Welcome to jchismar.com the online portfolio of artist John P Chismar. Please explore a selection of my current projects by browsing the area below. View some of my finished pieces in Galleries. Learn about my more involved projects in Stories. Email john@jchismar.com with any inquiries you may have. 

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Brown Paper Bag Lunch Box 

Tuesday, April 6 2015

ElectroCallioBreeze

The ElectroCallioBreeze is the product of several years of occasional experimentation. This contraption has been on my mind for some time. Preparing an exhibit for the Greater Newark Maker Faire was enough reason to invest resources to the project. My sister Suzanne acquired the xylophone at an estate sale a while ago and it sat on a shelf in my workshop reminding, er inspiring, me until now.

If the cogs were directly attached to the propeller shaft the melody would play too fast, sounding like a Wayne’s World dissolve. To slow the rotation of the cogs I created a second shaft with a belt across two different sized wooden gears. With that mechanism complete I experimented with various cogs to trigger the hammers.

Happy with the belt, gears, cogs and hammers I tested and experimented with the electrical continuity across the cogs and hammers. I consulted with electronics genius friend Charlie to insure I wasn’t going to ruin any of my electronic gizmos by attaching them to the mechanism. With a thumbs-up from Charlie I attached various gizmos to hear what would happen.

This video is of my first full-scale test of the project. Following recording the video I made several adjustments and additions for more reliable functionality. One of the additions is bushings between the hammers to prevent them from walking sideways and missing their target. After disconnecting everything I realized I had a few more noisy gizmos I wanted to attach as well. Perhaps I’ll bring the new sounds with me to the Maker Faire Saturday April 11.