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Old Nov 24 2020, 05:26 PM   #5601
Zelandeth
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While I used up most of my day's energy allotment trimming hedges today (the one was starting to encroach on the footway again despite having been done what felt like five minutes ago) I was determined to get at least one thing on the to do list ticked off...and sorting this on a permanent basis as a follow on from yesterday seemed a good target.



Checking it on the meter the original condenser was doing a passable impression of a 600K ohm resistor with no reading given on the capacitance range on my meter. Yep, that'll be dead then.

The polypropylene film cap sitting next to it should be a "fit and forget" replacement as they're far more long lived.

The innards were gouged out from the open end of the can and a hole was drilled for one lead of the new capacitor to poke through.



This was then soldered to the case (note that these capacitors are non polarised so it doesn't matter which side is ground).



Not the tidiest job but I was running out of gas in the soldering iron so was trying to be quick. It's solid and has good continuity to the can. Those are the important points.

The new cap is a little longer so unfortunately will unavoidably poke out the bottom a little.



Shouldn't be visible in-situ though unless you're peering at it.

Getting the wire (which is integrated into the insulating block which passes through the distributor wall at the other end) soldered to the cap lead was a major pain. Had to use quite a bit of heat and wound up shrinking the heat shrink I'd hoped to slide over this lead.



I'll come back to that another day. It'll be fine for now with a bit if tape. Not as though the wire is long enough to go anywhere.

Especially as the void in the can has now been filled with hot glue to provide mechanical support to the cap.



If I have problems with it going gooey due to heat I'll revisit things and use epoxy. I just don't have any in stock right now. Reckon it'll be fine though.

Back in place you wouldn't notice something was amiss unless you were specifically looking for it would you?



Bit of tape has since been added to the coil connection wire to the cap just to ensure it can't short on the case. What I'll probably do as a proper solution there will be to add a crimped on terminal at the body end so I can properly get a bit of shrink wrap on there properly. If it hadn't got dark on me today I'd have done it then, just ran out of time though.

Glad to report that this was the result when I turned the key (note she's stone cold here).

Brief YouTube Video Link (in the dark)

Which is always reassuring given at least twice in the past I've resolved minor ignition issues on cars and then lost all spark until I spent an hour faffing around and swearing at them.

Not really expecting to notice any real difference on the road but we'll see when I next have her out and about.
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Old Nov 26 2020, 01:05 PM   #5602
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Nobody spotted my deliberate mistake to see if you were paying attention then I see!

Um...yeah...of course it was deliberate. Definitely didn't happen simply because I'm a Blithering idiot.

While that capacitor came out of the drawer for the 0.22uF caps, it isn't one! It's a 0.022uF cap. D'oh! Now thinking about it, that should have been blindingly obvious based on size alone. The result of this was a car that would die the moment you even looked at the throttle.

Of course having turned that corner of the house upside down I can now confirm that I have a total of zero 0.22uF caps in stock.

Cue some bodging to get the car back up and running. This mess will just be getting cable tied to the side of the distributor.



Once the correct capacitor is back in stock I'll set about making it pretty again. Based on testing on the drive this seems to have sorted things though. Couldn't really go out to do a test drive as by that point it had dropped below few point again...which in a vehicle with no really usable demister is less than ideal.



That's definitely the biggest shortcoming of this car as a winter runaround I think.

Hopefully I'll have the opportunity to actually test things tomorrow.
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Old Nov 28 2020, 08:51 PM   #5603
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I hope everyone who celebrates it had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I hope those that don't celebrate it had a wonderful day.
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Old Nov 29 2020, 02:33 AM   #5604
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I hope everyone who celebrates it had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I hope those that don't celebrate it had a wonderful day.

Thanks, my workday was pretty good. I hope you had a good Thanksgiving, too, and found something to be grateful in this crappy year. My life's been pretty good compared to many, but even I am so ready for 2020 to be over.


My family isn't religious but we do celebrate secular Christmas. Our traditions include expressing gratitude for the good things that have happened during the year, so I really like the idea of Thanksgiving.
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Old Nov 29 2020, 07:07 PM   #5605
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Towards the end of the summer the oil pressure warning light stopped working on the Jag. Given that the oil pressure gauge doesn't work this was less than ideal and was not something I was willing to leave unfixed.

By the standards of a V12 XJ-S it's not particularly difficult to get to at all.



Thanks to the sheer amount of stuff in the way though even this did require full use of two extensions and a universal joint to get to it...but not too bad to be honest. Fiddly rather than difficult.



The offending item.



Once the new one was fitted (which by some miracle I managed *not* to drop down the back of the engine while fitting) correct operation of the oil pressure warning light was restored.



Fingers crossed it lasts longer than the previous one which was only in there for about a year.

Earlier in the day I had reason to do a bit of an audit and clear out of the chest freezer in the back of the garage as we had a large delivery of frozen snacks etc for Christmas and New Year arriving today (basically when we found we could actually get a delivery slot from Iceland we grabbed it!). This meant backing TPA out, and while I had some room I decided to do a bit of a clear up. Not bothering about the piles of junk around the periphery...I just wanted to pick up all the bits of finely atomised rubber floor mats and and sweep up the year's worth of accumulated leaves - and omnipresent film of soda blasting media that I reckon I'll still be finding a couple of decades from now.

Looks a bit less unpleasant at least. Though the clutter still makes my skin crawl...I cannot emphasise enough how much I am looking forward to getting this place actually cleared up.



Note the complete lack of any oil spots...Since I sorted the sump plug washer TPA's engine has remained completely oil tight. She weeps a bit of gearbox oil at speed from the gearbox top cover (reckon I'm missing a gasket), but that's it. Not bad for a 47 year old car. Bet if the engine was British she'd leak! Most of the discolouration of the concrete there was there from before we moved in. Aside from the stripe left to right near the door - that's spilled resin from when I was rebuilding the rear apron.

There will be a MAJOR clear out and rearrangement happening in the new year. Basically everything forward of the space the car parks in will be getting kitted out with ranks of shelving across the width of the garage (leaving just enough of a gap to be a walkway along the left hand side) to finally give me decent storage.

Getting rid of the clutter along the sides here will be a massive improvement as I'll be able to actually get to both sides of the car, and have the permanent equipment like the Sun engine analyser set up in an actual home.

It's a good thing for me that TPA isn't any wider or have conventional doors.



