Archive for the Uncategorized Category


Posted in Uncategorized on May 16, 2013 by jackBuffington

About seven to ten times a year I find a rattlesnake hanging out in my yard. I, of course don’t like to have rattlesnakes in my yard so I catch them and take them away.

First of all, I would recommend that you leave all rattlesnakes alone unless you have a really good reason to be messing with them. In my case, I have two dogs who spend the majority of their time outside and although I have trained them to leave snakes alone, I still worry that they might disturb one without meaning to. Because of that, and because my wife is terrified of them, I catch them and take then a few miles away.

In this video, I show how I go about catching and releasing a rattlesnake.

Wrapup of my entry for the laser cutter contest

Posted in Uncategorized on December 19, 2011 by jackBuffington

Here is the final word on my laser cutter contest entry where I have built a sun-powered clock. For those of you who haven’t seen my previous posts, here is what I have been up to:

When thinking about what I would do for this contest, I decided that I wouldn’t go high tech and do something involving lots of LEDs doing color mixing, video, or just displaying patterns. I have done that before. Instead, I decided to go ‘no tech’ and build something that had no moving parts and no electronics and yet still managed to ‘blink’ some lights on and off. What I ended up building was a clock that used the sun to display the current time. Above, you can see the face of the clock. The body is made out of aluminum. Instead of hands, I have a large number of acrylic rods running behind the clock face to illuminate the frosted glass in the location where the hour hand would be.

On the outside of the building, facing southward is a camera obscura (pictured above). This camera has a rather large hole as compared with a regular camera obscura that doesn’t have a lens in the front of it. This hole allows a beam of sunlight to pass through and hit an array of acrylic rods that are carefully arranged on the back. These rods channel the sunlight from the camera to the clock face. Below you can see a picture of the inside of the camera.

Below is my entry video for the contest. At the end of it you can find three links that take you through how I built it from start to finish.

Entry for’s laser cutter contest.

Posted in Contest Entries, Uncategorized with tags , on November 13, 2011 by jackBuffington


I *REALLY* want a laser cutter but have never had a good enough excuse to buy one so when I found out about the contest going on over at, I decided to enter.    The contest requires you to build something that uses light in some manner.   Ultimately, I will probably enter two things into the contest.  The first one will be a wall sconce that looks like it is made out of regular perforated aluminum but when it is turned on, it will project an image onto an opposing wall.   It will do this by varying the diameter of the holes in the aluminum, allowing varying amounts of light to pass through.    I have done some tests with different bulbs and different diameters of holes.  So far so good.   I’ll keep posting updates as I progress.