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  • Yellow Jacket Ground Nest Trap From 5 Gallon Water Bottle

    Hmm. What about a wine bottle, if the hole is large enough? Or any glass jar: Place over the hole, and then half bury with sand or dirt.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Max Maker's instructable Kayak and Canoe Cart (Boat Trailer)3 hours ago
    Kayak and Canoe Cart (Boat Trailer)

    You need MUCH larger wheels if you are going to use this on typical portage trails. If you use 6" wheels, you will catch on every 4" log, make grooves through swampy bits, and will have a miserable time on boulder fields. I would suggest that the bare minimum would be 12". Were I building this, I'd use 16" - 20" wheels salvaged from kids bicycles., or small mountain bikes.Other than the wheel size, good instructable.I know one guy who set a stem post bearing into his stern plate, and carried the front fork of a bike, inserting into the stem post. He carried the front end of the canoe, and his giant castor carried the back end.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Hey Jude's instructable Comfy, Colour-Coded Camera Controls5 weeks ago
    Comfy, Colour-Coded Camera Controls

    If you decide later you don't like it, how hard is it to remove? How likely is it to fall off in casual use?

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  • sgbotsford commented on Xryman's instructable PVC Faux Bamboo Privacy Wall With LEDs5 weeks ago
    PVC Faux Bamboo Privacy Wall With LEDs

    Why not use bamboo? Even more authentic looking. <grin> PVC is pretty evil stuff in terms of it's lifecycle environmental costs. I'd like to see this done with a more benign material.http://www.bambooworld.com/bamboo-poles 3/4 x 12 feet $1.62 1.5" x 8' $4.60This is about half the price of PVC. Probably can get better prices if you search for a nursery supply store in your area. Lot of bamboo used for training trees and grapes.

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  • ESP8266 Temperature Controlled Relay

    Depending on the power of the space heater to the size of the room, you may have issues with overshoot. E.g. If the target is 30C, you may want to turn it off when it reaches 28, because the room hasn't averaged out with the thermometer, it may surge to 33 or so.Anotehr way to approach this is to have a less binary feedback loop: E.g. You start with an initial duty cycle of 10 seconds on 50 seconds off. As the temperature rises the duty cycle shortens. This damps the oscillations in the system. The full cycle needs to be significantly shorter than the natural thermal cycle of the room. E.g. if the thermal mass and insulation of the room are such that it changes 1/e of the differential between inside and outside in 2 hours, then the duty cycle of your system has to be significantl...

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    Depending on the power of the space heater to the size of the room, you may have issues with overshoot. E.g. If the target is 30C, you may want to turn it off when it reaches 28, because the room hasn't averaged out with the thermometer, it may surge to 33 or so.Anotehr way to approach this is to have a less binary feedback loop: E.g. You start with an initial duty cycle of 10 seconds on 50 seconds off. As the temperature rises the duty cycle shortens. This damps the oscillations in the system. The full cycle needs to be significantly shorter than the natural thermal cycle of the room. E.g. if the thermal mass and insulation of the room are such that it changes 1/e of the differential between inside and outside in 2 hours, then the duty cycle of your system has to be significantly shorter than 2 hours to be effective in keeping the temp close to the set point.

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  • How to Lose 100+ Pounds and Keep It Off for Life

    Buy a kitchen scale. Lots of things don't fit nicely into half cup measures (try measuring a half cup of brussel sprouts.)Living with other people creates some friction. They may serve you stir fry glop of ground lizard sausage, chick peas and asparagus tips. Figuring out the calories in the glop isn't easy. Weigh ingredients as you add them. Tare everything. That is, know approximately the weight of the pots and pans and plates and bowls you use. Writing down weights is a lot easier than trying to get a lamb chop into a measuring cup.Read up on diabetics sites: They have a system of exchanges: E.g. starches are measured in bread exchanges. Veggies come in 0% 5%, 10%, and 20% varieties. A 20% vegetable means you count it as 1/5 of the same measure of a starch. So 2.5 cups of...

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    Buy a kitchen scale. Lots of things don't fit nicely into half cup measures (try measuring a half cup of brussel sprouts.)Living with other people creates some friction. They may serve you stir fry glop of ground lizard sausage, chick peas and asparagus tips. Figuring out the calories in the glop isn't easy. Weigh ingredients as you add them. Tare everything. That is, know approximately the weight of the pots and pans and plates and bowls you use. Writing down weights is a lot easier than trying to get a lamb chop into a measuring cup.Read up on diabetics sites: They have a system of exchanges: E.g. starches are measured in bread exchanges. Veggies come in 0% 5%, 10%, and 20% varieties. A 20% vegetable means you count it as 1/5 of the same measure of a starch. So 2.5 cups of veg = 1/2 cup of rice.Read the back of packages. You can still eat pizza. Cut the pizza into 8ths or 12ths, and divide the numbers into the back of the package.It's more than calories. You need a reasonable balance of calories.

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  • sgbotsford commented on adlabens's instructable How to Make a Tire Swing!7 weeks ago
    How to Make a Tire Swing!

    1/4" (shaft diameter) x 1.5" (thread length) is adequate for this. Could go to 5/16 if you are concerned. However use nylon insert nuts so they don't work loose.

    Your holes for the bolts are too close to the inner hole of the tire. Move the bolts to the outer edge of the side wall of the tire.

    If you use connector links instead of S hooks to attach the tire, you can easily change tires. This may be of worth as your kids grow.I never liked chains on swings as a kid. Cold, and mittens would catch in them, sometimes would get pinched if I got it really pumped up. You can do this same approach and use 1/2" nylon rope instead of chain. Avoid polypropylene rope. Most of it is NOT UV stabilized, and it will require replacement every couple years. Kids, being kids, it's worth having handles on the chain / rope so they can stand on the tire to swing. If you make the 3 tire chains 6 feet long, then you can put in connector chains at various heights for different kids to use as handles.When hanging it you want it far enough off the ground so that it will pass over a kid on t...

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    If you use connector links instead of S hooks to attach the tire, you can easily change tires. This may be of worth as your kids grow.I never liked chains on swings as a kid. Cold, and mittens would catch in them, sometimes would get pinched if I got it really pumped up. You can do this same approach and use 1/2" nylon rope instead of chain. Avoid polypropylene rope. Most of it is NOT UV stabilized, and it will require replacement every couple years. Kids, being kids, it's worth having handles on the chain / rope so they can stand on the tire to swing. If you make the 3 tire chains 6 feet long, then you can put in connector chains at various heights for different kids to use as handles.When hanging it you want it far enough off the ground so that it will pass over a kid on the ground directly under it.the ground under the swing takes a beating if the swing gets a lot of use. Excavate the sod, and put in a patch of sawdust under it. Top up when necessary.Other good toys if you have a multiple good tree branches for this would be a trapeze, and a pair of iron rings.

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  • sgbotsford commented on khoiland's instructable Wooden Gordian Knot7 weeks ago
    Wooden Gordian Knot

    Lee Valley tools, at least, has an aniline dye sample kit with 1 oz each of their range of colours. Dissolve in alcohol. Experiment. Aniline dyes are hard to apply evenly. Make it weak and apply several layers. Many online wood work suppliers have these.

    You may want to buy pre-cut dowels. They are grooved to allow air to escape when assemblying Another way to do this would be to use screws instead of dowels. I suspect it would go together faster.

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  • sgbotsford commented on YouLab's instructable Flower Crystallization2 months ago
    Flower Crystallization

    Alum is very very bitter. You won't have problems with kids trying to eat the flowers. You won't poison the kids either.May need to agitate the flower some to disperse air bubbles. This can be a problem with flowers with tubular petals.Might be merit in dipping the flower in 99% isopropyl alcohol for a few minutes. This will dry the flower some. Test with one first.Other crystals: Salt crystals grow too slowly, and it's hard getting a salt solution above about 30%. Sugar should work, but experiment with the amounts. Sugar is essentially infinitely soluble in hot water. You want a concentration that will still be liquid at room temperature. There are recipes for candied flowers in fancy cookbooks.Some similar effects can be done by drying the flower first, spraying with somethi...

