My Dad asked for a label dispenser for a roll of labels that is 60mm in diameter with a 25mm hole for the tube and approx 55mm wide, so I remixed one I found on thingiverse here (https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2361685). The main changes are a knob that screws on to secure the lid, and some indexing tabs on the inside of the lid to help keep it in place. I have to print this and if it works I will post it up to Thingiverse and Cults3D.
My Dad is on his 2nd Pool Blaster in about 4 years or so, and when they work, they work great, but both have had problems out of warranty. Now his 2nd Pool Blaster is dead. We had swapped a non OEM battery into the first Pool Blaster he had, before it finally met the garbage man a while later. When the 2nd Pool Blaster failed after more than a year, I took the 2x(Series)18650 battery pack apart, and found one of the cells had died, and would not charge in my Opus BT-3100 charger, but the 2nd (good) cell in the pack will charge. The Battery Management Board (BMS) on the factory pack has a tab connected between the cells, so it should be able to balance them, so I dunno why the cell died (the cell that died was the first cell in the pack, connected to the positive terminal). Instead of trying to swap the pack this time, I decided to get a battery spot welder and try to replace the cells with better ones.
To do that, I bought the "BiFRC 9 Gears Mini Portable Battery Spot Welder" for about $40, and some Molicel P26A 35A 2600mAh 18650 cells along with some 0.1mm x 5mm nickel battery strips and paper insulator rings for the ends of the cells. The total cost for everything was about $50 not including shipping. I also ordered some PTC Polyfuses since the one on the pack was not re-usable. When he needed it working again, I didn't have the polyfuse yet, so I just used a 5A automotive fuse so it could be used and when I get the fuses I will swap it in.
As you can see by the pics, I'm clearly no expert in making battery packs, but it was still relatively easy. I think if I do this again I will make some printed battery holding jigs for making packs since getting them oriented was the hardest part. Additionally I should have flipped the board over from it's factory configuration since it would have been easier to work with.
I may put the battery in an clipping from an old MTB tire with some zip ties to give it some water resistance but according to my Dad, the battery compartment is well sealed. One thing to note about this is that they originally spot welded the connections to the BMS board, which I decided was probably not a great idea so I soldered them on the board once they were already spot welded to the batteries. I know the welder should only affect the metal between the probes but I don't know if using it on a pad connected to active components could damage them (and I don't care to find out). Soldering also worked just fine.
The BiFRC Spot Welder worked great and I did not need to use a high setting to get welds I would consider to be as strong as the factory ones. I used the old dead cell to test with and found that I could use the 2nd or 3rd "gears" for most of the welds. I know that there are some videos where folks go much higher but I could not pull the welds off by hand without twisting the tabs and rolling them off with a long nose pliers, so I figured they were strong enough. I uses dome polyimide tape to help hold the nickel strips in place while I was welding and got a bit of a spark from it when I got too close, but other than that it was pretty uneventful. One nice "feature" of the welder is that it gives a tone when it senses that the probes are positioned to weld and then there is about a second before it welds. That's handy since it allows for some quick readjustment before the weld zaps it.
It may be tempting to just solder the batteries to make a pack, and when I was younger and battery spot welders were quite expensive, I made a few packs for my bike lights that way. But soldering a lithium pack is risky for a number of reasons, including possible damage to the cell protection or a shorted cell. Shorting a cell on an 18650 is nothing to take lightly either, I once had a small bead of solder roll off the positive terminal of an 18650 and weld itself between the positive terminal and the case (negative). I was working inside the house at the time, and had just enough time to run out the door, and chuck it in the yard before the thing popped like a firecracker. That experience gave me some more respect for lithium batteries and I pretty much stuck with NiMh from that point, when I had to build a pack. But now that a battery spot welder is under $100 and even under $50 I think it would not make sense to take the risk with soldering packs unless they were designed for that. I also recommend a protective face shield, or safety glasses at a minimum when working with the batteries.
I did however solder the tabs to the board after they had been spot welded to the batteries, and to minimize the heat, I first tinned the tabs and the pads on the board and let both cool down. Then I got some solder on the iron and soldered the pads to the tabs as quickly as possible. It's a good idea to have things arranged when soldering so that the parts will naturally sit where you want them to go, since you can't stick anything down with solder, if it won't sit right before soldering then it probably won't turn out well. In this case, since I was working outside to take advantage of mosquito season, I had to rig up some things I had on hand to situate the parts so the pads and strips would line up prior to soldering.