The black paint at the threshold is an experimental test to see if I can stop the little bit of water that tends to get in from doing so. The garage door closes about 1/2" in from the edge of the concrete slab so water tends to "wick" its way under the door through the grain despite there being a slight downhill grade to it...so I want to see if the finish being less porous helps stop that. It's not a big issue, but I'd just like to sort it if I can. Especially as there will be a floor covering of some description going in at some point to make it a nicer place to work.

There's more clutter than usual in here at the moment as well as we've got a crew coming tomorrow to spend the week to permanently deal with the rampant bamboo in our back garden, so there's a bunch of garden furniture and cushions from it etc buried at the back too. By the way...if you're looking at a house where the previous owner has been daft enough to plant bamboo outside, not in a properly shielded container, run away. Getting it eliminated is going to be costing us the best part of £6000. Yes, six *thousand* pounds. The work does come with a ten year guarantee at least.

I've also made a bit of a change to my parking arrangements. The Xantia has now moved to the bit of ground under where that huge Spruce tree used to be. The ground there is really hard packed and there's no grass or anything there so it's not going to get churned up. Plus it's just scrub land so couldn't care less really if it did make a cosmetic mess of it. Unlike the bit of lawn right out the lounge window which I'd been using as the overflow space before. That wasn't too much of a problem A: In the summer when the ground is like concrete, or B: When the car there wasn't being used much. However with the ground now being flat and everything pretty much in regular use I was starting to chew the grass up. I also really, really didn't want the Jag parked long term in damp weather over grass given their tendency to rust. So the Xantia is now to the left of the driveway, the Jag has taken up the position behind the van, and nothing is on the lawn. Well, the Xantia will for a couple of days when the landscaping crew arrive tomorrow as they'll be using that space as their entry/egress into the rear garden, but not on a long term basis.

We might well actually extend the driveway over towards the fence, where the tree used to be as it should gain me two spaces - but that will involve quite a bit of ground work to remove the stump of the tree, to flatten it all out etc...so not a job for this year. I really would like to be able to actually park all my cars on proper spaces though...and not have to dump something on the street whenever I want to get TPA out of or into the garage as that wastes a lot of time - and basically means I can't do it between 0830-0930 and 1430-1530 every weekday due to the school rush.

Having the area beyond the driveway here available as a proper parking area would definitely be really useful.



That bit of actual driveway is usually occupied by Chris' company car by the way...and it's not quite long enough to get two cars in one behind the other - which is annoying! At the very least we might extend the driveway back a few feet to the left in that photo as the fence there needs replacing anyhow...at least having the option to stick two cars one behind the other would be an improvement over the current arrangement even if still a bit more of a faff than having each one able to get in/out without needing to play automotive Tetris.
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Old Nov 30 2020, 10:22 AM   #5606
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Thanksgiving was ok. Went to sister's house. Fixed turkey hete last night. It was the best turkey I've ever fixed.
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Old Dec 2 2020, 10:55 AM   #5607
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I have a tiny dust bunny (kitten) kneading my arm & sucking on my shirt.
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Old Dec 3 2020, 08:56 AM   #5608
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I have a tiny dust bunny (kitten) kneading my arm & sucking on my shirt.
There are few things in the world cuter than kittens...

-- -- --

It's always fun when you take a car in for its first MOT in your ownership. Doubly so when you really haven't had time to check anything beyond that all the lights work. Though I did forget the fog lights.

Never mind when it's on a 35 year old British motor and the test is effectively six months late thanks to COVID (granted the car was off the road for the bulk of that time).

Anyhow...in we went.



Twenty minutes later:



I'll take that.

Usual issue noted with the daft steering rack mounting bushes meaning the whole rack can move, which I was already aware of. Might look to sticking some improved bushes in there at some point. That didn't go on as an advisory as it's more of a stupid design than a fault due to wear or age. Only other thing noted was a tiny bit of play in the lower pins in the rear hubs. Nothing major and I've always told my tester I'd rather he told me of any issues rather than just issue an "easy" pass.

Tester admitted to being pleasantly surprised by the overall condition of the car and was complimentary of the standard to which the usual welding repairs had been done.

Then straight back home to start hauling bits of felled trees into a skip. Right across the area where the patio used to be but is now a giant clay pit. In the pouring rain. I lasted about an hour before my arms and legs were utterly useless. Now resting up for a bit, will see if I feel like having another bash at it in an hour or so. Just seems sensible to use as much of the skip as possible given it's here until this evening and the contractors dealing with the bamboo only used about s third of the capacity. We did check and it was fine for us to throw anything in there.
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Old Dec 3 2020, 03:52 PM   #5609
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I bought 3d wall paper that looks like a gray castle wall. I can't wait to get it put up.
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Old Dec 3 2020, 04:11 PM   #5610
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My sister passed away the day before yesterday. We only knew she was ill for a month. It happened all so quickly, that we are baffled.

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Old Dec 4 2020, 10:30 AM   #5611
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HUGS
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Old Dec 4 2020, 02:11 PM   #5612
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My sistrr pased awayvthe day before yesterday. We only knew she was ill forva month. It happened all so quickly, that we are baffled.
I'm so sorry for your loss.
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Old Dec 8 2020, 11:23 PM   #5613
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Friday AM eye appt was for. Friday afternoon Kibby Dr. Appt. For shoulder pain. Dr aggravated the shoulder. So couldn't move it Sunday, couldn't work, ER for note saying she couldn't work. Monday Dr appt for me, also shoulder pain. Eye Dr called this morn. I can get cataract surgery on the 16. Have to do pre op. Back hospital for pre op today. All appts were in Charletsvill. 2 hours away. I am tired of driving there. Will have to go twice next week, and once 1 week after that.
On the plus side I will be able to see much better.
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Old Dec 12 2020, 06:18 PM   #5614
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The windscreen wipers on the Jag have been becoming increasingly glitchy of late. Normally a sharp thump on the scuttle would get them working again - until last time I needed to go out in a hurry when they decided to play dead entirely. The behaviour seemed to suggest the motor wasn't making it quite all the way to the fully parked position (which is slightly further over the screen than the normal wiping range).

Given I knew the drains had been clogged for goodness knows how long the motor had most likely spent some time under water so I was hoping it was going to be a simple case of dirty contacts or dried up grease in the linkage.

Figured it was worth pulling the grill over it off and seeing if I could see anything obviously amiss. Looked like it would be a simple case of pulling the wiper arms, undoing a couple of bolts and lifting it off...right?

Of course not, because Jaguar. Having unfastened everything I could see it still wasn't interested in budging more than a few millimetres.



