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What's with all the 5*s?

One thing that has annoyed me quite alot lately is knex guns that would have sucked 3 years ago getting a 5* rating. If you look at the rating system five stars is "best ever" now correct me if I'm wrong but is a piece of trash block trigger gun really the best ever? In my opinion all instructables should be rated for what they are worth instead of just giving a high rating to appear nice. I know many people will play the "it's my first..." card but I find that to be a pathetic excuse. No person's first creation can be the "best ever" thear is always room for improvement. Also shame on those of you who rate everything 5*s, rating for you has become a meaningless action. So by all means post your guns, just don't have a fit when somebody rates it a 2 or 3, it's probably what it deserved, also learn to take constructive critisism, people like DJ know their stuff and can help you improve your building skills, but there is a difference between constructive critisism and bagging somebody elses creation. If you don't like what I'm saying go ahead, rate this .5, heck while you're at it rate all of my stuff .5, with people giving everything a 5 the rating system seems pretty much worthless to me anyway. So next time you check out a new gun, try to give it the rating it deserves.

Topic by Fred the Penguin    |  last reply



knexfreak 95's oodammo pistol review!!!!

Hey guys i made kf95's pistol and wanted to make a review on it strengh: handle:7/10 good but not told what to put in the middle trigger:9/10 great trigger a lil tape add more strengh mag:8/10 moves a bit but good over all gun:8:10 good strengh for a 3 layer gun power: range:9/10 not the highest range but still good i got about 50 with oodammo and about 80 with a red rod (your results may be different depending on the bands you use) new: mag, slide innnvoate:slide, trigger over all:8/10 worth the bulid go bulid it now!!!

Topic by knexsuperbuilderfreak    |  last reply


Is it worth dropping $400 on a really nice oscilloscope (Rigol DS1054Z)?

I will describe my situation: I am a hobbiest that likes to make cool projects, and plan to get into maybe RF analog stuff, (maybe start out with making a few FM bugs, reverse engineer a simple video transmitter kit, and a few other things.) as well get into arduino some more, AC analysis (learn about Xformers, power factor, maybe some math, etc.) and I so currently have an old 2ch. 30MHz analog oscilloscope that is a PITA to make real measurements with. Not only is it huge and takes up a lots of space, but also I'm not even sure it is in cal!) I will be transferring into UVA (or maybe VT) for EE, and gone this summer for a NASA internship at langley. (maybe I will be able to take it with me w/ a toolbox of some electronics stuff!) The scope I am looking at (what appears to be what many subscribers seem to use, and/or claim is pretty good) is the Rigol DS1054Z. I only know how to use my $30 30MHz BKprecision scope I got on craigslist from the son of a father who was a TV repairman, and have NO experience with the use of the fancy-shmancy digital scope! What little I know is from watching EEVblog review of other scopes in the past. (I do know that they can be useful for 'capturing' waveforms, and can be set up to trigger on a pulse, maybe a certain digital codes, and that could come in handy for reverse engineering crap.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7v-tFYbc7h8 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W2qdtQkBKhc https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ETCOhzU1O5A https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-gStNYfqMXk What sells it to me, being a complete newbie to electronics and digital scopes is that it has a nice big screen, the specs seem good (other certainly think, I have no intuition of what any of those things mean except the bandwidth, and maybe the sampling rate, 1GSa/s), 4 channels, intensity graded display, and it has loads of functions and stuff for me to grow into, and hacking it to make it think it is a DS1104Z is tempting, but I probably will not do that right away. Maybe once I feel what it offered is limiting. The deal breakers is the $400 price, a bit steep for me (cheap for something this good, apparently but still.), the fear that by the time I really start using it, it will be obsolete and the same money can buy some quantum super duper ASIC tech whiz bang 3GHz 100Gsa/s 1GB segmented memory spectacular scope! I am not really sure if it has a source, or signal generator either. Some sources claim that higher end ones do, or certain models anyway, and it seems like the official site say's no. http://www.rigolna.com/products/digital-oscilloscopes/ds1000Z/ds1054z/ That brings me to my next point. Should I also get a decent function generator? 

Question by -max-    |  last reply


Is it worth dropping $400 on a shiny new Rigol DS1054Z scope?

I will describe my situation: I am a hobbiest that likes to make cool projects, and plan to get into maybe RF analog stuff, (maybe start out with making a few FM bugs, reverse engineer a simple video transmitter kit, and a few other things.) as well get into arduino some more, AC analysis (learn about Xformers, power factor, maybe some math, etc.) and I so currently have an old 2ch. 30MHz analog oscilloscope that is a PITA to make real measurements with. Not only is it huge and takes up a lots of space, but also I'm not even sure it is in cal!) I will be transferring into UVA (or maybe VT) for EE, and gone this summer for a NASA internship at langley. (maybe I will be able to take it with me w/ a toolbox of some electronics stuff!)   The scope I am looking at (what appears to be what many subscribers seem to use, and/or claim is pretty good) is the Rigol DS1054Z. I only know how to use my $30 30MHz BKprecision scope I got on craigslist from the son of a father who was a TV repairman, and have NO experience with the use of the fancy-shmancy digital scope! What little I know is from watching EEVblog review of other scopes in the past. (I do know that they can be useful for 'capturing' waveforms, and can be set up to trigger on a pulse, maybe a certain digital codes, and that could come in handy for reverse engineering crap.)   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7v-tFYbc7h8   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W2qdtQkBKhc   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ETCOhzU1O5A   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-gStNYfqMXk     What sells it to me, being a complete newbie to electronics and digital scopes is that it has a nice big screen, the specs seem good (other certainly think, I have no intuition of what any of those things mean except the bandwidth, and maybe the sampling rate, 1GSa/s), 4 channels, intensity graded display, and it has loads of functions and stuff for me to grow into, and hacking it to make it think it is a DS1104Z is tempting, but I probably will not do that right away. Maybe once I feel what it offered is limiting.   The deal breakers is the $400 price, a bit steep for me (cheap for something this good, apparently but still.), the fear that by the time I really start using it, it will be obsolete and the same money can buy some quantum super duper ASIC tech whiz bang 3GHz 100Gsa/s 1GB segmented memory spectacular scope!   I am not really sure if it has a source, or signal generator either. Some sources claim that higher end ones do, or certain models anyway, and it seems like the official site say's no. http://www.rigolna.com/products/digital-oscilloscopes/ds1000Z/ds1054z/ That brings me to my next point. Should I also get a decent function generator?   

Question by -max-    |  last reply


metal roofing

I am trying to get an answer, i hope someone can help. i have a 12x60 trailor i use for hunting and fishing, in upstate ny. i want to put a metal roof on. the original roof is sort of a rounded dome. the rafters are 2x6, i was thinking about building it up with 2x4's to get a bigger pitch. is it worth it? also if i use 2x4's do i need to put plywood on top first or can i attach the metal roof right to the 2x4's. thanks rich russo

Topic by rrusso54  


Should I pick up this old metal lathe? Answered

There's an older metal lathe that's going to the scrap yard, a reed-prentice co., looks to be from the 40's, and I could probably get it for scrap price. Would it be worth fixing up and using? I don't need to hit super-tight tolearances with it, just turning parts as a hobbyist / beginner. What questions should I ask about it? What should be there for it to be complete?

Question by Nate Cougill    |  last reply


Anyone know anything about old (60's) guitar amps?

I picked up old a Jansen eight 25. It's in not bad condition, apart from a dodgy tube socket and a missing dial, all of which can be repaired easily. Anyway, I was looking on-line and could not find any data for it other than it's a early 60's amp. Seems to work great. the unit is about 2feet wide and 1.5 feet tall. Made in New Zealand. So I was wondering if anyone could provide me with more data on this, if it is worth anything. If it is not, then it would make a interesting teardown.

Question by David97  


Portable Work Space

Hello,  I have been kicking around this design for a portable work bench. My profession is product design however I am a DIYer by nature (mostly wood working, furniture and the occasional home renovation). I would always loose count of the number of trips I would make back and forth to my shop in the garage.I thought that a portable table that could fold into a hand truck would be a good solution to design, build and possibly sell. I have teamed up with a metal worker in the PA and we are considering crafting a few of these tables however I would like to ask the community if an idea like this was worth anything. If you are at all interested in something like this, could you please take this very short "yes/no" survey so that I could tally and see if there is enough interest in this idea. Also, could you please let me know what you think of this idea? If enough people think this is worth the time I will build a  few tables and post pics.  Survey Link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/RX63VFQ Thanks, -S

Topic by sricci714  


MEMBERSHIP FEE IS MONEY VERY WELL SPENT!

My goodness!  My membership fee is the best money that I've spent in a long time. Its now 4 a.m. and I can't turn the computer off.  Where have you been my whole life?  My wife stumbled upon the site, and now she's going to regret it!!!!   Maybe not.  I'll make something for her every few weeks!!!!!  Retirement is five weeks away!!! Mike

Topic by miketheteacher    |  last reply


Soldering Irons?

My last soldering iron needs to be retired, it will no longer melt solder, and was originally purchased sometime in the 80's. So I need a new soldering iron, but I do not know which one to buy. Should I get a 25 watt or 30 watt to make sure I have enough heat? Also are any of the soldering stations with the variable heat gun worth it? For now I will have to be careful and use my butane soldering iron (I have not burned any components yet).

Topic by kcedgerton    |  last reply


Recycling Alkaline Batteries

It has always bothered me when I disposed of spent alkaline batteries ( having 3 children , can add up to a lot of batteries per year).And there are no local or state programs for recycling these types of batteries where I live. I recently found a company that recycles all types of batteries and electronic waste by mail @ a reasonable cost. They also offer a municipal program for your town.http://www.batteryrecycling.com/new+iRecycle+kitscheck it out , it`s worth the 5 minutes that it`ll take you.

Topic by dolabil66    |  last reply


Mk 219 fuze container value? Answered

I got this today at goodwill for $2.68 USD From what i got off the label Its some sort of ammo can for mk 219-3 fuze. Made by Nash-Kelvinator (automobile meets refrigerator) in 1943.  I know in the 40's everyone was into the war effort so its not that strange that an appliance/auto company would be making bomb fuzes. the MARK designation means Navy. My question, i picked this up to utilize as a small box for my smaller tools. Its in really good condition for being 68 years old. The inside is only scratched where the fuzes would have been rubbing the paint. (almost as if it contained live ordnance up until now). I checked ebay and havent seen any of these online.  Anyone have any idea how much its worth or rarity?(if its worth more than a tool box ill just sell it and buy a nice craftsman or something)

Question by thematthatter    |  last reply


Woah, everything's different

Well, I've been gone for about 5 days (family vacation) without internet and a bunch of stuff is different... what all has changed? if someone asked this before, soory, it's just that I don't feel like sifting though 5 days worth of forums... Oh, and neat thing! My cousin, Eric G (don't feel like spelling his last name) knows someone here! He saw me wearing an instructables shirt and he says he has a friend who is on here. He says that his screen name is muffin or something... possibly T3h_Muffinator?

Topic by guyfrom7up    |  last reply


$100,000 prize for environmental design

From EETimes EuropeActual Competition Web page(This hasn't year appeared on the US EETimes web site. Wonder Why?)Electronics engineers, students and academics are being invited to submit designs for aninnovative product that uses electronic components and has a positive impact on theenvironment in the Live Edge competition.The winning entrant will receive a cash prize of $50,000 as well as the support to movethe design towards production. The support package, estimated to be worth an additional$50,000, will include the services of an electronic design consultancy that will develop thedesign to prototype stage, assistance with legal matters and IP registration, marketing andpublicity, as well as Premier Farnell’s help in securing investment funding.

Topic by westfw    |  last reply


Selling my ibook g4 to a guy, any ideas?

There's a guy that wants to buy my iBook G4: 1.2ghz 512mb ram 60gig hd and a 15 inch screen. I offered him $300, but I'm thinking more $400, it's hard to find a ibook g4 of eq. specs on ebay for less than $500. I'm thinking maybe if I saved a bit to add to the $400 I'd get from him, I could go buy a macbook or something online maybe? I'd hate to see my ibook go, but if I could turn around a month later or something and buy a macbook, it'd be worth it. What should I do guys?

