Sunday, August 7, 2011

Oh The Anticipation

I don't really like the idea of posting mini hey-look-I-got-some-parts-but-can't-use-them-yet updates but that seems to be all I've got for now. I can explain. First though, look at these new parts that I got but can't use yet!

Here are the awesome little Pololu wheels and micro metal gearmotors:

Yeah they're pretty sweet. Next up, the incredibly powerful ducted fan, accompanied by its partner in crime, the Hobby King 30A speed control:

This thing is seriously insane, especially since I'm using it with 4S power so there's nothing holding this fan back.

Oh, also, those little GWS speed controls that I got suck. I soldered them to some very small test motors just to make sure they work know how electronics can be. The first one's BEC transistor exploded upon plugging it in for no reason. Didn't even get to use it at all. The next one worked the first time I used it, but then the next time I tried, it just didn't work. The BEC circuit was working fine because the receiver was on, but the test motor just wouldn't spin. I emailed GWS customer service and after a few emails back and forth of the guy doubting that I was using the size battery I said I was, he stopped emailing me back. Fuck GWS. That being said, here's a picture of new speed controls I bought. Their features include:
1. Lower price tag than GWS.
2. Double the amperage capabilities of GWS.
3. Pretty blinking lights which GWS did not have.
4. Operational. (this one's a real luxury)

Blue Arrow. Never heard of them. But as you can see their features list is impressive compared to the GWS speed controls I bought before. Now, here's a picture of the speed controls soldered to little test motors and plugged into the $6 receiver I got from the great Hobby King which by the way works perfectly.

Well anyways, at the beginning of this post I promised to explain why I'm posting yet another mini hey-look-I-got-some-parts-but-can't-use-them-yet update, so here goes that.

Ponoko takes forever.

More explaining. You see, I ordered a nice piece of carbon fiber for the chassis of this vehicle that I was going to have a friend cut out on his CNC machine, but I decided to get adventurous and use Ponoko's laser cutting services for the first time instead. I uploaded my design and ordered it and all that good stuff, and shortly after learned that it takes about three weeks to receive a part.

Three weeks. That's like three years in engineer-time.

So I'm just waiting anxiously. It should be about another week and a half before I have it and then I can finally put all this stuff together and make it work. By the way, it only cost $5 for the materials and cutting service to make the chassis out of acrylic, which is incredible. Besides the fact that they kinda shafted me with a $12 shipping charge, I would definitely recommend Ponoko to anyone looking to make small to medium sized 2D parts. They do 3D printing too but I don't know much about their 3DP services. But yeah, for now, this is all I have as far as a chassis goes:

Paper certainly isn't a very sturdy material, especially for a chassis, but it's good for mock-ups!

I would install the ducted fan and wheels and stuff know, paper. Not good for much more than lying flat.

Well for now that's all I've got. As soon as my chassis arrives I'll be able to actually put everything together and perform testing and take videos and all of that exciting aftermath of projects such as this one.

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