I do a lot of stuff that doesn't make it to instructables. Whether because it requires specialist tools/materials or just because it's too damn obvious, I don't feel it's worth writing up as a full blown instructable.
To keep a record of all these things I make and do I recently started a blog. To show off some of these ideas/plans/instructables in the making I have decided to take Carley's lead and publish a monthly (instead of her weekly) blog summary to Instructables.
The intention of this is not to drive traffic to my website, since I don't make any money from it (quite the contrary since it costs me money), but to share in a more concise way projects that might otherwise become spammy. If people like them or find something that interests them, great, they can follow it up on my website, or demand fuller instructions here. I also hope that others views of my projects get them to put their view of them across, hence inspiring me more!
This roundup's posted a wee bit early since I'm off on holiday to climb in Fontainebleau in France next week so won't get a chance to post it. Sorry so much of it's laser cutter orientated this month, hopefully it will be more varied next month.
Step 1: Satellite Dish Inclination Gauge
A guy at work wanted to be able to align his satellite dish on his motor home to the right inclination when he parked up. He had a chart to tell him what angle it should be at but no way to determine the angle it was at.
This quarter circle protractor was designed in Alibre and has 10 and 2 degree divisions and a dial so he can line it up by eye.
It's laser cut from 3mm translucent orange acrylic and held together by an M3 machine screw and two M3 nuts.
Step 2: Beer Mat Boxes
Lemonie brought me a bag full of awesome old beer mats for my collection when he came to visit in July. He picked them up at a car boot sale for £5.
I needed somewhere to keep them so designed this box for them from the 5mm frosted acrylic left over after making ERCBIENG a chess board for the gift exchange.
These boxes do the job well and I think they look great. They're held together by machine screws and tabs.
Step 3: Negatively Laser Etched Metal
This was on my blog first and after getting picked up by Hackaday.com I decided it would probably make quite a good instructable too, despite some of the specialist tools and machinery needed.
Thanks Kelseymh for bullying me into padding some of it out!
The method involved first spraying prepared stainless steel with black spray paint and then using our laser cutter to etch it off, leaving a shiny image on a black background. While originally I had intended to use it to make some shaft encoders for Steveastrouk the effect was so cool I did several pictures with it.
Step 4: SSOP Package Photography
After laying out the footprint for a tiny IC at work I had to print it out and check that the pads lines up with the pins under the microscope.
I thought it was pretty cool how the size of the pins compares to the dots on the paper so I went back at lunchtime and took some shots through the microscope. There's 0.65mm between the center of each of those pins!
Step 5: Removing the "Unsubscribe" Button From Wordpress Plugin "Subscribe2"
After installing the Wordpress plugin "Subscribe2" so that visitors to my blog could subscribe to email alerts I was a bit miffed at how ugly the Unsubscribe button looked.
I couldn't find anywhere online showing people how to remove it on what is apparently quite a popular Wordpress plugin. It wasn't hard to do but it took some looking around for the right code. To speed it up for others wanting to do the same thing I wrote this really quick tutorial on how to do it.
Step 6: Rechargeable Battery Rack
Lizzy wanted somewhere to keep all the charged rechargeable batteries her household gets through. Sick of them getting mixed up and having to recharge them, she asked me to make her something to keep them in. Suuuuuuure a margerine tub or a block of wood with holes would have done the job, but when you have a laser cutter and an itching to play with CAD, why not do both?
This little project was designed in Alibre and laser cut from 3mm white acrylic. I used M3 machine screws and nuts again to join it all together. The next one I make will have shorter uprights so that the AAAs fit better.
It holds 20 AAAs and 20AAs. I quite like that it makes it possible to keep sets of batteries together and easily findable instead of having to rifle through a box for a matching set.