Topic by Punkguyta    |  last reply


My project X My Car = Lumber

Not sure where to post this but figured I'd at least got the right website. I drive a Scion xB (aka the angry toaster) so I know what lumber I can carry. I'm looking for a calculator that I can tell the number of pieces, their dimensions and what the max of my car is capable of and receive the number of different pieces of lumber I can should buy to complete the project. Does such a thing exist? The math and algorithm is relatively simple. I'm just to drunk to work it out at present and it'd be a site well worth having in my bookmarks. If you know of a site this is a quick post, if not what would you like to see in such a site? Example: Building drawers for my small work space (13' x 6')  the structure I've come up with to support the drawers requires a frame of  2x4's: 3x sides: 2x56" 3x7" cross members: 4x 25" 2x 54.5 How many 2x4's should I buy if the max length of 2x4 I can fit is 8'? (I love my scion xB) 

Topic by MichaelD158    |  last reply


why can't you enter an instructable into a contest if it was published before the release of the contest? Answered

If you have an instructable that would be perfect for a contest, but cannot enter it because it was published before the release of the contest, why can't you? Is it worth unpublishing and republishing?The instructable I am thinking about entering into the Earthjustice United States of Efficiency Contest is the following below:https://www.instructables.com/id/Several_Easy_Steps_to_Boost_Your_Computers_Speed/Of course, it would have to be slightly modified with a few changes, but I think if your computer is running with less going on, it would be faster and therfore more efficient.If you also know why contests do this, I would appreciate the knowledge!

Question by lukethebook333    |  last reply


Almost Realistic Major Wound FX for Under $0.50US

Just a bit of a survey. Would an I'ble on this be worth it? Or should I, work on the technique some more. My aim is to create semi-realistic wounds for minimal cost, that can be applied as this was 20mins before kids turned up. Turned out after the first boy, the wound was just too scary for under 16's. I had to cover it up, until later at night when the hoodlems came out. This was last Halloween, took 15mins and cost $0.50US all up... Is it good enough to deserve an I'ble? I know there are plenty, if not too many FX I'bles,  yet all seem to induce some significant cost and/or having to locate "not normal" products. Comments / critique welcomed, as I want to improve this moreso.

Topic by Lftndbt    |  last reply


DS vs PSP !

Its the handheld battle! lol.Just wondering which is better Sony PSP or the Nintendo DS?Ive got a PSP and I actually got bored of it! The games are not that fun or addictive to me.....I havn't played on it since September, now thats a long time!I'm thinking of getting a DS, cause i have played an old pokemon game ( crystal) for the first time ever on my phone, and REALLY liked it. Its very addictive. So it would be better if i played it on a DS which has a bigger screen(s). My phone is only one 1.5 inch.Plus the mario games and the trauma center games look very fun!So also, I am asking you is it worth it to get a DS? Will I get bored of it ? Cause personally i found the PSP to be very overrated, and eventually I got bored of it, now its lying around somewhere - useless, collecting dust.

Topic by Baron A    |  last reply


Feature rich servo controller

Hi All, I'd like to write a servo controller that allows another system to offload some of the low level motion control work to the controller. This is primarily for amateur robotics applications. I'm trying to work out whether a controller implementing the features below would be replicating effort of existing open source drivers and not really worth the bother. Has anyone come across an existing controller that can some/any of the following? Position feedback Alterable traversal rate(s) changeable in real time (mid motion) Different seeking modes (acceleration, stall detection, hammering, error margins) Different communication modes (position queuing, position interrupts, upstream arrival and stall messages, etc) and so on... I'm looking at doing this probably with an Ardunio Nano and controlling as many servos as possible, but the primary goal would be feature richness. I could also see applications for an Attiny version (1 controller to 1 or 2 servos, limited feature set). Has anybody got any thoughts on the idea? Thanks in advance, Andy

Topic by andy    |  last reply


The Boy Mechanic, c1930 Free for download

Http://www.archive.org/search.php?query=boy%20mechanic%20AND%20mediatype%3Atexts the following is OCR text from the scanned book, the link above shows 3 items, books one and two, the first item, from Project Gutenberg is a duplicate of one or two, but not worth downloading. 700 projects, which can be updated to use modern materials and used as the basis of an Instructable. I guess from memory the book is from the 1930's as I have an original edition I bought second hand from a library in the '60s. Pcoject Gutenbenj's The Boy Hechanic: Volume i, by Populat Mechanics This eEoot is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and uith almost; no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy ^'^r give it auay oc re-use it under the terns of the Project Gutenberg License included uith this eBool! oc online at huh. gutenberg.net Title; The Boy Mechanic; Volume 1 700 Things For Boys To Do Author: Popular Mechanics

Topic by Lateral Thinker    |  last reply


Please Help for AutoLevel TronxyX5S

Hi, I apologize for the corrupt English first.I have a Tronxy X5S 3d printer. And I bought a sensor( SN04-N NPN) to add autolevel property to the printer. I thought I would be able to get rid of the small curves on the hotbed. I've arranged my commands according to autolevel as follows. But when I want to print a large shape, the extruder remains in the air at some points of the hotbed, print properly at some points, and at some points worth the hotbed(no filament output). So the autolevel property is not working properly. Can you help me? What am I doing wrong?My Marlin Configrution.h Changes//////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////#define AUTO_BED_LEVELING_BILINEAR//////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////#define X_PROBE_OFFSET_FROM_EXTRUDER -40 // X offset: -left +right [of the nozzle]#define Y_PROBE_OFFSET_FROM_EXTRUDER 20 // Y offset: -front +behind [the nozzle]#define Z_PROBE_OFFSET_FROM_EXTRUDER 0.5 // Z offset: -below +above [the nozzle]//////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////#define X_MIN_POS 0#define Y_MIN_POS 0#define Z_MIN_POS 0.6#define X_MAX_POS X_BED_SIZE#define Y_MAX_POS Y_BED_SIZE#define Z_MAX_POS 410//////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////#define GRID_MAX_POINTS_X 7 #define GRID_MAX_POINTS_Y GRID_MAX_POINTS_X//////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////Set the boundaries for probing (where the probe can reach). #define LEFT_PROBE_BED_POSITION (20)#define RIGHT_PROBE_BED_POSITION (280) #define FRONT_PROBE_BED_POSITION (40)#define BACK_PROBE_BED_POSITION (320)************************************************** ***************************************My Repetier Host/CuraEngine Gcode Changes////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// G21G90M82M107G92 Z0G1 Z5G28G29G28 X0 Y0G28 Z0G1 Z15.0 F9000G92 E0G1 F200 E3G92 E0G1 F9000{IF_BED}M190 S{BED}{IF_EXT0}M109 T0 S{TEMP0}Please watch my problem

Topic by BurakD22  


Need some advice in connecting/powering a bunch of Laser diodes.

I have 25 Laser Diodes that I want to connect up together & test out. They were all supposed to be: 650nm, 5mW, 5V, but in the small box they came with, there was a thank you letter, which listed them as 2 - 5 mW. They were pretty cheap & it wouldn't really be worth my while to return them so am gonna have a go. Since I know he-haw about electronics I was hoping for some advice to get me going! 1) How do I connect them all up together (they all have 1 blue & 1 red wire each, I'm thinking all blue together & all red together)? 2) I'm looking to run them off batteries (AA, AAA, 9V etc), so how many would I need to get it running properly as I don't want to burn the diodes out or anything like that? I know this will probably be an uber easy question to anyone with a hint of electrical experience, but I figured this is probably the best place to ask for advice. Cheers, Jonny.

Topic by mastini    |  last reply


Can an existing home be eligible for LEED Certification?

My home was built in the early 80's and I've made several environmentally-inspired improvements since I bought it - compost, rainwater harvesting, Energy-Star Appliances, insulatiion, low VOC paint and a 47 panel solar PV system. I've been looking on the Green Building Council's website to see, but all I can find is info on new construction. All I really wanted to do is see if there was a list of possible improvements that can be made on existing residential homes (and possibly the point rating) so I could know if I'm even in the ballpark to meet the LEED certification requirements. I checked into this a few years ago, but with this new 2009 LEED v3.0 it looks like they dropped anything to do with existing residential homes, or maybe I'm just not looking in the right place. So, has anybody else looked into this? Is anybody here familiar with where I can find this information? I want to see what it's like before I register and get inspected so I can tell whether or not it is worth the effort right now.

Question by iPodGuy    |  last reply


Most Superlative Object In the Office This Month: Bun B's Rap Coloring And Activity Book

Most objects are easily discussed. One simply drapes an adjective or three over it, and calls it well-described.  Occasionally, though, one comes across an object that can only be described as Superlative. Singularly Awful, Amazingly Awesome, Incredibly Unbelievable. Usually draped in exclamation points, often overused, and affective in the extreme, these Things Above Things are worth sharing with the Instructables Community in and of themselves. This week, the most Superlative Object we spy with our little eyes is a book brought to our attention by the mighty Wilgubeast. For those of us whose adolescent and teenage years were punctuated by the boisterous and boastful, rhythmically dense and ethically spare Music Known To Some As Rap, there can only be one gift to give one's favorite B-Boy or B-Girl: "Bun B's Rap Coloring and Activity Book". The Rap Game has more than its share of colorful characters, and this book describes them visually and textually with verve and humor—worthy of particular praise are "Brain Boxing With The Genius", "E-40's Word Bank", and "Match The Scarface". There are word puzzles, connect-the-dots, and of course, lots of opportunities to test your crayon skills. Should any of these challenges prove more than a reader can handle, our advice would paraphrase Ice T: "Don't Hate The Playa, Hate The Game".

Topic by craftclarity  


Archos 70 250Gb - poor review

I bought the Archos 70 as a replacement for my very reliable (but full) Archos AV700TV. I needed a decent memory that I could use both as back-up storage to my PC, and to show images portably - with nearly 50,000 digital images, this was the 70's "killer app" for me. Web browsing etc was just icing on the cake. As a web browser, it's fine - for ease of use it sits squarely between the iPod and the iPad, and is cheaper than either. The screen is a nice size. However, on it's "killer app", it FAILS. I uploaded my images (9 years' worth) in folders by year, and sub-folders by month. Easy. When I came to use the gallery function, though, it would only show me the first five years' worth. Nearly half my images simply did not appear in the gallery. Going through the "file" tab, I confirmed they were all there. I could even look at a few, but then it would kick me back to the Gallery function, and the images would become invisible to me again. I emailed Archos customer services several times, and got no reply beyond an automatic promise to respond within 2 days. A promise they never kept. On the website, the phone number for tech support is a premium-rate number. Eventually, I had to threaten the marketing department with a poor review, just to get a normal number for tech support. (By the way, that number is 0207 949 0115, and is charged at your normal (UK) landline rates) In the mean time, the gallery function failed completely, and I got alerts telling me the bluetooth function wasn't working (I hadn't switched it on), and that the device is running out of memory (there are currently 230Gb free). When I eventually spoke to a human being, he was as helpful as he could be (no problem with the call-centre's work, it's the higher-ups via email that are a waste of space), except that the firmware version installed on the device (2.3.6) is apparently one that has never been installed on Archos 70s (it should be 2.4.19), so he could offer no help over the phone, except try and update the firmware, and if that doesn't work, re-format the hard drive and start again from scratch. Now, after three attempts the correct firmware is now apparently installed, but the faults all remain. I am reduced to formatting the whole thing and starting from scratch and if this re-install doesn't work, I shall be demanding a refund.

