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Home > Advanced Projects

ADVANCED PROJECTS
These projects are ones I have designed for personal use and are not recommended for the beginner or GCSE student. Some may be feasible for A-Level students but most beyond the scope of the syllabus.
I have made the page available on line but not all projects have been published yet - they will appear in due course as time allows.

UPDATED:.11:23 01 December 2013


GIANT SIMON SAYS GAME - NEW
This project is a giant version of the 70's Simon Says game taken a bit far - with 6 digit display for messages and high scores, and a range of tunes played during demo mode. It has up to 63 step sequence genertion and hangs on the wall outside my workshop. It is very popular indeed and gets used by all ages...and all run from a 18pin PIC.micro-controller (HEX file available free),.

There is a handheld version on the Group Projects page also.

CNC DRILL - NEW
This is a CNC drill to drill holes in printed circuit boards. My eyesight is not what it was and drilling lots of boards for students is... well boring. So this drilling machine reads .drl Gerber files and can drill hundreds of holes with an accuracy of 0.003" - and it's mainly MADE FROM MECANNO!!!.
(3 pages)
GIANT LED METER
This multi-coloured LED meter currently has 1260 LEDs and is modular so blocks of 144 LEDs at a time can bne added to extend the length. It measures 2.1m and hangs in the workshop. It has an amplifier module so it can react to music and audio, and also adjust the speed of response and the scale of the meter. It draws a fair bit of current when all on but looks fantastic.

CPU LIGHT CONTROLLER
A unique control system for Zero88 or Pulsar analog lighting desks. This project is a combination of programming and a 32 channel analog sampler/driver that can interface a PC to a standard lighting desk, producing a fully programmable lighting system. This project is massive - it took 18months in all to develop it so will take a while to record.

DMX CONTROLLER
This is another light controller project following on from the Analogue one above, to control some DMX Moving Head units (flashy light things). This is a cut down version of the main project which means there is no facility for external sliders and switches. All operation and programming is done using the software.
All fully functional but this is as far as I have got. It needs to be used a bit first!

DOT MATRIX MESSAGE DISPLAY
At last, always wanted one of those moving displays with preset messages on it, just for those moments where you want to express an opinion but can't be heard. Good for leaving messages for friends, plus many other applications. A neat unit that can be programmed simply by plugging in a standard keyboard. Has an option for a remote also.

FREQUENCY METER/COUNTER
There have been many circuits for frequency meters and some standard IC's to use. This design goes back to the basic fundamentals and builds a neat counter that has excellent accuracy and stability. Measures frequencies up to 5MHz and counts/measures pulses on a 5 digit display.

RS232 SERIAL PORT READER
A few projects I have made have used the (rapidly disappearing) 9 pin serial port on PCs. In order to check the signals sent by the PC, this unit can be used to monitor the serial port. It does only monitor one directional on the receive pin (3) but has proved to be very useful indeed. It has a selectable baud from 9.6Kb to 1.25Mb and can display data in 3 different formats.

STAGE INTERCOM
These were designed for a school production to link the stage, orchestra, sound and lighting positions together via headsets. Uses 2-wire cable connecting 7 intercoms, but more can be added. A very sensitive but stable design and absolutely no background noise.

SPEED TRAP
This Speed Trap measures in metres per second and MPH and uses laser beams spaced 200mm apart as a sensor. The display is nearly 1 metre wide and such was the interest by the PE and Science depts, I decided to make 2, one for the wall of my workshop and one for the track/loaning out.

WORKSHOP POWER SUPPLY
A really meaty power supply with attitude, producing over 10A with voltages +/-5v, +/-9v, +/-12v, +/-17.5v and two variable supplies from 1.5-13v @5A and 3-28v at 8A. This has been used for many years and is as solid as a rock.

UV LIGHT BOX TIMER
A timer that controls the UV light in an exposure box. The PCB is neat and compact with most controls PCB mounted. Will time from 2-20 minutes in 10 intervals and switches a mains light via a relay. Can be used for other processing applications to do with photography for example.

GO-KART DASHBOARD
This was part of a Rover Challenge Scheme which enabled students to become involved in the design and construction of Go-Karts and systems associated with them. This one in particular shows a rather extravagant rev counter, temperature and battery meters and speedometer all using LED displays.

TRI-COLOUR LED CONTROLLER
This was designed for a colleague at work in the Science department who wanted to demonstrate the effect of mixing pure light using large 3W RGB LED's. The design uses PWM to control each LED. Not the best design but works really well and is cheap to build. Will control other devices up to 2Amps.

REACTION TIMER
A simple fun game that will measure you eye to hand reaction time in 1/100 od a second. A very simple circuit using a PIC controller and 3 x 7-segment displays. Fits in a small hand held case - very useful for boring journeys.

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