Monday, June 30, 2014

2014-06-29 (Su)

It finally happened. I did not do any project work for a whole day. 

This weekend was Pride Weekend in Minneapolis/St. Paul which is kind of a big deal. Minneapolis has the third highest percentage of same sex households according to Nerd Wallet which is right behind San Francisco. Parking was impossible. I drove past the park and kept driving until I found some parking in a residential district. I figured this would be a good time to drop a pin using Google Maps because I know sense of direction is not so good. I subtly changed out of cargo pants and into shorts and figured I should find some sunscreen as soon as possible. I booted up Google Maps and navigated to the park on my board.

It was a lot of fun and seeing all the costumes was great. I think costumes is the right word here. I met a friend and we left the festival to pick up a nice rug she had found on Craig's List. We got to her vehicle by riding the train, which is something I had never done since moving to The Cities. In Minnesota we call Minneapolis/St. Paul "The Cities."

When we had acquired the rug we drove her car back to Pride Fest and bummed around a little more. The subject of married people came up and she described her thoughts on marriage and I realized that I did not have an answer to the question, "What do you want by getting married?" I knew I did not want a person who kept me from being social. I am not bent on kids one way or the other. Tax benefits are not really the issue. It got me thinking.

We got our fill of fried cheese curds and people watching then I tried to go back to my car. I had forgotten to drop a pin with Google Maps. I could not find my car. I skated down a few streets that looked right but I did not see it. My friend drove me around for half an hour before I hopped out with my longboard to comb the streets. I combed them for three hours before she finally said she was coming to pick me up and take me home because it was dark out by now.

While waiting for my friend on a bench with an empty bottle of Gatorade and sore, sore feet I started thinking about the question from earlier. "What did I want by getting married?" I realized that I wanted to get married because my mom and dad were happy with each other. They supported one another even when they were unhappy or having money trouble. There was not an inequality, they both brought in money and both took care of my brother and me.

That is what I wanted from a marriage. Someone who has my back and looks out for me no matter what and knows I have hers. Someone who gives her support without expecting a return but can always count on my support. It was not easy for me to ask for help but if I shared my life with a woman on a level as intimate as marriage I would be saying to her that I am willing to give my support no matter what if she will do the same.

I should end the post with that last paragraph and let it sink in but that would be irresponsible. It ignores the fact that I really should have dropped a pin and, had I been married, I would fully expect to get chewed out for because it was a bone-headed move on my part and three hours of desperately trying to find my car using only a longboard was a good start to penance.

Journal page


 
A list showing of all the final posts of COMPLETED projects.


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.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

2014-06-28 (Sa) Upcycled 3D Printer

There are some things to be said about assuming I learned this weekend. The first is that the assumption that an engineered project won't necessarily outperform a simple project intending to do the same thing. In the tennis ball competition my friend used a slingshot made from nine pieces of 1/2" PVC pipe plus fittings and achieved amazing results. Mine used much larger PVC, metal, heavy duty bungee cords and some wood but didn't fire as far as his. I was a bit crestfallen to see that mine didn't do as well but I learned from it. 

The second bit I learned was about assuming that the logical solution was correct and to accept that without diligent testing. When I hooked up the relay for the air pump the first time I made assumption about what the pins were and I was wrong so when I applied power I had problems. It wasn't until I took the entire thing apart and tested it did I find where I went wrong by assuming.

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

The relay controller the air pump was removed from the circuit because it would not work and caused problems when inserted into the circuit, problems indicating a short in the 5V control side. The relay was tested by applying 5V until the coil was found and then using a continuity tester to establish which pins did what. It was assumed this relay was two Normally Open (NO) switches but testing shows it was a Single Pole Double Throw (SPDT) relay where two pins are tied together as the common terminal. The wires were soldered to appropriate pins and tested before wrapping everything in tape. The test showed that the pump would run when 5V was applied to the coil pins. The exposed pins were accidentally found to be electrified so care must be taken if this project is duplicated.