Topic by Kiteman    |  last reply


Computer recycling: Dangers for even the well intentioned

Are we really making it impossible to live in this ever increasingly "darned if you do, darned if you don't" society? Disposal of computer repercussions" Picture a stack of used PCs packed with corporate data sitting unattended on a shipping company loading dock. Imagine what happens to your company's stock price when the Environmental Protection Agency tracks the serial numbers of lead-filled monitors from an illegal landfill back to you. Think about a villager in a third-world nation burning circuit boards in an open-air shop to recover a few cents' worth of precious metals. Now, what's going to be generated by that 3-year-old PC your administrator just pulled from an employee's desk? Data theft? Lawsuit? Poison? Finally, consider research firm IDC's estimate that 269 million PCs were sold worldwide last year, along with 8 million servers. The bulk of them likely were replacements for systems moved into recycling or reuse. You start to get a sense of the dangers associated with disposing of outdated computer equipment.Concerns about computer disposal fall into three main categories: Eradicating data, finding a market for outdated but usable equipment and recycling or disposing of materials in an environmentally safe manner...."Anyone have any suggestions for are "fearless leaders" ? Image is of SKILLS from the PA recycling center and can be read about at this link for SKILLS

Topic by Goodhart  


Where to buy JB Weld

I tend to do a good bit of research when I purchase anything. I will spend hours finding the deal that will save me five cents. While this doesn't make much financial sense for me, maybe it will end up being worth it if you can save a few cents in the process!The only step to this instructable is a list of the best places I've found to purchase JB Weld. For those who are not familiar with JB Weld, it is, simply put, God, in a tube. It is an epoxy that when mixed (and mix quickly, you only have about 20 minutes of pliability) will set within 4-6 hours, and cure within 24. Once cured, it has the strength of steel, can bind with glass, and neatest of all, is actually conductive enough to use as solder!Note that I'm only referring to the original JB Weld, model 8265 (and 8265-S). I find the stick version doesn't adhere as well, and the "Kwick" version isn't as strong. I also tend to be stubborn and just stick with what I'm comfortable with.Since the invention of Duct Tape (genuflect) nothing has been so valuable to mankind. Thus, it's not surprising to find it anywhere from $9.99 a tube, up to $14.99 per tube. So how much should you be paying for your J.B. Weld?If ordered online, you can get it for as little as $2.95 per tube!Note: These prices are only accurate as of the posting of this instructable (29 June 2009)Okay, so if you've come this far, $2.95 per tube sounds pretty exciting. Keep in mind though that you're also going to end up dealing with shipping, so we'll see what the end result will be. When in doubt, if you have a local Ace Hardware, Lowes, Home Depot, etc. look there first. You avoid shipping, and the Ace online outlet sells it for as little as $3.25 per tube (No idea why nobody else, including Sears, KMart, Target, etc. carries it online). If you can find it in the store for that price, that would be your best bet. But assuming you don't have a local Ace Hardware, or since they're locally owned the Franchise Owner is a prick that overprices things, let's see how the following websites work out.First, it's important to note that while you will find many other places online that claim to sell the JB Weld for as little as $2.95 per tube, just try to purchase them. I'll wait... Back? So as you saw, 99.9% of these sites use the Amazon.com checkout system, and only allow ONE TUBE AT A TIME to be purchased. They then hit you with a $4.99 shipping fee for each pop, and now you're back to paying $8 per tube.On to the real suppliers:#1) Tool Explosion - The best price I've found with free shipping, but their free shipping minimum purchase is $100, and their JB Weld was only $3.76 per tube when last checked! One of the better deals out there. Between $100-$130 worth, this was the best deal I could find.#2) Alexandria General Supply - To get the $2.95 price here, you have to buy in 6 packs, otherwise it's more expensive. But hey, more JB Weld can only be a good thing. They seem to have a starting-rate of $17.05 for shipping, which is nearly as much as the 6-pack of JB Weld, making them almost $6 per. However, the more you order, the price of shipping will actually start to go DOWN. At 7 cases (42 tubes), it dropped to $7.41 for shipping making it $3.12 per tube, and at 20 cases, it was only up to $8.16 for shipping, making bulk purchases very much worth it. At $131.31 for 42 tubes, this was the best deal out there, and only gets better the higher you go. They do not accept PayPal, but do accept all major credit cards.#3) Ace Hardware Outlet - Don't ask me why AceHardware.com doesn't carry it, but AceHardwareOutlet does, but I'm not going to argue. At its respectable price of $3.39 per tube, it's not a bad deal if you're buying in bulk. Unfortunately, for just a single tube to ship, you're looking at $6.39 for shipping. The shipping rates only slowly go up the more you pile on, so if you're doing some shopping for some other hardware, Ace is The Place... For Me... (Plus, they take PayPal!) For individual tubes assuming you can't find anything locally, this is the best price going. At least buy 2 or 3 tubes at a time to make the shipping worth it, though.#4) Hands-On Tools - Another site with fair shipping, and a decent price of $3.66 per tube. Not much to say about this one, except that they seem to be one of the more reputable sites selling the weld for a good price. They work with the BBB and have a good rating, accept PayPal, and give you percentage discounts the more you buy. All around a solid company.#5) Castle Wholesalers - One of my personal favorites (since they are located near me, mostly) selling the JB Weld at $3.47 per tube. However, do keep in mind that you have a $25 minimum order here. Their prices are pretty standard for shipping, so you can add about $1 per tube once you've bought the requisite $25 worth. The more you buy, the cheaper the shipping gets per tube, as well. Only Visa and Mastercard accepted.#6) College Toolbox - While their price isn't the best, it's still a fun site with some decent stuff at fair prices. At $4.11 per tube, it's not necessarily worth the purchase here unless you find enough of their gear to get the "$150 purchase gets free shipping" thing. (And they take PayPal)In closing, if needing just a tube or two, your best bet is always going to be to shop locally, and buy from a hardware store. But once you start getting into the $5 and $6 price range, there are some decent places online to pick it up (if you don't mind the wait). Always take shipping into account, and always avoid Amazon.com and their Affiliate's rip-off schemes. If you see the Amazon logo, run far and fast (or at least close the window). E-Bay is equally a rip-off, only moreso as you're starting at the $9.99 level, and then tacking shipping onto that.For the hobbyist that understands the glory that is JB Weld, drop the $130 and get enough JB Weld to last you for a long, long time. For all others, I would recommend avoiding purchasing it online unless you absolutely can't find it for a fair price in your local stores (I can't stress that enough. Shipping is the debbil.)Hope this helps someone, and if anyone finds a better price, feel free to include it in the comments and I'll add it to the list!

Topic by Javin007    |  last reply


is what i have decided for my computer build everything compatible? Answered

I decided to buy the core parts my custom cheap computer, that i plan to upgrade with better parts. but if i want to save money in the long run and not have to buy totally new parts for a building a decent computer. will these parts i choose will work together? the top parts are the bare essentials for my build, excluding the parts i already have in my old tower computer (case, 300W PSU, monitor, and keyboard, mouse, WiFi adapter {maybe read bellow}) MOBO:---ASRockZ77 Extreme4 LGA 1155 Intel Z77 ATX Intel Mobo----------------------$140 CPU: -----Pentium G620 (lga-1155)-------------------------------------------------------------------$64 RAM:-----G.SKILL Ripjaws X-Series 8GB DDR3 RAM Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBXL---$40 i plan to get these parts after i get the initial build working. if i am unhappy with the above specs i will upgrade. my parents want me to build a cheap $250 computer first to see if i am up to the challenge.  so i want everything i listed to work well together. so far i have worked out everything except the power supply cables (if it will power everything listed and crossfire/SLI for future improvement.) PSU:------OCZ ModXStream Pro 600W Modular High Performance Power Supply---$50 after rebates CPU:------Intel i5 3570K-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------$220 GPU:------either a gtx 660, or a Radeon 7870.-----------------------------------------------------$230.00 ish CASE:----Cooler Master Computer RC 430 KWN1/dp/B003O8J11E---------------------------$46 HDD:------unsure. whetever i get my hands on in the future. it will be 7200 RPM or better, maybe a cheap ssd as for the GPU any recommendations? i want something within $250 and will play games on high settings with no problem, and dual monitor setup. i think this GTX 660 it seems to be slightly better than the radeon 7870, and cheaper. i might go with this. is it a good idea to get a CPU that has the 'K' at the end, i know this means it is overclockable bacause it is unlocked. but it it worth it to pay the extra 20 for a faster stock clock speed, and HD 4000 graphics? compared to the i5 3550? p.s. i will delete parts of my question(s) that have successfully been answered by you and the community.  thank you everyone who helped me out with this. i have to give credit to:  mpilchfamily, Willard2.0,  and bwrussell have been very helpful. i cant wait until i start building!

Question by -max-    |  last reply


Media computer

Hello all.  I have been having a really fun time going through the forums lately.  I started in the tech section or whatever it is called.  I have no idea what page I am on but I know I am looking at posts that are about 3 years old.  Not looking at every single post of course but about 5-7 posts per page.  But that is all besides the point, let me get to my question. The other day just because I happened to have an s-video cable around I hooked one of our laptops to the TV.  I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the image on the TV.  So I have decided to make an audio cable for it and start to use the computer on the TV for some stuff.  Money is tight around here (that is why I am making the audio cable and not buying one) and we do not have cable TV.  All we have is a converter box and ever since a really bad storm about 1 1/2 months ago we barely get any channels.  I am still trying to get management of my building to look at the antenna on the roof.  But after I saw what kind of quality the laptop had on the TV we are starting to look at getting netflix.  Figure it is only $7.99 per month and you get your first month free so I think it is worth checking out.  Since it looks like we will be using a computer with the TV quite often I have decided to make a media computer out of one of the towers sitting around here.  I am not worried about the power of the computer since the tower I have in mind is not all that old.  But I am trying to decide what OS to put on it.  I know there is a "Windows media" edition but I do not know much about it other then I think it is getting quite old.  I am leaning towards putting either XP or Windows 7 on it since I have those disks.  But I thought I would ask on here for peoples input on the matter.  I plan on networking the computer to my windows 7 desktop in order to access my 1tb hard drive for stuff I download.  My wife will be using this computer too so that is part of the reason I am leaning towards windows xp or 7 so she will not feel lost in some OS she does not know.  So now you have all the details.  Should I just go with XP or 7, or is there something else I should look at?

Topic by jcaresheets    |  last reply


BJT vs MOSFET? Answered

-- background: In my perpetual pursuit for designing the best, cheapest, & best performing flyback (line transformer) driver, I've decided to try out some big BJTs, which appear to have higher voltage & current ratings @ considerably lower cost. In the past, I have tried MJE3055's, which work OK, and allow the generation of thin blue arcs from a 12V supply for a few minutes until the transistor dies due to high voltage kickback or overheating. The FDP33N25 gives good results but is somewhat unreliable at 24V. So I decided to give these alluring "PHE13009" 400V 12A rated NPN BJT's a try. However driving the transistor adequately seems to be the problem. (I didn't realize these transistors would require like 5A base current w/ only HFe of 2!) It seems like almost all the "good" driver schematics utilize large $$$ FETs or even IGBTs, but almost every CRT, plasma globe, and ballast (SMPS) I took apart seem to prefer high power BJTs probably due to this exact cost difference. I was only able to get simalar performance to my 33N25 MOSFET when I stuck an additional TIP120 in as an additional darlington stage, which worked very nicely (white hot arcs) for about 1 second, then it popped! :( Since the collectors are tied together they are all exposed to >200V transients, I am sure that's what killed it. I substituted that transistor for another PHE13009 to see what would happen and with a third driving stage (2N2222) I could get somewhat acceptable results but I know I can do better. >:) - My actual questions:  * The GDP of this transistor is 40MHz, seems fast to me. (certainly faster than the 2MHz GDP of the 2N3055 which works well in my slayer exciter.) and MOSFETs have significant gate charge. ECE2630 glossed over transistors mentioning BJTs are faster, (small signal ones, anyway :P ) and some internet sources agree, but I am finding lots of sources saying the opposite! What's the deal? Which one "faster?"  * How to traditional BJTs compare to IBGTs? Which are faster/better? The datasheet for this transistor explicitly mentions its use for "high frequency ballast and switch mode applications" which implies that it is well suited for my needs. It also includes a several inductor test circuits, but other than that the datasheet is pretty bare-bones.  I'm actually a little disappointed the HFe is so low (around 2-3) @ >10A. I may require more windings on my primary and a 48v supply. (not ideal) * I know I will dissipate a little more heat due to the base current, and something I didn't consider was heat dissipated in the resistor biasing/controlling the base. (like 12V at several amps just to drive the damn thing!!) so it is worth the cost benefit of $0.5? Is there a configuration I could use that makes driving the transistor easier?