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    Alum is very very bitter. You won't have problems with kids trying to eat the flowers. You won't poison the kids either.May need to agitate the flower some to disperse air bubbles. This can be a problem with flowers with tubular petals.Might be merit in dipping the flower in 99% isopropyl alcohol for a few minutes. This will dry the flower some. Test with one first.Other crystals: Salt crystals grow too slowly, and it's hard getting a salt solution above about 30%. Sugar should work, but experiment with the amounts. Sugar is essentially infinitely soluble in hot water. You want a concentration that will still be liquid at room temperature. There are recipes for candied flowers in fancy cookbooks.Some similar effects can be done by drying the flower first, spraying with something sticky, then applying a granular substance. E.g. Spray with a sugar solution. Let dry a while to get tacky, then use coarse ground demarra sugar. Baking supply stores have coloured sugar in various crystal sizes. You can also use small coloured beads, coloured sprinkles, sequins,...

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  • sgbotsford commented on mlawing's instructable Level an Above-Ground Pool2 months ago
    Level an Above-Ground Pool

    Do you leave it up all year? If not, what do you do with this spot the rest of the year?I can see merit, if you are going to level the spot with this degree of accuracy, put down paving stones, or patio stones to a point beyond the pool, and extending to the existing patio. This gives you an extended patio during the non-pool season.There may be liability issues with making your pool accessible to neighbour kids, especially of you are not supervising. This can be a concern if you are away for any period of time. A pool can be considered an 'attractive nuisance'. Some years ago, a chemical company was found at fault for having a pool of battery acid, behind a 6 foot fence, far from a residential area. Kids climbed the fence and were killed when they jumped into the acid. Court ru...

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    Do you leave it up all year? If not, what do you do with this spot the rest of the year?I can see merit, if you are going to level the spot with this degree of accuracy, put down paving stones, or patio stones to a point beyond the pool, and extending to the existing patio. This gives you an extended patio during the non-pool season.There may be liability issues with making your pool accessible to neighbour kids, especially of you are not supervising. This can be a concern if you are away for any period of time. A pool can be considered an 'attractive nuisance'. Some years ago, a chemical company was found at fault for having a pool of battery acid, behind a 6 foot fence, far from a residential area. Kids climbed the fence and were killed when they jumped into the acid. Court ruled that it "looked" like a pool. Fence needed to both opaque and kid proof.

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  • sgbotsford commented on tdonoclift's instructable Hanging Gear Clock2 months ago
    Hanging Gear Clock

    I can see merit in adjusting the gear count to 30 and 60, then doing the movements in surges. e.g. it stays at 12 until it's time to move it all the way to 1:00. This would make the clock easier to read.I think I would make the minute gear have dots between the 0 and 15 etc like the hour gear does.

    Don't think a magnet and reed switch will be precise enough. The magnetic field will slowly get stronger as it approaches. How does a CNS milling machine reset it's position? Lots of x-y plotters do it by deliberately going to one end of the travel, until the stepper motor stalls. That doesn't work here. You need something with a very abrubt signal edge. How about a piece of flat black paper on the back of the gear, with a columnated LED and photocell?Or a thumbtack, and a pair of wire whiskers. Program a constant for it's offset.Most of the time corrections are going to be tiny. If the clock is fast, the controller just misses N steps until the world catches up. If slow, it adds enough steps to bring it to right time.

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  • sgbotsford commented on tomatoskins's instructable Quick-Release Bandsaw Fence3 months ago
    Quick-Release Bandsaw Fence

    If you are resawing wood:* You need a wide blade. 3/4inch minimum. 1.25" is better.* You need serious tension on the blade.Narrow blades can't tensioned as tight, and wander off by grain that isn't parallel or perpendicular to the cut.Blades that are unequally sharp, or unequally set on left and right teeth will pull to one side.Fence should be as tall as the board you are resawing.Rig way to apply pressure to keep the board firmly against the fence. This should apply pressure from top to bottom of the board.Verify that your fence doesn't deflect under pressure. There is a reason that commercial fences are often made of heavy castings.

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  • sgbotsford commented on bobbycordone's instructable How to Dig Your Own Swimming Pool3 months ago
    How to Dig Your Own Swimming Pool

    If you can't see it, you don't need to clean it. <grin> Seriously, the only reason to clean it is aesthetics. The filters take out the floaties, and the chlorine takes out the germs.With clothes, black clothes attract white dirt. I suspect you would still see dirt on the bottom of the pool. If you didn't want to see it, you would paint it mud brown. This would be a serious optical oddity. We aren't used to seeing clear brown water.I think that black/dark blue/very dark green would be a safer colour, at least for caucasian swimmers -- someone unconscious on the bottom would be easy to see, much like a white styrofoam cup on fresh blacktop. If the pool is used by people with very dark skin, it would be less safe.

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  • sgbotsford commented on BorkWood's instructable Tiered Herb Garden | a DIY Tutorial3 months ago
    Tiered Herb Garden | a DIY Tutorial

    Before building something like this, build a mockup and try to work in it. From such garden's I've made in the past this one will be very unpleasant to work the back/top tier as being an awkward reach.Design considerations: A waist high bench has easy access to about 6" under arms length. At 2 feet high you can get the same reach kneeling. At under a foot, you are essentially on the ground, and you can use shaft tools.Greater depths than this can be made much easier to use with strategically placed locations to stand. Pairs of bricks, small pavers.Point 2.Put a double layer of weed barrier below the bottom. Grass is very good and infiltrating a bed even from feet underground.

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  • Faux Black Opal Cast Resin Earrings

    The trays that deli companies deliver sandwiches and fruit trays make great dustcovers.You can get disposable eyedroppers on ebay about 10 cents each if you get 100. Walmart, newegg also have them. This may be easier/faster than pouring. If you leave a clear hole when done a stage, you may be able to use them 2-3 times.As an alternative to fauxopal, look at putting small rhinestones in the bottom of the bezel, with or without a tint in the casting resin. A tint makes the stone 'lurk in the mists'

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  • sgbotsford commented on seamster's instructable How to Flatten Boards With Just a Planer3 months ago
    How to Flatten Boards With Just a Planer

    The key is getting that box beam rigid enough. Two ideas:A: Since you normally run the board through centered, I'd put two more thinner boards on edge supporting the interior of the box.B: Another way would be to make a foam core beam. Use the grade of blue board used for road construction. Use the right adhesive, and this would make the beam far more rigid and only slightly heavier. You have to make sure that the glue is even or you get glue humps and valleys. I would look for a glue that can be spread using a notched trowel.***If you are doing a lot of this, having some sort of dog system that allowed you to pin/wedge the board in place instead of glueing it would be handy.

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  • Recycling Styrofoam (EPS) Into Useable Castable Styrene Plastic at Home

    One thought I had about reusing styrofoam -- reuse it as foam: Suppose that you ran it through a chopper to get a uniform size granule, then used a solvent at a dilution that just made it sticky, then pressed it into blocks, like giant lego blocks.Cities could stock pile blocks as emergency shelter kits.

    Be cautious: Except for the essential oil, all of these compounds are toxic even in small doses. Toluene exposure is hazardous in parts per million. A lot of these are also explosively flammable. Styrene + gasoline is essentially napalm. Yeah, in practice a napalm bomb had a core of HE to spread it.

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  • How to Disassemble a Pallet Efficiently

    It doesn't work with conventional northamerican pallets made from red oak. That oak holds onto nails that the boards shatter before the nail gives OR the nails break, leaving surprises when you are cutting up the boards.I can see where this might work with EUR style block separated pallets. Very few of our pallets are made that way.

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  • Wooden Planter - Easy Recycled Pallet Project for Your Garden

    Hmm. Don't seem to be able to respond to an answer any more.PVA is only moderately water resistant. I wouldn't expect it to last longer than a year.Wood is a natural material. It changes dimensions with changing humidity. Look at any cabinet. Changing shapes are the reason behind rail/stile and panel construction. let alone being rained on and with a block of variable moisture dirt adjacent to it. It *will* leak. I did this with oak barrel planters. Turned them over, and banged the rings on until they were very tight, then secured with screws. 2 years of weather cycles later there is a 1/16 gap between each stave. In wet weather they expand, and compress the edge wood. Next time they dry they open up. There is a reason people tell you to not let hardwood floors get wet.

