Make: Cake, part deux

Craft & Design

Here’s a little progress report on the Makercake Pinball Cake Project, to be unveiled at Maker Faire Austin. Can’t wait to see it.

The buttonmashing end of things is going to be processed by a Basic Stamp Homework Board, talking to a Seetron SSC II. Why the ancient, pre-2000 approach? It is what is on hand. Also programming the BS2 on a modern Mac is a kick after years when I had a dedicated crappy laptop running DOS to do Stamp / MELABS compiler / programmer stuff. Also, major efforts were done in two nights, one of which was digging stuff out of bins in the basement: Buttons, wiring, servos.

I had some fairly nice servos on hand: HS-5645 and -645, which I was hoping would work. While they were fine brutes for turret-nudging, they are a bit slow for the flippers. I am off to the vendors for some faster servos. Whatever I end up with, I am going to overvolt them (at least 7.5V) to get more speed and torque out of them. Word on the street is that the internals are robust to around 9V, so thence I go.

Makercake Project


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Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. His free weekly-ish maker tips newsletter can be found at

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