Picture of The Much Larger Board of Many Ping-Pong Balls

Ok, you saw the 8x8 board, now prepare yourself for the 16x32 awesomeness that is about to ensue.

I cannot apologise enough for the video quality, but I am still using my phone as a camera until I have fixed up my decent one

However... I do have decent pictures (ie not from a camera phone). Unfortunately, instructables thinks that 13.24mb for a photo is a bit excessive. I disagree, so until I resize them you will have to make your way to my blog to see them.

Just a little note, as whatnot has reminded of me in the comments, ping-pong balls are made of celluloid, which is very flammable. The LEDs do not heat up, or anything else for that matter, but you should not put this near anything that could light it. Using this on a stage can be problematic too, as most won't allow wooden fixtures. Some do, and if you explain it most are understanding.

Step 1: Things you should know

Firstly - I sell (or try to sell :-) ) kits. Unfortunately, I am a Brit  (not actually unfortunate, just impractical). This means shipping abroad is expensive. Very expensive. This means that for this, I cannot sell the wood parts, or anything that is not the electronics. If you buy a kit you get all the network cables, PCBs, ICs, Components, and LEDs. If you want to get the boards fabricated yourself, never fear, they have been open sourced under CC-BY SA V3.0 Unported and Eng+Wales. As for the laser cut wood panels, the DXF files are released under the same license. All you have to do is send the files to your local friendly CNC turner or Miller, pay him, and get some nice identical panels (though without my blog etched onto them :-) ), and you can pick any wood you like, and save yourself about £150 in shipping (no joke, that is what it would cost).

Secondly - The stand and frame are the only things that were manufactured by hand. There are no CNC files for these. In this instructable I will go over how I made my stand and frame, then an alternative method without requiring a full on workshop, then a guide on how to design your own if neither of these are to your liking.

Thirdly - Ah the joys of copyright. Initially I found another project, a matrix of the same size, and used their computer-side code. I then modified it, as allowed, ported it to my hardware, and added animations for my specific purposes. The problem is, that due to their licenses, I cannot redistribute my modified code. I do have my own original code, but it is still in the pipeline, and not ready for others to use it, its a bit of a "poke it with a stick" type program. Never works first time, until you kick it. Aaaannnnyyway, I digress; there is a solution to the problem, in that instead of giving out the modified code, I modified my electronics design to work with the code, without modifications or porting. Unfortunately, the electronics are worse because of it, but until my code is ready, that's just the way things are. (The code is from solderlab.de)
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wbannister1 year ago
could u make me one and sell me it? how much would it be?
iamm992 years ago
hei! :-) how big can u make it? can u make it 80*800? :-)
DaShroom (author)  iamm992 years ago
No, ish
There would be issues with the data rate (over TTL serial), power, scanning, control architecture.
You would have to either use multiple ArtNet (DMX over Ethernet) controllers (or nodes as they are refered to) and an artnet controller. This is preferable for low-res video (like this).
The other option is DVI in, but this would be much, much harder. You would need to get ITU-R BT.6XX (from a video decoder, such as the TVP5150AM1), and put it into an FPGA, possible more than one depending on the size.
Power is simple, just more of it :-)

If this is serious, contact me at inquiries@dashroom66.com and I can go more in depth
iamm992 years ago
hei! :-) how big can u make it? can u make it 80*800? :-)
Spludge2 years ago
Do you still sell kits? Your website is under maintenance...
DaShroom (author)  Spludge2 years ago
Sort of...
I don't have the resources to keep things in stock (thus the website is closed - and being redesigned).
However, if you email me at "inquiries@dashroom66.com" then I can make things to order, though there is a substantial lead time.
Spludge2 years ago
Does anybody know if they are for sure common cathode?

says common anode..
DaShroom (author)  Spludge2 years ago
The two projects have very different controllers; this matrix is cathode and the little one is anode.

Hi, I really like this! Would it be able to be programmed to work as a clock?
DaShroom (author)  tomvanschelven2 years ago
ish - you could easily fit the numbers on it, the problem would be how it would know the time. It could be told it from a computer, though that is quite a bit of overkill. What most people use is something called an RTC module, or a Real Time Clock. These are little chips (you can buy them in easy pre-done modules) that keep track of the time and give it over i2c or similar. The problem with this is that the i2c pins are used (though not by i2c) so you would have to modify the pinout to free these pins, then put an RTC on them. It should be plain sailing from there.

would that be something you might be able to do through your online shop and sell to me? sounds too complex for me! cheers
DaShroom (author)  tomvanschelven2 years ago
Yeah sure, though I have a LOT to do at the moment, including coursework (sooooo much coursework), more projects (cool instructables on the way, such as a fire-spitting twitter pumpkin, concrete nixie clock, joke keyboard .etc) and breathing (I am currently ill). But after I have got through this large mountain of work (ie half term), I should be able to start work. The basic stuff will be ok, but doing the frames (and animations I know I will end up doing), might take a while.

