Author Topic: Give away: 2nd Banshee Ultrasonic leak Detector (AKA the MacGyver project)  (Read 375 times)

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Offline Technical Mayhem

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I'm the guy that sent in the Banshee ultrasonic leak detector (AKA the MacGyver project).

I actually have another one and was thinking it could be given away as a prize in a competition. The idea is someone could go a different route with the MacGyver project and the most interesting submission wins - I will cover postage anywhere worldwide. Hopefully it gets through customs!

To keep it fair people can DM me their suggestion and I'll judge the most interesting entry, hopefully keeping it private will discourage copycats. Maybe this will be decided after we see which way Dave goes. I'll post the most interesting submission here and there will be pressure for the winner to deliver proof that they got it working!

A bit about my company: We specialise in repairing high-value scientific and electronic equipment that has had support dropped by the OEM. We service mainly Victoria, AU.

A few examples of equipment that we have repaired:
  • Electron microscopes
  • Ion sputtering equipment
  • Protein sequencers
  • RF & microwave amplifiers
  • High vacuum systems
  • Etc

Our website is

Online Nominal Animal

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I'm not eligible, because I have burnout-related issues that makes me very flaky about getting things completed.

However, I do have an idea I've mulled around for quite some time, so maybe someone else might get a kick out of it, and maybe get a better idea from it.

The idea started from the fact that the Banshee ultrasonic leak detector also looks a bit like a bathyscape.  Now, I personally love to tinker with Linux SBCs, and have built my own enclosures (or rather enclosures' enclosures, silent PCs hidden in furniture and such).  I also like the small IPS display panels BuyDisplay sells, because they're okay in quality, but come with sufficient specifications for hobbyists like me to play with.  I also like Sci-Fi, of course.

Replace one or two of the ultrasound detectors with a 2.1" round IPS 480x480 display.  Use the large inner volume for three lead flywheels running off brushed or brushless RC car motors.  Add a sealed lead acid battery, 6V or 12V, in the center; there's room.  In the leftover spaces, put one or two solenoids, so that when energized, they knock on the shell, perhaps with a rubber dampener in between.  The electrics compartment is large enough for a small SBC, although I'd use separate microcontrollers for each display, connected via USB.  Add one or two 6DOF IMUs for sensing when someone moves the enclosure, and maybe a muffled speaker inside it, too.

With suitable software, you have a small Dweller in a exo-bathyscape.  It's heavy and hums, but quietly; obviously not just a cheap plastic decoration.  Try to rotate it, and it resists the motion in really weird ways.  Move it, and the Dweller occasionally knocks about in there, annoyed, and you can maybe see a glimpse of its eye in one of the portholes now and then.

Thö best interactive Halloween decoration, ever, methinks.  Probably would have to chain it, though, so it'd be harder to steal.

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