Peering under the edge it became obvious there was a load of hardware attached to the underside, with no obvious way to detach it. Attempting to get a wrench into the bolt only resulted in me dropping it into the void under the grill.

Eventually I figured out that the whole wiper assembly remains attached to the cover and you just have to sort of wrestle it out through the not-quite-wide-enough gap.



Those spindle gear boxes look suspiciously like the same ones used in the Invacar...given the amount of BMC parts bin hardware in there it wouldn't surprise me.

Nothing hugely obvious amiss, though the whole drive assembly and spindles were really dry. So everything was drowned in penetrating oil and I then splodged as much grease as I could be hand into the spindle boxes (pretty easy as they're not sealed) without pulling things to bits any further as I was being mindful of having to go out pretty soon to collect groceries.



I'm under no illusions that I won't be back in here, most likely I'll need to dismantle the motor gearbox itself to give it a thorough clean and re-grease as the original lubrication has probably long since turned to plastic. As it is though the wipers now move at about twice the original speed and appear to be playing ball...the issue has been intermittent though so only time will tell.

With everything back together I headed for my grocery collection slot, via a fuel station (again).

Stopping at the first junction after that I noticed the dash lighting seemed really dim.

Um...yeah, that would do it.



The alternator appears to have lost interest in charging. I legged it home and switched cars. Further investigation revealed no working ignition light either...so either bulb has gone or we've got an issue with the brushes most likely.

Of course when I went back to the car half an hour later to park it it behaved perfectly again.



Yep...sticky and/or worn brushes methinks.

Won't that be fun...the alternator is one of the nice easy to get to things...



Oh...no I actually meant the other thing. You can barely see the thing. I changed the belt for it a couple of months ago and that was a full day's job pretty much!

Never a dull moment...

I did finally get a bit of time to start putting the basic text for a website update together (first time since 2017!), got a ways to go but have made a start at least. Decided to use something lacking in distractions to assist in concentrating on what I was actually working on.



Really do like the keyboard on this too. It's definitely physically the same board that Acorn used in the Archimedes range (A3000/3010/3020 at least), which was always my favourite to type on of the machines from that era. Amiga wasn't bad...Atari ST came miles behind with their horrible mushy mess. Funky shaped function keys couldn't even redeem it. No idea when I'll actually get the update finished and uploaded, but at least I've made a start.
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Old Dec 13 2020, 07:04 PM   #5615
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So, have I fixed the issue with the Jag's wipers? Nope...Worked perfectly until I turned the wipers off for the first time, then refused to start again until I thumped it again.

Fine. We'll pull the wiper motor apart, clean and generally service it then. My money is on it just being a dirty or sticky switch/brush. Given that the wipers work absolutely perfectly once they're started without any juddering or lack of torque I reckon it's a simple dodgy contact.

The plus side is that with the removal of four bolts (well, three in my case as one is sheared), removal of one plug and pulling off the washer feed tube the whole assembly just lifts off the car. So I've brought it into the house so I can work on it tomorrow inside when it's forecast to be tipping it down all day.



Parts manual is already coming in handy with a nice diagram showing what to expect when I start stripping it down.

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Old Dec 15 2020, 08:04 PM   #5616
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Continuing the theme of "can you daily an Invacar in 2020?" TPA was out and about again today.



Had a good chat with a gent in the car park at the supermarket who was very curious as to the differences to what they thought were the facts about Invacars, and the story of how we'd been able to get some of the survivors back on the road. They own a VW based trike, so not a huge surprise they were drawn towards unusual looking three wheeled vehicles.

I really do need to figure out a better arrangement for our driveway at some point...With how well TPA is running these days I actually want to use the car, but it's a 15-20 minute production every time I want to get the car in or out - and if there aren't two available parking places on the road to temporarily stuff two cars on I'm basically stuck.

When we got to the evening I figured it was about time I tackled the Jag wiper assembly.

Afraid not a huge number of photos as I pretty much from the start was covered in grease so it wasn't really practical to get too many as it required me to wipe my hands and remove my gloves every time I picked the phone up.

Breaks down into a surprisingly large number of pieces.



Once we got into the motor itself it became pretty obvious that (exactly as I expected given the issues I'd had with the scuttle drains) that it had been sitting in water for a while.





Thankfully aside from the visible gunk you can see there the only evidence we had of this was a single very sticky brush (blue wire)...which would precisely have matched the symptoms that I was seeing. When I first opened it up the brush wasn't actually touching the commutator at all. The brushes have a bit of wear on them but look fine. A little bit of cleaning and working of the sticky brush got it moving freely again. The grease in here wasn't actually bad at all. It had gone a bit dark in a few areas but was still behaving like normal grease, I honestly expected it to have turned into soapy plastic by now...might well be that someone has been in here before me. The only bit that was chalky was on the reciprocating slider, so that was cleaned and regreased - I just kind of slathered all other moving parts inside the casing within reason.

Getting to the park switch would have involved removing the ring gear, and I didn't have to hand a small enough set of circlip pliers to get the retaining clip for that out. However testing it with a meter showed that it seems to be working fine anyway so I'm leaving it alone for now. I was pretty much expecting this - while I wasn't 100% sure I would have sort of expected a fault with the park switch to result in the wipers never stopping rather than not starting.

While it was a bit fiddly, didn't take long to get things put back together.



...At which point I stood up and heard something go "clink" onto the floor and roll off towards the kitchen.



Which after a bit of head scratching (it doesn't seem to be shown in the parts manual diagram) I figured out was a thrust plate designed to take up endfloat in the motor shaft...so I had to take pretty much the whole lot back to pieces again. Annoying.

Slightly later than originally planned, we got it back into one piece though.



Sadly far too late in the day to get it back to the car to test it by then though. We'll give it a try tomorrow...fingers crossed this will have sorted it though. I think it will though, reckon it was just that brush sticking due to the water ingress from the blocked scuttle drains.
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Old Dec 16 2020, 06:15 PM   #5617
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I went back into battle with this thing this afternoon. Started at about 14:30.



Dismantled it...Couldn't see anything obviously amiss...Double, triple, quadruple checked that the switch actually worked and that there was actually continuity all the way to the harness socket in case we had a wiring issue.

Reassembled...Exactly the same. Rinse, lather, repeat...EIGHT TIMES.

Until...

Brief, very poor quality, dark, rainy YouTube video clip

I said six in the video, but this was the eighth attempt judging from how many pairs of gloves I'd gone through!

That was the first time it hadn't just taken off the moment I turned the ignition on.

