Build Your Own Analogue Computer

Discussion in 'Electronics Resources' started by Sparky49, Apr 6, 2012.

  1. Sparky49

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jul 16, 2011
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    Hi all,

    I came across this article - completely free and a good read!

    Spans several magazines to build a complete analogue computer.

    http://archive.org/details/anacomp

    Sparky
     
  2. crutschow

    Expert

    Mar 14, 2008
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    That's interesting history, but I don't see that anyone would want to build one now. The only thing it can compute is differential and integral functions, and add and subtract signals--basically the PID functions of an analog feedback loop. ;)
     
  3. Sparky49

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jul 16, 2011
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    *sniff* I would very much like to make one... I'm planning to use today as an opportunity to sort through the articles and persuade my parents that it is okay for me to spend more loot on electronics lol. :)
     
  4. panic mode

    Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2011
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    Sparky49 likes this.
  5. Sparky49

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jul 16, 2011
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    That's cheating. ;)
     
  6. crutschow

    Expert

    Mar 14, 2008
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    And what would you do with it once you built it? It has very limited capabilities.
     
  7. Sparky49

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jul 16, 2011
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    Hmmmm.... I'd look like a boss when I need to do some integration.

    Why do I make any electronic project? I suppose to increase my understanding and for sheer craic.
     
  8. billbo

    New Member

    Jan 25, 2010
    12
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    im planning on building a masive relay and valve 1 alredy have small colection of both
     
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  9. Sparky49

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jul 16, 2011
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    That'll be very cool! Best of luck with that!
     
  10. DMahalko

    Active Member

    Oct 5, 2008
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    Why does any hobbyist bother to build anything? You can usually just go out and buy whatever it is you're trying to do, for a tenth of the cost of what it'll take you in time and effort to do it yourself.



    I have some selsyns / "sychromotors" including one huge mechanical and now apparently extremely rare selsyn comparator, brand new in their original 50 year old US Military steel shipping cans, which I eventually plan to assemble to demonstrate how they were used in analog bomb plotting computers and analog data tracking/reporting systems.

    This will be used for a Wikipedia video demonstration:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synchro



    Scanned, illustrated, previously restricted military document showing how and where they were used in submarines:

    Historic Naval Ships Association
    Submarine Electrical Installations - June 1946
    SELF-SYNCHRONOUS TRANSMITTERS AND INDICATORS
    http://www.hnsa.org/doc/fleetsub/elect/chap11.htm
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2012
  11. strantor

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 3, 2010
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    Imagine making a digital computer out of hard wired electromechanical relays. Don't arrange them logically or mount them, just all soldered together with bits of scrap wire in a giant ball. Something just as simple as a calculator, I can see it; fills an entire room, draws several KW and a cacophony of clicking noises every time you press a digit.
     
  12. DMahalko

    Active Member

    Oct 5, 2008
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    Put a light source on every relay coil to show its on/off state, and turn off the room lights while you calculate.
     
  13. Sparky49

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jul 16, 2011
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    Put it in space and you've got a computer planet.
     
  14. Brownout

    Well-Known Member

    Jan 10, 2012
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    I think it's a good project. Analog computers are still with us! They are hard to recognize, because they are embedded in products and not a stand alone "computer" anymore. If you desire to become an analog designer, then such a project would be an excellent learning experience. And it's just cool besides, especially to us analog guys.
     
  15. malolyani

    New Member

    Mar 6, 2013
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    i need a help to build 2nd order analog computer please
     
  16. atferrari

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 6, 2004
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    Prior the PC era, the Loadicator, used on board, was an analog computer with a huge number of knobs to enter weights in the different spaces to calculate basically, trim, stability, bending moments and sheer forces.

    So many opamps used a lot of power.

    Now the whole thing is a piece of software running in a PC. It is compulsory to have it on board, required by the classification societies.

    Usually, that PC is supposed to be used exclusively for that.
     
  17. crutschow

    Expert

    Mar 14, 2008
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    True. But usually after its built it does something interesting or useful. I just don't see that being the case for an electronic analog computer. :rolleyes:
     
  18. KL7AJ

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 4, 2008
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    Heathkit made a very popular analog computer in the late 1950s. Wouldn't mind having one, just to look at. :)
     
  19. Peter McNair

    New Member

    Oct 18, 2013
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    I first saw an analog computer back in 1976 (Science Museum, London)...it stuck in my (12 year old's) mind and I have now got around to building one...

    http://analog-ontology.blogspot.co.uk/

    It's early days but it's opening up an amazing window into differential equations, completely different to any (digital) computer based approach...
     
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