Thanks, George
jbjorge2 years ago
What were the dimensions of the finished board as well as the individual squares?
DaShroom (author)  jbjorge2 years ago
All the panels are slightly different, due to borders, and space for text, but for arguments sake let's say 400mm square, and the whole thing is 1600 by 800mm not including the bottom text bit.

Whatnot3 years ago
Reminder: Real ping-pong balls are made of celluloid and celluloid is about as flammable as it gets, so keep that in mind if you use a ton of them.
DaShroom (author)  Whatnot3 years ago
Yeah, I know, but the LEDs don't get hot, or even heat up by one degree, so hopefully it won't burn anything down for a while :-D
I wasn't worried about the LED or anything, it's just that with a lot of ping-pong balls strapped to a large area it's good to know you should keep it away from candles and such, more a general reminder for people that make it and don't realize.

I'm sure it's fine in on itself and wasn't knocking the project which looks rather spiffy. :)
But the neater something is, the more people make it, the more chance that somebody doesn't realize and now they know.
DaShroom (author)  Whatnot2 years ago
Actually, by quirk of fate, the cheap ping-pong balls are plastic, not celluloid, so they don't easily burn (just go black and melt when I put a lighter to them)

DaShroom (author)  Whatnot3 years ago
yeah, good call. I will add it to the instructable. I had problems with that, and the fact that it is wooden when people use it as a fixture. Commercial fixtures are all metal, so people can get a bit panicky.
sitearm3 years ago
@DaShroom; Hi! Awesome indeed - I tweeted this. Pixels the size of ping pong balls! Cheers : ) Site
DaShroom (author)  sitearm3 years ago
Ta :-)
Nice instructable!

Can you add pictures of the led pins under "Solder Time"? The description is okay, but a little confusing, and as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. I'd like to see the pins bent without solder, the two columns without tape (i.e., what is "the other extremity pin"?), the columns with tape, a pic of the whole thing.
DaShroom (author)  kewpiedoll993 years ago
Yeah sure. I am on holiday, but I will do it when I get back. I decided to do an instructable after I built it, so most of the photos are useless, sorry :-)
keegancdr3 years ago
So how much is your kit with all of the electronics? I'm on a mobile phone and may have missed it in the ible' but yeah can you message me a price in USD? Thank you :)
DaShroom (author)  keegancdr3 years ago
Currently it's about £300, but I don't know about USD, think about $500. It aint cheap, but neither is the cost of 10 huge pcbs or the 520 LEDs, or the 16m of Cat6 patch leads.

HEY YOU3 years ago
Nicely Done!

Where did you source you ping pong balls?

DaShroom (author)  HEY YOU3 years ago
Ebay, I got them in lots of 150, very cheap.
Lindie3 years ago
Very nice!
I voted
DaShroom (author)  BIOhazard_inc3 years ago
Thanks :-D
radicalmart3 years ago
excellent, simplistic and a brilliant instructable and it uses less power than light sources iof that size!!!
Krow3 years ago
Make that into a beer pong table!!
Very cool....I have voted for you! #Best of Luck....hope you get the code sorted soon!
DaShroom (author)  phoenix62_803 years ago
Thanks :-D
florinc3 years ago
Can you publish the schematic?
DaShroom (author)  florinc3 years ago
Yeah, though there is a slight problem, in that they have been corrupted. I was in the process of re-making them, though I am now on holiday and away from my main PC. Soon after I get back, I will finish them and upload them. Thanks for your interest :-)

If you are desperate, it is just a basic 74HC595 chain, with 4 channels for each colour and the rows. The pins to go to the arduino are in the shield guide.

gweeto3 years ago
I used Photogadget for pictures. It reduces the file size but still keeps great quality
DaShroom (author)  gweeto3 years ago
Thanks, I will have a look.
amolengko3 years ago
it's cool.........
J-Five3 years ago
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