Here’s a project we did a few years back. The boys wanted to play with a robot arm and I just happened to have one sitting on my shelf that needed to get built… coincidence? (Quite probably!)
The project was a lot of fun. The arm went together quickly and easily without much fuss and a good time was had by all.
Here’s a link to the build log with more photos.
A couple of years ago I purchased a Bosch 1617 EVS router for use with my CNC machine. In general it works well but one thing that I wanted that it didn’t have was a way to better control the router RPM’s. Then I learned about a device called the SuperPID Speed Controller which retrofits a router to permit better spindle speed control, and it has the added advantage that it can integrate with the Mach3 CNC controller software.
Upgrading the router is not terribly difficult but it isn’t totally easy either. So as I was modifying my router I took lots of pictures of the process, partly to help myself remember what I did, but also to help someone else if they’re thinking about the SuperPID speed controller and have a similar router.
Here is a link to the build log.
Sorry there’s no descriptive text but I think you’ll find the pictures helpful enough on their own. One of the trickiest parts of getting it back together though was figuring out a way to hold the commutator brushes out of the way while I slipped the outer housing back on. I used a couple of pencils and rubber bands for this. When you get to that step, you’ll understand what I mean.
My Bosch router works great as a CNC spindle except for one small detail, it is designed to pull air through the router body and exhaust it out the bottom.
I’m sure this is a fine thing when it’s used as a manual router, but it causes problems when used as a CNC router due to the way it blows the dust and chips all over the place. This, in turn, causes the dust collector system to work extra hard to pick it up and there’s always some extra that gets wafted up into the air to settle wherever it might in the workshop.
So to solve the problem, I fired up Fusion 360 CAD and designed an air deflector plate that bolts onto the bottom of the router. And as you can see in the photos, now does a fine job of redirecting the air flow.
UPDATE: I have added this item on Thingiverse: . You can download it here: “Bosch 1617EVS Exhaust Deflection Plate v9”.
Here is a link to the build log where you can see more photos.
We signed the kids up for STEM Camp VEX IQ Robotics this year. Last year they did the EV3 Lego Robotics. They had a terrific time building their robot and getting it programmed, and then went on to win the competition and were awarded the First Place certificate.
Here is the link to the Google Album with lots of pictures and all the details.
My wife got me a Creality CR-10s 3D Printer for my birthday. It is really nice, and after some tuning and tweaking, it cranks out very nice 3D prints. I’m very pleased with it and I have printed some pretty neat stuff with it. Here is a link to my Google Photo Album showing a lot of the cool stuff we’ve printed with it so far. I haven’t added any commentary to it yet (as of this writing) but most of it is self-explanatory anyway I think.
‘Real World’ vs. Simulation
I challenged my boys to think about how a collection of disparate components come together to form a “complex system” which achieves a useful function. In order to simplify the discussion and to keep the focus on the central aspects, we used an ‘elevator’ metaphor as our example. Our first challenge was to use the Scratch programming language to create the elevator virtually, in an idealized simulated environment. Then I challenged them to do it again using real parts in the real world to see whether the experience would be the same or different…
I have more to write on this subject, but here is a teaser (our build log) from the project.
Howdy! Welcome to my new site. There’s not much here yet…. I guess I should probably put up some sort of a picture. Anyway, I got this site so we– my kids and I– can start keeping all of our stuff in one place. In the upcoming months the goal is to start migrating over project logs and albums that we’ve been keeping in other online locations to begin to chronicling our activities in a more comprehensive way. There’s only so much you can do with Google Photo Albums for instance. So we need a better way to start organizing all of these logs and records.
So hello and welcome aboard! Please feel free to follow along and make any comments, ask whatever questions, and do share links to your own projects and ideas. We’re always interested in seeing what other folks are up to.
I suppose I’m a little eclectic in getting updates up. It depends upon how busy I’ve been with work and “Honey-do’s” whether or not I’ve gotten in any time on projects. I try to plan stuff to do every weekend and sometimes it works out 😉 Whenever I accumulate enough progress that it seems like it could be interesting, I put up a new post. So maybe once a week or two on average, I’d say.
Thanks for stopping by!