ISTE Standards & NGSS Science & Engineering Practies

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Experimenting with MDF and Wooden Book Covers

Prototyping with MDF and Wood

This week, I'm working on two more book models- one using MDF and the other cherry.

Since the MDF is only 1/4" thick (and cut completely through with the laser), I glued a piece of binder's board to the back cover.

To make the MDF easier to glue, I sanded it. To minimize the odor and prevent discoloration of the cover paper, I applied gesso to the singed edges.  Luckily, the odor dissipated.

In general, I found the MDF pretty easy to work with.  I did, however, end up revising my Inkscape design by lowering the cut-out for the Photon and widening the channel for the battery wires.

Reggie Pouliot:  Carpenter Extraordinaire

When I first imagined making an internet-connected book, I imagined it with wooden covers. Unfortunately, I lack carpentry skills.

I first got in touch with Reggie Pouliot, a master carpenter, after buying one of his beautiful hand-made cutting boards at a craft store.

When I told him about my project (and explained how much I disliked the smell of MDF), he told me that he could use one of the MDF pieces I'd cut with the laser cutter as a template for a hand router!  The best thing about this was that by using a router, he could use a thicker piece of wood (3/8") and still make the 1/4" indentations for my electrical components!
The covers turned out beautifully!

Surprisingly, I learned that neither copper tape nor conductive fabric tape adhere to wood very well.  In hindsight, I should have tested this out long before I did!

This prompted me to try using Nori paste to glue paper to the wood before constructing the circuit.

The paste dried very slowly, but it worked like a charm!

Monday, January 16, 2017

Musical Book

Musical Book

For those of you who may be wondering what type of music my internet connected story book plays, when the Particle function is triggered, I've uploaded a short demo video above.

I got a head start by looking at this "Music Time" tutorial that plays "Never Gonna Give You Up" by Rick Astley.  Since I didn't want to rick roll people, I changed it.

In a future iteration, I'd like to figure out how to get the lights to flicker in sync with the music.