The only thing I did differently that time was actually making absolutely sure that it was in the parked position when I reassembled it (I had the meter hooked up in continuity mode, beeping at me during the whole process).

I'm not sure precisely what difference this makes, but the one thing I can think of is that maybe if it's not hooked up in the parked position that the relay logic used to control things might get confused. No idea...All I can say is that this time around it seemed to work...and I spent a good five minutes further turning it on, off and switching speeds after I turned the camera off and it kept behaving. I'll put the rest of the mechanism back together tomorrow. At least I had the sense after yesterday's failure to only reassemble the mechanism itself prior to the test rather than the entire assembly.

The parking mechanism deserves a little bit of a mention as it's a little bit strange.

I've not had many wiper systems apart, and most of those have been on buses...but usually I'm used to the parking system being based around either a microswitch or a hall effect sensor which is triggered by the ring gear on each revolution - it's just ignored by the control system until you switch the wipers off.

The hardware in this case is a conventional microswitch and a little metal arm on a circular collar that's pushed around by the ring gear. What's strange about it though is that it's actually held clear of the switch by a spring when the motor is running. To make contact with the park switch the motor has to reverse direction, at which point the metal ring with the actuating arm on rides up a ramp on the back of the ring gear so it can press the switch. *That* is why the wipers always change direction and complete a stroke or two backwards before the wipers park...it's necessary to get the motor into the "parking mode" due to this strange arrangement.

I haven't been able to find a decent photo or diagram on the internet anywhere and the parts manual appears to show the earlier motor style, so I might try to draw a diagram showing this arrangement tomorrow. I honestly thought I had taken a photo of it but my phone claims otherwise. It's not too hard to see how it works visually but it's not the easiest thing to describe.

Given it now appears to be working, I'm not pulling it to bits again for the sake of a couple of photos!

That wiper motor came very, very close to getting launched into low earth orbit this afternoon!

That video was recorded at about 17:30 I think. I might have gone ahead and reassembled everything today but it was tipping it down so my enthusiasm for being outside was pretty slim.

In other news the latest addition to my little collection of vintage technology arrived this morning.



This is a Kovac K-80D circa 1972. Aside from one segment out on the display (given it's the same one on each digit and the display is multiplexed I'm guessing - and hoping - we've probably got a single dead transistor) this thing is absolutely immaculate. It honestly could have just been taken out of the box today.

Of course the first thing I did was take the cover off to have a look inside.



I've usually have expected a calculator from this era to have a vacuum fluorescent display to be honest...Things generally jumped from Nixies straight to VFD/LED and then to LCD. The handful of models I've seen using digital neon displays usually have used Panaplax displays, which are planar seven segment neon displays usually with several digits in one envelope. I certainly can't recall ever coming across one before which uses a seven segment neon display with individual tubes for each digit. I'm sure there are a few, I've just not encountered them so I'd say it's a pretty rare setup.

Let's take a closer look at that display, because it's probably the most unique part of this calculator.



These are Rodan MG-17G neon indicator tubes in case you were wondering.





Digital cameras can never properly capture the colour of a neon discharge.



The window over the display is lightly grey tinted to help improve the display contrast.



Looking closely at the battery meter I think gives a good impression of how clean this thing really is. The complete absence of lint and gunk in the recesses around it tells the story I think.



It just about qualifies as hand held!



Okay. Maybe not. I think I'd label this as "portable desktop" in terms of form factor. It's the best part of a kilogram when loaded with batteries anyway so you're not going to go and stick it in a pocket.

Definitely glad to have this one in the collection, especially for the trivial price I paid for it. I'm used to anything with a more unusual display technology going for more money than the £14 I think it was that I paid for this.
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Old Dec 16 2020, 09:18 PM   #5618
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My grandparents had one of those Kovac calculators and I've always regretted that it went to one of my cousins when grandma passed away. I'd still have it the cousin lost it some time around 1980. Those were sweet machines for their day.
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Old Dec 17 2020, 08:01 PM   #5619
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My grandparents had one of those Kovac calculators and I've always regretted that it went to one of my cousins when grandma passed away. I'd still have it the cousin lost it some time around 1980. Those were sweet machines for their day.
That's a shame! It seems like a really well made bit of kit based on my first impressions. Even is the sort of semi-RPM operation confused the heck out of one of my housemates!

-- -- --

Had a little package arrive for the Invacar I'd forgotten about until it turned up today.



I noticed the last couple of times when out after dark that the indicator flasher was struggling a bit at idle when the headlights were on. To be honest I was rather surprised that it worked at all given it was in this state when I found it originally.



I'm pretty sure that I shook a not inconsiderable amount of water out of it as well.

Given a new one was all of about £3 delivered from eBay it just made sense to change it.





Indicators now flash even without the engine running with the headlights and brake lights on, so looks like problem solved. It's still a thermal flasher though so we should still get the old school variation in flash rate depending on system voltage (and ambient temperature) we're used to. The old one has been stowed in the "tired but serviceable in a pinch" spares box.


Next task, with everything now apparently working again it was time to put the wiper assembly for the Jag back together and onto the car. I was glad to find that the wiper assembly still behaved after I had reassembled it all.

However when finally putting it back on the car one of the hose stubs snapped off the check valve for the windscreen washers.



*sigh*

I uttered some quite unprintable things when that happened.

Realistically it was all of £2 for a replacement from Motorserv...just was annoying to have to go out and get more parts! This is just one of those jobs which has been determined to take as long as possible from square one.

Nevertheless once I've got the replacement check valve fitted tomorrow hopefully I'll be able to button that area back up and forget about it for a while.

While I was putting things away I stumbled across an LED P21 retrofit bulb I discounted using for actual vehicle lighting a while ago and realised that I did actually have a good place to use it.



That's far more useful than what used to be in there for a fraction of the power usage. We've found we do actually tend to use that light quite a bit in the evenings in the summer if we're sitting under the awning and/or when tidying stuff up. So having actually useful output from it is definitely a bonus.

This is a pretty accurate before photo if you were actually looking straight at it.



At this point we make another drift back into the area of vintage technology again as another package arrived for me this morning.



First up, the Texas Instruments TI-1250.



This was a (relatively!) low cost calculator dating from 1975. The TI-1200 (which I have one of already) is identical but doesn't have the memory functions - well...it actually does. It just doesn't have the buttons fitted!.

This one is pretty much immaculate. The only visible wear anywhere is on the label on the back.



Here it is modelling next to my TI-30 for scale.