Question by -max-    |  last reply


The best car ad ever made

A family member sent me this ad that was posted on craigslist, while it was the most explicit ad I've ever seen, I'd prefer this over any normal ad. Enjoy those who feel comfortable reading this. DISCLAIMER:  I bleeped (****) out any explicit words...... Though I could have missed s-something.  And explicit's definition is different between people Side note: If anyone thinks this is a tad (or more than a tad) over the top, PM me or reply saying so. I'll delete it. - - - If you think you'll be offended by this ad... DON'T READ IT.  - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - POS 1994 Honda Civic LX for sale - $600 (Marietta, GA) Date: 2010-07-11, 4:49PM EDT Reply to: sale-63pgj-1837513434@craigslist.org [Errors when replying to ads?] That's right, you can own a piece of shi... history right now for only $600. You may wonder why I didn't post a picture and that's because with a car this crappy, a photo is not needed. Just imagine the worst possible car and then picture a camel taking a dump in the trunk and you'll have a close approximation. You don't need to worry about me lying... it really is a POS. There is no risk of you getting over here and finding out it's really a gorgeous gem worth thousands... that doesn't happen...ever. But if for some reason that's actually happened to you, then you are acquainted with a crazy cosmic karma that has never thought to even piss in my face. I almost had a date on PlentyofFish and you know what happened? The f***ing AC died. For two years while I was not dating, it worked fine. The day after I get digits, the AC craps out. The car also has a weird hesitation problem that was not fixed even when I replaced the fuel filter. What could cause all of these things? Satan in the drive train...that's right... it's rare, but it happens to guys like me. This car is actually demon-possessed so you can forget about any sort of easy fix. Jesus said you need faith to cast out demons like this and believe me there are only two people on the planet that have that sort of faith. One guy lives in a cave in India and the other guy is dead. And you can forget about the guy in the cave helping you because, if you can find him, he's just going to tell you how physical setbacks are really spiritual blessings...blah blah blah...yada yada yada. Exactly. Don't expect sympathy from any motherf***er that sits around in his underwear in a cave. Other problems with this car include busted boots on the tie-rod ends, busted wheel hub boots, broken AC, leaking power steering system, ABS light always on, check-engine light comes on occasionally, driver window sometimes comes off the track, paint has permanent dirt in it (yes, it's f***ing permanent...you can't scrub it out with anything less than sandpaper or some highly explosive chemical that causes cancer in 49 states and erectile dysfunction in the 50th.) The car does drive, but that's about all it's good for. Good luck getting it to pass emissions. I've never tried as it's still registered in Clarke County. If you want to date, this car is probably not for you. On a positive note though, I can assure you no one has ever had sex in it. It would take a miracle to get a girl to even sit in this car, much less take her clothes off in it. Other possible uses for this car included entertainment at frat parties. You could charge people $5 a swing with a baseball bat, although you still probably wouldn't recover your investment. You might be able to sell it to the Mythbusters and get the to test the myth, "Is it possible that a car could really be this s***ty?" Adam Savage and Kari Byron will have a field day and close it off with "Myth f***ing confirmed" and a side comment from Kari about how whatever d*****bag use to own it must have never been laid. There are some positives like a beautiful Lumar 32% tint job, keyless entry with remote trunk release, an Alpine CD Player, and Pioneer speakers in the door. So at worst, you can sit in your driveway and listen to music with a bottle of Jergens and a picture of Eliza Dushku. I really wouldn't recommend taking it on the road until you replace the tie-rod ends. You might crash into a bus full of nuns and then the Pope will reign motherf***ing hail fire down on your betrodden a** with more fury than the inquisition because you actually decided to drive and be seen in such an amazing POS, killing 20 of his lovely Sisters. One other thing you might use this car would be pushing it off a cliff. If you've ever wanted to see what it's like first hand for a car to fall hundreds of feet and smash against rock, then here's your chance. Although don't be surprised if this demon-possessed sleigh from hell manages to f*** up your good time even in that bold scenario. I don't know how it would, but it would probably figure out a way. If there are any parents out there reading this, don't let your children fall into the situation I'm in. I would never have ended up with this car if I had pursued a real career. But instead I majored in math where the best job I can find now is up in Portland with a bunch of bran muffin eating hippies, jerking off Moose for 75 cents a smile for some wildlife conservation sperm bank. Let your kids do something with good with their future, like wait tables at Denny's. Oh yeah... it's white, 4 doors, and automatic. Whooptie-f***in-do!  

Topic by ry25920    |  last reply


Freebies from the local dump

Well guys, I was tired of being told by different friends of mine that there's lots of goodies to be found sometimes out at my local dump, including a shed FULL of crts, some still in the bag I'm told. I finally got the motivation to make it out there, I had to ask the attendant where to find the computer stuff as the only shed I found had some furniture and old electronics (I was tempted to take this OLD ibm scanner, looked like it was right outta the 80's). She pointed me over to a pile of computer towers, satellite receivers (a scary amount of receivers) and some other crap, all in the sNOW!!! I was a little disgruntled to see it all in the snow there, as there was A LOT of towers. Aside from finding a working 16 port rack mount ethernet switch, a good handful of cpus I removed from some towers, and some PC133 ram (not useful to most, but it has a better use than SODIMM ram ever will these days). One of the first things I seen was an lcd monitor sitting upside down in the snow bank, I ran over to it like it was an abandoned baby in the snow. It didn't look like it had seen the snow too long, so I picked it up and tossed it in the car thinking at the most it would make a nice laptop stand out of the folding base on it. Well upon getting it home, drying it with a towel and letting it warm up to room temperature, I plugged it in and was very EXCITED to see "no signal" faintly on the screen, the backlight was shot.... I got my thinkpad out and hooked it up to see if the entire screen worked and that it wasn't cracked or something, sure enough, the whole screen lit up with the desktop for a second, then off. Frustrated, I simply kept turning the video output of my laptop on and off, and just from cycling it on and off, I got the backlight tubes to kick to life!!! I moved it to my desktop and got rid of my 19 inch crt, so I had room for this 19 inch lcd :P Later I noticed a bit of water in the screen so I shut it off, however when I went to use it later, the image would only flash on for a split second, then off again, then back on, and so on. I dissembled it today and can't find a single cap on the board that's blown (visually), and the only discoloration of the pcb is on the bottom, beneath a transformer, so I figure it's probably an okay amount of discoloration as a transformer will often make enough heat to do so. I plugged it in, and begun turning it on with only certain backlight tubes plugged in (theres 4 cables so I have to assume 4 tubes, one on each side of the screen, I also just found out you shouldn't let the unplugged leads too close to the socket on the PCB, it WILL ARC, the high voltage label etched into the pcb means business.) It would make some high pitched whining noises, the lcd would be doing it's flickering thing, sometimes the image would come up garbled, and then shortly after it started going garbled, it would kick on and stop making the high pitched noises, so I moved it back onto my desk still dissembled, and upon leaving the room long enough for the lcd to shut off, I came back to the same problem, and had to fiddle with it again to get it turned on (I'm using it right now :) What is it that makes these lcd's do this?, I know most problems with lcds are from the power inverter, and also when the backlights burn out (Hell only one could work for all I care, this thing is so bright it hurts the eyes). This is a 19" viewsonic lcd, and I did do some googling, one person noted for a similar model he tried replacing all 8 caps on the board (We have diff boards, but he said to replace all of them to be sure), he then said he was going to try replacing one of the mosfets, and that he would let us know how it went, still hasn't replied yet. I feel bad for posting this without pictures, but I don't have any good batteries around the house for my digital camera, I plan to get some pictures by the end of the day, but until then, perhaps you guys can tell me what it is you would like to see/need to see to help me figure this out. A free LCD guys, and it turns on to a usable state, so I KNOW it's worth fixing, sorry if I seem flabbergasted or something like I'm off my cradle, but an upgrade to LCD is awesome for me, I'm so used to using my crt's and I'm finding the crispness of the image very nice to look at.

