Backyard Workshop is a site for my various hobbies, including my homemade CNC machine, Reprap 3d printer, metalworking on my Enco 3-in1 machine, woodworking, aluminum casting, electronics, and more that I do in my garage in Clearwater, FL!
Check out my photo galleries and free downloads :)
Hey everybody! I worked out some upgrades and improvements to the Monster in a Box Halloween prop I made last year - so check them out! And I'm also working on a new video format - hope it's not too CHEESY LOL
The first rail system was made with wooden dowels, and then I found some aluminum rods at the big box store so I decided those looked a little more "pro" and remember it's not about whether you win or lose - it's how you look playing the game ;) So here's a look at the new and improved DSLR Rail Rig
In the picture you can see my home made DSLR rail rig and also the homemade tablet holder mounted on the tripod - Using an app for controlling the camera from the tablet, I can face the tablet and camera towards me and see if I am framed in the shot or not - that's really helpful for my low budget DIY videos where I am the camera man AND the actor LOL
My camera rig consists of
OK so here's a picture - sorry the picture is taken with my phone because the camera is mounted on the rail system! LOL
It's October! And you know what that means... That means I'm working on Halloween projects :) I have three props that I'll be working on this year and I will post videos and articles on all of them. So stay tuned and check back in a few days for the first video / article / update! :)
Wow I can't believe we are halfway through the year already - time flies!
I haven't been doing a whole lot lately - printed a few minor things, but nothing extraordinary. The CNC machine hasn't been fired up in months either - I guess I'm in a slump LOL I'm sure it'll come around ;)
I did buy the new Parallax Propeller Activity Board and started playing with that - it's by far the best Prop board I've seen with built on Analog to Digital and Digital to Analog converters, built in 1'8" jack for audio playback, built on 3 pin headers for servos and such, built on SD card slot and last but not least jacks for the XBe wireless module - oh! and a nice little bread board section too - very cool board and I probably will buy a few of them for my projects! Get yours here!
Also in the Propeller arena - I've started working in the new SimpleIDE and programing for the Prop in C - since I program all day in C# it's a lot more familiar than SPIN for sure - still got a few quirks to work out but I think it'll be tons better! Expect to see the Monster in a Box Halloween prop reprgrammed in C on the new Propeller Activity Board! :)
and last but not least I started listing all my excess electronics on eBay - so please support the site and check out my auctions HERE :)
I wanted to get a fancy ring light for my DSLR, but all the ones I could find were not built for my lens (18-135 STM) and they were too expensive - and so I've had to make my own! :)
First I ordered some LED ring lights that are *meant* to be used in a car interier, they are 12V DC and in my mind - ready to go for my project!
I got the ones that I needed from here (search for the sizes you need)
Then I orderd a LED dimmer, the dimmer is supposed to be used with the LED strips but it worked perfect with the rings too - I go mine from eBay - Like this one
and finally I designed and printed the holder that will fit the rings and also fit on my lens' hood ring part - I have provided the STL file in my Downloads section - if you have a 18-135 lens then it will work for you :)
Here's some pictures and a video of the light dimmer working - in the pictures there are some with the light ring, and some with the flash, and some with no flash - the best one's (to me) are the one's with the ring light :)
Check out the video on my YouTube Channel (I embedded the video here but Flash's "I got to be on top" was messing with my pictures! LOL
Have I mentioned that I LOVE having a homemade 3D printer? :)
I am making some videos for my band Big Moon Rocket and I am using my Canon T4i DSLR to record the video - You may have noticed my DSLR rig in the featured posts above (if not check it out)
Well, on with the story... I have an 8' camera crane, and the last time we filmed with the crane it was a pain to try and see what was on the little DSLR screen when the crane was up in the air. So I figured out how to connect my Canon T4i to my Samsung G-Tab tablet - Using the DSLR Connect app and a regular USB cable (The Samsung G-Tab has a regular USB port - it's like the only one of it's kind I SO lucked out and didn't have to buy an adapter!) - anyway I'm set up to use the tablet as an external monitor that can show the crane operator what's on the camera - it can even start and stop the video and change settings and everything - it's AWESOME! :)
Weeeelllllll Now I need some way to mount the tablet on the tripod... Of course there are things you can buy for that... but I am not down with that LOL Not when I have the opportunity to design and print anything I want!
Without further ado - here's my custom homemade 3D printed tripod mounted tablet holder :) (say that 3 times fast LOL)
Homemade Filmmaking Gear
I wanted one of those fancy rail systems for my DSLR camera so I can do some more video work with my band. Turns out they cost a LOT of money, and I'm not down with spending a lot of money (especially when I can make all the parts myself and have the same thing - only better) :)
Spent Saturday of last weekend at the Oak Grove Middle School First Lego League Tournament. I set up my 3D Printer there for the kids to check out and was bombarded with questions all day long (not just from the kids) it was great that all the kids showed a lot of interest in the printer, made me feel that it was worth going for sure.
A couple of the kids sat there and watch it print objects nearly all day long - it really can be quite mesmerizing! LOL
The printer worked pretty well all day, in the morning the 24V Power Supply I use for the heated bed blew (sparks and smoke even!) so I had to run everything off of the one 12V power supply - and that means that the bed doesn't get quite hot enough - but it all worked out OK. At nearly the end of the day the plastic was running out so I was trying to feed in another spool and broke the piece that provides tension on the plastic to feed t though - so that was it - we were down! Good thing it was nearly over anyway! :)
Sunday of last weekend was spent milling some aluminum for a Taig milling machine on my Homemade CNC machine :) sorry no picutres of the work but the homemade CNC machine held up great and plowed through the aluminum better than I anticipated
So that's it - just a quick update - carry on
I was looking for tablet holders that my wife could use in the kitchen to display her recipes while she was baking and I found a few nice one's but they were way too expensive. So I thought to my self "I can make that myself for a lot cheaper" - that's pretty much what I say to anything LOL