Robot Girls, DIY View-Master,
and Arduino Hype
From Makers Like You
my favorite subject.
Readers might want
to know that you can
get aftermarket reel
blanks from Fresa
Volante and old blank
reel stock on eBay.
View-Master’s blank reel machine operated
until 2000, and in its last year they saw a dramatic increase in demand, since word got out
they were mothballing the machine. People
stocked up and are still selling their excess.
At my website, vmresource.com, you can
find a template for formatting digital images
for the original blank, instructions for modifying the cameras for electronic flash, and other
tips and tricks (plus a PDF of the manual).
Also: although William Gruber was a genius
and developed the View-Master format, most
of the camera design and the Personal Stereo
system were developed by two other geniuses
named Gordon Smith and Karl Kurtz.
—Eddie Bowers, Dallas
My daughters and I enjoy MAKE. It always
inspires us. Over the last year or so, Camille
( 11) and Genevieve ( 9) and I have been hard
at work building robots. We’ve built over ten
so far. The girls are involved in the designing,
naming, soldering, electronics, metal fabrication, programming, and testing of the robots,
with Dad guiding the way.
Our two most recent robots are a Mars
Rover, complete with NASA-style rocker-bogie
suspension system, and a mechatronic tank
with Mecanum wheels (see videos of both
beatty-robotics.com). We’ve also built
quadrotors, crawlers, and others. I thought
you might like seeing some of our creations.
—Robert Beatty, Asheville, N.C.
I was thrilled to see Bob Knetzger’s article
“Mastering 3D Views” in MAKE Volume 28.
I’m an avid user of the View-Master Personal
Stereo Camera system to make my own View-Master reels. However, I was crushed when
I read that “the empty View-Master reels
aren’t made anymore.”
It is possible to get empty VM reels —
I make them! I got frustrated at the expense
of buying old reels on eBay, so in 2005
I started shipping new reels under my label
Fresa Volante (
—Nick Merz, San Francisco
Thanks for the awesome projects. Here’s
a Spoon Carving Knife I made (Volume 27),
and the Gravity Catapult I built this week
—Lucas Fried, 12, Wayland, Mass.
12 Make: makezine.com/29