Archive for the Art, Design, and Imaginary Existance Category

Augmented Kazoo

Posted in Art, Design, and Imaginary Existance, As Built on November 2, 2009 by xeracy

Well halloween has come and gone. I made a  Silly String Pumpkin as seen on Instructables via Hack-A-Day, but my servo motor died the day of halloween after all the stores had closed.  Needless to say, it was a sad halloween for hobby tech.

Anyhow, I got home from work today, and was playing with a toy kazoo shaped like a pumpkin (also had a bat, spider, and skeleton).


I figured it would be cool if the amount of control you had over the noisemaker could be translated into something like mouse movement for DJ scratching software, or something akin. I set to work desoldering the IR encoder from a usb mouse and adding leads for remote mounting. For a first pass, I used the  mouse hardware in lieu of an arduino build from scratch.


While holding the ir led and sensor in place on either side of the kazoo, i was able to control the vertical movement of my mouse, up and down. Unfortunatly, since hot-glueing the components together, it seems the mouse only goes down unless it is spinning quite fast. I understand that the encoder wheel from the mouse and the noise-making fan inside the kazoo have completely different timings, so i will next look into fixing that issue. Perhaps I can use the original mouse encoder wheel and a custom tube to make a version 2.0….    yeah, probably not.


Anyhow, heres a quick demo video of my project thus far.