    "Once you get your pallets apart..." I find that I only get about 1 board in 3 off the pallet intact, and even that is badly mangled. After some struggle, I've come to the conclusion that it's not worth the aggravation.Caveats: When you water the planters dirty water come through the joints. Line the box sides, but not the bottom, with black construction polyethylene plastic will reduce this.Dirty water also comes out of the base. If you are on a deck this can be unsightly. Either build in directed drainage, or don't put on a deck.A wood planter like this has a fairly short lifespan. One side is continually moist. After about 5 years of growing season time, the wood will be falling apart.One way around this problem: Get some large nursery pots -- the ones used to sell ...

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    "Once you get your pallets apart..." I find that I only get about 1 board in 3 off the pallet intact, and even that is badly mangled. After some struggle, I've come to the conclusion that it's not worth the aggravation.Caveats: When you water the planters dirty water come through the joints. Line the box sides, but not the bottom, with black construction polyethylene plastic will reduce this.Dirty water also comes out of the base. If you are on a deck this can be unsightly. Either build in directed drainage, or don't put on a deck.A wood planter like this has a fairly short lifespan. One side is continually moist. After about 5 years of growing season time, the wood will be falling apart.One way around this problem: Get some large nursery pots -- the ones used to sell trees. 5 gallon pails work too. Size the planter to hold 3 or 4 of these. Do the planting in the pots, set the pots in the planter box. This also allows you to do tricks like:* Keep a set of inserts with tulips and daffodils in them. They go in the planter in spring, and come out when they are done.* Meanwhile you have another set with summer lilies, and a third set with autumn lilies. The ones that aren't in the planter are in the back yard getting ready for next year.* In winter you can remove all the inserts, put the planter upside down on blocks to dry out. You can apply another coat of stain, etc.

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  • sgbotsford commented on evanandkatelyn's instructable Twisted Wood Veneer Art3 months ago
    Twisted Wood Veneer Art

    My experiences with hot glue guns hasn't been great. I've had several projects that held together for a while then fell apart. I think the glue crystalizes and loses it's grip. There is really no reason not to use regular wood workers glue. You'd need a bunch of spring clamps, or even clothes pins.More ideas:It's wood. Enjoy it. Use wood stains. You can apply stain with a cloth. If you want to do just one side, do it before cutting. Cut long lenghs of veneer, clamp one end to a bench edge. The other end is anchored to a spring clamp and a cord to the nearest tree, or post.If you soak the banding first, you can can put more twist in it. This will raise the grain. So wet it, let it dry, sand with a 200 grit sanding sponge. (Takes only 2-3 strokes) Repeat. Now make your ar...

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    My experiences with hot glue guns hasn't been great. I've had several projects that held together for a while then fell apart. I think the glue crystalizes and loses it's grip. There is really no reason not to use regular wood workers glue. You'd need a bunch of spring clamps, or even clothes pins.More ideas:It's wood. Enjoy it. Use wood stains. You can apply stain with a cloth. If you want to do just one side, do it before cutting. Cut long lenghs of veneer, clamp one end to a bench edge. The other end is anchored to a spring clamp and a cord to the nearest tree, or post.If you soak the banding first, you can can put more twist in it. This will raise the grain. So wet it, let it dry, sand with a 200 grit sanding sponge. (Takes only 2-3 strokes) Repeat. Now make your art.Banding has possibilities for 3D art.

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  • sgbotsford commented on New Water's instructable Water Purifying Solar Distillery3 months ago
    Water Purifying Solar Distillery

    I would suggest scrounging a patio door glass insert. You can often get them for free from companies that replace ones wehre the seal has broken and the glass is dirty between the panes. The two panes can be separated with a putty knife and some patience. Clean up the edges, and you now have two pieces of safety glass. The slope on the glass may not be steep enough to reliably get water to run to the collectors. In addition, to maximize solar gain you want the angle to be roughly your latitude. So at 40 degrees latitude, you want an angle of 40 degrees from the horizontal.This makes the north side in-effective. So redesign so that it's a wedge shape instead of a roof shape. The really steep north face then is in the shade, and so is much cooler than the collector side. This may ...

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    I would suggest scrounging a patio door glass insert. You can often get them for free from companies that replace ones wehre the seal has broken and the glass is dirty between the panes. The two panes can be separated with a putty knife and some patience. Clean up the edges, and you now have two pieces of safety glass. The slope on the glass may not be steep enough to reliably get water to run to the collectors. In addition, to maximize solar gain you want the angle to be roughly your latitude. So at 40 degrees latitude, you want an angle of 40 degrees from the horizontal.This makes the north side in-effective. So redesign so that it's a wedge shape instead of a roof shape. The really steep north face then is in the shade, and so is much cooler than the collector side. This may improve it's overall efficiency. The north side doesn't need to be made of glass.***An open collecting bucket will collect flies, birds, bees. Use a closed bucket, and run the collection tube through a hole in it. A vent hole filled with a chunk of sponge will prevent it from vapour locking.***If used steadily salts will accumulate in the water, as pure water leaves. This lowers the efficiency. You need a mechanism to drain the existing water without disturbing the glass. Depending on how warm it gets you may have issues with algae.

    If doing it as a survival tool, using white plastic allows you to set up much larger ones with less effort.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Sebastiaan Mollema's instructable Staircase Drawers !3 months ago
    Staircase Drawers !

    I'm impressed with putting drawers on the winders. That's a lot of work for a small amount of storage. But if the client is paying you....***I can see merit in using metal double extension drawer slides for this.***Another approach is to make the treads into trunk tops. This is not an add-on: it has to be designed into the stair from the start, as a common stair uses the treads as a structural component.***I'm not fond of the hand notch. Stairs get a lot of dirt, and dirt will get into the drawer through this opening. Also makes for easy mouse access. (I live on a farm with 3 dogs....)However you also can't put something that will catch a toe. Blum has a "knee once to open, knee once to close type slide that might work for this. Would be a hazard however if kicked with a ...

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    I'm impressed with putting drawers on the winders. That's a lot of work for a small amount of storage. But if the client is paying you....***I can see merit in using metal double extension drawer slides for this.***Another approach is to make the treads into trunk tops. This is not an add-on: it has to be designed into the stair from the start, as a common stair uses the treads as a structural component.***I'm not fond of the hand notch. Stairs get a lot of dirt, and dirt will get into the drawer through this opening. Also makes for easy mouse access. (I live on a farm with 3 dogs....)However you also can't put something that will catch a toe. Blum has a "knee once to open, knee once to close type slide that might work for this. Would be a hazard however if kicked with a foot and then was partly open for the next person coming down.***The hazard of a drawer left open, or partially open (happens here a lot) is a big concern. Using slides AND setting them on an angle so that the drawer is self closing. Add a wood toggle to one side that can be used to keep the drawer open when you need to rummage. If you are called away and someone comes down stairs, they are more likely to see a fully open drawer.I gave some thought to this in my house on a stair with no winders, and decided that I couldn't do it in a way that was safe enough to for a household with kids, teens, dogs, and absent minded farmers who walk around with a phone.

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  • sgbotsford commented on jfulop10's instructable Mosquito Killing Ovitrap3 months ago
    Mosquito Killing Ovitrap

    When you buy socks be sure to get nylon/rayon socks. Cotton/wood socks will rot away fairly quickly.***From watching mosquitoes, I bet that dark blue would work as well as black.***A couple handfuls of grass clippings in a bucket of water will make good stagnant water. ***If you add a spoon full of fertilizer, the algae get going too.***Sunlight degrades many plastics. If paint sticks, then paint them first. Or put them in the shade.***Putting a string and tying a loop makes it easy to get the screen out when cleaning the trap. Do it near one edge.***Why metal screen?

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  • Make Joints in Woodworks DISSAPEAR!! - DIY Wood Filler

    You are correct. That is a different kind of filler, used to fill the pores in open grain wood. I wasn't clear. My bad.

