2015-10-20 (Tu) Printer Repair and New Car

Exactly one month ago I was in a traffic accident. For a month I drove a car with no rear passenger tail light so I couldn’t signal right turns properly. That was not cool. My 16 year old Toyota went through a lot but it was time to retire her. Last night, instead of regular project work I went car shopping which was not something I was looking forward to. I didn’t find my new car until after it was dark and when I took the picture below this morning the sun hadn’t come up. As of writing this I have never seen my car in sunlight.

My new car with some night glare

When I got home it was too late for any real project work but I owed it to myself to do SOMETHING. The 3D printer has been malfunctioning lately so I fixed that. The problem was the extruder head was not heating. I traced the problem to a small connector which may have been subject to too much flexing or perhaps it wasn’t suited to the current flowing through it. A voltage reading across the supply side showed 12VDC while the load side showed an even 4Ohms. I was confident the supply and load were working properly.

 Problematic connector, black

A part of my brain doesn’t like cutting into products. Weird for a hacker, right? So I considered methods of stuffing tiny metal shims into the connector to rig a good connection. I considered buying a new connector which would have meant buying a crimper too. My mind went through all kinds of ways of making this look exactly how it did earlier. Honestly, I don’t know why it’s such a big deal that it remain effectively unchanged. After deliberating for days without a printer I finally arrived at the obvious solution of just replacing the easy 2-point plug connectors with a 2-point screw terminal. Unlike the original this won’t disconnect in a couple seconds without tools but that’s not important. I mention all this because it’s a blind spot I know I have, I could have saved myself days of worrying if I had arrived at the obvious solution quickly and just cut and stripped the factory wires. Knowing it’s a blind spot, and writing about it publicly save me time in the future.

Replacement connector, white

First time here?
Completed projects from year 1.
Completed projects from year 2.

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2015-10-20 (Tu)