There’s an old engineering meme about wd40 and duct tape. It’s really true. The dial mechanism on the rotary gruebox was slow and balky–running maybe 1/4 the speed it was supposed to, and one shot of wd40 and it’s running right as rain. Contrary to popular myth, wd40 isn’t a lubricant exactly. It’s mostly a […]
I’ve gutted the rotary chest-phone that I am going to make into the third gruephone. What’s amazing to me is how little there actually is to them: Other than the bell, it’s just a dozen or so discrete components on a simple circuit board, mostly capacitors and resistors, with one transformer thrown in. The rotary […]
So, if I’m going to have 3 working phones for the Maker faire, I better get to building them. Today’s project is to get the keypad working. Oringally this keypad used a touch-tone signaling mechanism, but that wasn’t necessary for my purposes, so I just cut out all the DTMF hardware to get at the […]
In a flurry of activity, I’ve added yet another game. This time the classic “Hunt the Wumpus‘. It’s fairly faithful to the basic version, though the numbering of the rooms is different (still a dodecahedron though.) For those not familiar with the game, you are an intrepid explorer in a cave with 20 interconnected rooms. […]
I’ve gotta be better with these updates. It’s been about 10 months since my last post. Work on the new phones is slow to non-existent, but I finally spent some time getting the old phone in better shape, both hardware and software. First, the phone is now back in one piece after sitting disassembled for […]
This post is long overdue. The hardware has been complete (enough) for weeks now, and the software has been improving incrementally. It is the impending arrival of the Maker Faire that finally prodded me enough to finish writing this up. I’ll be there showing this off. Here’s what the completed project (mostly) looks like: (more […]
In order to interface the modem with the telephone, I bought a simple device called a tele-coupler. It is used when only have a phone that doesn’t have a standard jack, or is a digital phone line. It actually straps to a telephone handset and accoustically couples the phone and modem together… wonderfully old-school, […]
Many of the terminals in the phones I might use have connectors designed to attach to screw terminals. This makes it a little difficult to attach to a standard Arduino. Here is my way to adapt them.
While the original phone I bought for this project is uber-cool, the fact remains that it’s not quite period appropriate to the time when Zork was at its peak (1977-1983). So a little time wandering though the world’s biggest bazaar showed me an alternative. It came labeled as “No Sound from ringer, works okay” […]
So, by commiting acts of unspeakable hackery, I’ve gotten it small enough to load onto the Arduino: Of course it doesn’t run, but that’s a different hurdle.