Topic by Punkguyta  


Cfmoto 650 - possible options to derestrict the Australian model

When it comes to motorcycles with restrictions then Australia seems to be pretty much alone in the world.Despite an abundance of bike to choose from that would fit weight/power limitations it seems to be common to go overboard here.As a result basically all popular motorbikes up the 650ccm hit the AU market in a restricted form if they don't match the limitations by default.For someone in the US just reading this might sounds like a useless concept to get people to learn how to ride a motorcycle.As a fully licensed rider and being on a budget a bike for just over half the price of a Japanase model is still tempting.And for general touring use the MT is actually quite a comfortable bike.Big downside is the impossiblity to get certain bikes in an unrestricted form.For the Cfmoto's of the older type, running the Ducati ECU it is as simple as adding a suitable fuel/ignition tuner module and removing the physical restrictions.The newer models from 2017 onwards use a more reliable Bosch ECU though.With them it is appearently possible to use BWM tuning module but with the requirement to do a full remap on a Dyno.The 2018 MT is my bike, so I will focus on this, but the gerneral things are identical on all the Cfmoto 650 models.A word on the legal things first....Outside AU none of this concerns you as your Cfmoto will come unrestricted anyways.Within AU however we are subject to several laws that make the legal modification of a so called LAMS motorcycle virtually impossible.You can even put a different exhaust or airfilter on them without risking to loose your license and get some hefty fines.As a fully licensed rider however the law often turns a blind eye on these things as they don't really matter as long as they won't affect the safety of the bike, rider or other road users.With the plated riders out for now, let's focus on the options for a fully licensed rider, shall we?There is no need for a RWC or anything if you already owned the bike in the LAMS version.But if you try, for example, to go to Vicroads and have the registration details changed to reflect that the bike is now running with it's full factory default power, or a bit more you are lost.Two reasons for this.Firstly Cfmoto did not bother to import and register for road use any unrestricted version of the 650's.Secondly the VIN number and engine number are fixed in a database for LAMS only bikes.You would need a full engeneering certificate to register the bike in any modified version that affects the power output or reduces the weight of the bike.Sets you back about 10.000 dollars and still won't garantee that Vicroads actually transform it into a legal, unrestricted bike.The police has little to no interest in what a fully licensed rider does to a bike - within the usual limits of course.And since you would not sell the bike without fully reverting it back to the LAMS state the risk of prosecution can be fully minimised:If your insurer agrees to provide full comprehensive cover once the bike is (properly) reverted to what the international models are it is down to serious accidents that might still cause trouble.For example when you cause severe injuries to someone else the bike would be checked for modifications that could have had an influence on the accident.My insurer explained it like this:If the bike is checked roadworthyness after an accident it would fail because it is no longer LAMS compliant.That would automatically default the rider to be responsible for the accident even if not at fault at all.With that it is mandatory to have all the details about the modifications listed and validated in the insurance policy!Adding a tuning module for example would mean providing a fully Dyno chart with a safety confirmation from a licensed vehicle tester.For example the confirmation would state that a power Commander with Auto Tune module was installed together with a slip on exhaust system.Bike specifications allow for the save use with said modifications based on the results of the Dyno runs.With that the rider is put back into legal territory as the insurer stands for the roadworthyness of the modifications.It certainly helps to just stick with the default options and to provide the Cfmoto cert copy from the same international version of the bike.A plated rider should never attempt any of this as it still means there is no way to get away - legally and financially!Possible tuning options for the LAMS versions:Adding one the usualy tuning modules is not only pain but also costly if done properly.Being a LAMS bike you will have a hard finding a reputable shop to install a tuning module for you.Doing it yourself can be tricky, especially if you consider that the default wire colors are often different on the bike.Takes a few hours to check the wiring diagram, follow and measure connections and then to finally risk starting the bike....It works though if you know what you doing.Biggest downside is that you won't find any ready to go maps that you can use.And trust me trying to modify fuel or ignition maps yourself is not for the faint of heart and only an option if you a) know what you are doing and b) have the tools for it.There is a good chance the bike actually runs worse than without the module.Now the obvious solution would be to go for some Dyno runs and to have it all setup properly.Again, with a LAMS bike you will have a hard time finding a licensed and reputable shop to take your bike in.If you find one that does it anyway than it really is best to go for the full package and to suck the costs up.Let them supply the required modules, sensors and all, deal with the airbox and throttle limiter.Then have the usual 3-4 Dyno runs to get the mapping done properly.This approached worked perfectly fine for the older bikes using the Ducati ECU.The new models with the Bosch ECU might still struggle to accept the tuning changes.Reason for this is the checking of literally all sensor informations.Means the tuning module must cater for this and not just fool the O2 and TPS sensor readings.Just removing the throttle limiter and airbox restrictions will cause the bike to run too hot very quickly and also puts your ECU into a lean default mode once you see ECU errors flashing on the dash.Real tuning options that won't have a chance to harm the engine:With all models available internationally and without any restrictions it is relatively easy to find a wrecker in the US, EU or even Asia to supply parts from crashed bikes or those confiscated for destruction by dismantling them.If you are a fully licensed rider and after a bargain or love your first bike so much that you want to keep it once the plates are gone:Organise the ECU, airbox and throttle body from any part of the world except Australia.Sometimes you even find them on Ebay so pay attention to the sellers home country (some AU sellers go international and would then just get the same what is already in your bike ;) )!!Why not just the ECU you ask?Our airbox has added restrictors, just removing is not the best option as they are also responsible for causing required turbulences in the airflow.A straight through or even pot filter option would again require ECU tuning.As said, talking stock here...The throttle body might not be required to get the full power the bike is intended for but you never know for sure.If in doubt pay a few bucks more and have the injectors and sensors included as well ;)But why would I want to pay for a throttle body if it is not 100% certain I would require it?It would'n t have the screw hole for the throttle limiter ;)This tiny detail can be of importance if you go the full lenght, more on that later.With those three components (or two if you want to go without the throttle body) you have a stock international version of the 650.Makes it relatively easy to convince your insurer that the bike is safe to use in this configuration.Adding just a slip on is no problem either as the normal ECU runs quite rich in the higher RPM's anyway and the new exhaust would not make too much mess here.But adding a less restrictive airfilter will need Dyno tuning.Going the full length, especially interesting if you buy a second hand Cfmoto.It will take you a lot of Emails and some overseas phone calls but it is possible to find a wrecker that can sell you the registration plates for the frame of the bike - legally if said wrecker is allowed to sell frame number for rebuilds.Adding this plate to your order means your second hand bike can be deregistered, sadly this means unless you pay extra you need to hand in the numberplates as well.No big deal however if the bike comes without numberplates anyway.Once you installed all parts and replaced the frame ID plate you take the bike for normal RWC check and get your green slip.With that you go and ask to register your bike with new (or your old) numberplates.The Vin will not show up in their database and a red flag comes up, prompting some questions from the offcial behind the counter.The bike you know have is an imported model you got for cheap when you saw it for sale in some carpark with a blown engine.As the actual engines are identical you replaced the blown engine with one from an AU bike that crashed and was written off.In return you now pay a slightly higher than usual transfer fee but get the bike registered as he international model without LAMS restrictions.Even the engine showing up as a LAMS engine is of no concers here as there is no legal reason to not allow the use of a lower powered engine in a motorcycle.You insurance polcy will also go up a few bucks but that is not really worth crying about now anymore.Once you go out with your numberplates you can enjoy a legally derestricted (imported) Cfmoto.Ok, I got it an I say I am a fully licences rider that does not care too much and wants to go as cheap as possible...A brand new ECU from China sets you back about $400AU.Downside is that you are never 100% certain the mapping will fit what is installed on your bike.There might be differences for the US or EU market, not so much though for Asia - so ask for what market region the ECU is intendet and prefer the Asia market here.The airbox limiters should be safe to remove but you might have to make simple plates up to install so the air turbulences are within specs - you will notice if the bike runs really crappy in the high revs and struggles to provide power to the wheel...Unless Cfmoto actually include more limitations in or around the throttle body going with stock should be fine - flashing ECU error will tell you if not.Postage from China can be a pain, not so much for time it takes but for the money charged to use proper and trusted courier services.Up to $100 just for postage is not uncommon but also means the parts are your within a week or 10 days most.Some provide cheap flat rates but both have the risk of being asked to pay import duties if held by AU costoms.Going second hand from some wrecker outside AU can be slightly cheaper for the ECU but again postage can a pain on the pocket.The obvious downside is that the bike with such a simple and direct mod would be still a LAMS bike and if checked make it illegal to use with all the corresponding consequences for the rider - even if fully licensed, please check the above insurance part again if you must.If done properly and maybe even with a slip on: what gains are we talking about in actual figures on the wheel?To be honest not really that much at all, the bike is just too heavy.But the response will improve noticable!The bike pulls out of corners with ease now and no longer requires you shift through the gears with a screaming engine.Imagine you have a small, 4-cylinder car and went on a long holiday trip with your heavy camping trailer always attached.Holidays are over, you unhook the camper and go for a quick run to the shops for supplies.It is that wow feeling that you get when you take off with the weight gone...The gears run higher with a more evenly distributed power instead of just a narrow window of RPM's with enough power to pull away.The KW and RPM values are available on the Cfmoto homepages.What about top speed?I managed to get to a full 110km/h !! ;)For anything above that ask your local Dyno please or pay for a day on the track.What if the police gets me and makes trouble because of the modifications?A well trained officer in a bad mood will always be your nightmare.So I won't go into the troubles if you still need plates or just got your full license a few days ago...You are allowed to ride any road legal motorcycle, no matter the power ratings.However, a really pesky cop wanting to go by the full book on you will use the computer to check your bike and registration details.And if he knows the most obvious non-legal mods to LAMS bikes, like the shiny exhaust you will need a lift home.Chances are though that a clean driving record and having your full license for a few years indicates that you actually know how to handle your bike properly.That is the point where your honesty and details with the insurance company matter.Preferably with you having a copy of your policy with you when riding the bike.With that you can always argue the modifications are documented and approved by your insurer and corresponding vehicle tester.Makes it then only a minor offence for not being LAMS conform.The paperwork to fight you on what your insurer singed off for is just not worth it with a possible drunk driver getting past while you argue....Legally they can still book you or even take the bike but do they ever bother to take those Harleys or street racers with screaming exhausts you hear from miles away before you even see the bike? ;)As said, it comes down to a LAMS offense that is fully covered by your insurer and with that not really worth making a big fuzz about.If you got pulled over for speeding or other offenses the story will be different though as it then could be argued you made these modifications with the INTENT of illegal activities - like speeding or pulling stunts that are not allowed on public roads.Here you insurer can refuse the cover the same way they would for the same offences on a fully legally unrestricted bike.Is it worth taking the risk?No, it is not!If you are after a bike with good handling and power you would not ride a Cfmoto...As a true LAMS bike the resale value is actually quite good if the bike is kept in good condition.Modified you will have a hard time selling it as no learner would take the risk - a working brain assumed here.For a keeper once fully licensed or someone on a budget it can be quite tempting.After all, it leaves a nagging feeling if have a full license and sit on a restricted bike....You always have to explain what you ride and why anyway every time you pull over where chatty bikers are around.Selling the bike in good condition and maybe together with the extras you got over the years might be enough to justify the extra for a second hand bike from Asia, Italy or Austria and give you more leasure and pleasure in the long run.Doing it properly and in the most legal way costs quite a few bucks.If you add this to the current asking price of around 7500 ride away will add at least another $1500.Depending on the exhaust system even more.If you require proper identification and tracing of things like VIN plates it can be clse to $2000.At this point you already see really only makes sense it is a cheap second hand bike, whicj makes the entire approach a bit questionable anyway.With now close to $10.000 for a new bike the difference to a well known brand with maybe a better reputation is not that big anymore.The bike would already be unrestricted and making road legal modification wouldn't interest anyone.Not to mention of course the warranty issues as Cfmoto won't honor any of it if you modify new LAMS bike!Now add the possible costs for repairs or parts that would otherwise be free and free of labour costs and the bargain becomes very expensive before the warranty period is over.There will be the point where you ask yourself why did you bother in the first place....Warranty....Once modded the factory warranty is void so to say.Problem here is that the law is intentionally unclear on the reasons and options applicable here.As the bike would (without exhaust mod) be just like any international model the law states the warranty must be granted.However, Cfmoto has the right to refuse it anyway based on the exclusions required by law to prevent non-LAMS conform bikes from getting back on the road.A blown engine with a proper service history would be no big deal without this.The right to refuse a free warranty replacement for covered parts if the bike was not serviced by a licensed dealer is something car manufacturers already failed with.Cfmoto however will argue that their terms and conditions always superseed any Australian laws or regulations unless it was legally shown that one or more sections are actually invalid in Australia.This includes any evident or suspected tampering with the LAMS restrictions.If in doubt an ECU reading would indicate the impossible throttle positions used and the different ECU.Means even once the warranty is over you can't really take your bike to your dealer for a service or just a check without risking troubles.Some say this is still not enough to deter restricted drivers, I say that any fully licensed rider should have the right to enjoy his bike without LAMS restrictions.But if in doubt Cfmoto is always right, no matter how they argue.Last words from the wise camel....If you are fully licensed it is entirely your choice what you do with your bike and how you deal with - or interprete possible legal issues.Anyone required to display plates should just not think about modding the bike, it is not worth the risk.Although not really a big deal for an experienced rider, the added power and better response can cause a bad judgement.You might have been happy to open her up fully around your favourite hiarpin bend but now it could mean you loose traction even if don't try to break your LAMS approved speed record.Especially when things get a bit slippery and unexpected it can be difficult to prevent the heavy beast from going down.Never underestimate what you can't see and react to in time!Never overestimate your skills or the bikes real capabilities in terms of handling and grip!Once you are fully used to the different response you are fine, until then it is better to play it safe instead of ending up to be very, very sorry....

Topic by Downunder35m    |  last reply


V-Gate Motor, what is fake, what is real, why is it not possible

If we look at so called magnet motors than they usually share the common works of a V-Gate somewhere.So with the energy crisis blooming it might make sense to take a look on how these fance toys are supposed to work, or not work.You can check Wikipedia and watch a lot of Youtube videos showing magnet motors or just V-Gate magnet toys in operation.As the name suggests the permanent magnets are placed in a V shape configuration.Either linear or in a circle / on a drum.And the working theory suggests that if you place one or two magnets at the right spot in relation to the V than forces will make things move.It is great fun to play with a V-Gate just to figure out how the magnets actually interact.The longer you play with it and experiment the closer you think you are to actually make it work.No matter what you try though there is always a spot or an area where the magnet do the exact opposit of what they are supposed to do, the bind instead of making things move.Especially in the videos you can see a lot of interesting ways trying to compensate for this or to fool you.And the thing really no one wants you to know is that the pushing forces you want actually reverse half way through the cycle.But at this point their forces are already quite low.Would make sense now to just use that part of the V that actually works and to repeat it, doesn't it?If you do then you always end up with the same as what you had before, just more sections of it ;)And since in nature everything is equal we can not make the unwanted forces disappear and only keep the ones we want.Or can we? ;)A flywheel is a good option to preserve energy and to store it.No wonder then that people like to go big and include as many magnets on the drum as possible, preferably big and heavy as well...And since we can see in some videos that you can even make it spin by moving the magnet bar by hand: How hard can it be to do it properly?A flywheel needs energy to get going, especially if heavy...If the system would have the energy to make this spin then for obvious reasons it would only get faster and faster - but none of these toys do this...And well, moving your hand requires energy too ;)But combined with a mechanical or magnetic link it shall work just fine, timing is everything...And so you keep going and trying and in reality get nowhere at all.As said, you can't have only positive forces without the corresponding negative force(s).Modern approaches to the problem....The famous Yildiz generator uses all sorts of tricks.For example electromagnets to cancel out the field of permanent magnets, powered by internal generator coils of course.Or shielding around some magnets to direct the magnetic field in other directions.Others try to use a different angle for the magnets so seemingly one side of the field is stronger than the other.And the real enthusiast even machine their own magnet shapes from block magnets to get the field lines where they want them to be.In some case you can even find claims of commercial products in operation, with a convient link to order you own on a long term contract.This seems to suggest that there is indeed a way to create at least electricity for "free"....Of course this only made more plausible by the "security packets" included with these lease agreements.Sealed units, 24/7 remote camera surveillance, online connection for remote monitoring and on the go adjustments....And, no without the constant feedback from base operations through the online connection the "generators" will just stop.In a way all this only makes the search for the holy grail of magnetism more interesting.Just consider this:If it is worth to waste god knows how much money to create elaborate fakes with supporting websites and articles seeded all over the net, then why is it worth it?A real money scam would be exposed quite quickly and the websited disappear with the business.And if it is a real and registered business then they have to make the money somehow in legal ways.A balanced approach to the realities and options to make V-gate motor/generator as a workable toy....We know we can cheat and we know we can use modern materials.To make an interesting toy we would need to make it look and work interesting.Just a moving drum is boring and prone to be called a fake right away.Some fancy lever moving the magnet bar is nice but already well too abused to pass.Gearboxes and cranks however are not used that often due to the complexity of creating them in your garage.And some mechancial master creation displayed in museums of other places as "perpetual" motion machines are insanely complex.It comes down to first mapping the areas of negative impact, then finding ways to compensate for them.Preferably in some fancy optical way.Like the magician uses slide of hand to fool you you distract the audience by providing them things to focus on.The more focus on the workings behind it all the more they forget to understand physics ;)For example: If you want to lift the magnet bar you can use a fancy looking crank wheel that is overbalanced for the binding forced of the magnets - fools the unsuspecting person to think you actually eliminated the forces while in reality the wrong balance causes a problem later in the spin.And for those who were able to fllow that trail correctly you have something like and additional magnet moving to compensate fr this wrong balance.....Just make sure you seemingly complete the circle of force elimination back to where it started ;)Mumetal...Not, it does not come a cow....And yes, it is a real thing and not a fancy make up free energy freaks created ;)Unlike normal steel or iron Mumetal is extremely good in directing magnetic fields.For example the positioning head of your hard drive uses a pair of magnets on Mumetal plates to make sure the close proximity won't affect the disks storing your data.Now, some people on the net use these features to really fool you badly when it comes to magnets.From magnets in loudspeakers they misuse the term "shielded" to state Mumetal actuall shield the field of a permanent magnet.True is only that Mumetal provides pathway for the magnetic field that is thausands of times easier to follow than air.For example:A strong manget that still creates a noticable field at let's say 3cm distance.A Mumetal of 4cm in diameter placed 1cm apart would make the affects of the magnetic field disappear at 3cm.But not because the field is shielded, because the magnetic field lines now have an easy way to follow.They just "can't be bothered" anymore to go around the plate.In terms of utilising these effects for a V-Gate toy we can get really creative indeed.Some classic V-Gates use a magnet facing north on one side and a magnet facing south on the other side of the magnet bar and drum (left,right).Proving a Mumetal strip between them increases the field strenght on the other side quite a bit.It also allows for a much smaller extension of the field to the sides.And whatever area is covered by Mumetal will not show such a strong field, or none at all.So it would make sense to create a fancy gearbox to rotate a magnet bar.With every set of magnets on the drum the magnet bar makes one rotation.Like a real DV motor so to say.While the magnets attract each other the "active" side is exposed, and when the point comes where they would start to bind the "shielded" side is exposed to the drum.And like with all good mechnical toys we would have to find a way to revers the rotationthree times during one rotation of the drum to "compensate" for the reverse changes with a magnet bar that has a fixed spacing.Pushing instead of lifting....If two mangnets are used for the magnet bar it becomes obvious that a lot of "force" goes sideways instead of being used to actually push the drum.Hence the V shape to fool you the shape actually makes pushing possible to start with.Now read carefully and try to follow so you are not getting fooled by the explanation how to fool other people:For get an even base of understanding I will start where the closed end and the open end of the V meet on the drum, right where the pushing action starts.If the distance of the bar magnets dicreses with the V shape than we get even pushing forces working for us without the problem of reversal half way through the rotation.However we do get insane binding forces right when we get back to the start point of our rotation.Here we flip the magnet bar one full turn while the drum moves from pushing to pulling/binding.The direction of this rotation is important as it needs to match what the drum does.At the point of half rotation of the bar the single magnets move outwards again to be back in the start position once the rotation is complete.Complex mechanics, I know...The good thing is that you can always claim you get the energy for the action from the flipping of the magnets and that of course is not done by the mechanis, the magnet bar is flipped by the interaction of the magnets on the drum when the cycle repeats and drives the mechanics due the the inertia of the drum ;)So, is it possible to make it work without cheating and fooling?Sure it is.All you need to do is close the loop and make sure there is always more energy going into moving the drum than stopping it ;)Of course things would be much easier if you would find a material that actually blocks a magnetic field similar to what an opposing field would do but without the involved repelling forces.Like sunglasses for magnetic fields so to say.

