compilerbitch: That's me, that is! (Default)

I was asked elsewhere for high res photos of the knobs in situ for comparison with the originals.

Yep, not much comparison, but that wasn’t ever the point! I could probably have faked lookalikes, but this would have been a CNC machining job and a LOT of work. I could have done it using the 4th axis on the Sieg milling machine, but it would probably have taken me a couple of days at least. Sure, I could have made quite a few knobs once the CNC program was written, but for a one off, and particularly when I don’t really care much what the knobs look like, they just have to work, this was enough for me. :-)

High res closeup of replacement HP knob High res closeup of replacement HP knob

High res photo of replacement LeCroy knobs High res photo of replacement LeCroy knobs

Please note: this was cross-posted from my main blog at -- If you want me to definitely see your replies, please reply there rather than here.

#3Dprinting, #Electronics, #MakerCulture, #TestGear, #Uncategorized
compilerbitch: That's me, that is! (Default)

So here it is! The first ep is up, in all its glory, warts and all.

In this ep, I make and install a new binding post knob for my HP 3457A multimeter. The new knob is made from ABS plastic on a Solidoodle 2, a cheap 3D printer that rose to fame in a Kickstarter campaign a couple of years ago. I think I bought mine just after the Kickstarter campaign finished, so I was probably one of their earliest commercial customers. The Solidoodle 2 isn’t horrible — it’s a bit basic, but it gets the job done. I’d like something a little more rigid with a bigger build platform, but I’ve already had a lot of use out of mine for everything from replacement knobs (as shown, and also for one of my oscilloscopes) to connector backshells and prototype housings for spacecraft electronics. It can’t replace my milling machine, but it does do surprisingly well for a lot of smallish objects with complex shapes that would be irritating to mill due to the difficulty of doing the CAM and all the setups and tool changes that ‘real’ machining would require. I also show Geomagic Design in use live for the 3D design for the part. I wanted to show a true end-to-end process, starting from concept all the way through to a finished object, showing all the steps without eliding anything. When I was mulling over the idea of buying a 3D printer, I really wanted something like this because all I could find were brief timelapses showing the printer making things, with pretty much nothing existing that went beyond this.

I’ve been mulling over the idea of starting a video blog for some time. Though I might occasionally wish to post a rant or several (gosh, who knew?), I’m actually rather more inspired by some of the excellent YouTubers out there who put out excellent content that always keeps me watching. On the electronics side, I’m particularly inspired by Dave Jones (eevblog), but it may have been watching mjlorton that actually kicked me into doing something. I also devour anything posted by mikeselectricstuff and TheSignalPathBlog — so very tasty! On the mechanical engineering side, mrpete222, Keith Fenner, oxtoolco, abom79 and doubleboost have all kept me hugely entertained. On the slightly more commercial side, I should also shout out to The Ben Heck Show and Tested, who demonstrate how this can be done on with slightly greater than zero budget and a fair bit of professionalism!

My thoughts behind doing this are partly because I like making things and I love teaching, so a video blog of this kind is particularly inviting to me. I have all kinds of wild plans, some of which may not see the light of day, but the Vague Plan is to have the following kinds of content on the channel:

  1. Long form video blog episodes like the one above. This format is closest to the form that I tend to really like to watch. These episodes will be unscripted and have whatever format works for the purpose.

  2. Very short episodes in a series entitled 100 Seconds of Awesome. These will be higher production value, short attention span videos aimed at showing very short, very to the point material that each aim to teach exactly one thing very precisely and with no added anything.

  3. Long form episodes in a series called $100 of Awesome. This will also be higher production value, but with longer episodes. The premise is that I will pick up the coolest thing I can find on eBay (most likely something like a piece of test equipment or some such), tear it down, repair it and hot rod it, then put it on eBay for auction starting at $1 with the proceeds going to charity. Kind of like Pimp my Ride meets eevblog. Some builds may be multi-episode.

  4. Longer form builds as individual miniseries. In this case, I’ll start a project from scratch and show the whole thing through to completion. These eps may actually go out as part of the main m0mV blog or may be separate, I don’t know yet.

My interests are maybe a bit wider than most of the video bloggers who inspired me to do this, so the content will probably range from hardcore electronics to machine shop videos, ham radio and even also some music-related stuff — I have not forgotten that Mage of Machines started out as essentially a stage name for my musical endeavours.

I’m well aware that this first ep is a bit rough around the edges. I’m on a learning curve. I know how to futz over video and audio for many hours to make it perfect, but that won’t fly on this because it will simply take too long. I have to be able to make a video in an evening, including shooting and editing, or they just won’t get made. It will take me a while to shake the bugs out and to get used to not saying ‘so’ so damned much. I’ll get there. In the mean time, perfection is the enemy of done, so here it is.

Anyway, I hope you like this one. If you like it, subscribe, give me a thumbs up, leave a comment, whatever. All of that helps my ranking on YouTube, and will be greatly appreciated. :-)

Please note: this was cross-posted from my main blog at -- If you want me to definitely see your replies, please reply there rather than here.

#3Dprinting, #Electronics, #MoMVlog, #TestGear


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