Fun project of the year

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Fun project of the year

Postby Roche » Wed Dec 23, 2020 7:24 pm

This job was too much fun to not do it...

The customer turned up with a board that looked like this:
Start.jpg
Start.jpg (99.25 KiB) Viewed 3489 times

It had been running for about 16 years, but was undocumented and unreliable. I persuaded them to go for the nuclear option, and designed this:
Replacement.jpg
Replacement.jpg (94.99 KiB) Viewed 3489 times

The processor is a P18, with plenty of I/O
It is fitted inside this:
Ferry.jpg
Ferry.jpg (96.89 KiB) Viewed 3489 times

Fun bits included radio calling from each bank, 60GHz radar to detect the bank and anything in the direction of travel, speed control, interlocks with gates and other bits of user interface...

It runs across the Thames, about 50 miles west of London.
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Re: Fun project of the year

Postby ric » Thu Dec 24, 2020 12:05 am

I was going to be sneaky, and use geolocaiton info from the photo to try to locate it, but it was taken by a Ricoh camera with no GPS.
50 miles west of London would be around Abingdon/Oxford wouldn't it?
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Re: Fun project of the year

Postby Roche » Thu Dec 24, 2020 10:40 am

It's a little closer to London...
I meant to add - it's a chain ferry; so there is a chain between the two banks and the ferry pulls itself along the chain. All battery powered.
You're correct - Ricoh camera - ancient, waterproof and usefully anonymous!
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Re: Fun project of the year

Postby ric » Thu Dec 24, 2020 12:14 pm

Now you've got me curious.
Wikipedia thinks the furthest uptsream ferry is the "Shepperton to Weybridge Ferry", but it's plainly not that one.
From the width of the river, I assume it's a fair way upstream from there.
Latest test project, an LED matrix display made from one reel of addressable LEDs. here
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Re: Fun project of the year

Postby Roche » Thu Dec 24, 2020 12:32 pm

Although it is in the Thames, it crosses between the river bank and an island, so it is not a full crossing. Some of what you see in the picture is an island, so you don't see the entire width of the river. It is on a private estate.
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Re: Fun project of the year

Postby Roche » Sun Mar 27, 2022 6:10 pm

RIMG0019.jpg
RIMG0019.jpg (226.51 KiB) Viewed 683 times


This year the project was slightly different: A friends son has had a stroke. The son was a saxophonist, but could no longer play. He has though developed enough control of one hand to be able to use a keyboard, and blow a sax. My friend is a pretty able machinist, so made a surround for an alto sax so it could be operated by solenoids. I knocked up an interface between the midi output of a keyboard and the solenoids. All done with a little P18...
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Re: Fun project of the year

Postby ric » Sun Mar 27, 2022 11:46 pm

That looks like something that Professor Fate would launch at The Great Leslie! ;)
torpedo2.jpg
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Have you made a video (with sound) of it in operation yet?
Latest test project, an LED matrix display made from one reel of addressable LEDs. here
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Re: Fun project of the year

Postby Roche » Tue Mar 29, 2022 7:49 am

No video just yet - there is still some mechanical adjustment going on. When/if there is one, I will try and post it...
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