Pin functions discovered by testing

120V wires soldered to relay

Moving view of relay with wires soldered in place

 Warning about live wires

The relay heated wrapped up

To do:
  • Update "Base Making" portion of code
  • Build two wheel tensioner around chain
  • Physically install Arduino + Shield
  • Test + Debug
  • Revise Documentation


Journal page

Saturday, June 28, 2014

2014-06-27 (F) Grinding, a Primer

More exciting than the primer article that was written was the tennis ball launcher competition between a friend and I. In truth it was not a competition as much as a time for us to shout, "Ahh, let me shoot it next." He brought two launchers, one looked like a heavy-duty slingshot and the other looked like a siege weapon. No, I'm not kidding.

Hillbilly tow truck? No, that's his tennis ball launcher

It needs a winch to load. The winch is part of the design which he built from scratch and imagination

The release mechanism has the most engineering and worked marvelously

My launcher was not the most popular and after viewing his monster I'm not disappointed. The intelligence and material he used were easily the most interesting. I look forward to another competition with him and I hope it simply becomes another instance of, "Oh oh, I want to try it next!"

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

Grinding, a Primer
To encourage the hacker mentality a magnet-ring was constructed from a loose magnet and a plastic coated paper clip. The mange was many times larger than an implant in order to get a similar effect it it can easily be felt next to a microwave and it in fact comparable the current implant. The paper clip was coiled around the post of the magnet but a similar experiment with a plain disc magnet had the magnet held in place by virtue of its own magnetism and the ferrous make up of the paper clip. Both were effective demonstration tools. A 360 degree rotating view was made from a series of pictures and GIMP software.

Paper clip and magnet ring


The article was revised so no names appear anywhere. The 3D printable ring was removed since the license required the creator to receive attribution. The paper clip version's photograph took its place.


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

A list showing of all the final posts of COMPLETED projects.


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.

Friday, June 27, 2014

2014-06-26 (Th) Grinding, a Primer



Thursday was a good day. Hack-a-Day put my Sous Vide Oven Controller on their site so I was promoting that on social media. The comments filled faster than my previous projects on Hack-a-Day so I’m encouraged by that. Their title, Precision Temperatures for Cooking or Whatever, was flattering and I thought really showed how the project isn't just about controlling an oven.

Lately I haven’t been sleeping enough so my focus has been less than wonderful. Rather than fight it I used Thursday to take a friend’s dogs for a walk, take a nap, watch a shameful amount of cartoons and eat a disgraceful amount of burrito. My batteries feel recharged which I’m going to need for Friday.

Friday is the day of competition with the Tennis BallLauncher in Mankato, MN. A friend and I are competing to see who made the best launcher for our dog-owning friend with arthritis. The guy I’m competing against is wildly brilliant and he has built two launchers. The first launcher he built for our friend and the second he built for his own amusement. The second one needs wheels to move and uses more modern elastics. I can’t wait to see the draw weight of that monster.

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

The article was reviewed at biohack.me and a comment was made about making the article more general. The article has been revised and pdf and png copies have been made for reposting. The time tense of the article was double-checked. There is intentionally no author on the article to make it a community-owned article rather than the work of a single person.
The next likely revision will be to take a photograph of a magnet-ring to replace the 3D printed ring picture which requires credit to be given to the designer. The purpose of a photograph is to remove all names from the article.

To do:
  • Construct and photograph magnet-ring
  • Distribute

Journal page

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

A list showing of all the final posts of COMPLETED projects.


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.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

2014-06-25 (W) Grinding, a Primer

The first draft of an article currently called Grinding, a Primer, was drafted. It was formatted to fit on one page and included three color pictures. One picture was rendered from a 3D model of a ring which can hold a neodymium disc magnet. The other two are photographs to which the copyright is owned. The article was displayed on biohack.me in a thread to source information for the article. Input was asked for from the biohacking community.



To do:
  • Revise article
  • Submit for publication?
The rest of the posts for this project have been arranged by date.

A list showing of all the final posts of COMPLETED projects.


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.