This is Cacaphonix, named after the bard in the "Asterix and Oblix" cartoons because it makes a terrible noise in an attempt to make music. Unfortunately for Cacaphonix, his musical talent is limited to what I can program and I'm terrible at music. Things will probably get worse later when I make a second robot for the keyboard.
After Rik had a video rejected by Utube because of the soundtrack, I suggested he make a robot to create his sound tracks. When I saw this keyboard cheap in an after Christmas sale I decided to make one myself.
The keyboard has 8 instruments, 8 drumbeats, 4 drums to make your own drumbeat, 4 animal noises and the ability to record and playback your musical attempts. Some of the instuments even sound like they're supposed to. No bad for $14 AUD (about $9 US). It even came with batteries!
First thing I had to do was fix a dodgy solder joint that made every 8th key not work. Since I had to pull it apart anyway this was no big deal and the dry solder joint was easy to spot and fix.
Next I removed a very nice little modular battery box (3xAA) that I can use in another project and installed a socket and a LM2940CT +5V regulator. Now I can run this of a 6V plugpack.
This keyboard is easy to hack, plenty of room inside. the brains is one small chip. You could control this easily with a transistor on each button but where would be the fun in that? Click on the photo for a larger image, the regulator is easy to see.
This is the guts of the little robot, just 3 minature servos. I used a little hotglue to hold them together and then decided that would not be strong enough so I cut out some polymorph pannels and joined them with nylon post and 3mm screws. This made sure the servos can't move.
I haven't decided on a head yet as I have too many ideas. Wait and see what I find.
Another simple polymorph bracket allows the waist servo horn to be screwed to the back of the keyboard.
At the moment I'm using the control board from my last laser range finder experiment. Once I've made a second bot for the keyboard I'll make up a new board and fit it in the battery compartment. With the original battery holder removed there's enough room for a picaxe 28X1.