123D Circuits Video Series : Measure Current

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This week's video on Electronics teaches you how to measure electrical current with a multimeter in the 123D Circuits virtual circuit simulator.  This is the companion video to last week's "Measure Voltage with a Multimeter".  You may follow along with the video, or just watch and be entertained.
This link will take you to the playlist of all videos 


So far we've been keeping it simple by getting the main point across in under a few minutes, but if you watch the whole video you'll also learn some engineering science!  Check out the video below.

Want to see the finished Current Measurement circuit?  Here's the link!

123D Circuits is a fantastic place to go to build electronic circuits without leaving your computer.  It's as simple as dragging together components and watching them come alive in your web browser.  It's fast, it's free, and it's quite powerful.


You can do this yourself, just head over to 123D Circuits and sign in, then create a "New Breadboard Circuit" then follow along with the video.  You never know, this could be the beginning of something big - we think so!

 

 

Down the Creature Feedr Hole.

Have you seen the Creature Feedr Tumblr yet?   It's pretty great.

So far, 4 of our most prolific users have created video of their process with 123D Creature to share. Each artist has a different process, and it's kind of fascinating to see how they approach each of their creations.  Also, all the Creature Feedrs get a 3D print from our friends at Sculpteo!

 

                             

Adam Beamish starts deceptively simply, choosing to manipulate the wireframe into a generic bust before baking.  From there, it's all tweaking and surface manipulation to create his amazing characters.

 

Cecelia Gaxiola and Michael Whiteside use the wire skeleton much more to outline their creations and use color to enhance later.

 

Check out the newest from Joe Batty - this may be the cutest Creature so far.

We also post great models we see in the 123D gallery pretty regularly.  My hands-down favorite so far is the Simpsons series by cRe@YvEs.  Though, Marge is a little risque (not necessarily a bad thing).

Want to submit a Creature? Just click submit at the top of the Feedr page or go here!

Get Yourself Featured on 123D !

Do you like checking out the 123D Featured Users but feel like it's missing a little... "you"?   Fill out the form below and you could be the next Featured User!   The most interesting projects might just wind up here, or even on the screens of our apps.  What are you waiting for ?!?!  Hit the read more link.

Read more »

Glow-in-the-Dark Rocket Mobile with 123D and Tinkercad

We've been thinking about rockets and spaceships this week at 123D and we had some cool glow-in-the-dark filament for a Makerbot Rep2, so naturally: GLOW IN THE DARK SPACESHIPS!

The models came directly from the 123Dapp.com gallery, and the planets, end caps and filament points I quickly modeled in Tinkercad. Because the rockets were taller than would fit on a Makerbot, I imported them into MeshMixer to chop them in half witht the Slice tool. Slicing them also allowed for printing without support material.  With a little Krazy Glue, you get more size options.

If you want to make this yourself, you can try downloading more and different rockets. We've collected together a bunch of really varied rocket designs. ( <- click to see the collection and download!)

The trickiest part of a mobile is (perhaps obvious) is the balancing of all the elements - both physically and visually.  I printed a couple different sizes of rockets and planets, with varying infills so that I would have options when I started assembling it.  Only after printing the last rocket did I realize I could have just modeled the eyelets, but there you have it.

In total, the project cost about $15 in parts and materials: monofilament, eyelets, dowels and krazy glue. 

 

This is a perfect weekend project - and the glow-in-the-dark filament is available from Makerbot.  See the whole project here on 123dapp.com.  What are you making for SPAC3D?

HIGHFIV3D: Autonomous Reassurance Device – Part 3

Part 3: Audio & Assembly Awesomeness

 

highfiv3d 123d project

I wrapped up March with this cool little project - it's a little late on the calendar, but there were some tweaks to be made.  Last time, I successfully programmed the Arduino to accept the accelerometer input to trigger audio files, and recorded some WAV files.  I tried the cardboard hand from Part 1, but it essentially exploded (due to the inherent awesomeness of my high-five, maybe..).  I decided to just bite the bullet and print it on our Objet printer, I may do another with flexible filament after all.

Once the files were cut and loaded on to the SD card, I finished the assembly of the hand with a base that could support a bunch of slaps.  I used the shear at TechShop San Francisco to get some 3-inch strips of mild steel, then a vise and a hammer to bang it into a 90-degree shape (I'll let you figure out how to get the other side).  

 A quick trip to the hardware store netted a spring, some threaded rod, a bushing/spacer and some locking nuts.  Basically, the hand/dowel will rotate around the threaded rod - which is locked in place with the nuts - a spring at the base will provide the tension for it to return to neutral.  I just used a C-clamp to secure it to a desk and watched my co-workers smack away.  A small USB-powered speaker with a headphone jack provides the sound, and I just picked up a dual-USB-plug to power it and the arduino board.

