The FDL-2 is the successor to the FDL-1 Robotic Foam Dart Lancher. It is similar in function but instead of “Mega” sized darts firing from a revolver, it is designed to accept Nerf brand magazines and Nerf “Elite” size darts. It is fully automatic with an adjustable rate of fire up to about 8 darts per second. It also has select fire allowing you to fire in bursts of 1, 2, or 3 shots in addition to full auto. The entire FDL-2 is controlled by a Particle Photon microcontroller. The Photon is very similar to an Arduino except it has built in wifi allowing you to flash new code to it without plugging a USB cable into it. Darts are propelled by brushless outrunner motors which are powered by electronic speed controllers (ESC’s). The FDL-2 uses a stepper motor based pusher mechanism to push darts between the flywheels. Between the microcontroller, stepper motor, and speed controllers the FDL-2 has a limitless set of tuning options. The entire blaster can be reprogrammed to operate in any way. Having wifi also opens up the possibility of using a phone app or web page to fine tune the function of the blaster on the fly.
Every Thursday is #3dthursday here at Adafruit! The DIY 3D printing community has passion and dedication for making solid objects from digital models. Recently, we have noticed electronics projects integrated with 3D printed enclosures, brackets, and sculptures, so each Thursday we celebrate and highlight these bold pioneers!
Have you considered building a 3D project around an Arduino or other microcontroller? How about printing a bracket to mount your Raspberry Pi to the back of your HD monitor? And don’t forget the countless LED projects that are possible when you are modeling your projects in 3D!
The Adafruit Learning System has dozens of great tools to get you well on your way to creating incredible works of engineering, interactive art, and design with your 3D printer! If you’ve made a cool project that combines 3D printing and electronics, be sure to let us know, and we’ll feature it here!
Adafruit has had paid day off for voting for our team for years, if you need help getting that going for your organization, let us know – we can share how and why we did this as well as the good results. Here are some resources for voting by mail, voting in person, and some NY resources for our NY based teams as well. If there are additional resources to add, please let us know – adafruit.com/vote
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.