Saturday, December 13, 2014

Experience using clandestine operating systems.

I have been experimenting with using clandestine operating systems off and on for many years.

Using the various favors of Ubuntu and now the tails operating system. 

Get it here:

By far and away tails is the best and easiest I have found.

While I have to take others word that it is secure, the ease of use for it is off the charts

The get started you download the .iso file, and using a free program that lets you install tails to a USB 

The most secure but kind of slow is to burn it to a disc, it can not be altered after the fact by malware but it is slower and will give your disc drive a workout. 

The other option is to burn it to a USB.  Get the fastest USB you can find and buy a name brand from a reputable supplier. The cheap ones are often counterfeit and will work slower that advertised.

Once installed, set the computer to boot from USB or disc drive first.

Boot the machine from the disc or USB and select clandestine mode. This option will load the version below by default.

It looks kind of clunky and the controls are not how you are used to so you can also make it look like this:

It has word processing and a few basic programs installed asides from Firefox.

It also has the added benefit of being near impossible to get malware that will re-load on reboot.  If you are on a questionable site, and are worried that you got something installed, simply re-boot.

It runs quite fast once installed and is easy to use.  It also will let you visit the dark web.

No web history is saved, nothing will be carried over to the next time you use the machine.

If you are especially paranoid, you can install a computer kill switch that will wipe the ram and burn out the machine with a method described in a future post.

Clandestine manufacturing space in a apartment closet

One method to set up a small apartment closet for manufacturing is to use drywall.

In stick built buildings, you can soundproof the space by adding extra drywall.

First thing you do is add a layer of styrofoam insulation to the walls.  Glue it with liquid nails.

In order to avoid attracting attention bring it in in half sheets over a period of time.

While you are doing that you can run extra wiring inside PVC conduit to have handy outlets for your stuff instead of a rats nest of extension cords.  You could even just use good quality fused grounded power strips with long cords for this purpose and mount the power strip to the wall.

Next step is to attach drywall or cement board to the wall.  Since you need a fire resistant sheet to keep from creating a fire trap.  If you use sufficient glue on the styrofoam board, between the existing wall, you can then glue the new gypsum or cement board to the styrofoam to create a foam sandwich.  Hold it in place with a couple long screws, make sure you do not drill screws into the wiring.

Glue the styrofoam first. Let the glue cure over a period of time.  Gorilla glue works as well.

The screws are there only to hold the board in place until the glue sets.  Use thinner gypsum cause it is easier to handle and you will not add too much extra weight to the walls. Note this method will not work with ceilings.

Tape and paint the walls.  I have successfully used the instant pre-mix spakle to cover the seams.

Paint with acrylic water based paint.  The smell from oil paint will linger too long.

During this time, you can run a flexible dryer duct for ventilation if you can route this without much hassle.  Power that with a couple 2 amp computer fans stacked in series. 

You will have to sound proof the door as well.  Carpet stapled to the outside will work.  For the floor, you can remove the carpet, stowing it away for reinstall when you leave.  Add in a layer of plywood. If you have nosy neighbors downstairs, you can use carpet underlay between the existing floor and the plywood.  I would use at least 3/4 inch plywood.  You can use 2 layers of thinner plywood if weight carrying it up stairs is an issue.  

Last thing is to install a work bench, and better lighting.  LED lights work nice or get one of those really large screw in CFl lights that they use in outdoor lights with the standard build socket.

With careful planning, your shop should not draw much more power than a microwave oven. A mini mill with a Dremel tool head will draw at most 300 watts, and a 3D printer will draw at most 450 watts.  A typical microwave uses between 500-1000 watts.

Mounting shelves on the wall above the bench will free up valuable floor,space.

Wile you will not be able to weld in this space, you will be ale to run a mini mill, desktop drill press, mini milling machine, cut off wheel, and other related bench top tools in privacy.

Prototype mill files going to laser in the morning.

Sending the files for lasering tomorrow.  Might make a few small changes to make it even easier to put together and use less parts.

Might offer it as a kit if there is enough interest.  

First machine for shop use will have some 3D printed parts and I'm going to use thinner steel with bends in it to get the weight down for mailing out a kit if there's enough interest.

The cool thing is, with this machine and the 3D printer I can make even more tools for the shop. 

Once you reach a certain level of parts and tools in the shop, you can make the rest. 

These tools can be set up in even a small walk in closet space for personal manufacturing.

