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1  Totally Cube-ular Pixel Garland in Winter Holidays by Allerian on: December 13, 2010 07:50:41 PM
As a side journey from my iPad Pixelator project, I discovered that the combination of "Don't Break the Ice" blocks and Christmas lights were a perfect match.

All you'll need is a set of blocks from the game "Don't Break the Ice", a tube of clear cement, and a string of lights.  You'll discover that the game typically comes with 34 blocks.  This project requires as many blocks as you have lights on your string.

Now here's how to get it done.  I began with a 35 bulb string of size C-6 lights.

The bulb is just the right length to fit diagonally into one of the cubes.

Put a small 1/4" glob of airplane cement into the indicated corner.

Press and hold the bulb into the glue across the diagonal of the cube for sixty seconds.

Repeat on each bulb until complete.

Decorate like it's The Future!

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2  Re: Updated: iPad Pixelator in Completed Projects by Allerian on: December 12, 2010 04:14:06 PM
How to make your own iPad Pixelator

What you'll need:
One set of Hasbro's "Don't Break the Ice" +1 extra block for a total of 35
One or two rulers
A tube of clear glue
A flat working surface
(Optional) Fine sandpaper

The game comes with 34 blocks, but you will need 35 for this project.  This leaves you needing to fill the gap.  Maybe you'll find a 2for1 sale.  Perhaps an old set in the closet.  You could even organize a "group buy" with 34 other people who are making iPad Pixelators.

A word or two regarding the glue.  Since this project is about light, you want to use a transparent adhesive.  You may be tempted to use crazy glue, but the short working time makes it a bad choice here.  Airplane cement or "Clear Liquid Nails" have great working times and dry up solid.  Less is more here, you do not want glue coming out of everywhere.  Be sparing.  You might be tempted to apply the glue directly from the tube.  This works great until anything other than normal happens.  If you have no phone, pets, kids, or front door, go for it.

On a small paper plate, squeeze out a glob of glue (toothpaste shown for clarity).  Using a toothpick, apply the glue in a small area in the center on one side of the first block.  Remember, you don't want this squeezing out onto the table or you will have to pry the project up later!

Touch the two first blocks together and set them alongside your ruler, using it to align them.  

Take your next block, apply the glue and add it to the first two.  

Continue this way until you have your first row.  Once the first row is done, take a moment to be sure the blocks are aligned.  Don't press them together too hard, you'll squeeze out the glue!  Any small gaps can be filled in later.

Begin a second row in the same way as the first.  This time, apply glue on two sides so the rows are glued together.

Continue until all 35 blocks are arranged into a 7x5 grid.  Use your rulers to align and square up the blocks.  Once you're satisfied, allow it to dry completely.

Once the grid has dried, carefully apply glue into the small holes in between the cubes and to any gaps that look suspect.  Let dry.

Lay a sheet of sandpaper flat on your worksurface, grit side up.  Sand the pixelator front and back until smooth.  The goal is the make the back or "open" side as flat as possible so that it sits flat on the iPad.  The front can be sanded down to a smooth matte finish if desired.

Load up a video, press play and set the pixelator over the screen.   There are also many apps that create colorful onscreen graphics.  One of the best ones I've tried is "SpawnHD".  It is highly configurable and includes the ability to respond to sound.  Enjoy!

Here is a youtube video showing how it in action:

P.S. Here's a link to get the blocks directly from Hasbro:
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3  Updated with tutorial: iPad Pixelator in Completed Projects by Allerian on: April 15, 2010 07:29:48 AM

Updated the thread with a tutorial showing how to make this great project.  If you have an iPad or want to make a cool handmade techno-gift for an iPad owner, this will walk you through the steps.

Here is a youtube video showing how it works:

The initial prototype:

Prototype video:
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4  Samurai Kitty wall art in Completed Projects by Allerian on: October 01, 2008 06:53:50 AM
Spare time + cardboard box +craft paints + bag of felt scraps = this:

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5  Don't Break the Ice -> Pixelator *Updated w/assembly pics in CHALLENGE 21 ENTRIES by Allerian on: October 01, 2007 01:46:23 PM
My daughter and I were well into playing Don't Break the Ice when she held one of the cubes to the television.  Then we held a bunch of them together and did it again - we looked at each other and knew this had to be done.

Here is the game itself for reference.

We laid out 12 sets of the game on a very flat table with the "open" end of the cubes up and glued them all together using clear liquid nails and aligning them with a steel ruler.  What you see here is one half of the whole "screen" coming together.

A closeup of the back.  You can see that there are gaps, due to the cubes being slightly smaller on the open end.  These were fused with a line of airplane cement.  Takes a good while to do every single row.  And use a fan!

Then it was encased in a simple wooden frame.
Here is the front.

And the back.

The end result is that when you set this in front of your television, it becomes a magical animated pixel display.

Here's a little youtube of it running:

It was a fun project to do, and there are many ways to approach it.  Next time, it will probably have a lighter metal frame and hang from the top of the tv.
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6  Re: Any Tips for a First Time Plushie/Doll Maker? in Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Discussion and Questions by Allerian on: July 23, 2007 04:22:32 PM
I generally use a blanket stitch for 2-D stuffies and a really tight whip stitch for 3-D ones.  I'd also recommend felt and embriodery thread if sewing by hand for your first creation- its much easier to manipulate.

Amen to this.  While I have designs on doing 3D plushies in the future, for starters I've been making the little felt cats that were on the cover of Craft magazine.  My technique has improved dramtically over the past couple days of trying - especially once I stopped tacking everything with glue as they suggest.

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7  Pixelator - now with video! in Completed Projects by Allerian on: May 12, 2007 05:36:15 PM
Here's a thing I built over the last few months - finally complete!  

Inspired during a game of "Don't Break the Ice" with my daughter, I used 12 sets of the game to create a 15x24 grid of cubes.  This was set into a custom hardwood frame.  When placed in front of a television set, the animated pixelation effect is mezmerizing.


Watch the video:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AEQ5-mWrB_E

<Don't have 10 posts yet, so here are the links.>

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