• Elvin Ou

Midterm


Inspiration and Drawing:

The project started with a discussion with my group mate Eva sharing our own thoughts on what we want to do and made a decision on making a candy dispenser that is controlled by a game on p5 that controlled by analog inputs from arduino and then activates the motor to dispense candy from a skull container.


Images of raw materials:

- skull beer funnel

- flexible metal rods(hollow)

- Black acrylic sheet

- Servo

- Skittles

- Vibrating motor coin shape


Process:

1.Putting the servo onto the skull as the mechanism for the candy dispenser.

2. After putting on the servos, we needed to figure out a way to cut an opening on the skull for dispensing the candy and also a piece designed to fit that opening as a door. We started with making the piece as a circle that rotates to open and block the candy but we realize that the circle does not look like it belongs to the skull as a whole piece. We tried brainstorming for ideas and did lots of iterations and eventually decided on layering the acrylic and making a bottom chin/mouth by ourselves, which worked pretty well at the end.

3. After attaching the servo part for the mouth, we used laser cutter to cut the control base and used a heat bender to bend it to the shape we wanted.

4. With the right parts for the open/close of the candy dispenser, we tried to connect it to the arduino to actually see how it works and eventually discovered more problems:


- The skull has a weird non-straight shape that traps the candy from coming out

- The speed of the servo needs to be adjusted to be exact for the candy

- A funnel needs to be added to help containing the candy inside the skull funnel

- The funnel needs to be in an exact and perfect shape for the skittles to go through

With those problems, we started exploring different materials and parts in the hardware store and trying to find the right funnel. Surprisingly, the searching and the making of the funnel takes the majority time and effort of the entire creation of the project. After deciding on and building on the funnel we think that worked, we started having problems with the candy being stuck into the angel the funnel has. We spent so so much time trying to fix it. We went candy shopping trying to find candy that are rounded with smaller diameters and all sorts and eventually we decided on adding in a vibrating motor to constantly shake the tubing that candy sit in for it to work.




5. Eventually, the "brain lit" is fully covered with skittles by hot glue and placed on top of the skull and all the parts are fully connected for it to function. However, we started having problem finding a proper container to collect the candy since they are so rounded and small so that they bounce out from all the bowls and cups we tried until we found a tall vase that did the job.



Testing videos: