Wednesday, February 22, 2017

2017-11-20 (M) Touch Screen Pocket Watch

After printing a single copy of the model the unnecessary plastic used to fill the center of the watch halves was modeled out. The majority of the model, anything not touching the hinges, could have been eliminated too but the prototype halves may become useful for other projects or just fun to give away.

Rotating model

Printing at full resolution revealed a problem. The slightly discrepancy of the printer made the hinges marginally wider than the model but since they were printed to mate exactly the discrepancy made it too difficult to put the hinges together. These tolerances will have to be corrected in the next version. Two options exist, one is to move the hinges further apart than they are now and the second option is to shrink the hinges in place so they conform the desired width after printing.

Printing tolerances won't allow hinges to mate

Force was used to put the hinges together. They locked together. Another unforeseen problem was the hinges which had a square corner on the part which extended above the face. Corners such as these would never allow the hinge to function properly since the caps would hit instead of hinging. Hinges should be nothing more than the circles on the plane above the hinges centerline.

Hinges forced together

The rest of the posts for this project have been arranged by date.

First time here?

Completed projects from year 1.
Completed projects from year 2



This disclaimer must be intact and whole. This disclaimer must be included if a project is distributed.

All information in this blog, or linked by this blog, are not to be taken as advice or solicitation. Anyone attempting to replicate, in whole or in part, is responsible for the outcome and procedure. Any loss of functionality, money, property or similar, is the responsibility of those involved in the replication.

All digital communication regarding the email address 24hourengineer@gmail.com becomes the intellectual property of Brian McEvoy. Any information contained within these messages may be distributed or retained at the discretion of Brian McEvoy. Any email sent to this address, or any email account owned by Brian McEvoy, cannot be used to claim property or assets.

Comments to the blog may be utilized or erased at the discretion of the owner. No one posting may claim claim property or assets based on their post.

This blog, including pictures and text, is copyright to Brian McEvoy.

2015-11-19 (Th)

Monday, February 20, 2017

2017-02-19 (Su) Touch Screen Pocket Watch

My first attempt at making a smart pocket watch didn't go too well. I was pleased with the level of craftsmanship but the hardware, a first gen Sony smart watch, was not a good choice. One problem was the battery life on the watch which died after a couple hours. I'm not exaggerating; this watch didn't last until lunch. Putting the touch screen behind glass was also setting myself up for trouble. With more time and effort I probably could have made something work, I have confidence in myself, but it would have been wasted time.

My projects generally fall into two categories. The first category is repeatable projects which people can order materials and follow the steps to make their own exact copy. For the second category I've used the phrase scrapheap engineering. These projects were built with whatever I could find in my apartment. Generally I HATE seeing these projects. I've come across Instructables where people have found a piece of broken equipment, like a huge pen plotter, and written instructions for how to convert it to a tea server or something. Nope, the odds of finding the same equipment to repeat the process are as good as zero. If someone sees something cool on my site I want them to be able to build it themselves. If I'm lucky they will plus their own spin on the idea and improve but at a MINIMUM someone should be able to copy a project exactly.

I'm ranting and I don't care.

Open source hardware and open source software is great because it opens the door for people to springboard off the work of someone else and make improvements. Taking hard-to-find hardware and turning it into something cheap is fine and good for someone who desperately needs a robotic tea server and HAPPENS to have a broken pen plotter but it doesn't apply to anyone else.

That's how I feel about my first attempt at the smart pocket watch. It used difficult-to-find hardware, it was outdated hardware, and the steps made it difficult to reproduce. Granted, this would have made it a very unique timepiece but that only goes so far in my mind. My experience with the first attempt helped me to see some things which should help me as I make another attempt at a smart pocket watch. I learned that you DON'T cover the screen of a smart watch. I learned that you don't surround the watch in metal. I learned that hinges need to be held tightly. I learned that pressing buttons through plastic is difficult. I learned that modeling paint applies really well and looks nice.

Enough background.
----------

A clamshell design was sketched on paper. The traditional pocket watch shape was going to be copied while making changes for 3D printing. The most obvious change was an increase in hinge size. Metal pocket watches can use small metal hinges but for the hinge to be purely plastic it must be larger. Holes in the hinge were made to accept a #6 bolt which was roughly 4mm in diameter.


Paper sketch

The drawing was modeled with OpenSCAD. Only two parametric variables were used. These were values the user could input to change the characteristics of the model. For example, the radius of the clamshell could be changed from 12mm (1/2 inch) to 50mm (2 inches) with one variable and the bolt hole diameter would stay the same. Or, the bolt radius could be changed from a bolt, 2mm (#6 bolt) to a pin 0.5mm without changing the size of the watch.

Rotating model view

Reasonable sizes were input, 15mm radius for the clamshell and 2mm radius for the bolt holes. Two halves were rendered and each half had five hinge prongs. Each prong was offset so when the two halves fit together the edges of the clamshell would align.

Printed version. Broken hinge can be seen in full resolution

After printing it was obvious the hinges would not be durable enough at this scale. The printer could not create solid hinges because of how thin the filament became upon extruding. The number of hinge prongs will be reduced and each hinge will become thicker. It would also help to print the design larger.

To do:
  • Change test model
    • Reduce hinge prongs from 5 to three
    • Increase proportion of hinge:clamshell
  • Measure smart watch
  • Device method to attach watch
    • Magnet?
    • Clamp?
    • Friction?
  • Create living hinge to press button
  • Access USB port while encased?

The rest of the posts for this project have been arranged by date.

First time here?

Completed projects from year 1.
Completed projects from year 2



This disclaimer must be intact and whole. This disclaimer must be included if a project is distributed.

All information in this blog, or linked by this blog, are not to be taken as advice or solicitation. Anyone attempting to replicate, in whole or in part, is responsible for the outcome and procedure. Any loss of functionality, money, property or similar, is the responsibility of those involved in the replication.

All digital communication regarding the email address 24hourengineer@gmail.com becomes the intellectual property of Brian McEvoy. Any information contained within these messages may be distributed or retained at the discretion of Brian McEvoy. Any email sent to this address, or any email account owned by Brian McEvoy, cannot be used to claim property or assets.

Comments to the blog may be utilized or erased at the discretion of the owner. No one posting may claim claim property or assets based on their post.

This blog, including pictures and text, is copyright to Brian McEvoy.

2015-11-19 (Th)

Sunday, February 19, 2017

2017-02-18 (Sa) Dangerous Minds Podcast Interview COMPLETED

Dangerous Minds Podcast invited Tim and me to do a joint interview but Tim was overloaded at work so I accepted the invitation by myself. This was not my first interview or even my first interview with a podcast.

Dangerous Minds Podcasts is like 2 Cyborgs and a Microphone because they focus on the biohacker community but their format focuses on interviews rather than discussions. We had a lot to discuss before and after the interview. They appreciated my recording space where I modeled the head-mounted display for them. I appreciated their fluidity while recording. They had a wonderful method of making sure they didn’t speak over one another.

 Impromtu modeling

I started the interview a little wooden sounding but once we got a flow established it picked up. My interview was episode 27 and my definition of biohacking was used as the last interviewee clip in episode 29.

They used the off-air time to tell me about their new venture, Dangerous Minds University, where I now have a couple projects listed. Thank you DMP!

First time here?

Completed projects from year 1.
Completed projects from year 2.
Completed projects from year 3.



This disclaimer must be intact and whole. This disclaimer must be included if a project is distributed.

All information in this blog, or linked by this blog, are not to be taken as advice or solicitation. Anyone attempting to replicate, in whole or in part, is responsible for the outcome and procedure. Any loss of functionality, money, property or similar, is the responsibility of those involved in the replication.

All digital communication regarding the email address 24hourengineer@gmail.com becomes the intellectual property of Brian McEvoy. Any information contained within these messages may be distributed or retained at the discretion of Brian McEvoy. Any email sent to this address, or any email account owned by Brian McEvoy, cannot be used to claim property or assets.

Comments to the blog may be utilized or erased at the discretion of the owner. No one posting may claim property or assets based on a post.

This blog, including pictures and text, is copyright to Brian McEvoy.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

2017-02-17 (F) Weekly Summary

For the second time, we released an episode out of order. We recorded and released a show on the technological singularity because it was relevant to the news. The singularity was had been mentioned in 2xCb+Mic before and some of the same concepts came up in our AI episode. All of those can be found on our show page.

Tim has been working at a fevered pace to move our show to a new site. Before we just had a lowly page with the episode list but he's built us a whole site! As of this posting, it is under construction but all the episodes are there so have a look around.


Brian - Left. Tim - Right.

Why should mounting a screen to a pair of glasses present such a problem? It shouldn't. The whole process should only take a few minutes. Nope. Two weeks. It took two weeks, four machine screws, four nuts, and 200 lines of OpenSCAD code to create a wearable display. Sunglasses protect your eyes by blocking UV light but mine protected my eyes because I didn't leave the house during daylight hours for those two weeks. They're done, I look ridiculous, I can't wait to wear them in public.

Here's how it all wrapped up.

Small bumpers were printed for the holding the screen while being able to ride on threaded rods. This configuration was similar to an X-Y table found in CNC machines or 3D printers. Of course, only ordinary hardware store threaded rod was used instead of the expensive lead-screw type.

Parts for a simple screen holder which would use threaded rods

The parts were assembled and they fit exactly how I wanted. The threaded rods contained the screen at the top and bottom while the black bumpers contained the screen on the sides.

