Accumulating mass for the theremin

JonM's picture

Let's use this thread to keep track of all the random stuff we're accumulating for the theremin project. We're looking for old electronics, preferably those with audio amplifiers.

I'll troll the thrift stores tomorrow to see if we can find anything useful. In the meantime, I've got the guts of an old alarm clock / soothing night sounds generator. If nothing else, it has a big transformer and a lot of exciting-looking caps and transistors on the board. I've also got a puny Fender amp we can pipe the finished project through.

by david on Fri, 07/01/2011 - 14:09

I'm confused about this - are you looking for parts to build a design you've already decided on, or are you going to try to build something out of whatever you happen to find?

I think the simplest way to build a Theremin is to start with 4 AM radios (or maybe you could manage with 3).

JonM's picture

by JonM on Wed, 07/06/2011 - 12:18

Yeah, I think at this point we're trying to John Wayne one together from whatever we find. We actually talked about the three-radio build offline, so I've been mostly looking for those.

JonM's picture

by JonM on Mon, 07/11/2011 - 10:38

Well, so far I've found two AM radios and two answering machines. Not sure if the latter will have anything useful, but they were cheap.

JonM's picture

by JonM on Wed, 07/13/2011 - 12:58

Two more AM/FM clock radios and a busted Halloween voice changer! If nothing else, we'll have a lot of sweet seven-segment LEDs for other projects.

zenno's picture

by zenno on Fri, 07/15/2011 - 17:47

I'm digging in my box-o-junk deep in the garage and I believe I might find a few other goodies as well.

I'm also packing in various chunks of wood for use towards a possible enclosure.

JonM's picture

by JonM on Fri, 07/15/2011 - 20:56

Rockin. I found part of a baby monitor at the thrift store tonight. I might almost understand how this thing fits together. Almost.

zenno's picture

by zenno on Fri, 07/15/2011 - 23:09

So because my kids are no longer babies I am authorized to destroy our baby monitors... I've got two sets I'll bring in case we need them.

by SaintMeh on Fri, 07/15/2011 - 12:42


I just wanted to mention that MEH is home-rolling some inventory software for Hackerspaces. I'm better with programming than I am with Drupal. If you guys want our source, I would be happy to share our subversion acct. I would just like credit for all the work I've put into it. Leave "compliments of Meh 2011" at the bottom and it's yours. I will eventually put it under the CC license.

I'm having a hard time keeping track of inventory. Looks like you are too. Other hackerspaces don't seem to know what to do. So wtf why not *make* an inv system?

It currently uses SQLServer... but I'm thinking of pushing it over to another DB. it wouldn't be hard to pre-configure the code for a new RDBMS.

Also Overlord, have you checked out the MNA? They could help you with legal/accounting stuffs. I haven't spent much time doing it, but I know it's worthwhile. Poor organizational skills I suppose.

I used to run Digital Determination back in 2004 when I was 19. That was before I got sick of putting in the 80/hr weeks for $80k/yr. You know that money isn't enough of a reason to do something.. I assume you're not trying to start a HSpace for $. That would be, for lack(but not want) of words-- stupid.

I also mentioned earlier today that you can buy from Helena's Craigslist and we have a member who goes to Bozeman every week. He would likely transport smaller things.

There is a General Electric Powered Amplifier with surround sound. Sub woofer, 5 speakers, all speakers work and is in good condition $25 OBO Call 406-564-3762

Might be overkill... but ;-) Yeahhhhhhhhhh

zenno's picture

by zenno on Fri, 07/15/2011 - 14:04

Kind of funny I was just about to suggest someone build a simple Inventory Manager for Hackerspaces.

What language is it written in? I only run and program with Linux ;)

I've looked into the MNA, and because I run another company I have access to a sweet CPA who is helping with all of the legal paperwork etc...

I wanted to get folks interested in a Makerspace in the Bozeman area, because I just want to make/break/hack things. Our group will not have any paid employees, so everyone involved will doing it for the thrill and knowledge gained from being in the group.

by SaintMeh on Sat, 07/16/2011 - 05:56

Yeah. Of course. I know almost nothing about you. I was kinda hoping you weren't actually thinking to profit from this... like another Montana group that I spoke with in Billings. Sometimes... I'd rather be blunt than misunderstood.

Our group doesn't have any paid employees either. It's better that way :P.

So I just got word that I have an opportunity to go down to TN very soon to get some pointers on making a hackerspace. They 3d print free stuffs too. I was thinking about getting parts made for a Huxley Seedling.

I would like to share the deal: If we get one, I would like to make a Huxley for the Bozeman Folk. It would cost you guys whatever the hackerspace in TN charges to make. You can assemble it yourselves if you want. It might be funner that way.

On an unrelated note: I'm still worried about liability. My current insurance policy: have people sign release of liability forms at the door.

You know what we both could benefit from? A login program for guests and members. Something that we can say: Oh! You're a guest! Please sign this digital release of liability so you can't sue us if you're an idiot and break your toes off! Or "Oh! You're under 18! You need supervision for equipment usage please sign this code of responsibility and find an officer wearing a meh. pin". Plus, it would act as a guest book so we can say we actually have people coming and going. I doubt we would ALL have to use our real names... but those who wanted to help support the space could sign in. It'd be so simple to write that program. I'm thinking about giving it as an assignment for my Visual Basic class... Blegh... I hate VB. It's trash. I only teach it because I'm an adjunct and I don't get to choose what I teach. I also teach Javascript though.

I was also thinking that we could set up some automatic locks that are opened by flash drives(biometrics is a poor idea IMO). Though biometric looks cool. Let me know if you make one!

If you see anything in Helena on Craigslist that you want, go ahead and tell me. I'll buy it, pick it up and you can reimburse.

We just got a Nice computer donated today during the computer security testing group! Yay!

The subversion addy is

I'll msg you the user/pass

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