Topic by Downunder35m  


Kite-powered proa (boat) collaboration/comments

Added 5/26/07: Please read the comments below to see how the project is evolving. Design specs, goals, etc, have been modified after discussion.Hi Folks,For several years I've been wanting to build a kite powered proa. A proa is a kind of boat with a narrow hull and a smaller outrigger. These Instructables are about building a proa with a traditional sail:https://www.instructables.com/id/ERIIBDCCOTEPUCHZ1K/?ALLSTEPShttps://www.instructables.com/id/EZN8M3OCWZEV2Z7IR5/?ALLSTEPSThese are kite-powered proa-like vehicles for land and ice:https://www.instructables.com/id/EPKZ5O80HQEQZJI20F/?ALLSTEPShttps://www.instructables.com/id/EPWWSYZNWIEV2ZKLCH/?ALLSTEPSGoals for the project:1. Make at least one good boat.2. Publish a good Instructable.3. Work with interesting people.I am definitely going ahead with #1 & #2. #3... anyone interested?The Boat: Generally it should be appealing/attainable by as wide a range of budgets and circumstances and skill levels as possible.a. It should be fun to mess around with starting in about 6 or 7 mph of wind (3 m/s).b. A beach boat, not an overnighter. Should be able to carry one or two people, a paddle, personal flotation device and maybe a sandwich and a water bottle.c. Storable in a typical apartment (maybe even a dorm room?). I'm thinking a 2-part bolt-together hull like Wade Tarzia's above. Two halves, each under 8 feet long so they can be stored on end, maybe used as bookshelves as suggested by TimAnderson. What is a typical ceiling height? Mine is about 91"d. Possible to build on a restricted budget ($200? is that possible? $400?). I'm budgeting about $500 but as a cheapskate packrat scrounger type I am hoping not to spend it all. Should also avoid necessitating rare and expensive tools.e. It should be possible to make a "good looking" version if the builder chooses.... sort of financially and chronologically(?) scalable. Someone might want to build something as quickly and cheaply as possible, and another person might want to spend all summer working on the fine details and finish. The boat should be worth building in either case.f. Should be able to take a passenger (is that possible if we rely on weight-shifting for steering?), but be sailable single-handed.g. Possibly be adaptable to a traditional sail? Would this be hard? This is something I don't need for myself, but I bet someone will ask that question as soon as we publish it. If someone doesn't already have a kite, is it easier to build a kite, or a sail and associated mods to the boat?h. Probably plywood stitch-and-glue construction main hull, but maybe carved from a couple of Styrofoam billets with a plywood stringer and/or deck? Leaning towards all plywood. If we fiberglass the whole boat can we use 1/4" interior luaun at $9 per 4x8 sheet? Is that more practical and cost effective than something like occume at $60 per sheet with glass on just the keel and joints? We'd need 3 sheets. Need to do some calculations on this.i. Usable in flat water, chop and small waves (and bigger waves?). Mine will be used mostly at an ocean beach.j. Steerable by weight-shifting, i.e. moving towards the front or back of the boat. No rudders or daggerboards. Maybe paddle-assisted steering when carrying a passenger/helmsman?The Instructable:a. Should be a good read, even for folks who won't undertake the project. b. Doubles as an Instructable on how to collaborate to make a great project and a great Instructable.c. Represents everyone involved in the project in some way.d. Gives the potential builder a rough "how to sail it" as well?e. Presents the reader with several options for materials and/or construction.f. All the regular "what makes a good Instructable" things.The Interesting People:a. Everyone is interesting in some way or another, right?b. Some people like to do research on the web.c. Some people have built boats.d. Some people some know about wood, or glue, or paint, or kites, or sails, or writing, or... e. Maybe someone will build the boat concurrently so we'll have pictures of two or more versions at various stages when we publish the Instructable.Let me be the first to sign up :) I have been using kites to get around fields, beaches, frozen lakes and the ocean for 10+ years. I make my own kite boards and have made my own kites (I use commercial kites now but still love my homemade plywood boards). I've done a fair amount of web research on proas and plywood boats (and some on tarp boats, canvas covered canoes, surfboards, etc.) but I have never built a boat. I experimented with a busted up, rudderless old hobie 14 for a while, but my homemade foot-steerable rudders broke almost instantly, and shortly after that I had to abandon the boat because I moved to a place where it couldn't be stored. It was enough to get me interested. I'm pretty confident I could build a usable boat as a solo project but I want to see how much better it could be as a collaboration, or at least having a few folks commenting on my ideas.I have a small assortment of cheap power tools. I've used epoxy and fiberglass a few times and I have some on hand.I have permission from my lovely bride-to-be to use part of the kitchen, part of the time, as my workshop (that's true love). I also have a small are outside where I can work but I can't leave anything there.The pictures are my initial hull ideas. For each hull one pic shows the hull from 3 angles and the other shows how the side pieces would fit on two sheets of plywood. A third sheet would be needed for the deck and a fourth (of thicker stuff, I would guess?) for the frames, bulkheads, etc. I'll attach the files for the hulls too. You can get the freeware to view and edit them at www.carlsondesign.com.The simple V hull would mean less cutting and joining. The other one looks better (in my opinion) and can float more weight with the same amount of plywood.Could instead go with a flat bottom like Wade's.Let me know what you think.Thanks!

Topic by flywoodkb    |  last reply


Build Night FAQ

General Resources What is the Build Night program? Instructables sponsors monthly build nights at makerspaces and hackerspaces around the world. Each month we partner with a different company to send you materials and/or tools to run a workshop at your space. In return your space posts Instructables from your build night. How can my makerspace get a group on Instructables? Check out this forum post that list the guidelines for getting a group on Instructables. Build Night Guidelines + Best Practices What are the requirements for signing up? Your makerspace must post at least 1 Instructable to sign up for a build night. We look at project quality when deciding on what spaces to accept. I suggest writing a feature worthy project. Check out the feature guidelines. What does the process look like for signing up for an event? Signing up is a 2-step process. You must complete both to fully sign up. Fill out the google form at the bottom of the event announcement. You will then receive a private message in your Instructables inbox by a specified date asking for your shipping information. You cannot receive the materials without completing this step. What is the selection process for picking makerspaces to participate in each build night? It is not first come first serve. We look at past build night participation, past project quality, and project proposals for the current build night. If you haven't participated in a build night OR haven't submitted Instructables for build night program we suggest your space create Instructables over the next few months and submit them on future applications. Do build nights have to happen at night? No! The only requirement is that you host 1 event with the materials provided during the month of the build night. This can be on a weekend, at night, during the day….literally anytime! You can also host multiple build nights during the month. What happens if you don’t submit Instructables by the given date? Not posting Instructables by the deadline will affect your chances of participating in future build nights. We keep very thorough records of who does and does not submit. It is VERY important to let me know if you are not able to submit a project by the deadline. I am much more understanding and willing to waive a missed deadline if I am given a reason. What are the best practices for writing high-quality Instructables? We want to see feature worthy projects! Check out this forum post with tips on how to create great tutorials. As the event organizer the responsibility falls on me to post all Instructables. How do I motivate my community to help? Check out this forum post with tips on how to motivate members of your community to get more involved. How can we get more visibility for our build night event? Use social media! Tweet at us. Mention us on Facebook. Share pictures of events on Instagram. Sponsors love it and will be excited to share your posts! So be sure to use #buildnight. How can we hear about upcoming build night events? If you are interested in being directly notified about future build nights fill out this form to join our mailing list. You will receive an e-mail when new events are announced. Please only sign up if you are not already on the mailing list. Other Build Night Details How many makerspaces participate in the build night program? We have over 350 makerspaces, hackerspaces, fabrication labs, student groups, libraries, etc… subscribed to our mailing list. Each month we decide how many spaces will be able to participate. This depends on the sponsor and materials provided. How many countries participate in build nights? There are 45 countries represented in our makerspaces mailing list. Check them out: Albania, Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Croatia, Egypt, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Latvia, Lebanon, Mexico, Morocco, Nepal, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Poland, Russia, S. Korea, Serbia, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, Tanzania, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America, and Zambia. By what criteria does Instructables measure the worth and success of Build Nights? There are 3 parties involved with every build night: Instructables, makerspaces, and the sponsors. When evaluating the success of a build night I try to consider everyones experience. For Instructables, we're mostly looking at the number of Instructables we get in and the quality (feature rate, topic, pictures, etc…). We also look at the number of new authors and community involvement. Makerspaces that are heavily involved on Instructables have their own group page. The sponsors are looking for brand engagement and authentic examples of their products being used. Sugru was thrilled to see lots of people talking on Twitter and Facebook about their build night experience. Voltaic Systems wanted a lower number of high quality projects made with their solar panels -- so we only accepted 15 spaces and made the acceptance process more difficult. Its not always easy to know the success level for the makerspace because I can't attend the events. From what I've gathered these are the goals of the makerspaces: connect with other makerspaces, learn new subjects, attract new members, free tools/materials, and create more opportunities for their members. In general, how successful have the Build Nights been? (Answered from the Instructables perspective) Most build nights have a 50-70% project return rate. The feature rate has been all over the board. The 2013 sugru feature rate was around 20% (we received 250 Instructables) and the Voltaic Systems feature rate was around 90% (we received 9 Instructables). The more build nights we run the higher I hope to get the project return rate because I'm excluding spaces that don't have a good posting record. In every event announcement I say "Not posting these Instructables will affect your chances to participate in future build nights" and I'm serious about it. I have a very detailed spreadsheet where I keep track of who has and has not posted. When it comes time to selecting spaces to participate I cross check my spreadsheet. That being said, every build night I give spaces a chance to explain why they weren’t able to post in the past. I completely understand life happens and I like to give out second chances! ================================================================ SUGGESTION BOX: Have questions to add to this FAQ? Have suggestions for ways to improve the build night program or new features to add? Submit them to our suggestion box. ================================================================

Topic by Carleyy    |  last reply


Fastest you have ever been.