Nicely this one seems to be mercifully free of the key bounce issues which plague both my TI-30 and T-1200.

It's noticeable that this doesn't have the "screensaver" mode that the TI-30 does which blanks the display aside from a single chasing dot to save battery power. Also when the TI-30 encounters either an error or an overflow condition it actually prints out "error" on the display like so...



...Whereas the TI-1250 simply flashes the whole display to signify such conditions.

This display is also about twice as bright as the TI-30.

Next up is the Casio LC-828. Again still with its admittedly rather battered box.



While the box may be battered, the contents are immaculate.



Launched in 1985 this is a carbon copy of the LC-826 from 1979, simply using more modern LCD technology allowing the yellow filter to be dispensed with and with the case graphics having had a slight refresh.



Display seems to be identical even down to the border around the function symbols.



Now for the main reason I grabbed this little trio though, the Sharp EL-8130A. I'd not seen one of these before.



First impression on picking it up: "This feels expensive."



It basically feels like a solid slab of brushed aluminium that someone has just carved a calculator out of.

I was expecting this to be mid 80s...but a bit of research shows this to date from 1977-79!

Look how thin it is!



That's 0.5cm right there.

Even the texture printed on the rear of the case looks classy and brings to mind leather bound books.



Guessing from that serial number this one dates from 1979.

I'm waiting on batteries to arrive for this before I can test it, though I've confirmed it does work. Still had the original (very dead) batteries in, being Sharp branded they're almost a museum piece in themselves.



The flat panel keypad looks just like your typical touch sensor, but has an almost leatherette sort of texture to it and does deform just enough to know you've actually pressed a key - miles better than that Tandy (Casio made) PDA I got hold of last week! It also has the option for a keypad beep, which with any membrane keypad seems a sensible option to have. Turning that on or off is what the key with the musical note on is for.



An interesting little time capsule from the era where there was a distinct race between makers to create the thinnest possible calculator.

Should hopefully have some more actual car content on the way soon!
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Old Dec 17 2020, 09:08 PM   #5620
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So, how many Casio calculator watches have you had?
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Old Dec 19 2020, 02:50 PM   #5621
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So, how many Casio calculator watches have you had?
None actually.

They always struck me as being something as a gimmick. Far too fiddly to actually use. Plus I've always hated wearing a watch.

Oh...and within a week of wearing them they invariably turn into blithering idiots who have no idea what year it is much less accurately telling the time.

In the last year or so I've taken to wearing a Fitbit...and it's had exactly the same issue! It still stays reasonably accurate by virtue of syncing the time with my phone though. Ish.
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Old Dec 19 2020, 09:15 PM   #5622
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Do you know how hard it is not to rub your eye when it is itchy & watery? Very, it's driving me bonkers. Altho Kibby says I went bonkers a long time ago.
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Old Dec 21 2020, 05:40 PM   #5623
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Day 1 of Quarantine, Positive Covid test yesterday. I never knew how hard it is to get plenty of rest and not to over exert myself ! I am not one to sit around and do nothing. As for how i feel, low grade temp. and headache, lost the sense of smell. No other symptoms as of yet. Hoping this doesn't get any worse than this.
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Old Dec 21 2020, 07:12 PM   #5624
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Day 1 of Quarantine, Positive Covid test yesterday. I never knew how hard it is to get plenty of rest and not to over exert myself ! I am not one to sit around and do nothing. As for how i feel, low grade temp. and headache, lost the sense of smell. No other symptoms as of yet. Hoping this doesn't get any worse than this.
Hope you get over it soon! We've just been put back into full lockdown here - which really should have happened ages ago...Though where would we be without the official advice changing weekly?

-- -- --

Finally had a package from the US arrive today - which was posted well over a month ago.



This was a very random purchase from a while ago which very much appealed to my inner geek.



These bags contained these bits of hardware. One switch and one indicator.



While these are both from the 80s I believe, the designs haven't really changed hugely since the 60s.

The number of components in this thing for a four way latching switch is absolutely ridiculous.





From an engineering perspective it is simply a thing of beauty and a joy forever.

Now need to figure out something to do with it...Probably a master power switch for my workstation as I can use the split indicator (one side is red, other is green) for something useful then.

Yes, those are the same style as used in the Nasa control rooms from the Apollo era onwards (these are a slightly later style, but very similar). The one labelled Radar Acquisition is actually made by the Master Specialities Company who produced the original Apollo era kit, the unlabelled one is made by Unimax, but they're a very similar setup. Main differences are in the panel mounting method and the exact design of the ratchet used to latch it. The fact is that these were (and possibly still are) used in a plethora of military settings as well so they're pretty easy to find in the US.

I've always been a major Apollo enthusiast, so the moment one of the YouTubers I follow identified what the switchgear in the old MOCR (which everyone calls Mission Control) actually was I was on eBay hunting stuff down within minutes.

The seller I got this pair from has THOUSANDS of mil spec bits of switchgear and instrumentation in their eBay shop - I could quite happily have spent a small fortune in there as it's basically an entire shop full of stuff I WANT. I have precisely zero use for 99.993% of the stuff I'd buy, but that doesn't stop me wanting it! The only thing which saved me from going utterly overboard was that postage costs a small fortune from the US these days. If I'm ever in that area in a future visit to the US though you can absolutely guarantee that probably half my luggage will be full of stuff from that warehouse. I will seriously be like a kid in a sweet shop.
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Old Dec 21 2020, 10:04 PM   #5625
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Zelandeth, you would have been better off if they had sent those items with someone other than the US Postal Service. I once had something take 21 days to go from Colorado Springs, Colorado to me in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The item (an adapter for headphones on a Samsung Galaxy Note 10+) took 10 days to Omaha, Nebraska then one day to Indianapolis, Indiana. Then it took a 7 day circular trip between Indy, and Columbus and Cleveland Ohio hitting each city twice during it. It finally made it to Fort Wayne after 18 days and was promptly sent roughly 20 miles north to Kendallville, Indiana then back to Fort Wayne 1 day later where it sat 2 days before being delivered to me. Only for me to open it and find the wrong item. It's funny now but it was infuriating at the time.
Oh and for comparison I went and had it converted it is roughly 1999 kilometers between Fort Wayne and Colorado Springs a good set of drivers can make the drive in 17 hours.
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Old Dec 22 2020, 01:08 PM   #5626
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Dragon Fan I hope you feel better soon.
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Old Dec 22 2020, 01:52 PM   #5627
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Day 1 of Quarantine, Positive Covid test yesterday. I never knew how hard it is to get plenty of rest and not to over exert myself ! I am not one to sit around and do nothing. As for how i feel, low grade temp. and headache, lost the sense of smell. No other symptoms as of yet. Hoping this doesn't get any worse than this.

I hope you'll feel better soon. Take care.
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Old Dec 22 2020, 05:30 PM   #5628
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Nothing huge to report today, but the enclosure I'll be putting the distributor condenser on the Invacar has arrived.



Nothing fancy, it'll do what I need it to just fine though.

I'll probably tuck it away underneath the battery tray in the engine bay so should disappear once it's in place and has got a bit of dust and grime covering it.



Not sure if I mentioned it before, but I really want to install a remote engine start switch in the engine bay. That will likely end up on this enclosure as well which makes it a little less oversized for the job.

Amusing random anecdote from earlier in the day which might give you a giggle. Spotify appear as of the most recent update introduced a bug - at least with my exact hardware/software combination. This means that there appears to be roughly a 20% chance of the volume jumping to 100% the nanosecond I press play.

This is significantly annoying.

It's made me jump several times when I've had my headphones on over the last few days. The best (or worst!) by a mile though was this afternoon, when I had it hooked up to my stereo. All 350W RMS of it. Unbeknownst to me the volume on that had been left pretty much all the way up as several of the devices which tend to be hooked up to the and in have pretty low output levels.

I reckon I must have levitated a good couple of feet in the air, as the speaker I was actually leaning on at the time literally knocked the wind out of me. In addition to me leaving the ground, it felt like pretty much everything else around me did we well. Including the armchair that's a heavy two man lift, the sofa, both dogs and the foundations of the house.

These things pack a mighty punch...120W RMS (each), with integrated subwoofers.



The speaker to the right is one of the Pioneer CS-585s I inherited from my grandfather and will never part with as they still sound fantastic. Really do need to sort the cat damage (which happened in the late 80s!) to the cloth covers though. They're normal classic hi-fi speaker sized and are shown there just to give a sense of size of the Sony ones...which are heavier than they look too.

It's astonishing how long it can take you to find a volume control in a situation like that! Hitting pause was out of the question as when I jumped my phone was launched into low earth orbit (we found it down the back of the sofa after about 15 minutes of searching.

Just about everything in that room that was just leaning against the walls or was loosely stacked (it's a bit of a junk store) ended up on the floor as well. My ears finally stopped ringing after a few hours...

If Spotify could fix that bug I'd really be grateful. Not sure my heart can handle that happening again!

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Old Dec 23 2020, 08:32 PM   #5629
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Nothing to report from outside today thanks to the non-stop rain. Unless nervously watching as the run off from the driveway made it into the garage counts - thankfully only by a few inches.



It wouldn't surprise me if there had originally been a proper drain there and the previous owner of this place decided to bury it with a flower bed. That sounds like the sort of thing they'd do based on other sensible design choices found around the house.

A surprisingly bulky parcel with my name on arrived this morning though.

This arrival was the last one I was waiting for - and one I was very curious to take a proper look at.



Didn't spot from the eBay listing that it still had the original slip case, that's always nice to have for something in the collection. So what's in the case?



At a glance it's just a very basic four function calculator, by 1972 when this dates from that really wasn't anything to write home about. What was the standout feature of this example though was the display. This was as far as I'm aware only the second model commercially available which made use of a liquid crystal display. Though it's not quite an LCD as you know it (unless you're into this sort of stuff...though even then I'd not seen one of these in person until this evening).



So it's got the light/dark flipped...what's the big deal?

Oh no...It's much more than that. This is a DSM LCD - or Dynamic Scattering Mode LCD. The Twisted Nematic LCDs you're used to seeing work by changing the way the polarise the light depending on whether a segment is subjected to an electric field or not. These are very, very different. For a start, no polarisers anywhere here. The way these work is that in their rest state they are completely transparent, however when current is passed through a segment here the crystal structure is disturbed so the segment becomes opaque, taking on the appearance of frosted glass.

The way Sharp used this actually to place the display segments in front of a mirror.



The inside of the hood on this calculator is lined with a black felt which is what the mirror behind the display reflects so as to give a good visual contrast.

It's a challenge to photograph clearly! However the display is every bit as clear as it looks in the photos. The really interesting thing is that if you look close enough you can actually see a sort of shimmering effect within the LCD segments due to interference patterns set up within the crystals.

There are far less decent photos of DSM displays out there than I expected, so here's a few. I took something like 75 photos trying to get decent ones actually showing this display in its full glory...They'll have to wait for me to put it on the website.



That's where I've slipped a bit of paper in between the hood and the display so you can see how the digits actually do appear like frost on the mirror rather than anything vaguely resembling the appearance of any other type of display I've ever seen. Nothing looks anything like one of these.



(That one was from before I cleaned it, sorry).





That almost retroreflective like texture on the surface of the digits isn't a camera artefact - it's not static either. The digits do actually shimmer very slightly whenever the display segments are powered. It's quite beautiful to observe through a powerful macro lens.





I'll need to do some experimentation with a macro lens and natural light to see if I can do better.

A video showing some absolutely gorgeous super-macro video of these displays in action can be found here though:

YouTube Link

On a completely unrelated note to display technology, which is why I bought this thing...Is it just me, or does this thing seriously look like an Original Series Star Trek tricorder?



The quality of this thing is worlds apart from anything like this nowadays...Absolutely everything about it just *feels* expensive and just oozes quality.

Quite a bit smaller than I thought it was, here's it next to the Kovac which turned up a week or so back.



Yeah, this one is going to be staying on the desk full time I think.

That pretty much gives me *nearly* full coverage on display technology now I think...

[] Nixie: Check. Fine, it's a benchtop multimeter, but Nixie calculators are EXPENSIVE.

[] Panaplax: Nearly...The Kovac has a segmented neon display which is nearly there. The only calculator I'm actively looking for just now does have a Panaplax display though. Compucorp 324G or similar if you happen to have one floating around...

[] EL: No...Though I don't *think* anything as small as a calculator has ever used an EL display. They were more of a competitor to plasma displays in the early days of laptops I think.

[] LCD: All three generations, check.

Only missing the really exotic ones like edge lit incandescent or single plane projection (Don't think numitrons were ever used in calculators?)...Still have my eye on getting a proper flipdot display at some point to, but that's nothing whatsoever to do with vintage technology really, I just want one!

