Monthly Archives: September 2012

Eradicating Irregularities

More and more small things are crossed off my list.. and many more things that I find along the way that never was on the list to begin with, but should probably have been there…

While preparing the body for painting, I decided to fix another small thing that had bothered me a bit. It seems that my frame was not 100% straight at the top, making a slightly larger gap between the dome ring and the frame right where the shoulders attach. The gap here was about 3mm, while it was 1mm around the rest of the body.

So, setting out to fix it, I started with adding a smaller strip of styrene around the top of the frame, outside the rockler, but quickly scrapped the idea, fortunately before the glue had set permanently!

Instead, I reinforced the top frame ring with 2mm styrene around the shoulders!

2 pieces of styrene added, time to trim it flush and mark where to sand..

This was done on both sides, and I spent a good 45 minutes outside with my detail sander smoothing these out, but once I was done, it looked great and smooth. I test fitted with the rockler, found 2 more areas where a little more was needed to take off, once the rockler was sitting flush all around (which it wasn’t before, let me tell you) I mounted it again and put the dome on top.

The gap is now nice and flush. You can still see the old gap in the gray area above.. I’ve got a 1.5 mm gap all around the dome! I may remove a bolt inside and use washers instead to make this gap even smaller, I haven’t decided yet.

When I was working with the rockler, I also removed a few of the acetal bearings inside to make it run smoother. I also gave it a good sprayng of teflon spray while at it.

Now, I’ve removed the Pittman dome motor while sanding, but without the motor, this is how freely the dome now spins…

I feel quite happy with this change, and without the gap, it feels even better!

I celebrated the new spinning dome by getting another item dome on my list: I fixed and finalized one of the battery boxes! bondoed, sanded, everything!

By |2016-12-06T00:01:15+01:00September 30th, 2012|R2-D2|Comments Off on Eradicating Irregularities

the small things

As I’m approaching a place where all this will culminate in painting the droid, I’ve been tweaking a few things here and there I have not been happy with.

I have actually been quite busy with a knee surgery (I’m fine, thanks for asking), but I’ve managed to continue working on the droid!

I spent two days going over the dome with some small fixes, rewiring the electronics, rehinging the door, and most importantly, moving the front PSI’s since they were a bit crooked, and also repositioning the rear PSI about 1 mm in order to make if fit proper!

Now the front panel sits a lot straighter. And no, that’s not weathering, but I will sure keep that in mind for hen I do weather my droid!

Back panel around the RLD is now positioned correctly.. The RLD was too much to the side, making this panel “hit the wall” of the dome, something I wasn’t too happy with.

Come to think of it, I probably made my droid *less* screen accurate by fixing the panels..

Then, I dremeled out the front PSI holder to twice the size for the PSI board:

To properly insulate the PSI when inserting it into the housing, I decided to make a shim out of 1mm styrene.

It all fits great into the front PSI holder…

What do you know, it even works!

This was then screwed into place inside the dome.

I removed all the blue panels for sanding and painting, so the dome now looks a lot less complete than just a few days before.

When rewiring the droid inside, I also found a better placement for the slip ring connector board. Small improvements, one at a time!

I’m also in the process of going over the body, gleing anything that looks like it could use an extra dab of glue, trying to seal up any tiny holes I find.

While waiting for some glue to set, I also mounted all the parts I had home fo the charging bay insert.

Tomorrow, I’m going to work on dome alignment. I have noticed I have some gaps around the edge when my dome is mounted. First step is to lower the dome about 1 mm by removing a few bolts and replacing them with thinner washers instead. Then I will need to make some shims out of 1mm styrene and “pad” the top of the frame in some places to make the skin nice and snug all around.

I’ve done a few other small things here and there, nothing really big, but a few things off my R2-2DO list crossed off!

Oh.. I also cleaned my small office/workshop, which was met by a big FINALLY from my fiancée…

By |2016-12-06T00:01:16+01:00September 29th, 2012|R2-D2|Comments Off on the small things


In this process of doing things that is not really taking the build forward, but rather redoing things I wasn’t too happy with, I’ve spent the past two days making an overhaul on the electronics system!

The old electronics board had gone through three changes, and the flat styrene board looked like a well seasoned Swiss cheese, and it was a tad too small since everything seemed to be sitting on top of each other! The Dude will not abide!

This had to change!

In addition to that, I also hade a veritable spider’s web inside the droid with cables running back and forth, and not really bound together properly. This, too, had to change.

This is the old electronics board. A bit cramped, but not too bad. That’s because not all cables are attached! The incoming power and USB cable was sticking out at the bottom, and there was 8 different cables that needed to be attached at different places. This, I did not like!

Also, the cable for the Slip Ring had to be basically folder all over itself to not get tangled up. This clearly had to be moved somewhere, especially if I am planning to get a dome ring for my periscope and life form scanner!

This is the new electronics board, with more room for extensions, one common plug for everything (apart form the USB connector). I’ve got main power, both drive wheels and dome coming in on that connector on the left! I’ve also moved some things around, like giving enough space for the slip ring connector!

So much for the electronics board, but what about inside the body?

Well, I didn’t really take any “before” pictures, but perhaps this can give you an idea of what it was like. Many cables, back and forth, and all of them individual. Also note that most of these cables had to be able to connect to different places on the old electronics board!

This is a mess of power cables, foot drive cables and dome drive cables. Nothing really marked, how good is that?

This is the new look of the interior wiring, prior to me installing the board. There are still a few individual cables, but they will be tied down when I’m finalizing the cable mounts after the paint job is done. This is just hanging there and not fastened 100%.

With the electronics board in place, and the big connector plugged in…

…it looks like this! Clean and not too messy!

Another angle… remember it is all plugged in. No more cables going back and forth. If I need to unplug my electronics board, I only need to undo that plug and also remove the USB cable (not attached in this photo), and it’s a simple matter of opening the velcro fasteners and there we go!

Best part: I can not attack anything the wrong way anymore!

… and look at that! It even works!

Tomorrow I hope to have beaten this flu! I’ve got work to do… and a network thing… and Thursday I’m getting knee surgery!

I’m looking forward to getting a lot done on the small parts while being partially immobile!


By |2016-12-06T00:01:17+01:00September 25th, 2012|R2-D2|Comments Off on Re:Wired
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