The batteries were also discharged in the Opus prior to being welded, just in case there was a short or some other issue they would at least have less juice. Discharging them however has the effect of causing the BMS to shut them off once everything is connected, so the pack has to be charged up again to get it to "work". That also means if the pack is checked with a volt meter, and the batteries are discharged, it will only register some mV, and appear dead. I checked the charging current and it was charging at about 1.2A (fully empty). Once charged I gave it a quick test and it worked but the true test will be when my Dad uses it in his pool. I didn't grab pics of the battery after the board was installed but it is just mounted component side down facing the battery (which was how it was configured originally).
Yeah it's a mess in the laundry room right now, but the printer will at least have a place now to hide the tools which usually end up on top of the enclosure. This is an Ikea UTRUSTA drawer front (medium 302.656.35) and a MAXIMERA drawer (medium 602.656.72) which I installed using some custom brackets for the enclosure. The drawer is just a bit narrower than the enclosure so there are some spacers which fill the gap, and are part of the brackets for the slides. The Ikea drawers are a nice design with a soft close hinge and these have good quality sliders (not all of them do).
I designed but have not yet printed a part which will hold a shelf separator under the drawer, which lights can be installed on. Right now I'm trying to decide if the lower part of the enclosure should have filament storage (hopefully more organized than the current mess), or if I should try and cram my Ender3 in there and make it a full enclosure with ventilation and all the bells and whistles.
Right now I'm not planning to post the design for the brackets or the enclosure since this enclosure project as a whole is still a work in progress, and has been a big time and money drain (and would take more of each to get it ready to post).
This is a Dr Frankenstein type remix, where I started with Ocieward's "Ocie's 21-Cup Filament Silos" which looks great, and added a few extras like a latch and my filament guide. I also re-worked the spoolholder to use use an adjustable type, though it can also use the regular roller type that is original to Ocieward's design. I'm not sure which I will use yet, but like the idea of using fewer bearings. I'm hoping that everything fits but will update the design as I go if it does not. This will likely not be posted for a few weeks since there is a lot to print and test.
Update 1 - 8/28/2021: This is close to the final design if everything works. I'm printing some test parts now to see if things fit well or need some adjustments. The plan is for the back of the container, with the plate attached to the lid, to catch on the "heel" and then rotate "toe" down into the mount where it will be held by the quick release lever. That will allow the bowden tube to be connected up. There is also a version to use a pneumatic coupler (which is like everything so far untested). With the pneumatic coupler, the regular cap (pictured in orange) should be able to be used, which will allow the container to sit flat. The major changes to the design are that I split the base up to make it easier to print without supports. This also allowed me to make a bit of a pocket to accommodate some bumps in the lid of the Rubbermaid 21 cup container. There is also now a desiccant container and some screw positions to hold the spool holder which will still allow some adjustment or swap out for the rollers. Assuming everything works when printed, I expect this to be posted in the next 2 weeks.
Updste 2 - 8/29/2021: Doh! After uploading the pics I noticed that I chopped part of the threads off the base, which has been fixed, along with a few other optimizations for printing. I have shaved several hours off the total print time by adding some holes here and there, and decreasing the thickness of parts in non-critical areas. The first prototype is not much to look at, but everything works as I'd hoped for the most part and where it has some issues, I'm hopeful the current version will fix some minor annoyances. I still expect this to be done in about 1 to 2 weeks, and then it will be posted to Thingiverse.
Update 3 - 9/1/2021: I had to make some changes but the design is now tested and works. It will be posted to thingiverse in the next week and I will add a link to it below.
I uploaded some new pics of the completed design. Pardon the poor print quality on some of them, it is partly due to a worn 0.6mm nozzle (now swapped) and mostly due to the problem this holder is meant to solve - which was too much tension in the filament path. Prior to this the filament had to make two 90° turns to get to the extruder, now it only makes one and there is no tension in the filament prior to the extruder. I have yet to print the TPU gasket but plan to do that tomorrow, and will see if I can mount this to the top frame of my ender3 as well.