I have a car, but no permit or license. One day, my brother told me to bring him something while he was at work. I was driving down the street going the speed limit or a little over and under. I turned onto the main road Speed limit, 50mph, and just went 50 or so the whole way. and when i got back onto the highway, this guy is following me to my bumper basically, so in the non passing zone just getting on i am going about 25mph, as you are getting on it is 35mph limit, as soon as it reaches 50mph, i jam the gas, it goes into passing gear and in no time i am doing 80mph. and on an S-curve still doing 80. On the stretch i am doing about 60mph, and decided i should just stick to the speed limit. Got a story? A Nice Morning Drive It was a fine morning in March 1982. The warm weather and clear sky gave promise of an early spring. Buzz had arisen early that morning, impatiently eaten breakfast and gone to the garage. Opening the door, he saw the sunshine bounce off the gleaming hood of his 15-year-old MGB roadster. After carefully checking the fluid levels, tire pressures and ignition wires, Buzz slid behind the wheel and cranked the engine, which immediately fired to life. He thought happily of the next few hours he would spend with the car, but his happiness was clouded - it was not as easy as it used to be. A dozen years ago things had begun changing. First there were a few modest safety and emission improvements required on new cars; gradually these became more comprehensive. The governmental requirements reached an adequate level, but they didn't stop; they continued and became more and more stringent. Now there were very few of the older models left, through natural deterioration and . . . other reasons. The MG was warmed up now and Buzz left the garage, hoping that this early in the morning there would be no trouble. He kept an eye on the instruments as he made his way down into the valley. The valley roads were no longer used very much: the small farms were all owned by doctors and the roads were somewhat narrow for the MSVs (Modern Safety Vehicles). The safety crusade had been well done at first. The few harebrained schemes were quickly ruled out and a sense of rationality developed. But in the late Seventies, with no major wars, cancer cured and social welfare straightened out, the politicians needed a new cause and once again they turned toward the automobile. The regulations concerning safety became tougher. Cars became larger, heavier, less efficient. They consumed gasoline so voraciously that the United States had had to become a major ally with the Arabian countries. The new cars were hard to stop or maneuver quickly, but they would save your life (usually) in a 50-mph crash. With 200 million cars on the road, however, few people ever drove that fast anymore. Buzz zipped quickly to the valley floor, dodging the frequent potholes which had developed from neglect of the seldom-used roads. The engine sounded spot-on and the entire car had a tight, good feeling about it. He negotiated several quick S-curves and reached 6000 in third gear before backing off for the next turn. He didn't worry about the police down here. No, not the cops . . . Despite the extent of the safety program, it was essentially a good idea. But unforeseen complications had arisen. People became accustomed to cars which went undamaged in 10-mph collisions. They gave even less thought than before to the possibility of being injured in a crash. As a result, they tended to worry less about clearances and rights-of-way, so that the accident rate went up a steady six percent every year. But the damages and injuries actually decreased, so the government was happy, the insurance industry was happy and most of the car owners were happy. Most of the car owners - the owners of the non-MSV cars - were kept busy dodging the less careful MSV drivers, and the result of this mismatch left very few of the older cars in existence. If they weren't crushed between two 6000-pound sleds on the highway they were quietly priced into the junkyard by the insurance peddlers. And worst of all, they became targets . . . Buzz was well into his act now, speeding through the twisting valley roads with all the skill he could muster, to the extent that he had forgotten his earlier worries. Where the road was unbroken he would power around the turns in well controlled oversteer, and where the sections were potholed he saw them as devious chicanes to be mastered. He left the ground briefly going over one of the old wooden bridges and later ascertained that the MG would still hit 110 on the long stretch between the old Hanlin and Grove farms. He was just beginning to wind down when he saw it, there in his mirror, a late-model MSV with hand-painted designs covering most of its body (one of the few modifications allowed on post-1980 cars). Buzz hoped it was a tourist or a wayward driver who got lost looking for a gas station. But now the MSV driver had spotted the MG, and with a whoosh of a well muffled, well cleansed exhaust he started the chase . . . It hadn't taken long for the less responsible element among drivers to discover that their new MSVs could inflict great damage on an older car and go unscathed themselves. As a result some drivers would go looking for the older cars in secluded areas, bounce them off the road or into a bridge abutment, and then speed off undamaged, relieved of whatever frustrations cause this kind of behavior. Police seldom patrolled these out-of-the-way places, their attentions being required more urgently elsewhere, and so it became a great sport for some drivers. Buzz wasn't too worried yet. This had happened a few times before, and unless the MSV driver was an exceptionally good one, the MG could be called upon to elude the other driver without too much difficulty. Yet something bothered him about this gaudy MSV in his mirror, but what was it? Planning carefully, Buzz let the other driver catch up to within a dozen yards or so, and then suddenly shot off down a road to the right. The MSV driver stood on his brakes, skidding 400 feet down the road, made a lumbering U-turn and set off once again after the roadster. The MG had gained a quarter mile in this manner and Buzz was thankful for the radial tires and front and rear anti-roll bars he had put on the car a few years back. He was flying along the twisting road, downshifting, cornering, accelerating and all the while planning his route ahead. He was confident that if he couldn't outrun the MSV then he could at least hold it off for another hour or more, at which time the MSV would be quite low on gas. But what was it that kept bothering him about the other car? They reached a straight section of the road and Buzz opened it up all the way and held it. The MSV was quite a way back but not so far that Buzz couldn't distinguish the tall antenna standing up from the back bumper. Antenna! Not police, but perhaps a Citizen's Band radio in the MSV? He quaked slightly and hoped it was not. The straight stretch was coming to an end now and Buzz put off braking to the last fraction of a second and then sped through a 75-mph right-hander, gaining ten more yards on the MSV. But less than a quarter mile ahead another huge MSV was slowly pulling across the road and to a stop. It was a CB set. The other driver had a cohort in the chase. Now Buzz was in trouble. He stayed on the gas until within a few hundred feet when he banked hard and feinted passing to the left. The MSV crawled in that direction and Buzz slipped by on the right, bouncing heavily over a stone on the shoulder. The two MSVs set off in hot pursuit, almost colliding in the process. Buzz turned right at the first crossroad and then made a quick left, hoping to be out of sight of his pursuers, and in fact he traveled several minutes before spotting one of them on the main road parallel to his lane. At the same time the other appeared in the mirror from around the last comer. By now they were beginning to climb the hills on the far side of the valley and Buzz pressed on for all he was worth, praying that the straining engine would stand up. He lost track of one MSV when the main road turned away, but could see the other one behind him on occasion. Climbing the old Monument Road, Buzz hoped to have time to get over the top and down the old dirt road to the right, which would be too narrow for his pursuers. Climbing, straining, the water temperature rising, using the entire road, flailing the shift lever back and forth from 3rd to 4th, not touching the brakes but scrubbing off the necessary speed in the corners, reaching the peak of the mountain where the lane to the old fire tower went off to the left . . . but coming up the other side of the hill was the second MSV he had lost track of! No time to get to his dirt road. He made a panicked turn left onto the fire tower road but spun on some loose gravel and struck a tree a glancing blow with his right fender. He came to a stop on the opposite side of the road. the engine stalled. Hurriedly he pushed the starter while the overheated engine slowly came back into life. He engaged 1st gear and sped off up the road, just as the first MSV turned the corner. Dazed though he was, Buzz had the advantage of a very narrow road lined on both sides with trees, and he made the most of it. The road twisted constantly and he stayed in 2nd with the engine between 5000 and 5500. The crash hadn't seemed to hurt anything and he was pulling away from the MSV. But to where? It hit him suddenly that the road dead-ended at the fire tower, no place to go but back . . . Still he pushed on and at the top of the hill drove quickly to the far end of the clearing, turned the MG around and waited. The first MSV came flying into the clearing and aimed itself at the sitting MG. Buzz grabbed reverse gear, backed up slightly to feint, stopped, and then backed up at full speed. The MSV, expecting the MG to change direction, veered the wrong way and slid to a stop up against a tree. Buzz was off again, down the fire tower road, and the undamaged MSV set off in pursuit. Buzz's predicament was unenviable. He was going full tilt down the twisting blacktop with a solid MSV coming up at him. and an equally solid MSV coming down after him. On he went, however, braking hard before each turn and then accelerating back up to 45 in between. Coming down to a particularly tight turn, he saw the MSV coming around it from the other direction and stood on the brakes. The sudden extreme pressure in the brake lines was too much for the rear brake line which had been twisted somewhat in his spin, and it broke, robbing Buzz of his brakes. In sheer desperation he pulled the handbrake as tightly as it would go and rammed the gear lever into 1st, popping the clutch as he did so. The back end locked solid and broke away, spinning him off the side of the road and miraculously into some bushes, which brought the car to a halt. As he was collecting his senses, Buzz saw the two MSVs, unable to stop in time, ram each other head on at over 40 mph. It was a long time before Buzz had the MG rebuilt to its original pristine condition of before the chase. It was an even longer time before he went back into the valley for a drive. Now it was only in the very early hours of the day when most people were still sleeping off the effects of the good life. And when he saw in the papers that the government would soon be requiring cars to be capable of withstanding 75-mph headon collisions, he stopped driving the MG altogether. Written by: Richard Foster

Topic by Yerboogieman    |  last reply


How much Mercury is in Compact Fluorescent (CFL) bulbs, watch batteries, and coal-fired power plants?

In Brennn10's Compact Fluorescent Instructable there was a short discussion about the amount of mercury contained in CFL bulbs. The same topic came up in a mailing list I read, and there was some interesting analysis worth sharing.Statement:The Stranger (the Seattle weekly) has a column called "Dear Science" where the typically quite intelligent author argued that CFL bulbs weren't all that "better" for the environment because inevitable improper disposal put more mercury-n-shit into the environment. So unless you got all your power from a mercury spewing coal plant, you shouldn't use CFL's . And Seattle, getting a majority of it's power from hydro, shouldn't use CFL's.This was called into question for being selective analysis that encourages an attitude of "there's not currently a solution, so keep doing what you're doing", and elicited the following response:Just so I can bore everyone with what I think is the current level of knowledge about mercury and CFLs, here's some of the current information.NRCan did a study on how much mercury is actually in CFLs, and compares them to other typical consumer sources (e.g., watch batteries--if you throw one of them out, you've throw out five times as much mercury as in a CFL):http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/energystar/english/consumers/questions-answers.cfm#mercuryAfter reading this, I actually worked out these numbers for myself on how CFL savings compare to mercury releases a few months ago. Of course, this is all more environmental destruction brand X vs. brand Y discussion that was being talking about.I was curious about what the numbers work out to, so I went to dig for some data; this is what I came up with.In 1999, about 1.75 trillion kWh were generated by coalEnergy Information Administration Annual Energy Review 1999, Figure 26In 1999, 47.8 tons/year of mercury emissions came out of coal-fired power plants.Source: U.S. EPA, Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards.1999 National Emissions Inventory for Hazardous Air Pollutants.http://www.epa.gov/ttn/chief/net/1999inventory.html#final3haps.This calcs out to a figure of 0.025 mg mercury per kWhAssuming 5 mg mercury per CFL, the equivalence point is about 200 kWh--a CFL would need to save 200 kWh before getting tossed in the trash. A quick calculation shows that this is about how much a CFL saves in half a year, if it were run 24-7: 75 W for an incandescent; 25 W for an equivalent CFL = 657 vs. 219 kWh/year, or 438 kWh/year difference.Of course, this assumes that the coal mercury emission rate is the same as it was in 1999; I'm not sure if measures have been taken since then to reduce mercury emissions. Also, this is assuming that 100% of the power saved by the CFL would be generated by coal-fired power plants. But even with that assumption, coal is such a large fraction of the power generation (typically about half)--it would jump from six months to a year, instead. Of course, this period gets longer assuming a realistic duty cycle, but still, those numbers all seem to pencil in below typical installed lifetimes of CFLs.Finally, there's a article from Home Energy magazine (behind a subscriber link), where somebody did a similar calculation with more current numbers, I think.http://www.homeenergy.org/article_full.php?id=457&article;_title=Understanding_CFLsHome Energy MagazineNovember/December 2007Understanding CFLsby Richard Benware"Although the use of CFLs is steadily spreading, public understanding about how to dispose of them responsibly has not kept pace."Life Cycle BenefitsIn order to disprove the myths about CFLs, let's begin at the beginning. When CFLs are created, manufacturers dose the bulb with a small amount of mercury. This mercury, when electrically stimulated, releases UV light, which subsequently reacts with a phosphor coating to create visible light. Thus mercury is an essential part of every CFL; without it, the bulbs would not produce light. The typical dose of mercury is about the size of a pen tip, and these doses have been getting smaller and smaller. One reason for this is that the laws resulting from the Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) Directive have made it illegal for CFLs in Europe to contain more than 5 milligrams (mg) of mercury.In the United States, there are no such laws limiting the amount of mercury in lightbulbs as yet, but members of the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) have voluntarily agreed to limit the amount of mercury in the CFLs that they produce to 5 mg for bulbs of up to 25 watts and 6 mg for bulbs of 25 to 40 watts. The average CFL on store shelves today contains about 4 mg of mercury, and nearly all the CFLs in production contain less than 5 mg. The mercury used in all the CFLs produced in the United States represents 0.18% of the mercury used in all U.S. products andindustrial processes.CFLs do not release mercury as long as they are intact. In fact, they reduce net mercury emissions in the environment by conserving energy. For every kWh of electricity used by consumers, the average power plant emits over 1.5 lb of pollutants. If a 75W incandescent is replaced by an 18W CFL, the CFL will use 456 kWh less energy than the incandescent over its 8,000 hour lifetime. The Emissions and Generation Resource Integrated Database (eGRID) contains data on the emissions of the average power plant. Using eGRID's information to calculate the average emissions per kWh, we find that this single CFL has prevented the release of 2.72 lb of sulfur dioxide, 1.05 lb of nitrogen oxide, 5.67 mg of mercury, and over 700 lb of CO2.It is important to note that these are the reductions from the average U.S. power plant. The eGRID data show that, on average, nonbaseload emissions tend to be dirtier. And in addition to reducing emissions, CFLs save money for the consumer. The Energy Information Administration (EIA) gives a 2006 average residential electricity cost of $.1008/kWh. Using the example given above, and basing our calculation on this figure, we find that a consumer would save about $46 on energy over the lifetime of the CFL.When these bulbs finally do reach the end of their useful life, there are several pathways they can take. In the best-case scenario, the bulbs are recycled. Recycling rates are increasing, thanks to state regulations -- California and Minnesota have banned altogether throwing CFLs in the trash -- and improved consumer awareness. In 1999, it was estimated that only 15% of all fluorescent lightbulbs were recycled. Currently, that number has increased to around 25%, with higher levels in commercial applications. Since an average of 98.9% of the mercury is successfully recovered in the recycling process, this pathway generates minimal emissions.Even the CFLs that are discarded in the trash are unlikely to release much of their mercury. Although most of them break under current trash disposal methods, some remain unbroken, and will not release any mercury. But those that do break are not likely to release much mercury. EPA estimates that only 0.2% of the remaining mercury in a spent bulb is elemental vapor. The rest of the mercury is in the glass, the phosphor coating, and the electrodes of the bulb. Mercury absorbed in these areas is not readily released. In fact, an EPA study found that only 6.8% of the total mercury in a broken bulb will be released. Since the average bulb on the market today contains only 4 mg of mercury, it will release only about 0.27 mg, even if it breaks when it is thrown in the trash.The only disposal option that could lead to the release of any significant amount of mercury is incineration. Today, many incinerators have advanced mercury control technologies. CFLs disposed of in such incinerators would release up to 90% of their mercury, but those emissions would then be removed by these technologies. Incinerators without these technologies are not capable of removing the mercury. But even after accounting for all of the emissions that occur via all of the routes listed above, CFLs represent a mere 0.01% of total U.S. mercury emissions annually.It is important to note that even if CFLs released all of their mercury, the environment would still be better off than it would be if nobody used CFLs. This is true because the average power plant releases 5.67 mg of mercury to power each 75W incandescent bulb. In short, replacing incandescents with CFLs is a great way to save energy, reduce mercury emissions, and save money (see "Discounting CFLs").