Screen holder on bolts for easy adjustment

Designing these parts was not easy. Modeling the parts took time and coding. Attaching the parts turned out to be impractical. Even though the parts amounted to a very low profile configuration, it was too large to fit on ordinary glasses.

Adjustable screen holder that didn't fit glasses

A second model was made with a completely different approach. This version would occlude one eye in order to create a flat disc that would be glued to the glasses. In my mind, this wouldn't be difficult to attach and it wouldn't be tough to print a few extra in case the alignment wasn't perfect. It turned out that the angle this attached made it almost impossible to see the screen. More versatility was needed.

Simplest possible screen holder

I assumed that most of the project would be learning about Linux and sourcing exciting new hardware. Nope. It's been all about aligning a screen. I was able to take a day to add some of that exciting hardware. A Red Bear IoT pHat was ordered at the recommendation of Doug Copeland of the Dangerous Minds Podcast. This added Wifi and BLE without consuming any USB ports but rather it relied on the GPIO.

Red Bear IoT pHat with Wifi and BLE

After all the failed attempts at creating a suitable mounting method, it became clear the best way to gain the kind of versatility I needed was to build a set of glasses from scratch. I don't wear glasses so I learned a lot by building bad pairs. SPOILER: I learned enough to make a workable screen holder.

The first print featured a screen holder that I learned to print days ago with the eye-occluding version. Even though it didn't work I found that I could reliably print a simple rectangle that would hold the screen steady. That day I also learned that glasses need both halves in order to sit on the face or they just fall off. In the picture, you can see me holding it at the bridge of my nose in order to keep them in place.

Right half of wearable screen holder

The second attempt featured glasses that went all the way across my face. What you can't see in the picture is the temples (I learned that was the name of the little shafts that go between the lenses and the ears) are simple straight rods.

Spectacles that were able to be worn

Ear hooks had to be added to the temples in order to keep everything from sliding down my nose. While the animation is fun to watch they weren't effective glasses.

Temples were the wrong length

The modularity of temples printed separately from the rest was valuable but reprinting the temples each time a few millimeters needed to be added or subtracted was impractical. Instead, the temples were printed very short and long threaded rods made it possible to change length with only a wrench and screwdriver.

Adjustable temples

Most of the work left was simply fine-tuning the model to fit my face. This was where a parametric model was highly valuable. Correcting the model took seconds. Rendering the model took minutes. Printing the new model took an hour.

Only minor tweaks remain

A flyby animation was recorded in order to show how all the printed parts fit together. My face acted as the product holder.

Face flyby

All the parts were finally suitable, printed, and assembled. A needlessly bright, cold light was pointed right at my face and I snapped a selfie while wearing everything. In one eye I could see a bright CFL lamp and the other was looking at a Linux desktop. Not a bad night.

Picture of the final product




 

Disclaimer for http://24hourengineer.blogspot.com/

This disclaimer must be intact and whole. This disclaimer must be included if a project is distributed.

All information in this blog, or linked by this blog, are not to be taken as advice or solicitation. Anyone attempting to replicate, in whole or in part, is responsible for the outcome and procedure. Any loss of functionality, money, property or similar, is the responsibility of those involved in the replication.

All digital communication regarding the email address 24hourengineer@gmail.com becomes the intellectual property of Brian McEvoy. Any information contained within these messages may be distributed or retained at the discretion of Brian McEvoy. Any email sent to this address, or any email account owned by  Brian McEvoy, cannot be used to claim property or assets.

Comments to the blog may be utilized or erased at the discretion of the owner. No one posting may claim property or assets based on their post.

This blog, including pictures and text, is copyright to Brian McEvoy.

Friday, February 17, 2017

2017-02-16 (Th) Head-Mounted Display COMPLETED

When the bolts were picked to become the temple rods it seemed like a temporary choice of convenience but they have an interesting aesthetic so they may become permanent. Short bolts replaced the long temple bolts in order to achieve a better fit. It would have been possible to extend the long bolts out the front of the frames but since the bolts may become a permanent part of the spectacles it seemed more logical to replace them.

Side view of a single bolt holding each temple

A good fit seemed to be found with the short bolts and it was important that the glasses be easy to place and remove, which they were. Screen alignment was a problem but the point of making a parametric model was to make changes to the screen position through iterations.

Flyby of my face with the spectacles

Finally, all the parts were in place and a set of wearable frames had been printed. A poorly lit picture was taken while wearing the frames and staring at a bright light. During the picture, I was also wearing my 2 Cyborgs and a Microphone sweater.

I blame the lighting

The models were uploaded and can be found at the bottom of the page. My particular measurements were used for the STL model so if people want to adjust those settings they will need OpenSCAD and the parametric model.

Downloads:

The rest of the posts for this project have been arranged by date.

First time here?

Completed projects from year 1.
Completed projects from year 2.
Completed projects from year 3.



