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T.S.N. Ishtar - Portable Bridge Build

posted May 05, 2013 18:08:39 by ericksoninmotion
So I got the bug to build a bridge the day I saw Artemis at GenCon 2012. Had not even played it yet. 9 months later I have most of the ship together. It will be shown in public the first time at Phoenix Comic Con on May 23rd to 26th.

I wanted to make a bridge that looked cool, and could be setup played and put away, alas no full room builds at my house. I have to thank everyone on the forum here for all the ideas and advise. I was able to use Holiday Coro style scratch built lights, and other ideas from here to build the bridge.

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31 replies
ericksoninmotion said May 05, 2013 18:11:31
I used Micro ITX fan less motherboards for the workstations. 4 gig DDR3 ram running windows XP 64 bit OS. 40 gig SATA hard drives, and 17" matching monitors.

ericksoninmotion said May 05, 2013 18:22:05

ericksoninmotion said May 05, 2013 18:24:51
Here is the Red Alert Light I made, it will rotate the LEDs when turned on, to give the spinning light effect.
JamesDunnem said May 06, 2013 05:23:01
Very clean build from what I can see so far.
Are you going to share any more images, or saving the big reveal for Phoenix Comic Con?
"There is an old Celtic saying: "Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde."
-Beware of the anger of a patient man.
MarkBell said May 06, 2013 13:27:12
That looks slick! How are you passing current to the rotating board? Do you have a slip ring?
ericksoninmotion said May 06, 2013 15:03:34
Not using a rotating board, using 2 DMX controllers. Hooked Red to first lights Red, Green to Second Lights Red, Blue to Third Lights Red... and so on. Then in the XML file, I divided the 6 DMX channels by 581 mill seconds, and have them fire one after another to the sound of the red alert horn. This makes it rotate or look like it is anyways.

So all it can do is red lights. But its my red alert light, all I want it to do is red. I am working on a TOS under screen running light effect doing the same thing, with each channel going to all 3 at once to get only white light.

Here is the under side of the red alert light.

ericksoninmotion said May 06, 2013 15:12:43
So its made from:
2 Holiday Coro DMX Controller Boxes $9.99 each.
12 LED Lights about $1 each.
8 Zip ties, some solder and heat shrink tubing a few cents if you own them already.
1 10" part of an old 2x4 board.
1 4" x 4" piece of masonite sheet.
So around $35 in parts.

I cut a 2x4 down with 60 degree sides to form a 1 half a hexagon, cut it to 4" and wood glued them back to back to form the whole hex. Using the sticky tape on the LEDs I have 2 leds per side, each side is one of the DMX Channels. Used the 4" x 4" piece of masonite to mount the light on, and pulled the wires through it. I plan on putting a cover over it and will build a box to house it.
MarkBell said May 06, 2013 17:00:04
Ah, ok, the light moves between the static fixtures. Got it :) Nice! Got a video of it in action? Or waiting until you've got a cover?
ericksoninmotion said May 07, 2013 03:37:01
MarkBell, You can see it here:

Red Alert Light 1 Side View.

Red Alert Light 2 Topish View

Taken on phone so not all that steady, but shows it in action.
MarkBell said May 07, 2013 10:00:21
Dude! That is fraggin' rad! Totally sweet, can't wait to see the enclosure too :)
ericksoninmotion said May 09, 2013 04:39:17
Okay Finished building the Captains Chair.

I have modified an old chair with a rotating tray into my captains chair.

I have mounted a monitor stand on its back and flipped the monitor display on an old 15" display for the captains map. The rotating tray can be swung out if not needed. I have a track ball next to the monitor and on the other arm, I made a platform which I have a USB 10 keypad that can control the view screen.

While I want to build something more custom for the captains controller the USB keypad will get the job done for the time, and my Convention Deadline.

So this is the chair open, closed and a closer look at the monitor and keypad.

Currently it is being painted so in a few days I hope to have the painted pictures.

MarkBell said May 09, 2013 12:20:44
Nice! I love the rotating tray and screen. You need to strap some 5V LED blinkies and switches on that guy, let them hit buttons that have no purpose :)
Thedr said May 09, 2013 14:28:35
How did you go connecting the DMX adapters to your computer. The DMX stuff is something I'm really interested in however the idea of paying out $80 for the adapter recommended elsewhere in the forum is a little off putting.

I also noticed you used normal LED's as opposed to DMX lights, don't suppose you could let on how you managed to hook that up?

Thanks, this looks amazing by the way!
MarkBell said May 09, 2013 14:42:34
DMX has been discussed at length in several threads now. For a good primer, start here.

If you're looking to go cheaper but a bit more DIY, check out this thread. The lights he's using are the same kind of 12V strip LEDs that are discussed in the thread.
ericksoninmotion said May 09, 2013 15:12:30

Mark is correct, I learned all I need to know from this forum to build them myself. This is all you need to start playing around with is.

This sample pack comes with a 12v power supply, a basic DMX Controller, 10 LED's in 4 different styles to play with, PC Programming cable, and the Software to program the DMX Controller.

All super simple and all for $50. Holiday Coro also has great video guides on how to wire things up.

This package can make you a single light, that will do all you need for a first pass at DMX and Artemis. The Programming cable acts as the link from the PC to the DMX box, dmx box controls 1 to many LEDs that can be strung together to make as large or small a light as you want to have.

I went past this and also picked up 5 more DMX controllers so that I could separate Shields, Docking and Red Alert. Plus bought 80 more LEDs Plus run some other lighting effects. So for $180 I have all the lights and control them for the cost of one DMX Flood light.

I took a patch panel and wired all the plugs together to make a DMX Switch so that I can run a dozen DMX lights if I needed to at the same time.

So the images below show the Patch Panel switch. Plus Red Alert, Shields up and Docked at the same time.

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