I just sent out a message to the group. I realized afterward that this was different than posting a discussion, which is what I meant to do. My apologizes, I am relatively new here and don't often use sights like this. Anyway...
My name is Kyle. I have a degree in nanotechnology and make ferrofluid displays as a side project. I consider it a form of artistic expression for myself and a bit of a side gig (I hope to become a full-time gig someday). I'm very knowledgeable on the subject of ferrofluid and am happy to answer question for the group if they have any. I am also happy to consider helping anybody with ideas for a custom ferrofluid display. So, please don't be shy. And yes, I can add color to the ferrofluid for you (this is actually my specialty). Examples of my work can be seen at the CZFerro website The blue and gold colored displays on this site are made by me. The others are made by Nicky Nada. Hope I can add something to the group for everybody ;)
Kyle - absolutely awesome stuff and delighted to have you join the group. While I do love what Fluux did with their initial offering via Kickstarter, I really wish I would have stumbled upon your Concept Zero site. The Skull is beyond sick and from a purely aesthetic standpoint, I must say I really like the 100 ml display. Fluux's display device is a bit lightweight and really necessitates it being held while being used (versus using the display stand). The nice, elegant bottle in the 100 ml display looks like an ideal vessel and display.
I know I, and likely the other members of the group, will have more questions and possibly a custom request in the future. For now I just wanted to send along my props and admiration for your work.
Welcome K-Nano! Those are some cool displays you have on your website! I would be right on board with Jim on picking one up but I am also waiting on a Fluux unit.I may have a custom display quote request in the future.
I have hunted down a couple options to pull off a chameleon look to a lava lite but unsure how to keep it uniform and dispersed throughout the wax, definitely something oil based is needed. What powder are you using to get a clean and uniform dispersion of the color shift in your ferro fluid? I am assuming it is in the realm of oil based since it does not bleed out into the water, could be wrong though. Thanks for any info you have and would be willing to share, welcome to OG!
@Jim, Thanks for the props! I appreciate it.
@VOXul, I can't disclose exactly what I use to add color to the ferrofluid because it's a trade secret. (If I find it can be applied to the wax in motion lamps as well it's always possible I could work something out with interested persons.) Sorry, I probably should have mentioned that I can't answer many how to make ferrofluid display questions. However, I can answer questions about it's restrictions and limitations when working with it and designing/creating a custom display. Many people underestimate how difficult ferrofluid can be to work with. You'll notice every ferrofluid related project on kickstarter (there's been 3) has had issues delivering to backers and this is why. They all fall short, in my opinion, of proper experimentation before releasing the product. For example, Fluux should have known better than to claim that his display would not have an air bubble present. It is simply unsafe to seal a glass bottle without an air bubble because of fluid expansion. It's a recipe for disaster. This alone tells me he lacked proper due diligence before launching his product. The devil is in the details, my friends.
HAHA I understand K-nano. I will keep brewing some vessel ideas and come to you for construction! Would be cool to implement magnets into a Giant Wave base and fill a Pacifica/Atlantis tube with the stuff. Motorized motion into the magnets could create quite a wave party!
When it comes to building 'passive' displays that move the ferrofluid for you, we tend to lean towards using permanent magnets and stepper motors. The actual construction of which is done by one of my business partners, Casey Hughes. Here is an example of his work. We tend to stay away from electromagnet designs because of the increased level of difficulty and necessary expertise. However, electromagnetic designs are possible. If you guys know any electrical engineers experienced with electromagnets that would like to collaborate feel free to send them my way ;)
We've learned that trying to convey ideas through descriptive text is limiting and encourage people to use google sketch up if possible to help visualize the design. It's free and a very powerful design tool once one learns how to use it.
I don't quite get how this works but its very exiting... feel like a kid seeing an Astro Lamp for the first time!
I can't contribute anything development wise... but I sure hope its a winner for you guys.