Wednesday, September 6, 2017

3D Printed packaging equipment

I always have several different odd projects going on, one of which is something I do not write about much here.  That is food and re-creating normally purchased food items at home.

Over the last couple years, thru trial and error, I have developed a hot sauce, chili oil, and gourmet vinegar recipes.

I use a lot of hot sauce in the house, and the gold standard is Tabasco, Franks, and some of the Mexican brands, depending on the food.

However living in SE Asia on a Island, presents itself with a bit of a difficulty in finding it at a reasonable price.  I can purchase local brands, but they are really low quality and consist of a lot of food coloring, corn starch, paprika, xanthan gum, sugar and chili powder.

So thru trial and error, I developed a recipe of hot sauce using 4 different chiles, vinegar, salt, and a couple other ingredients to get a near perfect replica of Tabasco.

Along the way, I also came up with a hot chile oil recipe as the store bought stuff is very expensive.

My vinegar was just a experiment as vinegar locally is very cheap, but its either super processed, without much flavor, or of uncertain quality and not known if produced in a sanitary facility.

I have a new project starting up that will bring in some money, and I am looking at diversifying things into making a gift pack of chili oil, vinegar, and hot sauce, in a nice laser engraved wood box and sell near where the local tourists go to Church.  There is a mall next door and quite frankly the quality of souvenirs is just shit.  So I was thinking of putting up a nice folksy wood mall kiosk with these fancy wood boxes and hot sauce.

The issue is the start up costs and packaging equipment.

I grew up working in the family food processing plant.  We usually did between 1/2 to one semi truck load of product a week and the production was semi automated.

So I got to thinking as to how I can build my own bottling machine using 3D printed parts.

It came to me that a perlistatic pump will work quite well if driven by a stepper motor.  

These little pumps are $75USD on Ali Express plus shipping or about $4 in plastic and $4 in roller bearings.

Combined with a Arduino 3D printer electronic kit ($35) I can create a g code to dispense a measured amount, control 2 heaters and I have 6 end stops all driven from a SD card and LCD screen.

What do you think?

Thursday, August 31, 2017

How Bad Was Hurricane Harvey?

The estimated damage for this storm at present at 36 to 40 billion dollars.

This is more than the bottom 97 countries listed by GDP ranking.

More money lost in one storm, in one city, than the GDP of the following countries:

94 Turkmenistan36,180
95 Côte d'Ivoire35,489
96 Bolivia34,831
97 Libya33,157
98 Bahrain31,907
99 Cameroon29,334
100 Latvia27,684
101 Paraguay27,441
102 Yemen27,318
103 El Salvador26,709
104 Uganda26,195
105 Estonia23,130
106 Honduras21,364
107 Zambia21,310
108   Nepal21,154
109 Trinidad and Tobago20,966
110 Iceland20,047
111 Papua New Guinea20,003
112 Cyprus19,810
113 Cambodia19,398
114 Afghanistan18,886
115 Bosnia and Herzegovina16,605
116 Botswana15,018
117 Senegal14,785
118 Gabon14,273
119 Georgia14,222
120 Zimbabwe14,174
121 Mali13,960
122 Jamaica13,950
123 Laos13,790
124 Nicaragua13,049
125 Albania12,126
126 Mauritius11,950
127 Burkina Faso11,182
128 Equatorial Guinea11,636
129 Mozambique11,283
130 Brunei11,182
131 Mongolia11,031
132 Malta10,953
133 Macedonia10,912
134 Namibia10,646
135 Armenia10,499
136 Chad10,103
137 Madagascar9,740
138 Bahamas8,939
139 Benin8,577
140 Rwanda8,406
141 Haiti8,257
142 Republic of Congo7,955
143 Niger7,479
144 Tajikistan6,922
145 Moldova6,750
146 Kosovo6,707
147 Kyrgyzstan6,551
148 Guinea6,512
149 Malawi5,492
150 Eritrea5,352
151 Mauritania4,714
152 Fiji4,640
153 Barbados4,588
154 Togo4,434
155 Montenegro4,126
156 Sierra Leone3,981
157 Swaziland3,770
158 Suriname3,570
159 Guyana3,437
160 Maldives3,379
161 Burundi3,133
162 South Sudan2,914
163 Timor-Leste2,498
164 Lesotho2,267
165 Bhutan2,115
166 Liberia2,111
167 Djibouti1,894
168 Central African Republic1,780
169 Belize1,743
170 Cabo Verde1,636
171 San Marino1,592
172 Seychelles1,405
173 Antigua and Barbuda1,398
174 St. Lucia1,385
175 Solomon Islands1,184
176 Guinea-Bissau1,155
177 Grenada1,027
178 The Gambia965
179 St. Kitts and Nevis903
180 Samoa786
181 St. Vincent and the Grenadines775
182 Vanuatu773
183 Comoros620
184 Dominica520
185 Tonga403
186 São Tomé and Príncipe350
187 Federated States of Micronesia322
188 Palau293
189 Marshall Islands183
190 Kiribati167
191 Tuvalu34

In comparison to Typhoon Ondoy that was the Philippines greatest typhoon ever, Ondoy is 0.68% of the damage.