Things I never finished

Before I tuck into three projects this weekend I thought I’d throw up some pictures of things I started and never quite worked out completely from either becoming too bored or moving on to something else that seemed harder or more interesting (she said).

Don’t judge me as a person for any of this.


Bluetooth-enabled rotary phone



The idea here was to take this 60’s era Carlson-Stromberg rotary phone and rewire it to work with a bluetooth phone, sending the rotary dialed numbers to the phone simulating keypad strokes (or touchscreen clicks or whatever).  Basically it’d use your mobile to become a fully functional desk phone.

Why I didn’t finish it:

  • Couldn’t figure out how to ramp up a 5v power supply to a high enough voltage to ring the bell quickly enough. (I’ve figured it out since then)
  • Got sick of dealing with the bluetooth stack
  • Was well out of my element at the time


1940 Philco tube radio restoration and electronification (made up word alert)



The idea was to take this radio, fully restore it’s electronics, then add external interfaces that would allow remote tuning and volume adjustment and add input for internet radio, satellite radio, a phonograph, and whatever else seemed interesting. Also this had to be done without augmenting it’s current functionality, thus everything must be strapped on.  This way it could easily be restored to its original condition without leaving a trace that anything had been done to it.

So far all existing electronics have been restored, and it has a phono pre-amp with an audio-in port on it supplying sound via RCA and/or 3.5mm jacks.  Power is controlled via relay and the pre-amp automatically adjusts to the input volume to avoid any awkward pops or chopping of the frequency.

Why I didn’t finish it:

  • Lack of decision on which way to go with some things
  • I dunno, I’ll definitely finish this soon


Weird biped-looking robot thing



Uhh… yeah.  It was never meant to really hold itself up.  The legs look much shorter than they are in this picture.  It was more to try to learn about biped motion and play with the cool 32 channel servo controller I got.

Why I never finished it:

  • Uhh… look at it.  That shit haunts your dreams.


Object avoiding edge avoiding light seeking color detecting family eating tracker bot



This one was a bit interesting for me because I made it run on only 6v instead of 9-12v like most other bots I’ve done.  The challenge was to make it move and run the electronics without the startup draw from the motors browning everything out.  It has an ultrasonic device for checking out its surroundings, an IR detector for making sure it doesn’t fall off of anything stupidly, tracks for climbing over shit, LDRs for reading light levels in stereo, and everything is done on a breadboard mounted to the chassis so everything can be modified on the go.

Why I never finished it

  • Ran out of nice jumper wires
  • Stopped being interested
  • Meh, who knows, maybe I will finish it





Despite attending Ithaca College, a school that the year prior to my enrollment had ranked #4 in Playboy’s best-looking-girls-on-campus survey jobber, I still dropped out.

Why I never finished it

  • Yeah… umm…
  • I have no idea
  • Apathy maybe?

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