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andytechdude

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  • Add a Jet Engine to Your Project

    Having spent a long career in engineering and being dismayedby the apparent decline in interest in engineering by the younger generations Igain more than a little optimism from the maker revolution. This Instructable issuperb, entertaining, not to mention funny and well presented. Your work willundoubtedly be an inspiration to would be engineers the world over. Withregards to comments from the safety committee above, Orville and Wilbur wouldbe proud of you I am sure.

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  • Economy Plywood Turntable

    Nicely done. Cost aside it is always good to see anything resurrected these days instead of going to land fill. Plywood layers are always a classy finish. A note on the electrical output from a vinyl playing turn table should anyone wish to add their own amplification for the fully self contained unit. The output from the bit that converts the groove "vibrations" on the record into an electrical signal representing the sound (stylus and cartridge) have a particular frequency curve that is not flat like those from say a CD player. If the turntable signal is simply amplified the sound will appear "odd" lacking bass and a lot of top end. This curve is known as the RIAA equalization. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RIAA_equalization) The really small turntable signal (about…

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    Nicely done. Cost aside it is always good to see anything resurrected these days instead of going to land fill. Plywood layers are always a classy finish. A note on the electrical output from a vinyl playing turn table should anyone wish to add their own amplification for the fully self contained unit. The output from the bit that converts the groove "vibrations" on the record into an electrical signal representing the sound (stylus and cartridge) have a particular frequency curve that is not flat like those from say a CD player. If the turntable signal is simply amplified the sound will appear "odd" lacking bass and a lot of top end. This curve is known as the RIAA equalization. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RIAA_equalization) The really small turntable signal (about 10mV) needs to be corrected and amplified to normalize the sound and give the level a boost to a signal equivalent to that provided from a CD player or tape deck (about 300mV) before being fed into the power amplifier. This per-amplifier is built into amplifiers with a phono, (turntable input). Another slight complication is that the cartridges that were generally available came in a few different flavors. Depending on the type (moving coil / moving magnet / ceramic) the output signal voltage varied by quite a bit so the better amplifiers provide a couple of different settings to correct for the output type. The correction electronics can be a bit involved but there are cheap kits (US$19) available on the net that do the job. Long live vinyl, or as the grand kids say really.....really big CD's

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  • PVC Chicken Feeder With Meter

    I love simple solutions. Have a look at the Levetator. An excellent tank level gauge that sorts out the water up / float down issue. https://yaktek.com.au/our-products/levetator/This wouldn't work in chook feed but for a liquid they are brilliant.

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  • Measuring Water Level With Ultrasonic Sensor

    I would advise against the use of this system in a fuel environment. I personally would look into approved technologies such as those used in vehicle fuel tanks and adapt to suit your own application. Inventing is fun but all engineering comes with a responsibility for safety. Good luck with your project.

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  • Make a Lawn Statue, Copied From (almost) Anything

    Just a thought. You could cast in loops of galvanized fence wire or similar that protrude from the flat back face of the first casting. When dry and you flip the casting over to sit in the second half, the 2 pieces with have something to grip on.

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  • Great use of ultrasonics!Refering to your comments regarding the longevity of the system. Past work experience with the cheap readily available ultrasonic transducers has taught me that they do not like water. The aluminium case and grille corrode and the internals of the piezo electric transducer eventually gives up. There are water proof versions as used on car reversing devices but their sesitivity is much lower than the cheap common open versions. The reduced sensitivity may be OK for shorter range and larger targets that produce larger echo. A few tips for increasing the life of these open transducers.1/ Prevent water spray onto the transducer. In the past I have used barrier materials to take the energy out of spray and prevent the majority of direct water contact. Utrasonics have s…