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  • Make Joints in Woodworks DISSAPEAR!! - DIY Wood Filler

    For some purposes this is sufficient. However mostly you've changed one type of ugly for another kind of ugly. To be more effective:* Tint the mix so that it is at least as dark as the darker grain in the wood.* Use really fine sawdust.* Experiment before doing your good project* You can buy furniture repair felt markers that are in effect 6 colours of brown. You can use these to surface colour the filled area after.* Tinting works better after a first coat of varnish. * If you need to build up a color, put a coat of varnish between each colour coat.* Patches like this are less ugly against dark wood. Consider staining the whole thing to a dark colour before you start.Patches act like end grain when staining -- they absorb lots of stain and become darker than the wood.You may be abl...

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    For some purposes this is sufficient. However mostly you've changed one type of ugly for another kind of ugly. To be more effective:* Tint the mix so that it is at least as dark as the darker grain in the wood.* Use really fine sawdust.* Experiment before doing your good project* You can buy furniture repair felt markers that are in effect 6 colours of brown. You can use these to surface colour the filled area after.* Tinting works better after a first coat of varnish. * If you need to build up a color, put a coat of varnish between each colour coat.* Patches like this are less ugly against dark wood. Consider staining the whole thing to a dark colour before you start.Patches act like end grain when staining -- they absorb lots of stain and become darker than the wood.You may be able to get a better look by using a filler on the entire piece to mute the grain. This will reduce the contrast with the patch.

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  • Repurpose an Old Window Into a Mirror Window

    Most mirror glass does not take kindly to being constantly wet. Water on the cut edge delaminates the reflective layer. If this actually is going to be used in the garden, you need to protect the edges of the mirror,I would suggest putting 2-3 coats of exterior paint on the edge and back of the glass, and hang it in a way that reduces water exposure.Also in the garden, the wood frame will be getting wet/drying This will cause it to shift. Put chunks of foam backer bead between the glass and the frame to keep the glass centred as the frame changes size and shape.If you want to cheap out on, this, with careful handling you can come close to a mirror using aluminum foil. Use the existing glass, and back the foil with cardboard. This won't be suitable as a "Is my makeup on" m...

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    Most mirror glass does not take kindly to being constantly wet. Water on the cut edge delaminates the reflective layer. If this actually is going to be used in the garden, you need to protect the edges of the mirror,I would suggest putting 2-3 coats of exterior paint on the edge and back of the glass, and hang it in a way that reduces water exposure.Also in the garden, the wood frame will be getting wet/drying This will cause it to shift. Put chunks of foam backer bead between the glass and the frame to keep the glass centred as the frame changes size and shape.If you want to cheap out on, this, with careful handling you can come close to a mirror using aluminum foil. Use the existing glass, and back the foil with cardboard. This won't be suitable as a "Is my makeup on" mirror, but may be good enough to see if you combed your hair.

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  • sgbotsford commented on aCuriousCreator's instructable Copper + Wood Rings5 months ago
    Copper + Wood Rings

    I think you will find that a wood has problems as a ring material:On the inside it gets grungy from dirt on your hands working into the grain.On the outside it wears way too fast. I have a silver ring, worked into a celtic knot pattern on the surface. Over the course of a few years, the knot work has become close to invisible from wear.

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  • Make Your Own Never Wet/Ultra Ever Dry (Hydrophobic Coating)

    Would be effective on the edges of laminate flooring to keep it from being wrecked from spills?

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  • sgbotsford commented on SimonS169's instructable Sea Urchin Origami5 months ago
    Sea Urchin Origami

    Very cool. Interesting vid too. May want to add more links to Peter's work.FWIW baltic birch is available in 1/8" thickness in 5x5 foot sheets. It can't be folded like paper, but it bends well. Art stores have an amazing array of thin materials. Foam core boards, different weight papers and cardboard.If you have materials that are too stiff to fold, then look at duct tape hinges for cardboard, or holes that are laced with find rope for plywood.

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  • Hacking TV Tuner to Read Earth Photos From Satellites

    The antenna doesn't need to be that high. Typically if it's 1-2 wavelengths above ground that will eliminate the ground plane effect. It's about the same degree of risk as your telephone line (unburied) coming into your house.

    This is very cool. Keep up the good work.I think your missing a link. At the end you mention "this instructable" but there is no link.

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  • sgbotsford commented on randofo's instructable DSLR Microphotography5 months ago
    DSLR Microphotography

    Is it possible to just use the microscope objective as a close focus lens in front of a conventional lens? E.g. Use an infinity focus objective -- the light leaves it parallel -- and then the normal lens refocuses this on the sensor.

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  • Briccorda - Driftwood & Rope Seat

    The first seat appears to be sisal rope, or well worn manila. Both of these have bristles that poke and sometimes break off in the skin, resulting in what looks and feels like a bad zit or mild boil for about a month. Any ladies in your life that perch on these in bikinis are not going to appreciate this. The use of nylon rope is a better idea.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Awesome Crafts's instructable Autumn Wind Blow Wire Tree6 months ago
    Autumn Wind Blow Wire Tree

    Options: If you use bare copper wire (harder to get) you can heat it up, and it will oxidise. Or soak in a bath with thio-acetamide and put a layer of copper sulfide on it However the best way to color it would be to use varnish with dye in it (as compared to most stains which have pigment. The dye doesn't clog the crevices between the wires.My imagination now is wondering about doing it 6 feet tall out of 12 gauge wire...

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  • sgbotsford commented on bobbycordone's instructable How to Dig Your Own Swimming Pool6 months ago
    How to Dig Your Own Swimming Pool

    Good point. I live in Alberta. Here the pool would have 2 feet of ice on it by spring, and for us a HOT summer day is in the mid 80's I have inlaws who snowbird to Phoenix. Their summers are 120 in the shade, and it doesn't get DOWN to the mid 80's at night.Might be safety issues too. I can see someone not knowing where the bottom is, and doing a dive into 3 feet of water. Hence painting patterns, or gluing 6" white bathroom wall tiles every 4 feet in a grid.

    You didn't make a shallow end. How come?Ok, maybe you can tell me: Why are pools always painted blue or green? Seems to me that painting them black (with enough markers that you could see the bottom) would help warm the water

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  • French Cleat Tool Storage Wall and Clamp Rack

    Plywood is good in shear. The forces at play here are trying to delaminate the plywood. However either is strong enough, espcially if you glue it to the back. The risk would be a cleat splitting along its length -- more likely on the carrier, as it's a shorter cleat. Plywood would never split. The edge grain of plywood is rough. No way you could slide the carriers. With 1x4s you could sand the edges and slide them. One downside of cleats: They will collect cruft -- dust, dustbunnies...Test: Nail a 2 foot cleat to a bare 2x4 wall. Make a wood box, and load with sand or rocks until it rips off the wall.

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  • French Cleat Tool Storage Wall and Clamp Rack

    Chuckle. I just asked why they were so close together. All his carriers span at least 2 cleats.

    From the look of the way you use them, you don't need a cleat bar every 6" None of the things you've made allow using the next row down. Probably get away with 1 every 12"Cleats can be easily made from 1x4 or even 1x3. This is cheaper than plywood, and the edge is cleaner.You have mounted the carrier cleat part way down. I don't think there is any advantage to this. Could just put the cleat on the top edge of the carrier.In some cases you would have something who's end fell short of the next cleat. Putting a block of 3/4 scrap on the back of the carrier will keep in parallel to the cleat board.Would look cool if you painted or stained the plywood before attaching the cleats.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Bruceaulrich's instructable Wall Mount for Heavy Items6 months ago
    Wall Mount for Heavy Items

    Is there a non-hidden french cleat?

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  • sgbotsford commented on NicK_RSA's instructable Watersaving: Shower Mixer Alternative6 months ago
    Watersaving: Shower Mixer Alternative

    Possible issues: The water in the hot line cools during the time the shower is off. So if the water was hot enough to start, it will only be warm for your next pulse. This system would work best with a heater just before the shower head, not one at the other end of the house.As another idea for people doing extreme water conservation: Look at micro sprinkler heads. There are mist heads that do 4 gal per hour, and tiny spray heads that do 10 to 20 gal/hour.