Desktop Manufacturing and You

This doesn't mean that Wal-Mart will go away any time soon, but it does mean a pretty big shift in the relationship between individuals and their material world. Most notably, it would open up the possibility that the kinds of personalized products now available to those with the right money and know-how may soon be available to everyday people. Thinking of this simply as traditional manufacturing moved from the factory to the neighborhood (or the home office) misses the larger revolution. This isn't just desktop production (figuratively or literally), it's democratized production. It will have its own intrinsic dilemmas, from liability tospam, but it will pose a powerful challenge to the status quo.

Read the rest here:

Embrace the abundance in the world.  Make it yourself and take control of your destiny.

Earning a living in the Dark Market.

The books Daemon and Freedom(tm) by Author Daniel Suarez describe a dystopian future where the world has a alt form of commerce based on fictional Dark Market credits.  Chapters begin with the Dark Market to dollar exchange rate.

The book describes a faction tribe system based around individual members skills, and people interacting with each other with a "reputation score" of one to five stars with one star being the lowest.

The books also describe how members of this new system can download manufacturing modules, which are various types of micro factories that members can in the books terminology; download from the system. 

These micro factories are in cargo containers that are used to fabricate new local factories which then the original factory is returned to the system to be sent to other locations as seeds to build even more factories.  These modules can also be rented by faction members with the use of the Dark Market virtual currency.

What the author describes, is something that I see has a good chance of becoming reality.  If those of us in the movement, so to speak; are willing to choose to embrace this new/old way of commerce.

For me, if this system was existing today.  I would be the first one to bang on the virtual system door and beg admittance.  Yet in all my search for the Matrix, I have seen only the obvious pieces in front of my nose.

So let's look at what pieces of this system are in the here and now, and the feasibility of taking this to the next level.  

The Dark Markets are here.  From the open air Criagslist, to Silk Road types of markets, to the various auction sites that all transactions are solely in Bitcoin.  

Yet right now the Dark Markets via Freenet or Onion router network are mostly for items like drugs or what are items that not .gov sanctioned.  The open air markets are subject to attack, via .gov and people who wish to steal.

Yet what if we in the movement decided to put our goods, our services in the Dark Market?  A gigantic Mega Market where we could get real tangible services and goods outside of the realm of oligarch control.  A system where reputation scores are a open and public thing, not like the secret credit score that only those who pretend to be our masters can view?

The hardest part to do this is the transition from the present system to a new one. I will not use the buzz phrase 'change' to describe our thing. This ever promised bullshit word 'change' that has lost its meaning under the propaganda by the left, so I will use the word restoration because words do have meaning.

So I propose this.  If for example you sell some thing real with a real tangible value, offer your goods and services in BOTH markets.  

For example you have your business in the white market selling gravel, and you also will deliver that gravel for compensation in Bitcoin, or some other proxy for wealth, like gold, silver, copper, or even gasoline. The proxy itself is not important, it just has to work.

I do not know if Bitcoin is the answer, but it is starting to work.

Will you make the micro factories and take back the means of production for yourself?

Will you work in the new system?

Will you join us? 

The collectivists rail constantly about taking back the means of production and giving to the people, yet they only seek to give to themselves.  

The other side has already created their version of a Dark Market via illegal immigration in the West.  The veritable armies of these third world sheep have their own shadow banking, employment, housing, business and transportation system happening right under noses and has been there for the last 30+ years.

Who says the forces for freedom can't have our own too?

Who says we have to follow the other sides rules?  

The rules we never agreed to.

The peaceful disobedience advocated in the 1960's did have a point.  No one rules if no one obeys.

The collectivists have already had their own version of the Velvet Revolution.  

Do what they fear most. Be a counter-revolutionary.

The day is coming where you will have to choose your side.  Participation is mandatory.

More to come.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Making your CNC machine move

Here's the basic wiring diagram for the mini CNC.  The bed heater and extruder will not be used.

What you do is get a Arduino Mega 2560, download the firmware from many places online, upload it via USB to the Arduino board.

You plug the RAMPS board into the Arduino board and the motors are connected this way.  

All total it will run you around $150 for the electronics and motors.



Here is a quick file to make on  a CNC plasma  table or CNC laser.

The cutting distance is 12 inches, so if  you are cutting 2mm steel plate  it should run you about 4-5 of these per min.

When done cutting remove slag, and bend with a vise grips.

Link here.  File will only last for  a week.  

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Trombone

Introducing the Trombone.

A single shot 12ga shotgun with 3- 3D printed parts.  Includes CAD file for DesignSpark

Materials list.

