Thursday, June 16, 2011

A Compilation of the Miscellaneous

Not everything I've built needs a post about it like my gameboy calculator did. So here I will display the rest  of my highschool creations (almost, the plasma speaker will be next). For those of you who have seen my facebook albulm, much of these first few post are things you have alreadly seen with maybe a new picture or something. I'll probably be updating that albulm less now that I'm blogging as this gives me more of an opportunity to talk about the builds.

Here's a more recent project from early senior year. It was a joint venture I undertook with my friend to build a portable N64 into a breifcase. I built it and he payed for the parts. The picture shown above was the umm "working prototype" that I took with me to an out-of-town cross country meet. We're playing mario kart.
Unfortunatly, the project never made it to full completion because of an unfortunate accident (*cough* Ryan *cough**cough*) that rendered the screen ineffective. Its a project I will pick back up with the funds and time allow it. The new one will be better anyways. The cartridge slot with its like 100 pins I had to solder (twice) is pictured above.

Now on to the smaller projects. I thought I'd start with my first electronics project (not strictly true, I got a build your own radio kit from radio shack in 3rd grade) or more specifically a mod. These were done near the end of my 8th grade year when I was first learning how to solder. At this point your probably thinking that everything I build is centered around videogames. But thats all of them. Video game related mods tend to have a lot of online support, clearer pin markings, and readily available supplies (i.e. the controllers in your room).

This was a mod/fix that I did when the rechargeable batteries in my electric razor went out. Freshmen year I think. I've since got a new razor and I use this one for long campout and out of town trips. Nuff said.

The last of my displayable project is my breadboard power supply. It regulates votage to one of  five different adjustable settings. The was the first project (and only, its kinda expensive) where I used a PCB board house and a CAD program to make my board. BatchPCB and Cadsoft Eagle specifically.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

An Introduction of Sorts and a Gameboy Calculator

Having found myself with vast amounts of extra time since I graduated highschool last week, I decided to set up this blog to display the products of my electrical engineering studies at home. I'm really not that productive so postings may or may not be sparse after these initial few which will sum up some of my highschool creations and mods. My name is Cameron Blocker and I'm a student enrolled at Brigham Young University with a major in electrical engineering.

I thought I would start with my Gameboy Calculator since it turned out to be my claim to fame of sorts throughout highschool. The idea came and design and construction were done during my freshmen year. Prototyping and completion were done in my sophmore algebra II class. I beleive I had time to get 6 badges in pokemon leaf green by the time that class was over.

Although many people found it impressive, there are hardly any electronics concepts involved in the build. Just soldering and rewiring (and cramming and taping). Input pins on the gameboy circuit board are active low so I just had to rewire the buttons on the calculator's circuit board so they pull the gameboy's test points to ground when pushed. I neglected to mention that it in no way functions like a calculator. Anyting that the gameboy didn't need was dremelled off to make room for the additional circuitry. And even with that done, it was still a very tight fit.
As can be seen in the first picture, it has started to wear away some from the years of use. There's even a button missing that I put a gasket in place of. It still works to this day but now it sits on my shelf without a purpose anymore.