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  • sgbotsford commented on i.hate.karl.kilburn's instructable DIY Micro Camper6 months ago
    DIY Micro Camper

    Given the low ceiling I would be tempted to do as much of the interior work as possible before putting the roof on.I can see merit in using steel studs to reduce weight.An alternative to underlayment would be wood paneling. It's cheap, and needs no further finishing.Modification ideas:* I don't like the flat roof. It needs a slope so that water doesn't pool on it when stored.* I really really like to have one place where I can stand up. Both of these features could be done at once by making it somewhat wedge of cheese shaped.* You have the triangle at the front that is unused. While making it more complicated, using this to create a storage box/camp kitchen would make the trailer more useful, and may decrease wind drag.

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  • How to Cut Perfect Circles With a Table Saw

    Will a laser cutter that do 3/4" plywood?

    CA?

    Shop foreman where I worked part time in university has a sign over the table saw: "Count fingers after each use" Was far more effective than the usual bland safety statements. He also had a "no gloves, no rings, no ties, no long sleeves rule for using any power equipment.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Martian Taylor's instructable Make Your Own UFO Balloon-kite!6 months ago
    Make Your Own UFO Balloon-kite!

    Aerodynamic consideration: Google "Deltoid Pumpkinseed" This was a set of early experiments with aircraft lifting bodies. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AEREON_26. Good compromise between a balloon and a kite.Thanks for the article on working with mylar. -- Perhaps you could buy from Alibaba and sell on ebay/amazon.

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  • sgbotsford commented on monickingbird's instructable Concrete Octagonal Driveway Pavers6 months ago
    Concrete Octagonal Driveway Pavers

    Diesel fuel is often used as a mold release for wooden forms.If you cut your 2x4's to 3" and make the insert the same height, then you can trowel the top easily. With them at the same height, you can start your project with a layer of road pack, screen it level,tamp, and your blocks will sit flush with each other with no tweeking.Make your plugs with a 1/4" taper. They will release more easily. Put an eyebolt in the insert. Then make a slide hammer out of a chuck of 1/2" bar stock, and a heavy cylinder of something. Hook on one end, stop on the other.You don't have to wait for them to cure completely. Experiment, but usually you can remove the mold after an hour, at least on one site I saw instructions for DIY concrete blocks. Might have to use a richer mix, or a d...

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    Diesel fuel is often used as a mold release for wooden forms.If you cut your 2x4's to 3" and make the insert the same height, then you can trowel the top easily. With them at the same height, you can start your project with a layer of road pack, screen it level,tamp, and your blocks will sit flush with each other with no tweeking.Make your plugs with a 1/4" taper. They will release more easily. Put an eyebolt in the insert. Then make a slide hammer out of a chuck of 1/2" bar stock, and a heavy cylinder of something. Hook on one end, stop on the other.You don't have to wait for them to cure completely. Experiment, but usually you can remove the mold after an hour, at least on one site I saw instructions for DIY concrete blocks. Might have to use a richer mix, or a drier mix. Watch a curb layer machine.For light duty, there is no reason they have to touch. Use scraps of 2x4 to space them 1.5 inches apart in both directions.

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  • sgbotsford commented on hpat's instructable Hidden Door, Bookcase Door, Secret Room6 months ago
    Hidden Door, Bookcase Door, Secret Room

    Very cool. Good idea on the gate hinges. Why the uneven spacing on the hinges.I will be interested to see of the door warps. For a real book case the load is somewhat concentrated at the back, averaging at the middle of the shelf, but the support is on the front on one edge. Fair amount of force trying to put a skew twist on the back. The wheel helps with this.The other aspect is the wheel. If the door is used frequently will the wheel leave a mark on the floor?

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  • sgbotsford commented on JRivera0203's instructable Octagonal Infinity Mirror Table7 months ago
    Octagonal Infinity Mirror Table

    Very cool.Variations on a theme. I haven't actually done any of these. Experiment initially with making a smaller model out of cardboard.1. Slope the mirror. This moves the reflections to one side. It may look like you are looking into a bending tube.2. Get one of those convex mirrors used in warehouses to keep fork lift drivers from plowing into each other -- about 2 feet across. https://www.uline.ca/BL_3895/Convex-Safety-Mirrors but you may be able to get one from a warehouse that is closing down for a lot less.Use this as the bottom mirror. If it has a support rim paint it flat black. If the mirror is smaller than your well diameter, paint the unused part the blackest black you can find.No lights, no film. Look into this. It will appear like you are looking into a very deep ...

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    Very cool.Variations on a theme. I haven't actually done any of these. Experiment initially with making a smaller model out of cardboard.1. Slope the mirror. This moves the reflections to one side. It may look like you are looking into a bending tube.2. Get one of those convex mirrors used in warehouses to keep fork lift drivers from plowing into each other -- about 2 feet across. https://www.uline.ca/BL_3895/Convex-Safety-Mirrors but you may be able to get one from a warehouse that is closing down for a lot less.Use this as the bottom mirror. If it has a support rim paint it flat black. If the mirror is smaller than your well diameter, paint the unused part the blackest black you can find.No lights, no film. Look into this. It will appear like you are looking into a very deep well, and can see the water reflected from the surface. If you can see the boundary of the mirror, then you need to make the interior lighting dimmer. Use a grey or blue non-mirror film.A pale blue film on the top glass may make the reflection look like sky.You will know that it's effective if you see people look under the table and up at the ceiling.Not sure what lights and/or film would do to this. Not sure how far below the glass the the convex mirror has to be to make the illusion work. I saw one done as a halloween hellmouth that used a well about 2 feet deep, and sides done in vague red and black shapes near the top shading to a sullen red grey above the mirror.

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  • sgbotsford commented on ShakeTheFuture's instructable Tin Can Hole Saw7 months ago
    Tin Can Hole Saw

    If you have an existing hole saw, many times you can re-use the arbor.Cutting a disk slightly bigger and putting it outside the base will help stiffen it. Then, the first disk you cut goes on the inside to stiffen it from that side.Once you have a disk on both sides, drill 2 more holes through the base that are about 5/16 in diameter. These should be fairly close to the edge, and opposite each other. This will allow you to push a pair of bolts through from the back to push the plug out of the front.Put a set on every other tooth with a pair of pliers. Bend it about 1/2 mm (1/32 to 1/16 inch) in. Not quite a tooth width. This will slow down the saw, but will make getting the disks out a lot easier.

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  • sgbotsford commented on tomatoskins's instructable Table Saw Disc Sander7 months ago
    Table Saw Disc Sander

    Hmm 2 degrees. 1/28 of 5 inches. .17 inches. Seems like a lot. Bet it would be hard to get sandpaper to lie flat on that.It only has to be enough to get the grain of the sandpaper out of the way. I don't think you care about scratches before 80 grit, so the cone angle needs to be 1/80th of an inch between center and edge.So now, you cut a chunk of 1x6 long enough to handle easily on the mitre slide. Recut one edge so that it has a taper of about 1/32, wrap a piece of sandpaper over the end, and now sand your cone onto the face of the plywood disk.

    Will plywood reliably take being spun at 3000-5000 rpm? If your disk has a void on the interior you might get an unexpected surprise down the line.Maybe use thin baltic birch and put a layer on both sides of the blade and epoxy it in place. Make the birch disks slightly larger than the disk to hide the teeth?

    Hmm. Once you have it approximately round, couldn't you finish it on the table saw itself? Mount the disk, and push a sanding block against it? Not all of us have lathes.If the disk is the same thickness as a standard blade, you can use the same arbor washers, yes?

    Good point. Slack off the belt tension? Steal the step pulleys off your drill press and slow it down?Pulse it turning it on for a second at a time?

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  • sgbotsford commented on gzumwalt's instructable Money Maker!7 months ago
    Money Maker!

    Give one to the Government....<grin>

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  • How to Repair a Leaking Kitchenaid Mixer

    It's almost always a nylon gear that fails -- designed this way rather the wreck the whole transmission. Lots of youtube vids too.

