Saturday, 31 March 2018

DARE Rocketry meets Libre Space Foundation!

So last week I went out to the second PocketQube satellite workshop to be held at the TU Delft campus (another picture dump post to be done about the workshop soon). Regular readers (a very select group!) might recall whilst I was out there last year I managed to go and pay a visit to the fabulous DARE rocketry group. Well this year instead of just rocking up I did a few emails and managed to get a visit to the facility arranged for a cohort of people at the workshop. This included my friends and co-conspirators from the Libre Space Foundation . A rather lovely moment occurred when the two respective teams decided it would be a nice idea to exchange mission patches and remove before flight tags. It was fabulous to be the small link that made this possible, but it is also inspiring as these two teams, DARE and LSF represent new and emergent ways in that, to my mind, space is being democratised. LSF have a total commitment to working in the open and out loud using opensource tools and licenses. The welcoming and collaborative approach undertaken by DARE, is evidenced not just by accommodating me but by helping fabulous amateur sub orbital rocketeers Copenhagen Sub-orbitals to test their recovery systems. Both these organisations seem to afford glimpses of a emergent space sector that is freed from military and defence and built more openly on the principles of collaboration.... Sounds good to me.

Masses of thanks/dank je to Jesse and Caspar for organising and hosting an excellent DARE tour.

Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Guild of Makers Launch event... Photos!

So last week I got to go and help out at the guild of makers launch event as it has some strong links to my work with indycube and it was a pleasure to attend! It was held at the amazing new Autodesk facility in Birmingham which as well as a fabulous conference suite also homes an utterly staggering space full of innovation and the highest end machining and metrology stuff! Needless to say I was in heaven! I'm not going to go into masses of detail about the event here but to get a big flavour of the day jump on twitter and checkout the hashtag #GoMlaunch

So here is my curated out of a 100 photos 20 or so photodump! 

Saturday, 3 March 2018

Quick Arbour Press modification

So a year or so ago I used my arbour press to fit some PEM nuts into some aluminium extrusion for an experiment for someone else and I was reading on the data sheet that really they should be inserted with a specific force. It got me thinking about how useful having some knowledge or control of the force my arbour press exerts would be. I also currently want to test how a couple of different designs of bulkhead react to force and what thickness I need for a particular design. So a quick mod has occurred! Above you can see the press (a 1 ton Clarke I picked up locally second hand a while back)  but the handle you can see is actually my torque wrench connected to the opposite side from where a handle normally is. 

The mod is really simple.. I removed the spindle which raises and lowers the ram and drilled and tapped a hole into the end of it on the lathe I then fitted a steel bolt to the hole. Now I can use the torque wrench with a socket on over the bolt as a handle to apply pressure, with the torque wrench breaking at the force required set on the torque wrench! Its handy in terms of pressing something with a known force but also for testing what force an object will reach its elastic limit with!

Couple of shots of the process for fun! Arbour press spindle in the lathe.

Needed to trim a bolt down to the right length so use my stud clamp I made ages ago on my engineering operations course!

Spindle all drilled and tapped.  So I have seen lots of other mods for arbour presses, I definitely at some point want to drill a hole into the face of the ram and fit a grub screw to allow me to make different tools for the end.. some different punches for example and also perhaps some metal brake type set ups for folding small sections of sheet.