Well... maybe one more thing to do, and then this will be done:
Update 4 - 9/10/2021: As usual I can't keep messing with the design. But since I printed and used it, I noted two things and thought of one more thing that could be improved:
Update 5 - 9/16/2021: This project is not abandoned, it's only getting better :D I have completely re-designed the bogies for the wheels and the way they attach and can be adjusted will be much more convenient (no need to use screws to secure them in place anymore). It's a bit hard to explain, but I have designed and tested a button and ratcheting mechanism which will be used to adjust the bogies in or out. I'm still fine tuning some parts of the design but I could post it tomorrow and be 95% fine with it. The last bit to make it as good as it can be just longer.
I just updated one of my OctoPi's today, and thought I'd make some notes here on what I did. I'm no expect on this of course, but this process worked for me. Also these steps are not some special thing I came up with, they are the normal way to update a Pi as far as I know.
Unless you like to live on the edge though, it's a really good idea to make a backup image of the SD card in the Pi. This can save you a lot of time when the SD eventually gets corrupted due to improper shutdowns too. I use Win32DiskImager to create the backup image of the SD card and Balena Etcher to burn it to a SD card should the need arise. Note that when using Win32DiskImager, you should see that the SD card from the Pi has two partitions, one is boot and one is root (larger).
To image the SD card (with both partitions), I selected the smaller boot partition in Win32DiskImager, and then after entering a filename to save the image as, I selected "Read". I don't know if it matters which is chosen, but I just picked the smaller "boot" partition here:
Now just keep that image in a safe place (you may need to add '.img" to the end of the filename if it did not automatically get that extension. It is best to also consider the SD card that the image was taken from. Try and stick with one brand or microSD since there are differences in actual capacity between brands, and it can be difficult to resize an EXT4 partition on a Windows machine if you find that the image will not fit a new card.
To update the Raspberry Pi OS I used the following (steps are detailed here):
Log into the Pi using the "pi" user. I use Putty to do this since it's free and it works.
It may ask you about saving keys and then a terminal window will pop up.
Next I just entered the following:
sudo apt update
It will ask for the pi password again, and then it will start downloading updates (the Pi will need to have access to the internet for this).
After that is done, I ran this:
sudo apt full-upgrade
This took an additional 140MB or so and it asked me if I wanted to continue (I said "yes"). The update takes quite some time and will pause at a step where there are some notes regarding a change to the default behavior (had to do with a security patch), with the only option to press "x" to exit which is actually to continue, then I waited some more till it was done.
When the update was completed, I rebooted it.
Once it was back up, I logged into Octoprint using the browser and updated that. I started with:
To update, I clicked on the "wrench" icon at the top right, then selected "Software Update" from the left side frame, and then just clicked on "Update All". Octopi did it's thing and a few minutes later it asked me to reload it. I did that and since I was already on the current version it just updated some plugins.
After I tested the updated OS, I burned another image of the SD card to have as a more current backup, and then burned that image to a spare MicroSD card which I taped to the Pi so I can have a quick way to recover it if it should fail.
This is a mash up of an untested latch design I made for my mini-PC and "Malolo's screw-less / snap fit customizable Raspberry Pi 4 Case & Stands". I'm printing this now, but it may be a few days before it can be tested with an actual Pi.
Update 8/15/2021: Some updates to the design. I'm testing some of the changes, but the MicroSD card will probably not be tested since that is a component from a previously verified design which was just spliced into this design.
Update 8/18/2021: I'ver printed it after tweaking the design a bit and it works great. The print of the case however was not super so I am re-doing it (printed it with a 0.6mm nozzle and I need to tune up the CR10S Pro). Once I get the case re-printed I will post it up to thingiverse.
Update 8/19/2021: The design is completed and tested, and now uploaded to Thingiverse. You can find it here:
Im working on a remixed case for a Raspberry Pi that will fit a CR6 SE. It is based on and remixed from the following things:
Malolo's screw-less / snap fit Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ Case & Stands by Malolo
Creality CR6 CR-6 SE Under-screen / Side Rail Raspberry Pi Model B 1 2 3 Case" by SANGER_A2
Top for 35mm Fan" by PBahner
You can find my remix at the link below, but I'm just now starting to print it and don't have a RPi to test it with currently (at least not without ripping apart one of my existing Pi cases). This may also work with the ender3 and some variants, if the 40mm aluminum extrusions are similar.
Update 8/18/2021: The design was printed on my buddy's CR6 SE and it turned out well, but it did pick up some residual material that was stuck to his bed, but since it's a functional part I think it is fine. I don't have a fan to test with it, but I have some 40mm fans on order.
A buddy got a sweet deal on a gently used CR6-SE, but it had some issues. He said he was having multiple failed prints early on, which he suspected an problem with the extruder to be the cause. His printed also told me the power switch was bad. I'm not sure if this was an early or late Kickstarter CR6 SE, but he said that he did not trust the power switch, and so he was just powering it on using the mains and leaving the switch in the on position. I don't know the whole backstory on the faulty power switches on the CR6 SE, but apparently there were problems with a poor quality power switch on some of these. In any case I found a replacement switch for $3 at TH3D Studio, and swapped it out for him.
I also added some black electrical tape around any areas where wires could have rubbed inside the power supply compartment before buttoning it up. It was nice to see a genuine Mean Well Supply in there, though I heard they used them in this printer so it wasn't really a suprise.
Once the power switch was swapped and the case buttoned up, I checked and tightened all the wheels, some of which were quite loose.
Then I ran an autolevel, and it looked pretty bad. Unfortunately with this printer there are no bed leveling screws (it is fixed). That may be fortunate depending on your point of view, but in this case I realized that the bed skew had to have something to do with the z screws being misconfigured, the bed itself or possibly even the frame (or all of these things). I first tightened down all the bed screws, which were only a bit loose so I did not expect they were an issue. I checked the gantry to bed measurement from both sides of the gantry and noted that the printer was about 1mm higher on the right side. I knew I would need to fix this but first something else was bugging me.
I had earlier noticed that the printer had a definite wobble when placed on a flat surface, so I loosened the eight large bolts which hold the sides on (not loose but just enough to allow me to adjust the frame). Then I set it on a flat surface and firmly pushed the opposing ends of the feel down until the wobble was gone. I also checked that the bolts holding the gantry frame to the base were tight (they were). Adjusting the base to take the wobble out did not take much force, but it made a big difference, and the printer now sits perfectly flat. Unfortunately these adjustments did not help much with the bed leveling.
So I was back to dealing with the gantry and the z-screws being misconfigured. Based on the bed leveling heat map I could see that a good deal of the problem was with the out of step dual Z screws, but not all of the problem was there (which I was hoping the frame straightening would help correct). In any case I adjusted the right side Z screw down just a bit to get it level with the left side. To do that I just loosened the grub screws on the top of the right side (the side without the X stepper) and then turned the right side z coupler enough to bring that side down to the same level as the left side. I had to hold the loosened gear at the top of the right side Z screw, to make sure that the turns on the right side screw did not translate to the left side. When the gantry to bed height was equal on the left and right sides, I just tightened up the grub screws on the right side which I was adjusting from. To make the measurements, I used a vernier caliper and rested the butt end of it on the gantry and the tip of the post that extends, on the bed. The grub screws can be easily stripped so care is needed not to over tighten these.
This adjustment helped a bit and I could probably spend more time to get the level a bit better from left to right. But I think I will leave it here (even though I'd like to get it closer to level), since I think the auto-leveling can compensate for it. From the bed heat map there is still some diagonal problem going on.
This shows an improvement over the initial test (this was actually the 3rd or 4th test I ran but it was the last one. Im sure with some more time it could be improved but this seems acceptable since the auto leveling should take care of it. If it looks like a problem I will spend some more time to see if it can be improved further.
I then checked the e-steps and found that it was off by 7mm over 100mm (I asked the printer for 100mm and it only extruded 93mm). I verified that the extruder was tight and not slipping, and re-ran it again to verify it was really off by 7mm.
