Copying All! The! Files! (Except Some)

All our data files spin around on a nearly full 1 TB drive in a “file server”, a grandiosely overqualified and dirt-cheap off-lease Dell Optiplex desktop sitting in the basement. It’s been running headless and unattended for the last half-dozen years and is badly in need of replacement, so I must copy all its files to a newer, even more overqualified, and equally cheap off-lease Optiplex.

Copying the files from the /mnt/music collection on the existing server to the identically named directory on the new server proceeds thusly:

sudo mount -o ro fileserver.local:/mnt/music /mnt/nfs
sudo rsync -ahu --progress --log-file=/tmp/music.log \
 --exclude="/lost+found" \
 --exclude=".Trash*" \
 --exclude=".dtrash*" \
 --delete \
 /mnt/nfs/ /mnt/music

Mount the existing collection (from the old server) in read-only mode to avoid heartache subsequent to confusion. It could happen.

The first time through, add a -n option for a dry run, then inspect the log file for surprises.

The various --exclude options avoid copying trashed-but-not-yet-deleted files from the various trash directories maintained by various file handlers. In the process of sorting this out, I learned the DigiKam photo manager creates a .dtrash directory holding deleted files for each of its Album listings, appearing down near the bottom of the top-level album wherein you’ve quasi-deleted photos via “Move to Trash”.

The --delete option removes files on the destination (new disk) if they’re not on the source (old disk). I started this migration earlier this year, before the world fell apart, and have moved / consolidated / renamed various directories & files in the interim, so deleting the previous copies from their old locations makes the destination match the source.

So far, so good …

Mini-Lathe ER Collet Chuck Drawbar

The ER-16 and ER-32 collet chucks use an M12×1.75 bolt to snug their MT3 tapers in the Mini-Lathe spindle. As nearly as I could figure, I needed a 190 mm bolt to get enough thread engagement, but the nearest available sizes were either too short or too long.

Fortunately, making round things is what a lathe is all about:

MT3 drawbar - assembled
MT3 drawbar – assembled

The aluminum bellyband adds 30 mm to the length and aligns the bolt sections, with the threaded section from a long 5/16-18 bolt inside holding the metric bolt together:

MT3 drawbar - parts
MT3 drawbar – parts

Although I got it right on the first try (!), the bellyband lets me fine-tune the length as needed.

The original dimension doodle and some in-flight updates:

ER Collets - MT3 drawbar bolt - dimension doodles
ER Collets – MT3 drawbar bolt – dimension doodles

The fancy brass / bronze washer comes from a battered rod with mushroomed ends. A pair of V-blocks let me cut a chunk off one end with negligible drama:

Bronze Bar Stock - support fixture
Bronze Bar Stock – support fixture

It’s clamped firmly to the right block and a few licks with a file knocked off enough of the mushroom on the left end to put it flat(-ish) into the V; the near side of the right block is barely raised off the surface.

Face off the mushroom to get a flat spot for a center drill:

MT3 drawbar - battered bronze rod
MT3 drawbar – battered bronze rod

Some peaceful turning & boring produces a pretty washer:

MT3 drawbar - washer cutoff
MT3 drawbar – washer cutoff

The bore needed a bit of relief to seat the bolt head squarely on the outer surface:

MT3 drawbar - spindle washer
MT3 drawbar – spindle washer

And then It Just Fit™:

MT3 drawbar - installed
MT3 drawbar – installed

Loctite on the inner bolt threads should keep everything together.

Bathroom Door Retainer: Bigger and Stronger

After three years, the retainer holding the front bathroom door open against winds blowing through the house on stormy days finally fractured, right at the top of the towel rack where you’d expect it:

Bathroom Door Retainer - fractured
Bathroom Door Retainer – fractured

I was all set to add reinforcing pins and whatnot, then came to my senses and just made the whole thing a few millimeters larger:

Bathroom Door Retainer - stronger
Bathroom Door Retainer – stronger

Customer feedback indicates white blends better with the background.

I made a few minor tweaks to the original design, including slightly larger bumps to hold it against the towel bar that, regrettably, put corresponding gouges into the bar. Who knew they used such soft plastic back in the day?