Front handle
Back  handle
Firing pin insert
3/4 inch Schedule 40 steel or stainless steel pipe
1 inch Schedule 40 Steel or Stainless steel pipe
Concrete masonry nail
Steel Epoxy
Threaded  pipe cap for the 1 inch pipe.

exploded view
Back Handle 3D Printed
Front Handle 3D printed
Firing pin holder.  Cut concrete masonry nail so that the sharp end only protrudes a couple mm. This saves  the headache of drilling a center hole in the pipe cap without a  lathe.
With pin guide inserted. this should be epoxied in place.
Assembled Trombone

 While I realize this  is not a new concept, I have taken the liberty of updating it and making it easier to manufacture.

Welding machines

Welding machines  for clandestine manufacturing (and working out of the trunk of a car)

Lately there has been lowering  of costs when it comes to welding machines.

The old heavy transformer AC powered welder like from Lincoln or Sears, or related type is not  suited to portable fabrication.

AC welders require a large amount of power and big generators to operate.  The new news is DC inverter powered welders.

Now those of you out there who  know how to weld and say MIG welders or  TIG, I will reply "Of course those work better"  But the inverter DC welder has so many advantages for our purposes.

the DC inverter welder  will run off a small  gasoline generator.  By small I mean those little ones that while  they will not power a 1hp electric motor, they will power this.  Since the cheap generator ratings are fudged wildly, suffice to say that a cheap 5kw generator actually only puts out about 1000 watts and barely that.  Yet you CAN power a small DC  welder with it.

They are small, and will fit in the  trunk of a car.

Second, the DC welders are easier to weld with.  The spark starts easier and it is easier to control vs the AC models.

Here is   a Inverter welder with TIG controls built in.

Third the  DC welder can be used for TIG welding with add on kits that run about 200 dollars. While  they do not have the  high frequency start of the dedicated machines or many fancy features, it  will let you TIG weld in metals  more than 1mm thick.

Lastly Sitck welding vs MIG in the field. Stick welding  requires no extra tanks of  gas.   It works in high winds, and it can be used as  a crude cutting torch.

So for example, You get the call to repair something that has been used and abused or  to fabricate  a facility out of the reach of  shore power.  What do you put in your trunk?

Generator,  Fuel, DC Stick welder, Extension cords, Portable lights of the LED or CFL variety, Chop saw and Angle grinder, hammers, wire brushes, and hand tools.  With that basic load you can build a steel building, make hillbilly armor, make a  water tank, and many other things.

The welder pictured below is the one I have. It is rated  for 200 amps but the duty cycle is limited  at that setting.  You can weld for a little bit and let it cool off.  If you are welding at 100-110 amps you can weld all day.

Linear guides

This post will deal with linear guides.

Basically linear guides are the parts that guide the machine movement.  They move in a lateral fashion.

There are many different types, however for this post I will be elaborating on guides that you can buy for a relatively low cost, and guides that can be fabricated locally with a minimum of cost at your local machine shop.  

This post will grow as I add more drawings and explanations to it.  

The first guide is the smooth round rod.  

You want to balance the size of the guide rod (referred to as just "rod") with the mass of the moving parts.  Suffice to say, if if does not move, by that I mean that that axis is moved by another axis, then you can go larger size without paying the weight penalty.

All CNC machines will have at least one axis that is moved on a second axis.  So for example left and right is on the part that goes up and down.  I will leave out the Axis letter designation for now.

You want the guide rod. In this case round rod to be as straight and as smooth as possible.  It can be bought online, or acquired locally in what is called drill rod.  You want the chrome plated stuff if possible.

Now you can use locally acquired stainless round bar stock, however you may have issues with flexing over longer runs and or not being perfectly straight.  This may or may not be an issue depending on circumstances discussed below.

The round bar will ride on either a linear bearing, or a bushing.  Linear bearings will last much longer, but they are more expensive.  They are also usually not available in English measurement sizes that the stainless or drill rod is commonly found in.  So you can get local rod but no linear bearings...

Bushings on the other hand can be fabricated locally on a lathe with a very amount of labor.

Simply they use either Delrin Nylon, or High Density Polyethylene or Brass.  I personally prefer the plastic.  The plastic and brass can be purchased as round stock and drilled out with a drill bit.  

The clearances have to be tight.  Slop or wobble and your tool will wobble, too tight and you will over work the drive mechanism.    

To check local round bar stock, you will need a mirror or piece of glass.  You place the bar flat on the glass and roll it.  Look where the metal meets the glass and see if it matches flat with the glass.

Now for making a milling machine if that bar is bowed by 0.1mm then your overall work over the entire part will vary by 0.1mm.  You need to ask yourself if it is good enough for what you are doing.

For the purpose of making a CNC Plasma table or a wood router, then yes this is good enough.  CNC plasma due to the nature of the plasma jet will vary by a small amount.  Changes in torch height of the bow is located in a up and down axis will have a negligible effect on the machine operation as the auto height control will compensate for this.  

More about CNC plasma and wood routers in later posts.

The next type of linear guide I don't know if it has a name but it uses square bar stock.  

This type of bar stock can be made locally and be made very straight if the machine used is accurate in itself.

What one does is they purchase a length of one inch bar stock.  If you use mild steel then you need larger sizes for longer runs to combat flexing.  This will work for,runs up to around 4 feet. Longer runs can be accomplished using steel tubing as the weight of the steel will cause,it to sag without a load.  

Once the bar stock is acquired, you need to use a surface grinder to true the bar stock.  Make sure they use coolant when grinding.  It is the same machine used to grind engine heads and many other things.  Surface grinders can also be used to make knives which will be discussed in another future post.

The next step is the roller that fits on the bar.  The bar is turned at a 45 degree angle to the roller like this:

The roller is made on a lathe and that part fits inside a bearing.  Personally for low cost I like to use stainless.  It is between the cost of mild steel and tool steel, and does not corrode easily.  A factor when you operate in harsh environments.  Stainless steel will work harden the longer you use it. So it will deform a little and then reach a point where it is very hard like tool steel.  You will lose some tolerances in the time that it is breaking in, but it can be compensated for and allowed.  

The third version does not need a surface grinder to make but it does need a laser cutter.  If you are lasering (or water jetting) parts this part can be lasered at the same time.  What you need to do is laser a rectangular bar out of 4 or 6 mm steel plate or water jet from 8-12mm plate. This serves as the roller guide and you use a similar roller bearing setup.  This method will make great parallel axis but the flat part can be subject to wobble unless it is bolted to a piece of straight stock like c channel, or square tube.  To get it perfect, you use thin metal shims between the guide and the frame and check for straightness with a piece of piano wire stretched tight.

It is more work, but less crap you have to buy from China.  

This is just just 3 of the many ways you can make these parts of your machines. There are other more expensive methods available but for the purposes of this period of instruction, I will only delve into these.

Metal casting at home.

This post is about casting  metal.

Since this guy says it better than me check him out


The 3D printed milling machine

In case you never heard of the Gingery series of books, they were a series of books describing how to build a machine shop from basically scratch.  

In this theme I am proposing the use of a 3D printer for the same.  Basic tools+3D printer will let you make more complicated and stronger machines for bigger work.

For example, this is designed to be printed on a small consumer grade printer.  In itself it won't do much nor be super accurate. However it uses hardware store threaded rod, about 30 dollars worth of plastic and about $150 worth of electronics.  It can be used to make PCB boards, and parts for larger machines.

This is the basic mini mill configuration.  Not reinventing the wheel here.  

Let me know in the comments of you have a printer already and would like this file.

3D printer quick overview for noobs

3D Printer overview

For those of you out there who are in the advanced class and want to do 3D printing, here is some info you do not find on the 3D printing forums.

If you are looking to buy a 3D printer, and I recommend buying one first before you build one.

You need a machine with the following things and I will explain as I go along.

1  Every moving part needs a bearing or bushing.  The cheaper machines do not have this.

2 Your electronic board has to have a  fan on it.  These boards will run warm and while driver chips are  only bout $10 it is pointless to throw money away cause you did not have a fan.  You need a machine that is dead reliable, and will run tens of hours unattended.  Your machine will make millions of moves and the cumulative travel distance of that print head will be measured in 10's of KM or miles every month.  It is not a paper printer.  Desktop paper printers can not handle that work load and neither can a crappy printer.

3 You need to know CAD.  Get DesignSpark. It is free.  It works.

4 Your print head is the most important part of your machine.  If you see a machine offered with a J head, don't get it. 3 year old tech and not reliable.  You need a print head with active cooling.   

 The reason is simple.  Plastic is in 3 states: solid, liquid and between that you got this rubbery sticky stuff that will clog your print head.  You want as sharp of a  temp difference between the hot and cold side as you can get to keep that sticky state from forming.

I use liquid cooled, most of the industry uses air cooled.  Guess who has a more reliable unit?

5 Plastics.  If you want to print molds and one off parts use PLA.  it has many uses, you can even make artillery fuses with it.  Abs Plastic for a little stronger parts and if you want real strength, then you gotta go into a better print head with temps that will hit at least 300c.  

If you can go up to these temps then it is possible to reuse plastic sota bottles.

Btw here is  todays video to give you some ideas.   The print used in the mold is pretty bad, but you get the idea.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

3D printing and casting

Here is a interesting idea for you.

Lets say you have a 3D printer, and have a burning desire for a milling machine, or some other tool. Plastic is not strong enough and steel is overkill, so what do you do?

Try this:

3D print the part, like say a bracket.  

You then acquire silicone rubber caulk thinned down a little with paint thinner.  Don't use too much.  
You then use that to make a mold around the 3d printed part.  Wait a day for it to cure and remove the printed part from the mold.  Don't tear the mold.

You then melt tin-antimony solder or lead solder in a crucible.  Pyrex lab glass works well also.  

Pour that into the silicone mold.  After cooling you have a die cast part.  You can also use this method to replicate items like pulleys, car parts, and even make another 3d printer.

Homemade CNC

This is one of my designs for a DIY CNC machine.  It is designed to use a Dremel for the spindle although it could be easily adapted for a water cooled 2.2 kw spindle from China for about $500 dollars.  

It is not quite done yet, so I won't publish the blueprints, but you will get the first crack at them before they go out anywhere else.

The electronics to power this are the same as a 3D printer.  It is cheap and readily available,  once I started really digging into how to put this together, I realized it was super easy to set up.

This design uses 9 pieces of laser cut steel plate 4mm thick.  

I am also working on a design that will use angle bar, hardware store threaded rod, and other hardware store parts to use as a manual milling machine.  

This basic design if it is beefed up could be used to machine steel.  By that I mean using water jet cut 1/2 inch steel plate and a better type of linear guide.

Btw this was drawn in that free DesignSpark program I told you about earlier.

Mission Statement

In no particular order of importance, I am running a series of posts with essential links and resources to get your own maker house in order.

I applaud the guys out doing  the humping in the bush, but that guy needs more than someone to order stuff out of a catalog and supply him with it.   Boy wouldn't that be weird.  A war where both sides order their supplies online and it gets delivered via FedEx.

Well I am here to tell ya that is not happening... Well some of it  is, but not everything.  I seen many years of the sandbox to entertain someone over drinks for hours about it, but that is not what this blog is about.

So first  post is about a subject near and dear to my heart.  3D printing and CNC.

I never started out  doing CNC,  never went to any school to learn how to do it, and  hell I'm not that great of a machinist..

 Yet anyways, but I never stop learning.

It really struck me today just how freaking REVOLUTIONARY (and yes dear reader that deserves an all caps) 3D printing is.  

I have been following  it  for 6 years and actually printing stuff for a year.  I was occupied with doing war stuff and earning my daily bread to actually do  anything about it until a year ago.

To do 3D printing you will need to know the basics.  Start at the beginning.  Take a little step.

So I in the style of Fight Club I am giving you a homework assignment.

If you are serious about ya know making stuff, you gotta learn how to draw it and put it down somehow.

So first task is to learn CAD.  and for that I recommend the free program DesignSpark Mechanical.

The program is free.  Download it, do the tutorials  and you will be designing simple stuff in days, and complicated stuff in a couple months.

Second homework assignment is to make a list of the tools you got.  Like inventory the stuff.  gather them all up, clean them, give them an oiling whatever you need to do.  This is the starting point for your home shop and the tools for your liberation.

Tomorrows post will deal with tools.

Do not forget your homework assignment.



This is a blog about making stuff.  Mans stuff.  Its time we cut ourselves off the grid so to speak.

I believe that one of the ways we will get out from underfoot of big brother is by personally taking charge of the means of production.

This means, that we ignore the system as it is now.  This system implemented during the industrial revolution that no one alive voted in saying how it is created.

It is  time to stop studying others actions and do it ourselves.  This means every aspect of our lives we will need to change.

It makes absolutely no sense that I should work for someone for a day, then a bunch of crooks take a percentage of that work for themselves, and then buy food, when I could have spent 2 hours time for the same damn meal growing it myself.

It makes absolutely no sense to import a trash can from China or a tool from Taiwan when I could make it myself.

This blog will encompass one part  Global Guerrillas, one part Freedom(tm), One part System D, one part Dark Market, and one part Instructables.