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  • BalloonSat Stabilization With Compressed CO2

    Right angles to the sun: Sun rays hit the cells at a 90 degree angle.Push: Atmospheric density drops by half every 18,000 feet. So at 90,000 feet you are at 1/32 of an atmosphere. At 100,000 feet it won't quite be down to 1/64. Call it 1/45, or about 1/3 psi. That is still high enough pressure that the fan's ability to grip will be roughly linear with pressure. It will move the same volume of air, but with about 1/45 of the momentum. Yes it would make more sense to redesign with larger blades. I would anticipate a bigger problem would be the lubricant in the motor freezing. At that attitude the turning forces are small, mostly residual twist in the support line.

    @itsmescotty. Please explain. Which detail are you concerned about?

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  • BalloonSat Stabilization With Compressed CO2

    This is very cool. However, the problem with a CO2 stabilizer is common to satellites in general: You are using a limited resource. Once the fuel is gone, you no longer have stability.At 100K feet you have a pressure of about 1/30 of an atmosphere. This is still enough to grab some and push. Could you instead use a solar cell, a battery, and a small fan instead? During flight, part of the protocol would be to keep the solar cell as close to right angles tot he sun as possible to charge the battery.Lots of other experiments that could be powered long term this way.

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  • sgbotsford commented on JackmanWorks's instructable French Cleat Wall & Storage Loft7 months ago
    French Cleat Wall & Storage Loft

    I think your cleats are stronger than the MDF slotwall panels. Matching the spacing of slotwall will allow you to use the commercial hooks and such.Slotwall (or slatwall) storage is flexible, but tends to waste space. Fabulous if you are rearranging things a lot. But the ideal storage system has an invisible back wall. There's something in front of it.Lot to be said for a sheet of plywood, nails and hooks for hanging things, and shelves with cardboard bin boxes for storing things.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Lillyvilleky's instructable Aluminum Can Solar Heater7 months ago
    Aluminum Can Solar Heater

    You don't drag it in and out. Typically you mount them against the foundation, and run a pair of ducts into the house. See http://builditsolar.com/ for lots more info on this sort of project.

    Not worth it, unless you are really constrained for space. Just build more of them.

    More info at http://builditsolar.com/ on this sort of project.If you want to heat a space with this, you need to run two ducts to its, and move the air through it with a computer fan and a 12v solar cell. Put a thermostat on it, and only move air when the air is above 80 F.However: This doesn't collect any more energy than a window of the same size. The win is that it doesn't drain energy at night.You can get almost as good an efficiency by just using a box with black paint inside. You won't get an increase in temp, but you will be able to move more air through it if you insulate the back with slab of foam.I read of a farmer in Montana who made the south wall of his shop into a solar collector like this. Tarpaper, 2x2, clear plastic on the outside of the insulated wall. Plenum a...

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    More info at http://builditsolar.com/ on this sort of project.If you want to heat a space with this, you need to run two ducts to its, and move the air through it with a computer fan and a 12v solar cell. Put a thermostat on it, and only move air when the air is above 80 F.However: This doesn't collect any more energy than a window of the same size. The win is that it doesn't drain energy at night.You can get almost as good an efficiency by just using a box with black paint inside. You won't get an increase in temp, but you will be able to move more air through it if you insulate the back with slab of foam.I read of a farmer in Montana who made the south wall of his shop into a solar collector like this. Tarpaper, 2x2, clear plastic on the outside of the insulated wall. Plenum at top at bottom. Used a furnace fan to pull air in from the top when the temp got up to about 70F. Even in midwinter shop was warm enough to work in by 10 a.m. and remained so until about 5 p.m. If the rest of the building were better insulated it would still be warm in the morning.

    More likely polyethylene pipe -- available any farm store. PVC is expensive, rigid and environmentally evil. That said the water can get hot enough to melt poly, especially in summer when you don't actually need the heat for the pool. Using PEX pipe will reduce the chance of this happening,but it costs more.If you are heating domestic hot water, the vacuum tubes with the high efficiency coatings do a better job -- at more money. Use a simple cheap system as a pre-heater.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Jule's instructable Wire Clamp Making Tool7 months ago
    Wire Clamp Making Tool

    A problem that I have with the one I bought at Lee Valley: It uses a wingnut to tension the device, and my fingers give out first. You have a much better replacement for the wingnut. Another problem I've had is keeping the wire from slipping on the back set of bars. I use a fairly stiff high tensile strength wire. This class of device needs an easy to use positive grab for the wire here. This design still has this problem.Hmm. Wonder if I could expand this to use high tensile fence wire for poly pipe connections?

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  • Automated Staircase LED RGB Lights for $20?

    For other people with stairs: I bought a roll of 1.5" wide white vinyl tape used to mark lines on basketball courts. I ran one strip on the top of the runners on either side, and wrapped around the nose of each step. In even the dim light of a nightlight the white strips show up. Another idea: Put an LED rope light along the stair runner, and just leave it plugged in. They draw only a few watts.

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  • Modern Platform Bed // Hand Tools + Framing Lumber

    I went a step further with simple: We bough a box platform, a mattress, and 4 cinder blocks. I sprayed the cinderblocks white,and cut a scrap of carpet the size of the face for each. Put the fuzzy side down, put the block under it, and put one block under each corner. The joint between the box and the mattress is solid for holding bedding when we make up the bed.In my student days when I was even poorer my bed was a door and 4 milk crates, and a 30" x 72" chunk of 4" foam. Small spacers under the support crates allowed additional crates for storage under the bed with 1 spacer clearance. (I think I used scraps of 1x4 as spacers.

    Before you build this set up, make a mock up to see how easy it isn't to get out of bed. I have found that anything much more than a vertical 1 x whaterver on the edge of the mattress requires that I scooch over. It's a minor nuisance, but on one bed we had a 2" gap between the mattress and a 2x6 on edge. I eventually got annoyed enough that I turfed the bed.Also mock up the bed's foot print. You may have a huge bedroom and the extra 2 foot width isn't a problem. In many rooms it can be. (We have a guest room that a standard double wide only leaves 16" on either side.)Finally: Give consideration to making matching boxes that slide or roll under the spaces. These aren't convenient spaces to use, but are quite suitable for things that aren't uses often -- e.g. winter clo...

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    Before you build this set up, make a mock up to see how easy it isn't to get out of bed. I have found that anything much more than a vertical 1 x whaterver on the edge of the mattress requires that I scooch over. It's a minor nuisance, but on one bed we had a 2" gap between the mattress and a 2x6 on edge. I eventually got annoyed enough that I turfed the bed.Also mock up the bed's foot print. You may have a huge bedroom and the extra 2 foot width isn't a problem. In many rooms it can be. (We have a guest room that a standard double wide only leaves 16" on either side.)Finally: Give consideration to making matching boxes that slide or roll under the spaces. These aren't convenient spaces to use, but are quite suitable for things that aren't uses often -- e.g. winter clothes in summer; Christmas ornaments/presents that come out only once a year.

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  • Automated Staircase LED RGB Lights for $20?

    He probably should also install a hand rail.

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  • sgbotsford commented on TomTechTod's instructable Tiny UHF Tracker Transmitter8 months ago
    Tiny UHF Tracker Transmitter

    I recently saw a story about someone who was losing Amazon packages from their door. Something like this with a longer range would help people set up stings. For that purpose you need more range -- maybe 2 miles. But that would take more power. What if it made a LOUD (rf wise) beep every 15 seconds, and a lower power one every second.Also, if these became popular you would want to modulate it so that your tracker could be distinguished from other trackers.The biggest problem is that you don't know when you want it, so when you do want it it's probably got a flat battery. A much more sophisticated version would echo. E.g. it listens on one frequency, then chirps for a while.

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  • How to Reverse Sear a Perfect Ribeye Steak in the Oven

    Why an inch thick? Why can't you do this with the normal supermarket steak?

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  • sgbotsford commented on Easy Composites's instructable Resin Penny Floor Project!8 months ago
    Resin Penny Floor Project!

    Casting resin is not very hard. Even the resins used with fiberglass aren't very hard, they often have silicon powder added to reduce abrasion. This can work as a panel that you don't walk on. Could work on a coffee table. Not suitable for a kitchen counter.Minor scratches can be buffed out. Read up on renewing acrylic shower doors -- and note that acrylic is harder than casting resin.