This disclaimer must be intact and whole. This disclaimer must be included if a project is distributed.

All information in this blog, or linked by this blog, are not to be taken as advice or solicitation. Anyone attempting to replicate, in whole or in part, is responsible for the outcome and procedure. Any loss of functionality, money, property or similar, is the responsibility of those involved in the replication.

All digital communication regarding the email address 24hourengineer@gmail.com becomes the intellectual property of Brian McEvoy. Any information contained within these messages may be distributed or retained at the discretion of Brian McEvoy. Any email sent to this address, or any email account owned by Brian McEvoy, cannot be used to claim property or assets.

Comments to the blog may be utilized or erased at the discretion of the owner. No one posting may claim property or assets based on a post.

This blog, including pictures and text, is copyright to Brian McEvoy.


2017-02-15 (W)

Thursday, February 16, 2017

2017-02-15 (W) Head-Mounted Display

The goal of this project was to learn about Linux by forcing myself to use a Raspberry Pi daily. The secondary goal was to be able to walk and use a computer simultaneously. The unexpected, and so far sole accomplishment, has been teaching myself about the construction of eyeglasses.

All the adjustments were made in order to, hopefully, create a usable print of the glasses. The painstaking measurements and wild guesses have led to a frame with all the correct numbers in all the correct places.


Spinning model of glasses


Once printed, it was immediately apparent that the temples were the wrong length. They were so short that the ear hooks rode up and caused the viewer to lose alignment with the eyes. Instead of making attempt after attempt, which is time-consuming and expensive, ear hooks were printed extremely short so they could be attached with bolts.

 Bolt temples

 #6 bolts were used but 3mm bolts would work equally well. The holes in the temples were tapped to give the plastic threads. Only one of the bolts needed nuts in order to fasten securely while the second bolt provided tension without over straining the plastic. Available bolts were too long. They could have been trimmed but it was late so shorter bolts will replace them soon.

Side view of bolt temples

The rest of the posts for this project have been arranged by date.

First time here?

Completed projects from year 1.
Completed projects from year 2.
Completed projects from year 3.



This disclaimer must be intact and whole. This disclaimer must be included if a project is distributed.

All information in this blog, or linked by this blog, are not to be taken as advice or solicitation. Anyone attempting to replicate, in whole or in part, is responsible for the outcome and procedure. Any loss of functionality, money, property or similar, is the responsibility of those involved in the replication.

All digital communication regarding the email address 24hourengineer@gmail.com becomes the intellectual property of Brian McEvoy. Any information contained within these messages may be distributed or retained at the discretion of Brian McEvoy. Any email sent to this address, or any email account owned by Brian McEvoy, cannot be used to claim property or assets.

Comments to the blog may be utilized or erased at the discretion of the owner. No one posting may claim property or assets based on a post.

This blog, including pictures and text, is copyright to Brian McEvoy.


2017-02-13 (M)

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

2017-02-14 (Tu) Head-Mounted Display

Temples with ear hooks were designed. Ear hooks were nothing more than a quarter of a ring. Since the edges were sharp right angles they will likely have to be sanded once the correct measurements are found. The temples were also shortened to account for the added length of the ear hooks.

Angles between the frame and temples were also changed but it is harder to see. A four-degree angle was taken from the face where the temple meets the frames. The angle of the screws also had to be changed. This angle will be adjustable for anyone with the code who may want the temples to press more firmly or lighter on the head.

Spinning model of temples with ear hooks

Once printed, the temples were attached to the frame. The four-degree angle was not readily noticeable and may be ineffective. A larger angle will probably be necessary.

Frames will ear hook temples

Measurements for the temple length and ear hooks were guesses all along so it was no surprise when the frames slid down. A stupid animation was made to show how far the glasses slid. Adjustments were measured by sketching pencil lines on my nose and measuring the difference. Fortunately, only one selfie made its way into this blog post.

Serious face in a silly animation

The rest of the posts for this project have been arranged by date.

First time here?

Completed projects from year 1.
Completed projects from year 2.
Completed projects from year 3.



This disclaimer must be intact and whole. This disclaimer must be included if a project is distributed.

All information in this blog, or linked by this blog, are not to be taken as advice or solicitation. Anyone attempting to replicate, in whole or in part, is responsible for the outcome and procedure. Any loss of functionality, money, property or similar, is the responsibility of those involved in the replication.

All digital communication regarding the email address 24hourengineer@gmail.com becomes the intellectual property of Brian McEvoy. Any information contained within these messages may be distributed or retained at the discretion of Brian McEvoy. Any email sent to this address, or any email account owned by Brian McEvoy, cannot be used to claim property or assets.

Comments to the blog may be utilized or erased at the discretion of the owner. No one posting may claim property or assets based on a post.

This blog, including pictures and text, is copyright to Brian McEvoy.


2017-02-11 (Sa)