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View Full Version : Scary Terry's Audio Servo Driver



nromanel
08-31-2008, 03:01 PM
Anybody here have any experience with the above mentioned board/kit?
(www.cowlacious.com) or (http://www.scary-terry.com/)

I've built it, but during the initial tuning... I can't get the LVL led to lgiht, no matter how much I adjust The lvl pot.

MrChristmas2000
08-31-2008, 08:47 PM
That's cool stuff.

You could have a Santa waving and mouth saying Ho Ho HO.:D

kostyun
08-31-2008, 11:54 PM
Looks cool... I may have to build one!

nromanel
08-31-2008, 11:55 PM
Yea... just got it working...

I had some resistors in the wrong places.
In some cases it was hard to distinguish between the orange bands and the red bands.

I'll be ssure to post videos once I have it mounted in a skull!!

nromanel
09-02-2008, 05:40 PM
I can amuse myself for hours with the end result!

Check it out:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXmfulpGIJc

BuzzKill
09-02-2008, 07:12 PM
Arrrgh!! They are already sold out until mid-September. I put one on order anyway. That is WAYYYY to fun to pass up!

nromanel
09-02-2008, 08:36 PM
Only issue I'm having is with the servo...

The board has a pot to adjust the servo to a starting point, but I'm not having much luck with it. I can't seem to get it to a point that has the servo slightly off 0. Either too far, or not enough... which causes the servo motor to keep running and get really hot.

I may use a Basic Stamp 1 that I have laying around, to just take an input from the darlington array and I'll process my own servo output.

ctmal
09-02-2008, 09:02 PM
That's awesome!

kostyun
09-03-2008, 08:14 PM
I have this huge inclination to get one of these and a full size skeleton..........

nromanel
09-03-2008, 09:41 PM
I'm right with you frank!

I also had the idea of motorizing one of the arms. Two pivots... one at the shoulder, and one at the forearm. Remote controlled by a wearable sleeve on the operators arm...

Essentially the sleeve would just have two pots connecting to a basic stamp to encode the data and shoot it over rf to the receiving basic stamp, which would then output to the servos.

Even taking it a step further...
Put the skeleton on a rotating base (Or just the torso), and then hook up a pot to a swivel chair.

My vision has the operator sitting down and wearing the sleeve with a headset mic. Watching a monitor which has a camera view of what the skeleton "sees"

I think that would be quite the attraction! It's pretty simple mechanically but seems to be certainly a one or two weekend project in terms of fabrication

nromanel
09-03-2008, 09:43 PM
Only issue I'm having is with the servo...

The board has a pot to adjust the servo to a starting point, but I'm not having much luck with it. I can't seem to get it to a point that has the servo slightly off 0. Either too far, or not enough... which causes the servo motor to keep running and get really hot.

I may use a Basic Stamp 1 that I have laying around, to just take an input from the darlington array and I'll process my own servo output.

Seems the issue I was having was with the servo. Replaced the servo, It's now as smooth as silk!

rca
09-04-2008, 09:14 AM
Did you replace it with another Hitec 425BB or use something different?

Ron

nromanel
09-04-2008, 11:59 AM
I was originally using a futaba, and replaced with the same.

Not sure which model, just regular run of the mill servos that I picked up at the corner hobby shop ;-)

bbayliss
09-04-2008, 11:07 PM
Arrrgh!! They are already sold out until mid-September. I put one on order anyway. That is WAYYYY to fun to pass up!

Check out http://www.efx-tek.com
These are good friends of mine, Jon Williams will help you design anything you can think of. Vixen now has plugins to control their products and they now have a plugin for VSA which will syn multiple servos to a soundtrack, so you could have a singing choir. The 2 owners used to work for Parallax and developed a lot for them, then they were fired when the EFX line started to take off so they formed EFX-TEK. They have some awsome simulated candles that they developed for Disney.

BuzzKill
09-05-2008, 12:27 AM
I met them at Maker's Faire. They need to update their website so that you can figure out what the hell you are supposed to do with all that stuff. I see all the goodies. And they are definately on my short list for next halloween. But they have only one demo and that is not even complete. You have to already have the hardware to even use it. There are no examples. At least Terry has a kit that out of the box you will end up with a working prop when you finish building it. After that you can figure out new ways to use the product. Efx-tek needs an introductory kit so you can build something and see the possibilities.

On another note... Has anyone seen a plans for making a water spitter? I just want to aerosolize some water that gets spit from a skulls mouth.

bbayliss
09-05-2008, 07:14 AM
You need to go to the forums that is where everything is, including the code to make your prop work out of the box. Yes the EFX-TEK products are more advanced than boards like Terrys but you can do so much more with them and you can reuse them for differant projects.
Brian

kostyun
09-05-2008, 11:52 AM
I have been poking around online - I found some 8 channel DMX to servo controllers that I think I'm going to give a try.

In vixen there is the option to "dim" a channel based on the audio - I am going to use this to create the motion.

BuzzKill
09-09-2008, 12:31 PM
nromanel -

Are you using J10 on the board? It looks like we could drop that 12v 500ma off those 8 J10 pins down to 5v we could directly drive a couple of SSR boards to throw some floods or something on the prop as it is speaking.

Aurbo99
09-09-2008, 01:43 PM
Been using Scary-Terry and Cowlacious Designs for other projects not related to the Holiday schemes for many years and I would higly recommend both.

Cowlacious has top notch customer service was very fast at answering questions.

Order EARLY.. they sell out FAST but no one can complain about keeping overhead down thus keeping prices very reasonable.

I used the several of the items to animate a diorama at a Military Base a few years back. I wont tell you exactly which items, if the C.O. of my old unit ever found out how fricken simple the diorama was to animate, I'd be in a ton of crap for twiddling away almost 3 months "developing" the system =)

nromanel
09-09-2008, 02:26 PM
nromanel -

Are you using J10 on the board? It looks like we could drop that 12v 500ma off those 8 J10 pins down to 5v we could directly drive a couple of SSR boards to throw some floods or something on the prop as it is speaking.

BuzzKill... J10 are the outputs from a darlington array. They don't switch voltage, they switch to ground. So whatever voltage you want is fine. They are made to drive high loads.

I was thinking along the same lines (a spotlight on the skull)

BuzzKill
09-09-2008, 04:04 PM
I put my 555 in the wrong spot! Can't beleive it. I have assembled a couple dozen SSR's, 595's Ren24's without a mistake. And now I have been undone by a talking skull. I broke a pin trying to extract it too. Oh well. Radio Shack has 555's so its all good.

nromanel
09-09-2008, 04:06 PM
I put my 555 in the wrong spot! Can't beleive it. I have assembled a couple dozen SSR's, 595's Ren24's without a mistake. And now I have been undone by a talking skull. I broke a pin trying to extract it too. Oh well. Radio Shack has 555's so its all good.

Ha!!! I know the feeling! I wanted to install sockets to make IC replacement easier, but i just couldnt wait to get the entire thing together!

Greg in Canby
02-26-2009, 12:55 PM
My Scary-Terry/Cowlacious talking skull has run for three years now without a glitch. I have edited the audio each year and am pleased with the results.

I guess it's time to branch out to a 3 axis skull and VSA . . . ya know . . . two skulls are better than one!

I agree that Cowlacious has top notch customer service.

I aslo shot an email to Scary-Terry about a different circuit and he was fast to reply as well.