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  • 10 MORE Bench Vise Tips, Tricks, & Hacks (Part 2)

    Downside of vaseline: Attracts crud. If your shop is primarily a wood shop, the vice ends up coated with a layer of vaseline and fine sawdust. A small amount of carnuba wax dissolved in hot turpentine works well. Put in a spray bottle. Flammable. 2-5% wax. Idea is to leave only a thin film on the metal. Let sit for half an hour (depending on temp -- colder = longer) and buff off the excess. Works for tablesaw tops and saw blades too.Tool companies sell a spray can of some wax in a carrier that does the same thing, and doesn't clog the nozzle.

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  • How to Build a Crosscut Sled With Flip Stop Block (+ Free Plans)

    Lee Valley Tools sells knobs that are a lot easier on your fingers than wing nuts.For ones that are used often, might be merit ire replacing a wing nut with a cam.I'm nervous about the width of the remaining board for the back fence, and by inference the front fence. These narrow strips are all that hold the two sides together.

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  • sgbotsford commented on AverageJoesJoinery's instructable Riverbed Coffee Table8 months ago
    Riverbed Coffee Table

    Comments.Very nice touch explaining your mistakes. Thumbs up for that.Different resins have quite different characteristics. People who make this may be able to save themselves some grief by having a simple mold that they can pour the surplus into. This gives a place to test things like planes and different finishes.Realism -- You aren't going to make a realistic riverbed. All projects like this choose to model some aspects of nature and ignore others. Often this is good. A real stream running down the middle of the table would be messy. And a real set of rocks would be hard to dust. But things to consider if you want to make a unique table:* Width often is more variable.* Depth is variable. Usually deeper in the middle, but also pools -- fishy gentlemen's clubs. You could ...

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    Comments.Very nice touch explaining your mistakes. Thumbs up for that.Different resins have quite different characteristics. People who make this may be able to save themselves some grief by having a simple mold that they can pour the surplus into. This gives a place to test things like planes and different finishes.Realism -- You aren't going to make a realistic riverbed. All projects like this choose to model some aspects of nature and ignore others. Often this is good. A real stream running down the middle of the table would be messy. And a real set of rocks would be hard to dust. But things to consider if you want to make a unique table:* Width often is more variable.* Depth is variable. Usually deeper in the middle, but also pools -- fishy gentlemen's clubs. You could do this by feathering the edge of the planks* Surface of a running stream isn't flat. If you could figure out how to sculpt the ripples and waves into a tinted layer, then top it with clear... This could also allow the rocks to come up above a 'beach.'* As water gets deeper it gets darker -- milky blue-green if it has rock flour in it, green if it has algae in it, brown if it has clay in it. You could get this effect with multiple layers with tints.Aesthetics: This is a matter of taste, but are considerations if I was at the silent auction bidding on this item: The legs are clunky looking. Possibilities. Use a leg style that are close to invisible. 3/8" iron, painted black? Pieces of driftwood?I don't like the red rock. If I'm buying something for my house it has to look right. For me the rock would cut my bid down to a third, and this would go in the den, and not in the living room. Similarly a coin would be wrong because it wouldn't be in scale.

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  • Cut a Hole in a Bottle (Using a Soldering Iron)

    Very cool. Any particular tip or wattage of soldering iron?Tip on doing photos of glass: A: Use a solid background colour that is dark, but not black. A dark coloured towel works well. In your pix, the graph paper background is confusing.B: Use coloured glass if you can. Green or brown is fine.C: Multiple light sources. One should be somewhat diffuse. A flood light works well. The other should be a point source. A clear tungsten bulb works, as does a CREE unfrosted LED light.***Putting a duck tape handle on the glass that is going to be removed makes it easier to deal with if it falls into the bottle.

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  • sgbotsford commented on ClenseYourPallet's instructable Our Reclaimed TreeHouse8 months ago
    Our Reclaimed TreeHouse

    Trees will continue to grow. They will eventually try to grow around the board.Trees flex. This can do one of two things:* Bolts with shear.* Working back and forth will enlarge the hole to the point bolts will fall out of the tree.* Working back and forth will destroy the main support beams.Try this: Make the hole in the board about 2" across. Cut a 2" plug out of a tire. Cut 6" strips of 1.5" wide by 3/16 bar stock, with a hole in the middle. Lag bolt goes through the hole, through the tire scrap.Do Not tighten it all the way. Leave the board 1/2 inch out from the tree. If you want, stuff some backer rod in the top edge to keep leaves from collecting the in crevice and rotting. When the rod is looking flat, back off the lag bolts by half an inch.If you do t...

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    Trees will continue to grow. They will eventually try to grow around the board.Trees flex. This can do one of two things:* Bolts with shear.* Working back and forth will enlarge the hole to the point bolts will fall out of the tree.* Working back and forth will destroy the main support beams.Try this: Make the hole in the board about 2" across. Cut a 2" plug out of a tire. Cut 6" strips of 1.5" wide by 3/16 bar stock, with a hole in the middle. Lag bolt goes through the hole, through the tire scrap.Do Not tighten it all the way. Leave the board 1/2 inch out from the tree. If you want, stuff some backer rod in the top edge to keep leaves from collecting the in crevice and rotting. When the rod is looking flat, back off the lag bolts by half an inch.If you do this, you have to make the top free to shift on the main supports.***For those of you who aren't blessed by hundred year old walnut trees, your local power company sells used electrical poles. Locally they go for $28 each for a 35 footer. Usually the bottom 6 feet is only marginally useful. Tell your kids the story of Baba Yaga who had a flying house on giant chickens feet.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Raleighup's instructable Indestructible Coffee Table8 months ago
    Indestructible Coffee Table

    If you want a smoother face, use a jointer and dress one edge of each board, and use a 60 tooth blade to cut them to length. Then when you assemble, do it on a FLAT surface and put the jointed edge down.

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  • sgbotsford commented on nhampto9's instructable How to Disassemble a Pallet8 months ago
    How to Disassemble a Pallet

    Very cool. If you don't have a kid to help try this: Put two fence posts in the ground 3 feet apart. Lean the pallet against the posts.Downsides: You don't want to run these boards through a planer or rip them.Where you cut them apart, you'll take off half a blade thickness more or less off of either side, leaving a rough patch.Consider your project: If short lengths will do you can just cut the slats next to the stringers with a circular saw. This is faster than than the sawzall. Often you can do this for at least one end of the slats.Pallets are made from a variety of woods. I've gotten pallets made from red oak, doug fir, and once mahogany.Certain industries use heavier pallets. Tires are often shipped 4 stacks on a 6.5 foot square pallet. Stringers are 3x4's and there a...

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    Very cool. If you don't have a kid to help try this: Put two fence posts in the ground 3 feet apart. Lean the pallet against the posts.Downsides: You don't want to run these boards through a planer or rip them.Where you cut them apart, you'll take off half a blade thickness more or less off of either side, leaving a rough patch.Consider your project: If short lengths will do you can just cut the slats next to the stringers with a circular saw. This is faster than than the sawzall. Often you can do this for at least one end of the slats.Pallets are made from a variety of woods. I've gotten pallets made from red oak, doug fir, and once mahogany.Certain industries use heavier pallets. Tires are often shipped 4 stacks on a 6.5 foot square pallet. Stringers are 3x4's and there are 4 or 5 stringers. Slats are 2x8s These pallets need equipment to move around. individual ones weigh 300 pounds.

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  • DIY: How to Make 6-Pointed Paper Snowflakes

    If you want to hang them, spray them with starch then iron them. This will help make them stiff. Once dried, you can spray with varnish. Or cut out a hexagon out of coloured cardboard, and use a spray adhesive and attach the snowflake to the face. This will be more permanent.Sandwich tracing paper and aluminum foil when folding and you can make foil ones too. Florists have foil in red, gold, and green. The tracing paper keeps the foil from binding on the edges when you cut it. They are delicate to unfold.If you do the fold in thirds stage step earlier, you end up with 60 degrees and a 3 fold symmetry instead of 6 fold.

