Gadgets I made in high school

(Left) One of our first 3D-printers in the corner of the film lab. (Right) The new Design Lab.

Mechanical T-Rex 🦖

Something must be missing on my diffuser. Hmm, how about a T-Rex head? How about a mechanical T-Rex breathing out steam? I 3D-printed this mechanical T-Rex head, painted it, and installed it on my diffuser.

(Left) Painting the printed T-Rex head. (Right) Head installed on the diffuser.

Flashing Pumpkin 🎃

For Halloween 2018, we decided to put the new laser cutter to the test. A face is carved on the pumpkin, and an LED is inserted in one of its eyes to blink every second controlled by an Arduino microcontroller. Looks scary in the dark hallway! However, the laser cutter smelled like pumpkin.

Coin & Gear Clock 💰 + ⚙ = 🕰

Electric Turn Table

The Year 8 Design class has made a bunch of dragsters, and some of the exceptional ones need to be displayed. A turntable undoubtedly is the best way to demonstrate every single detail in 360°. Based on a 3D-printed turntable, we attached a motor to the axis and battery powering it to make it electric. In the future, we will attach a joystick to control turns and enclose the table in an acrylic case.

Literally a “Small Token of Appreciation” 🎁

Colourful Coins

Coin colours are confusing. Why don’t we make it more confusing by turning them into other colours? Using the technique of electroplating, we gave our dimes and pennies a new coating and appearance!

(Left) Electroplating process. (Centre) Original and electroplated dime. (Right) Golden, silver, and bronze penny.

Foggy Christmas Tree 🎄

Christmas trees are all the same. How we make them cooler? With some chemical reactions and lights! By placing multiple beakers around a lab stand, we constructed a “tree.” Then, we put dry ice, water, and various colourings in beakers. When the room is dark and a light source is aimed at the tree, our version of Christmas tree comes to life with colourful vapour!

Creating those projects with my schoolmates and teachers have been a lot of fun. Feel free to reach out if you are interested in learning more about those gadgets or just generally about making!



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Simon Zirui Guo

Simon Zirui Guo


Accelerating Deep Tech | Robotics, Blockchain, Neurotech | EECS @UCBerkeley | Teaching @CalBlockchain, Director @BB_Xcelerator | prev @hax_co, @SOSV, @Interaxon