Topic by ewilhelm    |  last reply


Some of the current Ebay and Paypal scams to be aware of

Recently the spam activities increased for my inbox and with that the amount of phishing Emails and direct scams.Today I will only focus on the big two: Paypal and Ebay.1. General Paypal scams and phishing mails....Most of these are really easy to spot.Genuine Emails coming from Paypal always address you with your full name!Scam or other bad Paypal Emails will use your Email address or just your first name.There is a problem with some users here, but I will go into these details a bit further down.In most cases the scammer will spoof areal looking Paypal Email or server address.This means in your Email client the sender appears as "Paypal" and not some cryptic server address you can find in the source code of the offending mail.The simple scams use links to malware or phishing sites - often trying to look like the original so be aware of this.2. The latest and for some hard to spot Paypal scam.You are more likely to become a target if the Email looks genuine enough to fool you to click on some link in it.A lot of users do a quick check with the mouse on some links offered and check in the bottom left corner for the link that appears.Sadly in the latest scam mails the scammer uses genuine graphics and links.In some case directly from the Paypal servers, like logos and backgrounds.Only one link is in there that will fool you.If the scam informs you about a payment you supposedly made than it will be the link directing you to your account to cancel the payment for a refund.If the scam mail is about a refund you got then it is the same link - the one making it easy for you to get to your account settings.In one scam mail I landed on a really good looking copy of Paypal's login portal.The address bar however did not contain the usual secure HTTPS and neither a genuine address going to paypal.Problems with these new scam mails happen if you follow the suggestions or free will for naming your Email account.If your Email is for example tommy19726@mymail.com then you will spot this quite easy in the scam mail when you are addressed as tommy19726 instead of Tommy Hilfinger.It seems to be a favour now to have a real looking Email, so Tommy might have used Tommy.Hilfinger@mymail.com.And then in the scam mail he would be addressed as "Tommy.Hilfinger" - only the DOT is then different to a real Paypal mail!!!If you have one of these Email addresses with no numbers and just your first and last name then pay specail attention when checking Paypal mails!!!3. The latest Ebay scam from China :(Lately I had to order quite a few things that I could only get through Ebay for a reasanable price.Shipping costs were the major problem with other sources as I don't see the point in paying much more for postage than for what I bought.Anyways, the scam goes like this:You order something with a value above about $50.You get the usual payment confirmation and a few days later a tracking number.Problem is that this tracking number won't get any updates at all.It usually only states "Shipping information received".This means someone in China requested a shippment but never actually lodge an item or had one picked up.You can't do anything through Ebay until the max delivery time is over.Trying to get a working tracking number from those seller only gives you excuses but nothing of use.In many cases the answer you get has no relation to your request!Once the last date to get the shippment is over the seller keeps stalling and asks you to wait a few days more.No attempt to explain that the tracking shows that nothing at all was sent on the way gets any useful answer.It is like talking to your digital assistent set to a language you don't speak.Once you start a claim through Ebay the case and refund is handled quite quickly.Does not mean you are left alone by the seller, especially if you did the right thing and left negative feedback.And no surprise, suddenly the seller is then even able to uderstand your language LOLBiggest thing is that these dodgy seller are adjusting quickly.Once you state in your responses that you will open a calim they usually "offer" a refund.Even if you clearly state you want the item and not the refund you will get a nice thank note back and then a refund that makes a claim impossible.You are left with no item and can wait another 3 or 4 weeks if you find trustworthy seller that is.Only chance is to open a "Item not received" claim right after the last due date.But even if Ebay agrees and provides you with a refund, as they have no interest to do more, you need be quick!The item in question will end in the hidden section of your purchase history.Only if enable to show your hidden items you can then select it to rate at least the transaction for a negative feedback.If you act quick enough you can even leave negative feedback in the usual way, but only through activating your hidden items.What can you do to stay secure?The easiest way for Paypal is to simply ignore all content in any Email you get that seems to be from Paypal!Whatever you do or feel you need to check: Go directly into your Paypal account through the app or with your browser but DO NOT use any links provided in any Email.If you think an Email is suspicious then just forward the Email to "spoof@paypal.com" - or .com.au for Australia, .de for Germany and so on.In case the Email is genuine you will get a corresponding response.If the Email is indeed fishy then Paypal will notify you to delete the Email in question.For Ebay the problem is not s easy - at least if you don't buy locally.From my end I can only state it is the Chinese sellers, Hong Kong and mainland.And a few years back the recommendation was not to buy from a seller with less than 95% of positive feedback.You can try it yourself and mess up one sale if you are private and see how badly your feedback goes down - just kidding, please don't try!!!With the introduction of "power Sellers" and Ebay stores however this guide was rendered totally useless.A power seller with 99.7% positive feedback can still literally have hundrets of negative feedback comments for the past few months.Quite often you see it spiked a month or 6 ago - a clear indicator the seller is going to new account and tries to make as much quick money as possible before Ebay closes him down for good.If in doubt you really need to check the negative feedback in detail before buying.Some really dodgy sellers make all sales "private".This not only removes the item from the feedback but also the sale price.Intended only for special uses, Ebay sees no need to stop this misuse.If you can't see detailed feedback for a seller then just don't trust the seller!If you see way too many negative feedback comments during the past 6 months then stay away!Click on other listing showing identical listing images and you can be almost certain that even if the seller name is different it will be the same scammer.You can usually confirm this by seeing a similar pile up of negative feedback with that seller.Why do I stress so much about Ebay scammers if you get a refund anyways?Interest...No really, I mean interest in getting it for the money in your account.Firstly, if you wasted about 100 bucks and waited a few weeks for finally getting a refund, then you were out of pocket twice.Once by paying for something you never got and then again for the money you lost in interest.Sure on your end only a few cents worth...But see it from the other side:Have just hundred transactions of $50 going into your Paypal account where you never actually bother to send anything.Add a longer than usual shipping time and make it free.Means you have $5000 in your account collecting interest rates for 4 to 6 weeks.Do it on an even bigger scale and you can invest 10.000 or more on a regular base.With up to 10% of interest on foreign currency Chinese banks are only too happy to take it.Or did you never wonder why an item sold in Greece needs to be paid for in US Dollar, UK Pound or Canadian Dollar? ;)A good Ebay scammer can make over $25.000US in interest rate payouts this way before Ebay even decides to limit or monitor his sales.And once Ebay or the feedback rating goes to negative on him it continues on another account with the same items and availbilities.Quite often you can find a seller has let's say 5 items sold and 12 still available.Isn't it then funny and of course pure coincidence that another seller has the same, hard to find item, with the exact same 5 items sold and 12 available?Ebay has no interest to actually stopping this in any way, Paypal also prefers to look away if the same account is used for multiple Ebay accounts.Not even the need to provide the Paypal details of the seller in plain english is a requirement anymore.You need to use a translator to figure out what "company" is behind the Paypal account and it never matches the Ebay account in any way....I did some checks on the few suspicious sellers that still had at least item prices listed with their negative feedback.There are some out there having a vlue of well over $12.000US in "not received" claims over the last 12 months.About a year ago I tried to start a little (ad sponsored) reporting service online.Scammed Ebay users were asked to provide the details about the item, Paypal address of the seller and the amount/time until refunded.Within 3 days of going online and with only having two users that reported a scammer my provider gave me a shut down notice - effective immediately.A few days later I got an Email stating my website was shut after both Ebay and Paypal stated I would violate their privacy terms and break US law.Needless to say this notice also included a note informing me that if I attempt to conitnue to provide such service I will be taken to court for legal action.So what was the fuzz all about you might wonder?It was planned that users can provide the required data, without this data actually showing up anywhere.Once the databse was full enough a user could enter a seller or shop name or even a Paypal account to have it checked for negative things.You either get "unknown" or a list that states when and how many users reported this seller.With no deatils about any transactions, item numbers or user names linked.Did I mention how supportive Ebay and Paypal were when I contacted them about the take down notice? ROFLRules and regulations...I pointed these flaws out to Ebay and Paypal more times than I can count over the past 3 or four years.But as always, money is all that matters and those scammers won't be stopped.If you get a refund then the seller will be punished by more than your feedback, only if the Paypal account he used was unable to provide the required funds.In the rare case the Paypal account disappears with the seller you will notice the refund comes from Ebay or Paypal but not from the seller's account.This is the only real buyer protection Ebay has on offer.The rest is just following the pressure of local laws, especially in terms of refund and warranties.Does not mean though a warranty for an Ebay item will be honored by a company....If you start selling on Ebay then one big requirement is to have a validated Paypal account.Also a real physical address - although this is only too often just taken as granted once you had a delivery to your nominated address.Either way you Paypal account's address and name must match what you used for Ebay.Means if things go really south both Ebay and Payl will have enough details to surrender you to the local law.In China however things are different, starting with space.An export business is highly subsidised as it brings in foreign currency.So you can just hire a dummy letter box in some office building for company purposes.All mail however will be directed to whatever real address you specified for your "company".Same for actual company grounds.A n awful lot of producing factories/companies over there get additional support by the government for supporting small export businesses.That means you, as a little Chinese Ebay power seller forward your orders to whatever factory produces or stores these thing in huge amounts.This company then does all the shipping for you.Becomes really clear once you try to figure out from where you Ebay shippment really came.There won't be any Ebay seller name on the address, same for whatever you found in the Paypal invoice.The guy can just sit in his lounge room and never actually touches any shippment at all.In mayn cases those sellers have good discounts and since small items ship for free out of China, no one complains about the extra work.Both Ebay and Paypal are well aware of those loop holes in China!But as with multiple accounts they look away and prefer not to act as long as the money keeps flowing.

Topic by Downunder35m    |  last reply