The OpenSCAD source code as a GitHub Gist:


Makergear M2 Extruder Motor Debugging

While sorting out an extrusion problem on the Makergear forum, I suggested marking the motor shaft and the filament drive shaft to see if the motor pinion inside the gearbox had worn out: if the motor turns and the filament gear doesn’t, then it’s dead inside.

For future reference, you mark the motor shaft thusly:

Makergear M2 - filament drive motor - rear shaft
Makergear M2 – filament drive motor – rear shaft

Two marks on the filament drive gear tell you if the shaft is turning and if the gear is slipping on the shaft:

Makergear M2 - filament drive gear
Makergear M2 – filament drive gear

A closeup of an earlier, much coarser, drive gear:

M2 - Filament Drive Gear
M2 – Filament Drive Gear

It all worked out well in the end!

USB Media Card Reader: Contrast Improvement

Consumer electronics designers seem to favor low- or no-contrast markings, with this USB reader falling on the vanishing end of the spectrum:

USB card reader - low-contrast slots
USB card reader – low-contrast slots

I poke the MicroSD card from the AS30V helmet camera into the smaller slot on the top surface, but, contrary to what’s revealed by the camera’s flash, the slot is a black-on-black target.

Well, I finally fixed that:

USB card reader - high-contrast slots
USB card reader – high-contrast slots

Although white tape surely would have sufficed, the roll of fluorescent red came to hand and that’s what it’ll be. The CompactFlash and Memory Stick slots on the front don’t see much traffic and have better access.

I slapped tape on case, trimmed the slots with a razor knife, and declared victory.

Much better!

Soft Vise Jaws

A Round Tuit™ finally arrived for this long-delayed project:

Vise soft jaws - installed
Vise soft jaws – installed

They’re bandsawed from an impossibly heavy-duty U-shaped aluminum extrusion salvaged from a scrap pile; the flanges are 6 and 7 mm thick. I’ll put in a good word for the Proxxon 10/14 TPI blade, because it goes through aluminum plate like butter.

The wood strip under the top flange raises the fillet on the interior angle enough to let the extrusion sit flat on the top vise jaw and square against the gripping side. It’s held in place with double-sided carpet tape.

They’re faced with a rubber sheet I thought was twice as thick when I picked it out of the Big Box o’ Squishy Sheets, but turned out to be two thinner sheets invisibly stuck together. Carpet tape holds one of the sheets to the jaw; I expect the other sheet to fall off in short order.

You’re supposed to embed neodymium magnets in the jaws to hold them to the vise. As far as I can tell, they’re perfectly happy to just sit there all by themselves and, anyway, magnets would grow lethally sharp and bulky steel fur coats in short order.

Squaring the long edge didn’t pose much of a problem:

Vise soft jaws - squaring edge
Vise soft jaws – squaring edge

Tidying the ends, however, required more setup:

Vise soft jaws - squaring ends
Vise soft jaws – squaring ends

That’s the Sherline Tilting Angle Plate at 90°, with barely enough room on the far side for the base of a Starrett Double Square to set the extrusion vertical; the hand clamp holds it in place while tightening the step clamps. It sits on an aluminum sheet to put its upper end three smidgens over the angle plate, letting me flycut one smidgen for a clean edge.

Now I can retire the old soft jaws, which have served for too many decades and are far too ugly to show; improvised from weatherstripping glued to bent-square copper pipe and intended as a quick fix. You know how that goes …

Garden Soaker Hose Repairs In Use

Just for completeness, here’s what the various soaker hose clamps look like in the garden, as solid models only let you visualize the ideal situation:

Soaker Hose Connector Clamp - Show view
Soaker Hose Connector Clamp – Show view

This one prevents a puddle in the path to the right:

Soaker hose repairs in situ - clamp
Soaker hose repairs in situ – clamp

Bending the hoses around the end of a bed puts them on edge, with this clamp suppressing a shin-soaking spray to the left:

Soaker hose repairs in situ - end-on clamp
Soaker hose repairs in situ – end-on clamp

The clamp at the connector closes a leak around the crimped brass fitting, with the other two preventing gouges from direct sprays into the path along the bottom of the picture:

Soaker hose repairs in situ - clamps and connector fix
Soaker hose repairs in situ – clamps and connector fix

All in all, a definite UI improvement!

As far as I can tell, we have the only soaker hose repairs & spritz stoppers in existence. Hooray for 3D printing!