Jamie Cunningham, aka the Backyard Mad Scientist, will be showcasing his DIY inventiveness as a Maker at our 2013 Tampa Bay Mini Maker Faire in March, where he’ll be bringing his homemade 3D printer and some of the cool things he’s made with it, like parts for his homemade CNC machine!
Jamie will also have his latest project ”Monster in a Box” , a Halloween prop that incorporates microcontrollers, stepper motors and electronics.
And he says, “I’m also planning a “top secret” project .”
We asked Jamie to share a bit about his work and rather than repeat himself so soon after a similar interview request, he referred us to his answers for EE Web –
Here’s the highlights:
Air Force Tech school is what really inspired his creative enterprise, and over the intervening years, he wound his way from “bomb loader” for the Air Force to circuit board manufacturing to software development and quality control work, finally ending up as a CAM operator, and then tinkerer extraordinaire in his Backyard Workshop Maker’s oasis.
There, he told EE Web,” Recently after building my CNC machine in the garage, I’ve started to mess around with micro controllers (Parallax Propeller to be exact),” hence the Monster in a Box.
Jamie told EE Web his favorite hardware tool is his home built CNC manchine, which is also one of his favorite and most challenging builds. But he’s also very fond of his homemade foundry, which while not technically a tool, is totally awesome. We here at TBMMF have seen his foundry and He uses the foundry to melt aluminum and cast his own parts “usually that were cut out of foam on the CNC machine.”
Jamie also used his CNC machine recently to cut out some three dimensional foam letters for the TEDxYouth@TampaBay event back in December, a process he invited local high school FIRST Tech Challenge Team Duct Tape to come watch and learn about. The kids had a great time and were totally inspired by Jamie’s mechanical self-sufficiency.
It’s worth quoting Jamie’s remarks on why he likes the CNC machine so much: “ I like it best because it has been the most challenging and also the most rewarding, I can make just about anything I can think up (as long as I can figure out how to model it). The first machine I made, helped me make parts for the second machine – can’t beat that .”
No. You can’t.
Wonder what that “top secret project” is?