February 9

Super-size Your D20

Giant Metallic D20

For Valentine’s Day, some people dream of getting a sparkly, shiny something. Here’s a geeky version – a giant metallic d20 (20-sided die, for the role-playing game un-initiated).

Kat and Cam at Our Nerd Home have rolled up a quick tutorial for you on how to make your own d20 using a piece of ~20″x20″ cardboard (I love how they used cardboard from a Lord of the Rings set of Legos they just happened to have laying around!)

My son’s 20th birthday is this week, so this could be just about the perfect present for me to make for him.

In the post, Kat/Cam mention that they left the numbers off the die to make it a more subtle decor item. If you make this, will you add numbers, or no?

Links of Interest:

September 3

DIY Ambilight: Because your TV isn’t big enough already

You’d think that a 55-inch, full-HD LCD television with surround sound system connected to an enormous media pc, XBox 360 and a PS3 would be enough for a man who actually mostly plays PC games in a different room and watches TV on his phone on the train trip to work. But you’d be wrong.

Dave of DaveNewson.com is the latest of major nerdy tinkerers to take on the DIY challenge of Ambilight – a TV enhancement where the colours from your TV are projected onto the wall behind it. There are some sane reasons for doing this – improved immersion and less eye-strain when watching in the dark being the main ones. But mostly, Dave did it because it looks “cool as hell”. Click here to see it in action.

Enhance your TV with LEDs!

Want your own Ambilight system? There are a few different ways of setting this up apparently, but essentially you will need a strip of colour-changing LEDs, a micro controller, a PC to play media from, a 5 volt power supply, a TV, and a way better understanding of electronics than me. Click here to read the really quite detailed How-To on DaveNewson.com.

August 13

Piranha Plant Cake Pops

Nothing is better than a good cake except good cake pops. And what could be better than GEEKY cake pops?!  Check out these mouthwateringly amazing Piranha Plant Pops over at baking blog, Cakecrumbs.me.

Piranha Plant Pops

And the best part is that Rhiannon has posted detailed step-by-step instructions on how to recreate these geek pops, complete with cake recipes. How do you like the sound of Dark Chocolate and Raspberry Cupcakes? Well that’s apparently what a Piranha Plant tastes like. Yum!

June 22

A Barrel of Kong

ArcadeControls user griffindodd made this sweet Donkey Cong cocktail-style cabinet using a old wine barrel! Now, who’s ready to roll this bad boy around an abandoned construction site?

download

“Every time friends or family see my builds they always say the same thing “Oh you should make these and sell them”, to which my answer is always the same “It’s just not worth the man hours for what I could charge”. With that being said there are people quite successfully making bar tops and selling them on a regular basis, and, I assume, turning a profit of some kind,” griffondodd wrote.

Here’s his breakdown of the project:
Costs so far
Used Oak Wine Barrel – $87.00
17″ 4:3 Monitor – $25.00 (Craigslist)
Craftymech SLG Scanline generator – $23
Power Strip – $6
Amplifier – $19
Power Socket – $5
4x PCB Feet – $2
Power Supply – $18
2x long shaft zippy sticks – $16
Jamma Wiring Harness – $10
4x Regular Buttons& Switch – $4
3x Player Start Buttons – $3
Speakers – $15
1/2″ Bevelled Glass – $84.00
Laminated Control Panel art – $38
Bezel Artwork – $22
Paint – $6
Stain – $13
Shipping to date – $19.00

Total Build Cost – $415

Hours Spent Total – Approx 20 hours
Sourcing/Ordering Parts – 2 Hours
Vector Artwork Barrel Top – 1 Hour
Wood cut templates – 1.5 hours
Build in general – 15 hours