Oh...Or CRT. A Friden EC-130 or 132 would be sort of the "unicorn" find for me. I seem to recall making strange squeaking noises when I spotted one in the National Museum of Computing. Odds of ever finding one: Slim to zero. Odds of finding one for sale at a price I can justify paying: Probably less than zero.
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Old Dec 24 2020, 06:37 PM   #5630
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I hope everyone has a very merry Christmas & that the new year bring peace & joy.
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Old Dec 25 2020, 01:40 PM   #5631
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I hope everyone has a very merry Christmas & that the new year bring peace & joy.

Seconding this sentiment. Merry Christmas!
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Old Dec 25 2020, 07:14 PM   #5632
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Someone was enjoying this afternoon...



Getting to destroy the wrapping paper is pretty much his favourite thing in the world.





The main box waiting under the tree for me this year - completely unexpectedly - contained this.



This contains a 3D printer.

Immediate reaction "Oh god...this means I need to learn how to drive Blender!" Which is a bit of software I've generally run in terror from on all previous encounters!

Would have been nice to get to set up the 3D printer this evening wouldn't it?

Life had other ideas though. Before we'd even tidied up from dinner it became immediately apparent something was amiss with the fridge. It was 15C and the lower veg drawer was stuck in place by a block of frost at the back.

Fine...everything out and start pulling it to bits.



Became immediately apparent we had a defrost issue - not least because the lower moulding there (which is the airflow duct covering the evaporator) was completely frozen in place.

As it was clearly stuck to the evaporator I couldn't be too rough with it - but eventually I got it free.

That fan hasn't been doing anything for a while...



Yes...definitely looks like the defrost heater has died. The inch and a half deep block of ice immediately below the heating element tends to suggest it's not been doing much. For those not familiar with the innards of refrigeration equipment, he heater is the black thing below the silver coils.



Also...the bits of a fridge you can't get to to clean become utterly disgusting.

After some attention with a hairdryer I got the fan freed from the ice cube it had turned into and it seems to have survived. I chiselled the block out of the condensate drain tray, blasted the drain clear (no idea if it was clogged before it froze up or not), and reassembled everything.

Sadly this fridge is intelligent enough to know if anything is unplugged so will just throw error codes if you try to power it up in bits...so I had to put it all back together before I could test things.



I also had to dismantle the door hinge to find and defeat the switch so I could ascertain whether the fan was working...as it only runs when the door is closed.



Fan is running, cool air is being circulated...good. Everything can go back in.

I'll need to investigate why the defrost heater isn't working but that can wait until tomorrow. I can easily test whether voltage is being supplied to the circuit from the main control PCB.



I've done work on this board before as the relay that controls the compressor burnt up a year or two ago. Was pretty painless really.

Credit where it's due to Samsung, by the standards of modern white goods this thing isn't bad from a service perspective. Everything is held together by normal Philips head screws (all of which are identical) with no daft clips, and even the pin headers in the control unit are labelled. It's also 18 years old so isn't doing bad to be honest! Especially given the abuse the kit in this house took before we moved in...The dishwasher for one was scrap! I do question why such control circuitry is needed for a fridge freezer though!

Given the freezer seems to be working normally my money is on a dead heater element, in which case it should be a pretty simple fix. Which is appreciated as American style side by side fridge freezers are extremely expensive!

Seriously though...Christmas day?!?
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Old Dec 26 2020, 12:18 AM   #5633
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I left a roll of wrapping paper on the couch when I went to bed last night. I got woke up by the noise the kitten were making playing with it. They got it on the floor & had managed to unroll
it & were running on it & "killing " it. There was wrapping paper all over the living room.
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Old Dec 26 2020, 07:17 AM   #5634
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Thank the kittens very nicely: they were just protecting their ooman from getting smothered by the alien paper.
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Old Dec 26 2020, 08:54 AM   #5635
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Star did get involved too, albeit less rambunctiously than Tesla. She very delecately stole two bits of paper and then proceeded to spend the next couple of hours finely atomising it.

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Old Dec 26 2020, 10:28 PM   #5636
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This afternoon I wanted to make something useful out of this box of bits.



Wasn't entirely sure what to expect here. Two reasons...One is that I've never set eyes on a 3D printer of this type in person before, and secondly this is a direct from China box...so you're never quite sure what that means where assembly is concerned.

For those playing along at home, this is a Flsun Q5 printer.

Everything was soon out of the box and laid out on the desk it will live.



At this point a couple of things became immediately clear. Firstly being a delta printer means that there are far less bits than more conventional design. Secondly that my immediate impression of everything as it came out of the box was that it felt like a quality product.

The instructions were somewhat classic Chinglish, but to be honest beyond "the rails are labelled X, Y and Z, match them up..." You really don't need them.

They have included everything you need in the box, including all the Allen keys (including those for maintenance in addition to the actual assembly), cable ties, a screwdriver and even a surprisingly decent set of side cutters.

The three linear rails slot into and bolt onto the upper housing (where the controller and power supply live).



The only slightly fiddly bit is plugging the data leads from the controller into the stepper motor control boards. Not bad, but if the leads were 1/4" longer it would have been a 0/10 for difficulty rather than 3/10.

Five minutes later we had all the rails attached.



Then you need to flip it the right way up and bolt it down onto the base. At this point there is one more screw that goes from the outside of the upper casing as well. They're not taking chances with rigidity.

Forgot a photo of that stage...but the next one is then to attach the actuating rods to their bushings on the rails and the extruder to them. You could probably attach them all to the extruder then to the rails...but I figured doing them one at a time reduces the number of bits and pieces you've got flailing around.



The filament reel holder then goes on top, the cabling all gets connected up along with the filament guide. The wire connectors are all either keyed or colour coded so you really can't go wrong.



We're about 20 minutes in at this point.

Time to hook the power supply up (after double checking the voltage selection switch is indeed set to 230V not 110) and seeing what happens.



Powered up normally...bonus.

At this point with a conventional printer you would normally enter the time consuming faff where you have to level the build platform.

Not so with a delta printer. You attach a little levelling tool to the extruder (there's a magnet in it so it just snaps into place)...



then click on "Autolevel" in the tools menu.

It even reminds you to attach the levelling tool when you start it. Nice touch.



The printer then goes off and gently "pokes" the build plate in a couple of dozen places to build up an accurate map of where the bed is. The levelling tool can then be unplugged and stored safely.

