MAKE 33: Software for Makers


MAKE Volume 33 features projects for makers of all skill levels — Arduino projects, food, music, personal fabrication, electronics, and more. In our special Codebox section you’ll learn about software of interest to makers, including circuit board design, 3D CAD and printing, microcontrollers, and programming for kids, featuring Microsoft’s SmallBasic, Scratch, and the Kickstarter-funded project Makey Makey. And you’ll meet fascinating makers, like the maniacs behind the popular Power Wheels Racing events at Maker Faire.You’ll get 22 great DIY projects like the Optical Tremolo guitar effect, “Panjolele” cake-pan ukelele, Wii Nunchuk Mouse, CNC joinery tricks, treat-dispensing cat scratching post, laser-cut flexing wooden books, brewing sake, growing the incredibly hot “ghost chili” pepper, and more.

Table of Contents



Geek sports!Page 08

Reader Input

Rocket sugar-rush, drill press safety, an energy-saving bear, and a trip down memory lane.Page 10

Made on Earth

The world of backyard technology.Page 16


Hack the Track

Move over Formula 1, the Power Racing Series is in town.Page 24

Going Pro

Makers are turning their hand-soldered prototypes into consumer electronics.Page 32

Building a Bot

Ben, Kendra, and Monsieur Tux the cat tackle the Rovera 2W Arduino Robot Kit.Page 36

Code Kids

Start programming with SmallBasic Recipes. Page 51

The Banana Interface

Control your world with Scratch and MaKey MaKey. Page 54

Hobby Horse

Link Scratch to your bronco for rockin’ good times. Page 56


Skill Builder: CNC Panel Joinery

Make interlocking, self-aligning, and demountable joints in flat stock.Page 58

Laser-Cut Book Covers

Use this neat technique to make plywood flexible.Page 66

Simple Soundboard

A getting-started project for Raspberry Pi. Page 68

DIY Welding Rod

Prepare for the apocalypse by rolling your own.Page 72


Start a ukulele craze with this great-sounding instrument built from household parts.Page 76

1+2+3: Dice Popper

Page 87

Growing the Ghost

Bhut Jolokia peppers are 125 times hotter than jalapeños.Page 88

Electronics: Fun & Fundamentals

Make a key-card door lock.Page 92

Optical Tremolo

Plug your guitar into light-programmable waveforms.Page 96

Country Scientist

Explore your world through a pinhole.Page 104


Build a snack-dispensing scratching post to make Kitty forget the couch and curtains.Page 108

Wii Nunchuk Mouse

Bring console-style motion control to your PC.Page 118

1+2+3: Spray Bottle

Page 121


Brew sake at home.Page 122

Making Trouble

Build a solar-powered roasting spit.Page 127

Vinyl-Cut PCB Resist

Etch your circuits the easy way — with a resist pattern you make on a vinyl cutter. Page 130

Counting Box

Building a simple counting circuit for kids.Page 134

Howtoons: Abacus

Long before written numbers existed, merchants used the abacus to count large numbers and calculate the cost of goods. Now you can make your own with easy-to-find household supplies!Page 140

Remaking History

Abraham Lincoln and the political campaign torch. Page 142


Nixie tube chess set. Page 146


Sliver grippers, screw pliers, Typhoon burs, universal clamps, books galore, and the latest in Arduino.Page 148

Toy Inventor’s Notebook

Gnome math required!Page 160