post-wave

post-wave

Post-Wave is the first in a series of sinusoidal-inspired sound projects. Post-Wave is highly based on Reuben Margolin’s Redwood Wave. It served as an introductory study of mechanics and electronic design, in addition to being a assessment of carpentry skills.

The mechanical design is composed of two metal rods intersecting a set of 30 6” circles, each offset by one another.

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Then a set of 1” x 30” strips treated with dado cuts beneath sit on a pair of circles. To prevent the wooden strips from slipping off the circles, a rectangular strip of wood is mounted in the middle of the 1” x 30” dado strips, which is then secured between two wood strips perpendicular to its position.

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The two rods are then coupled to two separate DC gearhead motors. The two motors are powered and controlled with an Arduino Uno using Polulu’s Dual VNH5019 Motor Driver Shield. A Microsoft Kinect is used via Processing to detect blob depth and position using the SimpleOpenNI library. Depth and X-position data is sent via serial to Arduino. Thus, depth controls the speed of the motors, and X-position determines which motor is being controlled. The result is a surprisingly well executed mechanical acoustic emulation of the sound produced by waves on a body of water. The physical action of the wood strips sliding back and forth on top of the wood circles makes for a soothing hypnotic audible result. The wave moves slowly when a user is not present, yet as soon as a user place his hand on top of the wave, a reaction is immediately identified, engaging the observer to discover his or her ability to control the sculpture.

 

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