default, ogredude

Test printer goop acquired!

Here's a huge thank-you to Justin at Hi-Tech Color of Boise Idaho.  Yesterday, I started calling print shops, looking to get my hands on some UV coating to test our printer when it's built.

Hi-Tech Color was actually the first shop I contacted. Justin was extremely friendly, and found a bucket of coating that doesn't work with their machines, so he let me have it.  There's almost 10kg of product in the bucket.

I'm totally looking forward to seeing how this stuff will work.

Thank you so much, Justin and Hi-Tech Color!


So I decided to test this stuff and see what its properties are.  I taped a scrap of granite to the bottom of a paper plate (to keep it from blowing away), and poured in a little bit of coating.  I was planning on putting it outside on the patio table and checking on it every minute or so.  It's currently 88 degrees and VERY sunny out.
During the 8 foot walk from the door to the table, the surface of the coating had already skinned up pretty good.  I let it sit in the sunlight for less than a minute, and pretty much the whole thickness of it cured.  It was about 1/8" deep. The top 1/16" or so cured up quickly, the stuff underneath didn't cure until I tilted the plate to bring it into the light.  So apparently it's UV opaque once it cures.

It's kind of rubbery feeling, and quite brittle.  It falls into crumbs if you squish it.  It's opaque white. I'm assuming that it's clear when you spread it on paper in a very thin coat (the way it's intended to be used). There's not much odor to it, neither when it's liquid nor when it's cured. Once cured, there's a small amount of moisture left over. I rinsed it well under the faucet before continuing to play with it. It seems to be completely unaffected by the water.

I took a small chunk back inside to play with, and left a larger chunk out on the table, I'll let it sit out there for 10 minutes or so just to see if anything different will happen.  And, nope. It appears that there is no change between the initial cure (less than a minute in full sunlight) and leaving it sit in the sun for 10 minutes.

It looks like this stuff, as expected, isn't going to be producing usable prints, but it'll definitely help us tune our mechanics and projector.

If you'd like some of this stuff for yourself, let's find some inexpensive light-proof bottles, and I'll be happy to share if you reimburse me for the bottle and the shipping.
default, ogredude

In search of a good vat coating

So one of the biggest difficulties folks are having with the Lemon Curry printer is how to get the material to stick to the stage, but not the vat.

I'm setting up to test a number of different vat coatings.  I've cut a large number of 3" x 3" squares of glass, and located a strain gauge.

The plan is to treat each piece of glass with a different coating, then use 2-part epoxy, which behaves much like the UV resins that'll be used in production, to glue a test fixture with a 1" x 1" footprint on it. Then we'll mount the glass to the drill press table, and mount the strain gauge to the drill press quill, and find out how much force it takes to pull the fixture off the glass.

My current list of stuff to test:
  • Silicone RTV
  • Silicone mold release
  • Teflon mold release
  • FEP Tape (teflon tape with silicone adhesive)
  • Coconut oil
  • Olive oil
  • Silicone spray lubricant
  • Car wax
  • RainX
  • Teflon dry lubricant
We'll be building the test rig today, and hopefully will have some results by the end of the week.
If you can think of other coatings I should try, please let me know.
default, ogredude

The quest for a 3D Stereolithography Printer

I've been intrigued by the RepRap a lot, but with its low-resolution prints, I've never really been able to figure out what I'd use it for.

Last week, I discovered the Lemon Curry project, which is a 3D stereolithography printer that uses a DLP projector and UV-curing resins to create fantastic resolution.

It's still a project in its infancy, but the concept is too good to pass up. I've started researching bits on how to build this thing.  I'll use this space to post updates about my progress.
default, ogredude

Dutch Bros. Coffee, Garden City ID

So I pull up and ask the guy for a doppio.  Here's the conversation that ensued.

Me: "Hi, I'd like a doppio, please."
Him: "A what?"
Me: "A double shot."
Him: "A double what?"
Me: "Double shot of espresso."
Him: "Oh, you mean like a tall cup?"
Me: "No, fill the thing with coffee, pull a shot, hand it to me."
Him: [startled] "You don't want anything IN it?"

At this point, I'm thinking this is probably not the best idea I've ever had.  But what the hell, I'm here already, and it can't be any worse than Moxie Java.

Me: "No, as long as you're pulling 20 to 25 seconds, it should be fine."
Him: "Yeah, we're running 22 seconds..." [pause, shocked look on face] "Wait a minute, how did you *KNOW* that??!!"

He didn't even know what a barista was.  Sheesh.

Anyway, after all this, surprisingly the shot was acceptable.
default, ogredude

The pinnacle of coffee infusion technology...

So yesterday, I this month's Popular Science magazine that was lying in the living room, and idly paged to the section of the hot new gadgets.  You know, the gadgets that are either incredibly stupid, or incredibly cool but you can never afford them?  Yeah, that section.

And I saw a picture of a French press.  Now, I'm new to the whole LJ blogging thing, but if you've ever heard me blah blah about coffee before, you'll know that the French press is my absolute favorite coffee infusion device. 

"So what's new about a French press?" I wondered to myself.

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    enthralled enthralled
default, ogredude

Sunbeam CoffeeMaster

So a couple months ago, I ended up at a flea market in Boise, where I picked up an old Sunbeam CoffeeMaster C30A.

If you're not familiar with this machine (and if you're not a coffee fanatic, you probably aren't), it's a vacuum coffeemaker.

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    excited excited
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default, ogredude

God Shot!

Used the last of my Guatemala Antigua the other day, and I managed another God Shot!

(A God Shot is a shot of espresso so yummy that it was obviously blessed by God.)

Dark, rich, full crema, wonderful aroma, complex nutty flavor with chocolatey overtones, it was delicious.

Now I need to buy more coffee.
  • Current Mood
    accomplished accomplished
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