The random clips are pretty funny, I may do something similar soon with microphones.  The folks upstairs at Instructables have some pretty heavy feet, we've been scheming to provide them some 'feedback' when footsteps reach a certain decible level.  

 It's a pretty cool little thing to have on your desk - most people can't resist a high-five.  And that's good, because it's rude to leave someone hanging.

 

Bonus: Here's the raw footage of us recording the audio samples. 

HIGHFIV3D: Autonomous Reassurance Device – Part 1

During the month of March, there are a few different music-themed things happening: SXSW and more festivals you can shake a stick at (it's even Music in our Schools Month!), so we're thinking about sound and music here at 123D. There are tons of great related models in the 123D gallery that we'll be remixing and playing with for the next few weeks, and a couple of us will be focusing on sound-related projects using 123D Circuits - look for #LISTEN3D 

As an at-best-novice with electronics, I decided to step lightly and integrate Circuits with some other projects I've been wanting to try. The first is, naturally, a High-Five machine.  While it has nothing to do with music, per se, I think I'll learn a lot about the audio/electronics side and 123D Circuits.

The idea is this: a free-standing hand that you can interact with for a bit of reassurance when walking to get a cup of coffee.  When you give it a healthy palm smack, it will generate some positive words of encouragement - think "You're Awesome!" or "Oh Yeah!".  Within a cardboard-stacked hand, a sensor would register impact and trigger the audio. My first thought was a Piezo sensor in the hand, but after some words of wisdom (and a high-five) I decided to go with an accelerometer that would determine when the hand was moved, thus activating the audio output.

The Mona Lisa started out on notebook paper, btw.

The first step is building the physical hand and then we'll figure out how the passerby will interact with it - table mounted seems the easiest, but wall-mounted would be a little cooler.  I considered using 123D Catch to create a model of my own hand and arm, but while messing around on 123D Creature, I found a really great model by Mark Dollar!  It's a bit cartoonish and big, so it should be perfect.

 

 

I downloaded the model and opened it in MeshMixer to open up the fingers a bit more for a proper high-five.  Then took it into Tinkercad to work on the cut out.  I think a 1" dowel is a fine way to make the 'arm'.  I also made a little hollow for the accelerometer.  

 

Once I was happy with the cutout, it was on to 123D Make to generate the slices for the laser cutter.  I wanted to keep it close to human scale, so I made it about 9" tall.  Once cut, the only tedious bit was the fingers (hopefully they'll withstand some trauma).  

 

 

Now I need to go shopping, look for next steps and more Sound & Music posts soon.

 

 

Autodesk University: In the Can.

 

Thanks everyone who dropped by the Creative Studio this past week at Autodesk University in Las Vegas!

We had a great week and enjoyed talking to you.  There's lots of exciting things on the horizon for Autodesk and all our customers, and we're looking forward to next year.  

In spite of the apparent possibility of building a crossbow that will puncture a trash can with wooden skewers, we didn't even have any (serious) injuries from the Office Warfare table!  So all in all, we think it was a success!

Remember: "What happens in Vegas...", BUT if you have any great memories of the conference, let us know!

Merci Beaucoup! 3D Print Show Paris All Wrapped Up.

Whoo - after a long week of flying and chunneling, we ended a great week of 3D Print Shows.  London was very exciting, with people from all over coming to say hi and learn more about 3D modeling. 

Based in the Carrousel de Louvre, it was essentially a remix of the London show, only with a lot more French. By the end of the week, my technical (if not conversational) French was parfait, but fortunately, our awesome Paris Autodesk staff came by to help bridge the language barrier.

Some attendees were professionals looking for new ways to model, like with MeshMixer or 123D Make, others just wandered in from the Louvre, not knowing what they were getting themselves into.  But in all, the show was a success and it fit nicely in one of the oldest museums in Europe.

Thanks to everyone who came by - maybe we'll see you next year!

M-M-Movember!

Now that Halloween is over and we are collectively recovering from eating too much candy, it's time to get our faces ready for the annual mustache-growing competition, Movember, to raise awareness for men's health.

A few of us on the 123D team are ladies and unable to grow mustaches of our own, but thanks to 3D printing we can still compete with the guys!

 

Head over to our new Projects section to get ideas and templates on mustaches for yourself! Happy November/Movember everybody!

From the 123D Gallery: Chimpanzee by Amanda Jackson

Check out another great model from Amanda Jackson - keep it up Amanda!!