Carlos Lopérgolo's Catwhisker Detector Stand
(I promise I didn´t invent anything new)
Introduction: — Well, as a web surfer I stopped by a wonderful place on the internet called: Dave´s Homemade crystal sets, it sounds familiar, don´t you think ?. I sent this fellow an email (I won´t never forget that 9th october, 2006) and since then we share a lot of things in the name of science and crystal radios.
I sent some pictures of the radios I made and now I want to share my last projects related to catwhisker detectors with all of you. Nothing new under the sky, but I hope you enjoy this.
The Idea, the development and the construction: — I had that idea going round in circles in my head for a long time. And then I put my hands to work. I wanted to experiment that terrible fight between that rock and the person that want to listen a radio station by making use of a catwhisker detector. Nothing else, but that.
I wanted to catch the feeling of early radio times, and in that moment I knew this was the way I had to choose. Here we go !
First I took some pieces of plumb pipes and melted them together with some tin, just in the stove burner because it has a very low melting point and my wife wasn´t at home. I made a mold with a very heavy piece of pine wood and drilled a 12 mm hole. I emptied out a little amount of this alloy inside this hole and put the little pyrite rock there with a pair of tweezers, but I burned my finger anyway. This means the fool´s gold made its own magical effect on my finger, this is what I call a stupid finger.
Second, I checked out my junk store and found another wonderful piece of wood that I had collected from a container in the street that belonged to a new building construction.
Third, I cut different shapes and took several measurements to make the base to place the pyrite and the detector itself.
The detector is what I would define as a good way to see how the lateral thinking works. I went to a hardware store and found some kind of metal device that people uses to put inside a hole made in hollow ceilings. Well I looked at it in several ways and found this idea, the detector. I added a wooden bead, a spring that was taken from a printer found in the streets too and the catwhisker is a little winded copper magnet wire, and the result is what you see in the photos. You can connect the detectors thanks to the contribution of another found object in the hardware store, two metal brackets that are commonly use to fix mirrors or something like that.
The experience: — It was something horrible at first try, I spent at least 1 hour until I got a little sound, but now I´m experienced, it just take a half an hour ! Just joking, it´s a very nice device to build and I´m sure that you´re going to make it real too. Remember that thing related to lateral thinking, it really works as the catwhisker detector!
Thanks Dave for this chance and Enrique to have lent me his camera.