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Group Projects

As a group, BuildBrighton like to have one or more larger projects on the go at any one time, that most of the group can contribute to. These are either for enhancing the hack space directly, or just for the fun of working on a project together (and even in collaboration with other groups). Here are the projects that we are currently discussing:

New Workshop Build

We've now finally acquired a blank-canvas 1300sqft awesome new hackspace. We need to fit it out as we need. More hands the merrier.

Laser Cutter

We've all known in our hearts that a laser cutter is an amazing tool for prototyping and general craft. We clubbed together and bought one. See the project page for how to get trained up.

CNC router

Laser cutters are cool. But one thing they can't do is cut/etch copper clad board, which means we're still stuck with etching PCBs with Ferric Chloride and drilling everything by hand. We're making a CNC machine to make PCB fabrication easier. Then we thought if we're going to the trouble of making a CNC, we may as well make it beefy enough to cut stuff that the laser couldn't cope with - for example thick mdf and plywood (you can laser thin plywood and mdf but it really stinks and can make a mess of the focal lens if you're not careful). We're using a number of designs/plans from all over the 'net and mixing and matching whatever works to suit our tools (not many), available equipment (not much) and skills (practically zero).

Light Brigade IR Badge Board and Soldering Workshop

For the White Night 2010 celebrations in Brighton, we ran a soldering workshop for drop-in folk to make an interactive IR & RGB LED Badge, that senses the presence of other badges in its vicinity and shares colours between the devices. And Zombies. We designed and manufactured the kit from scratch for the evening, as a general purpose IR send/recv platform for general hacking too.

Swarm Bots Collaborative Project

Brighton Robotics, in conjunction with BuildBrighton, have been asked to put on an event in collaboration with Bristol Dorkbot for the dConstruct conference. The event will be held on Wednesday 2nd September at The Skiff and will consist of an 'exhibition' of members projects plus the unveiling of a new group project that Brigton Robotics and BuildBrighton will have created together. After discussion we have decided to make some Cockroach Swarm Bots.

MAME arcade cabinet

Build a stand-up arcade cabinet housing a dual-player MAME arcade system. Add coin operation to raise revenue, but also an RFID reader so members can get free-play.


We have been asked by Playgroup, local club promoters, to provide a 'sweetner' to perusade electronica djs Evil Nine to take part in an event they are promoting. This item is to be a Theremin. We therefore need to design and build a theremin to be presented to Evil Nine on 30th October 2009 at The Komedia (where we will also be hosting the pre-party from 6-10pm).

Drawdio Kit

James was putting an order into Adafruit, and a few of us got Drawdio PCBs. Since we were going to have to buy all the parts anyway we thought we'd over-order and etch some boards ourselves.

James and I set about designing a single-sided Drawdio board that was easy to etch (thick traces, wide spacing). If we ever run any workshops, this would be an idea candidate for an afternoon project. Print, transfer, etch, drill and then solder a drawdio!

UPDATE: New BuildBrighton Drawdio Plus+ kits: 18 ROBOTS Drawdio Plus Soldering Kits


After a long chat at the new space both Jason Hotchkiss & Reverend Neil Wakely came up with a new project idea. We decided to make a POV fan with a difference this fan will display messages that are sent to it via a mobile phone. This is an ongoing project and will have it's fair share of issues but we will be logging the whole project.

Individual Projects


  • Owner: Emily Toop
  • Collaboratives: None
  • Description:

I have bought myself a lynxmotion hexapod chassis. This will be my first robot where I will be designing the circuit, behavior and programming myself so is a big learning instance for me.

  • TimeScales: None
  • Status: Pending
  • Looking for collaboratives: Yes - looking for advice and tuition on circuit design.

Marlin Midi Guitar Tutor

  • Owner: Chris Holden
  • Collaboratives: Any
  • Description:

I got a cheap(ish) Marlin Guitar off eBay, because BC Rich and Flying Vs are too expensive! This has a large body and plenty of space for adding onboard electronics. Initial idea is to put LEDs at each fret, for the first 12 frets on the neck which can be individually lit up. Send in a MIDI stream and the lights on the frets light up, to indicate which note is playing, allowing you to learn new licks and riffs by playing a note as it lights up! The massive body also means plenty of room for onboard electronics - distortion, wah-wah, volume and more. Looking for novel ideas for controlling these, rather than boring old switches and rotary knobs.

  • TimeScales: None
  • Status: Guitar bought and awaiting delivery
  • Looking for collaboratives: Yes - MIDI input/decoding, custom paint job, active electronics.

The World of the Kinect beyond Xbox

I started to experiment with the uses of the Microsoft Kinect for a planned workshop with BYC. The idea is to be able to eventually scan in objects into a PC via the Kinect, to control them in games as puppets, with the children being the controllers.

  • TimeScales: None
  • Status: Python script running to control NUI Motor, Basic single user tracking now possible
  • Looking for collaboratives: Yes - 3D Modelling


I have taught myself how to make Christmas Trees out of old magazines.

  • TimeScales: None
  • Status: Ongoing


I will be revamping the Bistro Table by turning the top into a Cool Mosaics including the BB logo that hopefully will be lit up using LED's.

  • TimeScales: None
  • Status: Ongoing

Pages in category "Projects"

The following 9 pages are in this category, out of 9 total.