I finally have some downtime. I guess I’ve had time to stare at the project as it is and realized that it’s just not going to work. It’s extremely vulnerable to warping and just won’t run smoothly no matter how much tweaking I do.
After seeing this hackaday post, I realized I was being a bit of a bonehead. So, I’ve started over at the base. For a few day’s worth of work, it’s looking really good, IMO.
That’s it. I have neglected this blog for far too long.
Spring Break is coming up, it’s warming up outside (which means it’s warming up in the garage), I have new motor drivers, and a new laser diode (1000mW!). I am done lollygagging around.
I also really, REALLY want to ride my bike this week. I’m going to post some pictures of my bike. It’s a pretty cool bike.
EDIT: Remember that thing I said about it warming up outside? It’s now April and it’s not fucking happening. Still cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey. I’ll get to it soon.
For no particular reason, I decided to see if I could SSH from my lappy to my PogoPlug Arch machine to my Raspberry Pi. [I finally got the wifi dongle to work, btw. I don’t know if I posted about that already.]
And it worked! How useful is this? I have no idea. But it works.
I’m currently running the test.stl code connected to the machine. Everything seems to be wired correctly, but my motors are making that sick and dying sound – which probably means they are *not* wired correctly.
I really need to clean this thing up.
I finally found my old digital camera, which I was using to build my book scanner. Unfortunately, it seems that it has trouble holding a charge. I might have to get a couple of LiPo AA batteries, which will not be cheap.
I tried my other camera, which I use to shoot video. Apparently still shots are pretty low-res. So that’s not going to work. Oh well.
As you can see, it’s just a piece of acrylic with four holes drilled though it. Two nuts on both sides hold a 24″ threaded rod secure at each corner. The threaded rod is bent about 1″ in at about a 15 degree angle (I think) and covered with clear vinyl tubing to protect the acrylic when it’s taken apart and carried in a bag. The other end of the threaded rods are fastened to two ‘L’ brackets which are screwed into a piece of wood.
The camera (you can see it sitting on top of the tool box) would be fastened on with a nut and bolt.
The whole assembly is poised to scan a copy of ‘Little Brother’ by Cory Doctorow. (http://craphound.com/littlebrother/download/)
The Firmware seems to work fine. I haven’t hooked up the Arduino to the cutter yet, but I ran the test.stl file that comes with Pronterface and it ran with no weirdness to speak of.
I think I will have to make 3D models in order for anything to work. Pronterface seems to pitch a fit if it sees something unusual.
If anyone is still curious, I’m getting ready to start working on the cutter again. School has been a pain in the neck, but it looks like I’ll have a little bit of free time now.
I ordered an ATmega328P to see if I could get it to work in my Arduino Diecemilla board. No such luck. But I picked up a reasonably-priced Arduino Uno from the local Micro Center and have uploaded the Teacup firmware to it. Now I just have to hook everything up to the new board and get started on the mechanical issues.
The Y-axis linear actuator might be a bad idea. At the very least, the motor mount needs to be replaced with something that doesn’t have nearly as much play.