting whole preamp from another c64 board. So I did it. You need to connect point A and B between two boards. C connected to pin 1,2,3,4 are 22nF (new SID) or 470pF (old SID). C in audio line is 100nF. Address for second SID is selected by 74LS139. I put another SID on existing one and solder it together according to schema below.

Monday, February 14, 2011

My Valentine's Day gift.


Today I will show you my new small project. It is my Valentine's Day gift for my wife. It is simple heart made from LED controlled by 4017 (digital counter) and NE555 (generator).
All parts connected using universal PCB.

Cost about 3-5$.