The only remaining configuration step you need to do is fine tune the actual level of the Z axies. There is a dedicated button for this in the tools menu too. This scoots the extruder down to nearly touching the bed, you then slip a piece of standard paper in there and manually lower it until the extruder nozzle *just* drags on the paper. Click save and you're ready to go.

Well nearly. You need to load filament, *then* you're ready to go. That's simple too. Probably far more so with decent filament, the little starter reel that came in the box is pretty cheap and nasty.

You preheat the extruder nozzle (two button presses) for the appropriate type, then press the filament change button and "load." You need to make sure you cut the end of the filament to a point so it doesn't snag while feeding. Basically just a smaller version of feeding wire into a MIG welder then. When you hit the button to load the filament it runs the feed motor for a preset time to ensure it's all the way to the extruder and any air has been expelled. Getting the filament into the feed roller is a bit fiddly but it's pretty self explanatory what you need to do.

*Now* you're good to go!

The SD card they supply in the box has a few example designs on, so I picked one at random and pressed print.



Off we go!





Yes, the wiring still wants to be tidied up a bit, figured I'd ensure everything worked before I got too involved there.

I then left it be for a while while I got dinner.

When I got back this message was waiting on the screen.



More surprisingly though, this was on the build plate!



Seriously?!? Straight out of the box, with the horrible freebie filament, we've got a successful print?

Nothing wrong with this.





Now I've never owned a 3D printer before, nor ever printed anything myself on one. I have watched a friend getting things printed on their Makerbot Replicator...which did a good job but did involve a not insignificant amount of wrangling after any period of inactivity.

This just working out the box is definitely a good sign.

Overall impression so far: hugely impressed. I've assembled IKEA bookshelves that were more complicated to put together than this. If you've got any vague engineering know how you could put this thing together with your eyes closed.

There's only one type of screw used in assembly. Connectors are all colour coded or keyed, all the holes are precisely drilled and tapped cleanly. The critical ones in the rose joints on the extruder actuator arms have thread lock already applied, the edges are all nicely machines so there aren't any burrs or sharp edges...and it just worked. Overall the impression is one of really decent quality.

Very pleased so far.

Delta printers do take up a pleasingly small footprint on your desk too, as the build platform doesn't move nothing actually extends beyond the footprint of the printer.



Only gripes? The stepper motor wires could do with being a tiny bit longer. Not a big issue but it would make assembly that little bit easier. Finally, the filament they include in the box is pretty poor...but having said that, it did the job and proved the printer works! So can't grumble too much.

Only time will tell when we start getting more involved projects underway, but really impressed so far.

Last edited by Zelandeth; Dec 27 2020 at 06:32 AM. Reason: correcting autocorrect...
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Old Dec 27 2020, 04:44 AM   #5637
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Originally Posted by P'ter View Post
Thank the kittens very nicely: they were just protecting their ooman from getting smothered by the alien paper.
Is that what they were doing? How sweet of them. I thought they were just living up to their names, Lucifer & Crowley (king of Hell, Supernatural.)
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Old Dec 27 2020, 12:28 PM   #5638
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Is that what they were doing? How sweet of them. I thought they were just living up to their names, Lucifer & Crowley (king of Hell, Supernatural.)
The naming convention there gave me a good chuckle.

Our two have a variety of names, but Sir Grumpykins and Booplesnoot tend to be the most common two just now anyway.

-- -- --

With a working 3D printer now in hand, software wise I suspect I've got quite a steep learning curve ahead I think.



While I know there are a few more basic tools out there, I do tend to think that if I can wrap my brain around it that learning to drive Blender is probably worthwhile. Purely because of how versatile it is and that it's what a few folks I know use, so there's a bit of a safety net out there I can turn to if I get stuck with a very specific task. Plus there are more tutorials out there then you can shake a stick at.

Just finished putting together the second box that was gifted to me. A proper dual monitor mount for the right hand two monitors to get them up off the desk and clear me a substantial amount of space.

Before:





Annoyingly I did have to pay extra for some adaptors as HP oh-so-helpfully decided not to include VESA mounting points on the Pavilion 24XW monitors. Given how much better the image quality was than the others I was considering I'd probably still have bought them even if I had spotted that...but it would have made me pause. HP want £40 a shot for the adaptor plate!



Helpfully you can get a pack of two on Amazon for £15...which still stings for a bit of stamped steel which as far as I'm concerned there's no excuse for HP not just including in the box with the monitor - especially given these things cost the best part of £250 each when I originally bought them if I remember right.



Work in progress...



The end result:





It's hard to convey on a photo quite how much of the desktop it has cleared. I'll get an additional single arm for the left hand monitor shortly as well. At least that does have standard VESA mounting points, which also allow the ability to flip it to a portrait orientation to be retained as that can be handy sometimes.

The original stands for those HP monitors weren't exactly sturdy either so they used to wobble quite a bit when I was typing, glad to report that's now a thing of the past.
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Old Dec 28 2020, 09:32 PM   #5639
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Kibby's boss is getting irritating. Schedule is suppose to come out Saturdays. It starts on Tuesday. For the last it hasn't came out until Monday. The day before schedule starts. One week it didn't get post until 11 Tuesday morning. The called the ones who had to open late Tuesday night.
Kibby is suppose to be at work at 10:00 am tomorrow. I have 8:45 Dr appt. 2 hours away. Sister has to be at work at 5:00am
We have 2 cars. If we had known Kibby had to be there at 10 we could have asked someone else to take. Since the schedule didn't get posted until this afternoon she's will be late. District manager is not happy with store manager. He's going to cover Kibby until she can get there.
This is the same manager who schedule Kibby to work durring Mom memorial. Kibby even said she would open that day as long as she could leave by 11. He scheduled her to go in at 11.
District manager happened to go by & found out she wouldn't be able to go to Mom's service & covered for her then.
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Old Dec 29 2020, 09:00 PM   #5640
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I might die of shock...I actually just uploaded a new page to my website.

First time since 2017 I think! Hopefully the first of many as I've quite a few things I want to get written and uploaded - and I *really* want to rewrite some of the older pages. A huge portion of that site was written when I was in my teens and it really, really shows. Nothing will be actually deleted, but a large portion of it will be stuffed behind a clearly labelled archival link, and the pages themselves labelled accordingly in case anyone lands on them via a Google search or anything like that.

I did realise a few minutes ago that I didn't so much as proof read the page I just wrote before uploading it...Though I need to go back tomorrow to add the alt-text to the photos anyway so can do a quite spelling and grammar sanity check when I do that. Just had it so close to done that I really wanted to get the page up this evening rather than delaying it a day.
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