The M503 output from the printer showed the following:
Recv: echo: M92 X80.00 Y80.00 Z400.00 E93.00
Since the original Esteps were 93 steps/mm, and my adjustment factor is 100mm requested / 93mm actual, I ended up with an new esteps value of 100 steps/mm - so I ran the following:
I re-checked the e-steps and it was a perfect 100mm when requesting 100mm on the extruder. Its a puzzle why they are so far off, but the difference was repeatable and the fix was confirmed in a third test.
Finally I decided to print My Stoopid Test Cube and discovered what I suspect was the cause of the problems my buddy was having, which he attributed to the extruder. That is the z-offset was set too low. It was set as 0.2mm and I had to raise it to 0.4mm before my 0.2mm feeler gauge would slip between the nozzle and bed (I later dropped it to 0.30mm since adhesion was suffering). I'm still tweaking things before I try an larger print.
I can't help but throw in some thoughts on this printer. Aside from the inability to level the bed I really like the CR6 SE, the load cell auto leveling sensor is a great idea, and it looks solidly built. It's like a little CR10S Pro for ease of use and assembly. Unless there was a compelling reason like price or amazing speed or some leap in quality, I don't think I would buy another ender3 class printer though, they are just too limited in volume. For a beginner the CR6 SE may be or may not be a good printer. It has a lot of bells and whistles, but that also means it can be harder to fix. That said it's a good printer, this one just needs some love.
The vast surveillance state that exists in parts of China is fortunately not a reality for Americans, but that doesn't mean corporate America has quite gotten the memo. Facial recognition technology is now waiting at a store near you, and the industry is still trying to decide if their customers will accept it, but mostly it seems that they hope nobody will notice it until it's everywhere. There are a number of good reasons why companies would want to place a face with a name, from targeting you with coupons because they saw you walk past the ice cream aisle five times before your willpower gave out, or possibly they just want to see if your face fits that of a pesky serial shoplifter that ran off with a case of dog food. And if the software decided you looked a lot like the dog food bandit, they may just give you a bit more attention than normal at the self checkout. There is the additional issue of facial recognition tools generally having a poor record when making correct ID's of faces of people of color (and how that has lead to problems for some innocent people). Whatever their reasonable reasons may be, it is also very reasonable for Americans to have the right to know what they are doing, and take their business elsewhere if they don't like it.
Even without bio-metrics and facial recognition, grocery stores have been collecting a vast trove of information from customers, even those without "loyalty cards". And that data surely has value beyond the grocery business (insurers, drug companies, investors and even employers would be obvious consumers for the data). It seems that they probably use the data to target promotions and provide leverage with their suppliers, and investigate criminal activity, but once it becomes their data, there is not much/nothing you can do about how they use it, unless you live in CA and the store provides an opt-out method. We just have to rely on companies' image concerns, and possible ethics, to avoid having our data sold to whoever would buy it.
Given the influence of lobbyists and regulatory capture in this country, there is little hope that Americans will ever be able to reclaim their personal data with the force of law (I say their data, because the data stems from the choices we make to buy goods and services from the companies collecting it). It's true though that what we buy in stores will be used to market to us. That's a horse that has left the barn, but facial recognition in grocery stores just seems icky and intrusive. If you agree, you can find a list here of popular stores that do use, may use, or have pledged not to use facial recognition, and vote with your feet - or let them know how you feel.
The updated HexLED Lights are posted on Thingiverse. They were updated to work with a with a higher current switch and higher current DC jack. As noted in the thing's description though, it is still a make it at your own risk deal, since the switch I had is not DC rated (it is an AC 250V/6A 125V/10A" switch). If anyone has a better switch please let me know and I if I can get one (that is it is available and not very expen$ive), I will see if it will fit. I'm not electronics expert, but I have been using the LED panels without an issue intermittently over the past couple weeks, having them on, cycling through colors, for around 8-10hours at a time, though I don't run these all the time (too wasteful). I am running mine using a 5V DC / 4A power supply so that is about as high as my panels will go when the LEDs are on white which I never use. In actual use though it runs a bit over 2A (when all LEDs are on white it draws the max current). In any case it's uploaded. I have had it hanging on my wall and it seems to work well, and I'm not planning any further updates at this time.
Welcome to my Stoopid corner of teh Internet. It's mostly gonna be 3D printing stuff, but I also post some recipes, projects, and the occasional rant here as well. More Stoopid stuff is updated regularly.