Family Crest (or, what is stronger than steel)

OK, maybe not a “crest” per se, maybe it should be called a family symbol, or icon, whatever the name is, this is a thing made of two large rough steel wheels and three smaller shine balls, all mixed together in perfect harmony. One of the large wheels is complete and full, the other one is broken or incomplete, nevertheless the five elements integrate into one solid body.

Ask my kids what is stronger than steel, they will not hesitate to answer, family.

 

iCube Desktop

A 4x4x4” Cubic with 5 touch screens, sound, BT/Wi-Fi, run Apps, play sound and video, communicate and connect.

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The Problem

Smartphones are great but are not desktop natives. At your desk, your PC or smartphone are never at the right size and position to share content and view multiple sources simultaneously. Using your smartphone to show apps, videos or images to someone sitting in front of you is never comfortable. Tilting your computer screen cause you to bend over and stretch across your desk. When several gusts are sitting around your meeting room you lose control once you give away your smartphone to be circulated. When using your smartphone at your desk you have to hold it in order to view the screen, lay it on the table to do something else and hold it again to see if the stock you are following has changed or to view the clock again to make sure you are not late for your next meeting.

The Solution

iCube is a desktop Multiscreen Cubic Computer (MC2) running tablet OS and apps. With 5 hires touch screens (faces) and dual speakers on the bottom face delivering hi-fi sound, iCube store and play all popular AV media formats. Equipped with BT and Wi-Fi, iCube communicates with servers and gadgets and can be controlled using own GUI or remote desktop applications.
Syncing with smartphone’s and desktop’s email and calendar applications, iCube is the ideal platform to manage daily tasks on one face while presenting other information on other faces.
iCube includes high density battery allowing 2 weeks between charges under normal usage conditions, utilizes very large SSD and accepts external memory cards in designated slot on the bottom face.

Restoring Aircraft Carrier Model

Exactly 47 years ago on Oct 6th 1965 my father Negus (Michael Raymond Marcel Ransenberg RIP 1936-1947) built a model of FOCH Aircraft Carrier.

For many years the model was at the same apartment where we lived and in later years at my nephew’s house. The model housed in wood and glass aquarium with back mirror was kept reasonably, only few parts fell apart and most of the wood and glass stayed intact. To give it another 50-100 years I took the frame apart and rebuilt it using the same materials replacing only one broken side glass. The model itself needed some cleaning and regluing. It is now time to re shelf it for next generation to keep and remember.

The Three Laws of Robotics bug

The Three Laws of Robotics will only survive a bug free world. However, it is the nature of mankind to create bugs in machines and it is the nature of bugs to ignore rules. Hence, the world as we know it today will cease to exist once robots understand the Three Laws of Robotics.

Backlash probe for Mach 3

As a result of struggling with backlash issues much longer than needed I built this probe and wrote a small VB procedure to help read backlash values within seconds. The probe is similar to edge finder which rises a bit on the parallel interface when grounded. The electrical connection is made between the probe and the spindle using two alligators and required an isolated base which is made of clear Polycarbonate. At the base are two rare earth magnets which holds the probe on the milling vise or alternatively between its jaws. The audio jack plugs into a connections box which leads it to the controller.

The script is self-explanatory, just notice the settings under “User Inputs” and make sure to select the correct values:

Resolution – If you need an immediate low-res (i.e. non-accurate) backlash reading you can run at 10 or 100 and the feed rate will be set respectively (the resolution will be low but the speed will be high). For final reading always use 1000.

Active Axis – Simply set to X, Y or Z and place the spindle (or tool or whatever is attached to the spindle) between probe’s brackets, somewhere in the middle, and in a way that will allow the brackets to touch the spindle when the axis moves in both directions.

Two Sides – This is useful for Z but can be used on any axis. When measuring backlash I always read it in two directions and set the average result as backlash compensation. With X and Y there should be no problem, but when doing Z, how do you set a tool to touch the two brackets of the probe? You can use any tool such as fly cutter, a bit with extended tip or a hex wrench attached to a drill chuck. Otherwise, you can set this parameter to False and the script will run the axis in one direction, which is going down to the table.

Number of loops – For some reason I initially wrote the script with an option to run multiple cycles and display the average reading but I never used it and always run once. It is there in case you find it useful.

The code can be found here, open the VB editor and paste it there. Always remember to “SAVE AS” or else Mach 3 might use a previously stored file name and overwrite existing file you may need.

How to hold the probe for XY (right) and Z (left)

 

Golan Heights, a day trip

We had a trip today to the Ggolan Heights and came back with many photos and videos but I think this one says it all: