Saturday, January 3, 2015

Moribund companies

When a company promotes its senior management from the human resources department (with one exception for employment agencies) you find a company led by people who do not make things, have no ability to make things, and no imagination to design things and will be doomed to eventually fail.

Making real things with real value matters.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Making drone aircraft wings.

Spent a few hours today with a old book from 1930 called the Flying and Gliding Manual.  It was full of aircraft blueprints.

I opened my CAD file to see if I could translate the paper plans to 3D, and I was successfully able to draw a proper wing curve.  

I will be taking screen shots and doing a tutorial in the next few days so you too can make your own wings for a drone.  

The test prints were surprisingly good.  I found that I could get a nice strong wing section that was 4 inches wide and came in at 11 grams per inch of wing.  So a wing section without the control surface, or servo 4 feet long would come in at about one pound.  

Per inch of wing it took 45 min to make.  So that 4 foot wing would take you about 36 hours machine time to print.  

A reprap takes nearly 40 hours to print, so it is a good deal.

updated CAD photos here

3D printed impeller water pump

Got it printed over the last 2 days.  Was in a bit of a hurry so I ran the machine really fast so the print quality isn't quite up to par.  


It works!... Kind of...

I made a small mistake in the hole alignment for the side port so flow was partially blocked.

It was a 2 minute fix in the CAD so I'll make another tomorrow.

No leaks even though I didn't use any gasket material.  I used a .3mm tolerance between the top core and the body.  It came out about a half mm too tight.  I used a hand file to take it down a little and it fit perfect.

I was concerned about leaking from the shaft thru the bearing, that fear was unfounded.

After that I made a radiator to go with it.  It's a little overkill for the machine but it was fun to make.


Actors didn't use to be celebrities. A hundred years ago, they put the theaters next to the brothels. Actors were poor. Celebrities used to be kings and queens. Then the United States abolished monarchy, and now there's this coming together of show business and celebrity. I don't think it's healthy. I don't want to sound self-important, but all these celebrity shows and magazines - it comes from us, from Hollywood, from our country. We're the ones creating it. And I think it works in close step with a lot of other bad things that are happening in the world. It promotes greed, it promotes being selfish and it promotes this ladder, where you're a better person if you have more money. It's not at all about the work itself. Don't get me wrong. I love movies. But this myth of celebrity has nothing to do with movies.

Joseph Leonard Gordon-Levitt

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Are you on System D? Care to do a anonymous interview?

Are you on System D?  

I'm looking to interview successful system D entrepreneurs. (anonymous of course)

Looking to know how you sell. What made you go off the grid?  

International (non US) entrepreneurs are really encouraged to contact, especially those with experience in communist countries.

Happy New Year!

Being the uber-nerd that I am, we celebrated new years with the Ft Collins atomic time clock...

Second time I did this.. First time was before Internet and used my shortwave radio to CPU t the seconds of a leap second year...

Above the view from where I am at right now...

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Making a water pump today (updated)

Making a water pump today.

With the 3D printer.

The last few days have been busy in the lab/shop/zoo.  Getting some samples ready to go to the UK, redesigning some printer parts to assemble another printer, and a few other projects.

The pump I started making last night.  Woke up at 4am to check the machine and discovered that I somehow had a setting enabled that made the part as a single outline  with no holes.

So started making it again.  I need a more powerful pump in the shop for the water cooled print head.  It works good now, but the pump is a little awkward to mount. 

 Along with the pump, I will be making a radiator for the cooling system.  

Now you are asking yourself, why does someone need a cooling pump for a 3D printer?

It is rather simple really.  Plastic goes into the print head as a cold solid filament. As in room temp cold.

It then gets pushed thru a heated nozzle like a hot melt glue gun.

However the heat can travel up the guide where the plastic does not melt but gets rubbery and sticky, thereby jamming the machine.

So I use water cooling to keep the part cool where the plastic foes thru.  Simple problem that takes a rather complicated solution.

I'll have some more pictures later today.

The good camera is not here right now, so you will have to settle for some crappy cell pics in the meantime.

The Thingiverse downloaded file printed but was not really finctional.  I put it together and ran it with a drill and it did pump water but there was no way to put in a seal or fittings.

Spent the day designing this pump to work with pneumatic quick connect fittings.

Motor mount is not drawn yet.  New Years Eve and got family stuff to do.