October 29, 2011
Very little programming experience, I think a group will help me focus. I've got some hardware design experience, and a lot of troubleshooting experience. We moved from Tacoma to Lacey, and my wife's kindergarten took precedence after the move. I'll have a workshop with wood and metal lathes, a small combo mill/lathe, metal cutting bandsaw, and the usual power tools, plus a separate electronics lab away from all the shavings. I'm working on getting OlyMEGA's Shapeoko2 CNC 3D carver and another little CNC for PCB carving up and running. Then I have my own all aluminum CNC engraver/carver to get up and running. I've been learning to use Sketchup. I have used it to create objects which I've printed in my Ultimaker 3D FDM printer. I've started learning dipTrace PCB, but I'm considering Designspark PCB.
I'm working on: An easier way to conceptualize and wire Charlieplexed LEDs. I may need to figure out how to write my own Arduino library for it. A smart charger for lead-acid cells that will charge up to six cells at a time independently. An ESR/low ohms meter in a marker body. Click on my profile picture to see a sketch of it. An all-in-one test equipment package with LCR, coil ring tester, frequency counter, dual trace 'scope, and anything else I can fit. LVDT shield for Arduino. I have built an Ultimaker 3D fused deposition printer and am building a CNC mill. After we moved, my wife's school took precedence. I now have time to get my workshop and lab sorted out. In my lab, I intend to make some instructional videos to post on YouTube. I have a whiteboard and a greenscreen to that end. I am getting rid of a lot of old test/signal gen equipment. I'm designing more compact and powerful equipment to take their place.
What -wouldn't- I build? I'd be working on a working Tricorder. Not something sad like the commercially produced Tricorder Mark One, but something that is actually useful. I think my first model would be an all-in-one test equipment for electronics troubleshooting. I have about a dozen toy Tricorders, a cell phone display will fit it.
My favorite programming language has been solder, I'm looking to change that. 20+years as an ET, went back to school to finally get a degree. We did one project with a PIC, I designed the hardware and helped with programming. Looking to learn more.
Lots of smart people sharing ideas.