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  • sgbotsford commented on mikeasaurus's instructable Glow Table8 months ago
    Glow Table

    Ideas:If you have deep holes, fill partway with resin or wood putty first. This way the glow powder is near the top.You may be able to get UV powder. This glows when struck by UV light. This will provide a stronger, more continuous glow. All you need is a blacklight flood light over the table. This will be all the better because it won't glow where shaded from the light. Put a mobile in the path of the light, and you will have these shadows oozing about the table, with no apparent cause.

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  • sgbotsford commented on chienline's instructable DSLR Cowboy Holster9 months ago
    DSLR Cowboy Holster

    Options: Put a chunk of backer rod (Think 1/2" pool noodle -- insulation section at any construction materials store) on the edge, and cover with tape.I would lengthen my strap so that I could wear it around my neck even with the camera holstered.Lots of cameras have front mount buttons for depth of field, flash, etc. You may need to modify the top so that these buttons aren't on the edge.Another entirely different way to do this:Secure a plastic dog clip to your belt. Put a longer neck strap on your camera. Clip to the strap. This keeps your camera at your side when you bend over.

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  • How to Make Cordless Driver Holder From PVC Pipe

    You could also use ABS for this. (black plastic sewer line) One of the advantages is that you can get it in 4" diameter, which would allow it to be used without reshaping. ABS takes paint well too.

    You have quite the collection. Now we need a clever way to store several different chargers and spare batteries.

    The downside for using it with screwdrivers: You can't see the tips. I buy my drivers one at a time just so that I have a chance of being able to tell them apart from the handle. I prefer taking a 1x2, drilling holes in it and screwing it on edge to the wall.

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  • sgbotsford commented on Gremlinlord's instructable Building a Boot Dryer9 months ago
    Building a Boot Dryer

    To block the other pipes some possibilities occur to me:* The cardboard tubes that good scotch comes in.* A tall jar that covers most of the holes.* A plastic bag with a sock over the bag.* A dry pair of boots.

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  • Amazing, Cheap & Easy, Cracked Gems & Marbles. for Fantasy & Crafts.

    Under what conditions does this create internal fractures, instead of the piece of glass just shattering.

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  • sgbotsford commented on bekathwia's instructable Solar Balloon9 months ago
    Solar Balloon

    We used to make UFOs out of dry cleaner bags -- even thinner and light weight.3 threads ran from the open end to a piece of aluminum foil. On the aluminum foil we would put short piece of candle. Set those loose on calm summer nights. They would fly until the candle burned out, gaining altitude as the load got lighter.

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  • sgbotsford commented on fixthisbuildthat's instructable 5 Ways to Print on Wood9 months ago
    5 Ways to Print on Wood

    Coarse woods will need some form of filler. You need to get the wood both smooth and flat. These methods are not going to work well on barn wood. Good 1 side plywood, luan board (used for supporting linoleum) baltic birch plywood (available in very thin pieces. MDF board may work too, but the high glue content may pose a problem. MDF glues may release formaldehyde on heating, another liver killer.1. Use acetone in very well vented circumstances. Breathe as little of the fumes as possible. It's hard on your liver.Laser toner is very fine particles of iron coated with a film of plastic. In the laser a heated roller fuses the powder to the paper. With the acetone process, you are dissolving the plastic so that it doesn't stick to the paper. When the acetone dries, the plastic is l...

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    Coarse woods will need some form of filler. You need to get the wood both smooth and flat. These methods are not going to work well on barn wood. Good 1 side plywood, luan board (used for supporting linoleum) baltic birch plywood (available in very thin pieces. MDF board may work too, but the high glue content may pose a problem. MDF glues may release formaldehyde on heating, another liver killer.1. Use acetone in very well vented circumstances. Breathe as little of the fumes as possible. It's hard on your liver.Laser toner is very fine particles of iron coated with a film of plastic. In the laser a heated roller fuses the powder to the paper. With the acetone process, you are dissolving the plastic so that it doesn't stick to the paper. When the acetone dries, the plastic is left sticking to the wood.Acetone dissolves lots of kinds of plastics, including acrylic bathtubs, and some synthetic fabrics.2. Clothes iron.If it has settings, set it to linen. Give it time to get hot. Modern irons often will turn off if they are left to sit for more than a few minutes. Do not use with steam. Because both the wood and the iron are flat, you may have voids in the image transfer where the iron doesn't make full contact. Try a pad of paper towels. Press HARD.You may want to try pre-heating the wood in an oven at 400 F for a few minutes. This will make the wood surface perfectly dry, and the iron doesn't have to heat it up as much.3. Water based varnish.This one has the best chance on less than perfectly smooth wood, and also on coarse grained wood. With the latter you may want to put one coat on, let it dry to fill and seal the surface.It may help with this mode if you can print onto a slick finish paper. The paper surface is sealed with clay, so the varnish won't soak into the paper as much. This make make removal later easier. The use of a shiny paper will make drying time a lot longer.Warm water will work faster to soften the paper. Try the steam setting on your iron, or a wall paper steamer.If paper doesn't clean off well, try soaking the surface either with an acid (muriatic acid from the concrete products section at building store) or with a strong alkali (draino and warm water. Both of these chemicals will dissolve you as well as paper. Nitrile gloves, apron, and a face shield. Using it diluted is a lot safer, but slower. Have vinegar ready if working with draino, have baking soda at had working with draino. Have a garden hose with shutoff spray nearby. Or work in the bath tub. If you spill rinse off with lots of water then apply the neutralizing agent. The acid is safer to work with.If your fingers wear out rubbing, use the rubber finger tips used by people who work with paper a lot. 4. Gel. I plead total ignorance.5. Laser. Due to dot gain, you may need to half-tone the image at a coarser screen size to get reliable results. You also may find that you need to change settings for images (where you want just enough heat to mark) and text (where you want it black.) If you are attempting to do grey scale (dots of different density) you may need to calibrate the laser. E.g. 50% of the exposure may give 80% of the dark. Google Printing dot gain. Laser on wood may have issues with grain. The grain, being darker reflects less light initially, and so heats up faster. Try a test image that consists of a step wedge (greys ranging from pure black to pure white) done at various half tone grids.

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  • SUP Surf Board (from Homecenter Materials)

    Even styrene foam comes in multiple grades and densities. In general EPS is the stuff made from individual beads. When you cut it you have beads everywhere. XPS is cast in the sheet. When you cut it you have really lightweight saw chips. Don't use EPS for anything structural.Here EPS is marketed at Home Depot as 'bead board' and is always white. You can see the bead structure in it. XPS is either blue or pink, and you can see a much finer structure. Picking up a sheet it's much stiffer. For people who want a larger board, specialty wood shops can get plywood in 10 and 12 foot lengths. If you make it 8 foot sheets, you will have to laminate. This will nearly double the weight of your board. You can get Baltic Birch plywood as thin as 1/8" but it's pricey.The notch at the...

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    Even styrene foam comes in multiple grades and densities. In general EPS is the stuff made from individual beads. When you cut it you have beads everywhere. XPS is cast in the sheet. When you cut it you have really lightweight saw chips. Don't use EPS for anything structural.Here EPS is marketed at Home Depot as 'bead board' and is always white. You can see the bead structure in it. XPS is either blue or pink, and you can see a much finer structure. Picking up a sheet it's much stiffer. For people who want a larger board, specialty wood shops can get plywood in 10 and 12 foot lengths. If you make it 8 foot sheets, you will have to laminate. This will nearly double the weight of your board. You can get Baltic Birch plywood as thin as 1/8" but it's pricey.The notch at the back will create drag. The minimum drag shape will be asymmetric with the wide point about 40% of the distance from the front.If you want to find out if you like stand up paddling, a solo canoe works well, and can be rented easily. It has other possibilities too.

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  • sgbotsford commented on jfarro's instructable Solar Powered RGB LED Magic Pathway9 months ago
    Solar Powered RGB LED Magic Pathway

    When you work out the light posts bear this in mind:The worst time of year for solar power is winter. The sun is low on the horizon even at noon. (Unless you live in Florida) So angle the solar cells to the south to collect maximum amount of light on the shortest day of the year. The correct angle is your latitude away from being flat.

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