Customer Feature- Peter Hartes

Customer Feature- Peter Hartes

 Introducing TinyCircuits user Peter Hartes. Peter created this amazing Doctor Who Tardis model, with a TinyScreen Video Player Kit running a video for the console!

Peter lives in Atlanta, GA and has always been an amateur tinkerer, modeler and someone interested in miniatures as well as electronics. He was introduced to the Sci-Fi television show Doctor Who on its relaunch by the BBC about 14 years ago. Peters interest in the show grew when David Tennant took over as "The Doctor" and he quickly found himself immersed within the "Whoniverse." Then, Peter came across a toy company that created a playset of The Doctor’s time machine – his TARDIS – interior and he thought “I could really enhance this.”

Peter began looking at screenshots and started re-watching TV episodes from the David Tennant era to make sure he noticed all of the details…LOTS of details. For example, he found a company that makes miniature fluorescent tube light bulbs (like what you find in an old garage ceiling). He had to learn how to wire them to a power source, the result was exactly what he envisioned. To complete this project Peter used anything and everything, from the unconventional to the most miniature. From jewelry pieces and parts to hardware screws and wires, to Nano-sized LEDs for lighting. 

In the center of the TARDIS is the console, how you fly it through time and space. Six sections with various bells, buttons, levers, and a revolving screen that shows The Doctor information in his Time Lord language. It acts as a normal ‘television’ screen as well. So for this missing piece Peters search began again – random inquiries on the internet eventually brought him to TinyCircuits. After looking at the size of the TinyScreen+, he knew it was what he needed to create a ‘live’ screen on the TARDIS console. 

Peter ordered the TinyScreen Video Player Kit and downloaded the software and says his first test video looked like a 1970s television show with static lines running through it. After some assistance with the code, he went back to the internet to find a few .gifs of what the screen was going to play. From there, he modified the plastic screen on the console to fit the MicroSD + Audio board and the TinyScreen+. The display and battery are wired through the middle of the console so it still turns and moves like the real thing making it easy to change out the battery quickly. 

 In creating a project as this Peter says,

"First you need a vision, then you need a plan! Start with the beginning and end at first, then fill in the smaller details as you go along. Search for exactly what you want… the satisfaction of seeing your vision come to life right in front of you is great. Take your time too! The TinyScreen Video Player Kit is the cherry on top in my TARDIS model. While my eye for detail can be seen from the smallest ropes to the texture of the coral pillars that frame the console room, when the TV screen broadcasting The Doctor’s language is interrupted by Rose Tyler shouting for him in a split second (see Doctor Who series 4, ep 5 ‘The Poison Sky’ and ep 10 ‘Midnight’), the ‘OMG’ reactions from fellow Whovians tell me I’ve done well." 

Peter says he could not be happier nor be more impressed with himself for creating this. He took the TARDIS model along, as well as the action figures when he met David Tennant, Catherine Tate, and John Barrowman, the cast of Doctor Who. 

Peter eventually wants to build a miniature set in the same manner as this model but from Series 3 Episode 10, ‘Blink,’ where the characters are seated in a room watching a portable DVD player broadcasting another one of The Doctor’s cryptic messages. He plans to use another TinyScreen Video Player Kit as the centerpiece there as well. Peter says "TinyCircuits offers a very unique product…and I’m very happy that I found it "

- Thanks, Peter! We're happy that you found us too! 

This is the beginning of a series of monthly customer features, where we show what customers like YOU do with our tech every day! Interested in having your tech featured in a blog post like this? Want to have a spot on our front page for an entire month? Tag us in your projects on Facebook and Twitter, or post in our Forum under "User Projects." We'll be on the lookout for our next candidate!