LEGO Powered Up Relay

I needed a way to turn a LEGO motor ON and OFF using a Powered Up hub but keeping power supplies independent. This way I can control a large current demanding motor without draining out the Hub batteries (and also without the need to use a custom cable).

So I used a Power Functions switch as a relay:

LEGO Powered Up relay

Also took the chance to try LDCad on linux. Not so easy to use as LEGO Digital Designer (I am a zero with CAD) but after a while I got a pretty close model. To create a PDF with the instructions I then used LPub3D – I couldn’t install the ‘.deb’ file because of missing dependencies no longer available for my Ubuntu laptop but found out that the ‘.AppImage’ works fine.

The instructions on this PDF file also have a list of the parts that I needed to get from LDView (LPub3D generates a nice image with all the parts but without describing those parts). I also couldn’t install the ‘.deb’ version so I used the ‘.exe’ for Windows, it runs fine with Wine.

The model uses a Powered Up / WeDo 2 motor but it can also use a Power Function M motor or a MINDSTORMS medium motor so this relay may use with different technologies (IR, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, USB) as long as you just need an ON/OFF control of the motor.

Using a Power Functions LiPo battery you can still regulate the output power

A video of the relay working:

And another showing how I use it in my LEGO Imperial Conveyex Transport based on the old LEGO monorail system:

Big thanks to Roland Melkert, Trevor Sandy, Travis Cobbs who designed these great open source tools (and probably many others who contributed).

SmartBrick – em breve num LEGO perto de si

A campanha KickStarter atingiu o primeiro objectivo, 7 dias antes da deadline e posso orgulhar-me de ter dado o meu contributo. Espero poder ajudar ainda mais nos próximos meses, vamos a ver.

To everyone who has made this possible,

We want to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all the help you have given us over the last three weeks. All the support you have given has led this project to success. We know the hard part only begins now, as we have just placed our order for the first shipment of BLE chips 🙂

We want to thank you for the all the work you have put into spreading the news about the project. You are responsible for the wonderful karma that has been with us all along the way!

Dear Friends,  and we think we can call you that by now, we have worked really hard over the last 8 months in building SBrick for you. Now that we have reached our funding goal, our common dream will become a reality,  and you will be there with us to enjoy all the fun that this project will bring!

Thank you again for all your support, and keep on supporting the SBrick!

Estou ansioso por poder testar um bichinho destes com o Raspberry Pi e com o LEGO Mindstorms EV3. Acho que é desta que vou aprender a programar decentemente em Python 😉

Crowdfunding: SmartBrick

Decidi apoiar um novo projecto de crowdfunding: SmartBrick.

Basicamente um bloco WeDO mais poderoso e sem o cabo USB, apenas Bluetooth.

Para quem estiver interessado, o site do produto e da empresa-mãe, a Vengit.

[actualização de 28 de Julho]

O projecto tem o apoio de figuras como o Philo e o Sariel. Este último participou numa review de um protótipo:

[adição de 6 de Agosto]

O conhecido Nico71 também participou numa review: