Archive for February, 2020
A beaver family built their lodge next to the Dutchess Rail Trail:
It’s just to the right of the fence post, on the far side of the pond.
Dutchess County’s aerial survey in 2016 showed a dry-ish area west of the rail trail, with a culvert to the north:
We went back the next day and stopped at the culvert. Their dam spans the entire near side of the pond, upstream of the ditch (just above my hand) leading to the culvert:
The helmet camera pictures look west from the rail trail, with the lodge in the northernmost open area. The wide-angle camera lens exaggerates the distance, but the lodge is only about 35 feet from the fence.
Go, beavers, go!
Engraving all three Tek Circuit Computer decks on a single sheet of styrene plastic with the diamond drag tool:
The three patterns overlap here & there, but the intent was to have plenty of engraved lines for further study:
The vivid blue glare comes from a flashlight at grazing incidence off to the left, with brutal color correction back to something sensible.
Engraving each deck at a different depth gave a range of downforce:
EZ='EngraveZ=-0.5mm' Runit Bottom Engrave EZ='EngraveZ=-1.0mm' Runit Middle Engrave EZ='EngraveZ=-2.0mm' Runit Top Engrave
I fed all three of those G-Code files into bCNC, applied them to the same sheet with the same origin touchoff, and it worked fine.
The tool holder rate of 200 g + 50 g/mm produced downforces of 225, 250, and 300 g. In retrospect, the range wasn’t really broad enough, so Moah Force may be in order.
The diamond produced plenty of swarf:
Wiping the surface with a strip of masking tape clears away the loose rubble:
The innermost scale comes from the top deck, engraved at 300 g. The long shadows from the plastic pushed up along the tick marks seem to indicate the deepest trenches, although I don’t have any way to measure their depth.
I scribed and snapped the sheet into quarters so I can (mis)treat the engraved patterns in various ways:
What a mess!
A closer look at the spalled section on the flank:
An unused tip comes to a neat point:
As does its companion, arriving in a twofer deal from halfway around the planet:
They’re brazed on 3 mm OD shanks and ground to a 60° included angle.
Somewhat to our surprise, our “new” HON Lateral File Cabinets include a pop-out shelf:
The trick: push the bar inward against fairly stiff spring pressure, release it suddenly, watch it pop out maybe half an inch, get some fingers under the front edge, then pull it outward:
Obviously, opening the drawer above the shelf will sweep whatever you put there onto the floor and opening the drawer below seems futile. I suppose it produced a bullet item on the features list.
Note that the topmost “drawer” is also called a “shelf”, because the front cover slides up-and-inward to reveal the contents. Should you stand eight feet tall, you might be able to look down on that shelf, but we mere mortals barely see its contents at eye level.
Dismantling the cabinets preparatory to deep cleaning revealed a pair of rubber bumpers along the rear edge of the shelf:
The slightly angled front side of the bumper (on the right) collides with a crossbar below the drawer just above it, preventing you from pulling the shelf entirely out of the cabinet.
Remove the bumper by pressing down and rearward (to the left), shoving the protruding lip into the slot with a thumb / screwdriver, then pull it upward through the slot:
The second cabinet had only one bumper, so I traced it twice onto a rubber sheet half as thick as the OEM bumper, bandsawed the shapes, and introduced them to Mr Belt Sander for cleanup:
Jammed side-by-side into the slot, they’ll serve the purpose:
As with the replacement foot on the first cabinet, they’re not the prettiest things you’ve ever seen, but Mary doesn’t expect to use the shelf and they’ll never actually bump into anything.
Even the Pixel phone’s HDR image processing has trouble dealing with dark gray objects on a black background in dim light …
After five years, the adapter between the Kenmore Progressive vacuum cleaner and the long wand required to reach inside the refrigerator evaporator coils broke at the latch opening:
A quick fix let me continue the mission:
A better fix required a few minutes of OpenSCAD tweakage and a few hours of hands-off build time:
The fitting ID is now 2 mm smaller, the 3D honeycomb infill is 25%, and (contrary to the picture) it now has 4 perimeter threads. It’s a two-line change from the last time:
OEMTube = [35.0 - 2.0,35.0,41.7,40.5,30.0]; // main fitting tube … then, inside MaleFitting() … cylinder(d1=OEMTube[ID2],d2=OEMTube[ID1],h=2*OEMTube[LENGTH] + 2*Protrusion);
Those will propagate to anything I build from now on, although this is the first latch fracture.
Gotta love it when 3D printing lives up to the hype!
We bought the best-looking (pronounced “least bashed”) pair of hulking five-drawer industrial-strength HON Brigade Lateral File Cabinets from the local ReStore outlet’s assortment for Mary’s quilting fabric stash. They came with a steep discount, barely fit inside the Forester, caused minor interior trim damage, and should organize her entire stash.
One cabinet lost a foot nut at some point in its 16 year history:
The surviving foot nuts sported two weld nuggets apiece:
The hole had the remains of one nugget at the top left and looks like a manufacturing defect to me. Of course, we’re (at least) the second owners and the usual lifetime warranty no longer applies.
I can fix that.
Bandsaw a 1×¾ inch rectangle from 3/8 inch aluminum plate to match the surviving foot nut (which is steel, but aluminum will suffice for our needs). Break the edges, clamp in the Sherline, and mill a square protrusion to match the square-ish hole:
Drill a 17/64 inch hole (looser than the nominal F drill, because I’m a sissy) for a flat-head bolt from the Drawer o’ 3/8-16 Bolts, tap, and clean up.
A trial fit showed the nugget had to go before the nut would come even close to fitting flat into the hole:
The sheet metal around the hole had absorbed at least one mighty blow pushing the entire surface inward behind the front edge. To compensate, recess the nut’s front edge and slope the sides with a Dremel wheel to let the bottom face sit level:
Another trial fit showed the need for more recess:
Another spate of grinding made it sit mostly level on the decidedly non-level surface around the hole:
The beveled corners fit inside the swaged hole corners.
Grind paint / crud off the sheet metal and roughen the surface for good epoxy griptivity:
Stand the cabinet top-side-down to make the bottom level. I wish the basement had one more course of block, but it’s not to be.
Butter the nut with JB Weld epoxy, plunk it in place, apply excess epoxy to make a fillet around the edges, apply duct tape to guy the top of the bolt level-ish, and let it cure:
After the epoxy stiffened enough to hold its position, remove the bolt, file a crude ¼ inch hex, and saw a screwdriver slot to make it match the other feet:
Not the fanciest job I’ve ever done, but it now behaves just like the other ones and it’s all good. The HON Storage Files FAQ points to a Troubleshooting Guide showing how to level the thing with a hex socket from inside the bottom drawer.
The flat heads on those bolts are basically 25 mm OD steel plates calling for fuzzy felt bumpers on the Sewing Room’s wood floors. When properly leveled, the front will be ⅛ inch higher than the rear. Although they suggest a pencil should roll toward the back, the top sheet metal on this one may be sufficiently warped to confuse the issue; I have a long level well suited to the task.
The original dimension doodle includes metric offsets for cutting with a ¼ inch end mill:
All in all, a satisfying day in the Basement Shop …
Five years ago, robotic trash cans were a thing on Vassar’s campus, including this duo in front of Vassar’s library:
I infer the robotics did not work out as anticipated.