Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Cryptex: Day 1

I have started the machining process. I spent the first day on a larger lathe squaring up the ends of all the 3.5" diameter discs, and drilling and reaming a hole through the center that I will use with a small fixture to hold them on a smaller lathe. These discs will eventually become the rings of the cryptex. I spent the next day turning down the outside diameters of the discs to 3". It will probably take a few more days to get that done, then i'll start on boring out the centers. The pictures below are from the smaller hardinge lathe, holding the discs with a fixture in the collet adapter.


Bird's nests are more fun to take pictures of:
Bird's nest


Sunday, February 18, 2007

Repeatable Camera Mount

I know very little about photography, other than that I like pushing the button on top of my camera. I made this mounting fixture so I can position the camera in a certian spot with repeatability and accuracy. The mounting block screws into the tripod mount on the bottom of the camera, and the two 1/4" dowels correspond to the accurately sized holes in the base.

Camera Mount

I made several base blocks, with the idea that I can mount them in different places and get several pictures from the same position, like the sunset view from my deck, and use them to create an animation or a slide show.

Mounting Base

The possibilities are endless as to where I could put the base blocks, I'd like to find an urban/public location somewhere that I visit often and hide a block to get some cool pictures. Once I've accumulated some pictures I'll post an example of how they turned out.


Monday, February 12, 2007

2GB ChapStick USB Flash Drive

I just bought a new 2GB USB flash drive, and it happened to be sitting on the desk the other day next to a tube of ChapStick. It looked like a perfect match once I got the drive out of it's case, but it ended up being a little too big to fit in the tube. I took it to work and bored the tube out on the lathe during my lunch break, made a few notches in the base and the bottom cap with the die grinder, sanded the edges of the circuit board a little, and finally got it to fit perfectly. Looks pretty good, even the LED shines through the bottom. Hopefully it will fare better when it ends up going through the dryer in my pants pocket than a regular tube of ChapStick does.

Chap Suck?

USB Drive

2GB ChapStick

2GB ChapStick

And yes, the cap does fit. I'd like to make one that twists in and out, but I don't think they make a drive that small (yet).


Friday, February 09, 2007

Cryptex: The Materials

This is the aluminum I have to work with for the Cryptex. I bought the 3" discs and the two Ø2.5" x 7" pieces for about $30. The big chunk was a freebie from work, hopefully I won't need it. I bought several more discs than I need for the finished project; some will be used for making holding fixtures. I hope to start turning down the discs next tuesday, but it all depends on how I feel at the end of the workday, and whether or not I really want to stay a few hours and work on this.

Cryptex project aluminum