Edward Carlson need to cut a bunch of cables, but wasn’t keen on spending a whole 20 minutes measuring and snipping them. Instead, he turned to automation to simplify his life, and after after a mere four days of labor and purchasing of new parts, he has a machine that can do it for him.
His device uses an Arduino Mega for control, along with an LCD/button shield purchased locally. The user programs in the number of feet to be cut, then a stepper motor obediently rolls a larger wheel via a timing belt. The wire is fed between this wheel and another on top of it to provides tension. These rollers feed the wire into a piece of PVC tube, and finally out to the waiting jaws of a modified manual wire cutter.
Clipping is accomplished via a linkage setup, which can be seen in action just after 5:30 in the video below, which is quite pleasing to watch.
While some might wonder why one wouldn’t just cut the cables manually, those that enjoy building things for the sake of seeing if it can be done will definitely appreciate this contraption. On the other hand, Carlson does now need another pair of clippers, as they’ve been sacrificed to his auto-cutter!