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    Great use of ultrasonics!Refering to your comments regarding the longevity of the system. Past work experience with the cheap readily available ultrasonic transducers has taught me that they do not like water. The aluminium case and grille corrode and the internals of the piezo electric transducer eventually gives up. There are water proof versions as used on car reversing devices but their sesitivity is much lower than the cheap common open versions. The reduced sensitivity may be OK for shorter range and larger targets that produce larger echo. A few tips for increasing the life of these open transducers.1/ Prevent water spray onto the transducer. In the past I have used barrier materials to take the energy out of spray and prevent the majority of direct water contact. Utrasonics have strange properties and what may look opaque to you may be perfectly transparent to utrasonics. The coarse nylon material that pan scrubbers are made from produces a good barrier that drains easily and the transducer simply "sees" straight through.2/ Humidity. The interior of a water tank gets very humid under the right conditions and that humidity will make short work of your tranducers. Try to provide ventilation arround your tranducers to keep the humidity low, vent to the outside. Your transducers can "look" in through a well placed hole while enjoying the fresh dry air outside the tank.Ultrasonics may pick up features that you do not wish them to see. Features on a tank wall or the rim of a hole for example. The beam shape from ultrasonic transducers can be shaped to prevent this. Similarly as you can with light, reflectors and baffles may be applied to tranducers to shape / limit the beam. Trial & error is the only easy method for the home inventor for getting this right. Minimum detection range. When attempting to detect in the coser ranges, problems can be encountered due to cross-talk directly between the tranducers. Software can be modified to include a "dead zone" an echo time interval below which the readings are ignored. Isolating the transmitter and receiver sound can also help with this problem. Keep inventing.

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  • Great project Kieren!I have had a keen interest in the renewables subject for 20 odd years now so I take great interest in projects like yours. I actually have a property that is entirely off grid, so the fundamental economics differ from yours but the principles are the same (just without the grid). Ignoring the modified sine wave inverters (only good for running a power drill), I notice that the inverters used in many of these projects are of the high frequency radio shack variety. High frequency inverters form the output AC waveform in the electronics and pass the waveform out to the load. This is fine when it only needs to supply power to limited devices for a short period eg UPS. A far better (and robust) system is low frequency where the electronics form the waveform and present it …

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    Great project Kieren!I have had a keen interest in the renewables subject for 20 odd years now so I take great interest in projects like yours. I actually have a property that is entirely off grid, so the fundamental economics differ from yours but the principles are the same (just without the grid). Ignoring the modified sine wave inverters (only good for running a power drill), I notice that the inverters used in many of these projects are of the high frequency radio shack variety. High frequency inverters form the output AC waveform in the electronics and pass the waveform out to the load. This is fine when it only needs to supply power to limited devices for a short period eg UPS. A far better (and robust) system is low frequency where the electronics form the waveform and present it to the primary of a large transformer, the load is then powered from the secondary (rough and ready description, google is your friend). In low frequency inverters the electronics are protected from inductive spikes etc behind the transformer, this makes for a far more robust inverter. The surge capability of the low frequency design tends to be an order of magnitude above the high frequency equivalent too. Now before anyone shouts out "but at what cost?" there are low frequency inverters from China that are almost comparable in cost to the high frequency types, the inverters to which I refer also double as potent battery chargers when they are fed from a generator (or grid). I use one of these for a stand alone system in a shed and it runs everything from computers to motors without issue, and handles the large inrush current of my saw bench etc. These inverters not only charge the batteries when an external AC source is available but they also have internal contactors to switch the incoming AC through to the output. An example is https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/3000W-9000W-PEAK-24V-P...We have installed one of these in a neighbors house and it runs the whole place, 3 years on it is still putting in good service. Economics wise. My neighbors system cost roughly $1000 in electronics, inverter, solar regulator, battery isolators, solar circuit breakers etc. A further $6500 was spent on an 1100Ah 24V battery bank and $2000 on solar panels. All in all it is a break even on grid power costs in Australia over the 10-15 year battery lifespan. There is more to this than economics of course. For those purely interested in economics I always say, start by turning off the lights when you leave a room.Great stuff Kieren, all the best for you future as a sparky!

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