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Everything posted by richfiles

  1. Okay... been busy with work, then winter happened, and it's tougher to go out and work on projects, but I'm trying to get back into my momentum, working inside... That said, I was doing some brainstorming, and it hit me... There's a SUPER simple way to do non light emissive flag indicators. I remembered that Dave Jones of the EEVblog did a video series on custom LCDs a few years back. There are other parts to that video series, but the gist is that Dave goes through the entire process of designing and ordering a custom LCD. He discusses the one time and bulk costs involved. The cost per unit actually ends up being very low. Tooling costs are generally the big cost... a couple hundred bucks typically. Per panel though is often $1-5, depending on size and complexity. A simple grey LCD module, with a barber pole segment pattern could offer a modern and elegant option to replace this old electromechanical style flag indicator. While it wouldn't be identical to the old Apollo and shuttle indicators, it would definitely offer a good, low cost compromise. I'll have to look into this. It'd make a good "stuck at home" project for winter as well. The one catch with the LCD solution is that I'd be dealing with white and black, or grey and black... These 3D printed "fake" flags are nice, but would be hard to reproduce as LCDs. the issue is the reflective layer is either gonna be white or grey or somewhere between. I'd be quite happy to settle for grey with black barber stripes. There might be off the shelf options too... they wouldn't match the Apollo style, but other people might opt for them... These 5-segment and 14-segment e-ink modules are available from Digikey. Setting these horizontally above or below a switch would make a nice, unobtrusive indicator. These e-ink displays are very visible with their white background, and won't overwhelm your senses with that Christmas light effect that masses of LEDs can do. Darkening alternate segments might look very good on the 14 segment part. Might only light up a portion of the segments too, that one's a bit longer than the other. The 5-segment module is pretty affordable too, $26 at this time for 10x pieces. The 14-segment module is much costlier, at $96 for 10x. The biggest catch with these, is the smaller e-ink display has an active area of only 3.00 x 10.30 mm and the larger has an active area of only 3.00 x 21.50 mm. They're kinda small... Honestly, I could totally see getting a custom grey and black "barber pole" style LCD custom made. Most of all, the size could be perfected. It would effectively be just one pixel (though it could be made with all segments as individual inputs, so it can be repurposed as a diagonal bar indicator). If wired as a "single pixel" then in theory, a whole array of these LCDs could be wired to a common LCD controller as if each whole LCD module were a single segment. If I order custom flags, I'll probably order them in bulk, and possibly have more than I need by myself. Much of the cost is the upfront tooling. The more ordered, the cheaper each piece is. Another option might be to pay extra for an onboard controller chip. Would be nice too be able to feed power and ground, and have either a direct digital I/O input, or an I2C or SPI serial input for addressable control. As for desk updates... When I designed it, I did a BIG DUMB by not pre-constructing ANY mounting points or pass throughs for things like wiring, monitor arms, etc. I decided to undertake the chore of reverse-disassembling it, so I can correct those missed elements. I also wanna seal the interior areas too, so the wood is more resilient to humidity fluctuations. It's not hard... just a chore, and one I can't do in the big open area of my dad's barn, given the bitter cold temps right now... One of the things I want to do is route out (I finally bought a small router) the openings for the CRT displays I want to mount, as well as modify the desk so the panel they mount to will be easily attached/detached, and the assembly be able to slot in and out. Might do the same with the other side too. Constructing that panel like a drawer would make for an ideal place for small accessories, etc. to be hidden away. It's a minor, but I think very worthwhile upgrade to the desk.
  2. It looks really nice! It's about as tight a fit as possible, without overlapping the tabs. I didn't want to do that, cause it might affect whether they both sit flush. Pre-drilled all the holes by hand, to ensure I didn't punch through and ruin the aesthetic. mounted both the switch and outlet, as well as the two cover boxes. I used some plastic as a strain relief to clamp the two wires coming out.It's a little unorthodox, but it works. I love the finished result! I could have done the openings a bit better, I'm sure, but I'll touch up the few nicks with some stain and call 'er good. Honestly, I want to throw everything together, be done with the desk, and get to the Kerbalin'!
  3. Labor day weekend... I had to labor on Saturday. I would have just taken the Saturday off, but thanks to reasons not in my control, I absolutely had to be there for seven hours so that I could help that ONE customer with their $14.01 transaction... Mind you, one employee had been getting supervisor approval to take off every one of his Saturdays for months, just to prove how unnecessary us covering Saturdays even was... When higher management found out that we were successfully demonstrating that even our own customers didn't care if we weren't open on Saturdays... Well, they had to nip that in the bud real fast, once an actual holiday was up and someone else wanted their chance at a three day weekend... Well, I was just out of luck!
  4. As someone who has had family that absolutely disrespected the final wishes of a deceased family member... Go ahead and communicate what the final wishes were to the other relative. Explain the situation as best as possible. Even if the decision was made disrespectfully, it was still made (in a skewed mindset) to benefit that other relative. If they can understand why the one cousin's actions caused such offense, they may be willing to honor your uncle's final wishes and send the flag. Even if what the one cousin did felt disrespectful, I'd say don't poke or prod at them, and definitely don't try and goad the other cousin into any collective "embarrassment" or chastising. That never ends well. If the one cousin asks why the other doesn't have it. they can simply say they decided to follow the late uncle's wishes as their priority. No conflict, no hurt feelings, and no escalation. I imagine in their mind, the one cousin must think they "know best", and probably doesn't even realize the offense they are inflicting. If they are aware... then I'm sorry you have to deal with that kind of person... That's how it was in my family... In those cases, it's still better to be friendly with everyone else, and leave them to stew in their own antagonism on their own.
  5. Oh man... It just hit me... The farmer that owns that tractor probably can't even get it back because it's certain to be tied up as evidence into the police and the state employment safety board investigation. I would hope the dealership can provide a loaner, particularly cause the harvest season is going to be ramping up this month, and that farmer is gonna need that machine! When it is finally released... Yikes, just even knowing his machine killed a man... That will always loom over his mind whenever he has to use it... He had no control over what happened, and yet that's gonna be a burden he'll have to carry, of no fault of his own.
  6. I have submitted the first mockup for toggle switches to Concord Aerospace to see if I can get them manufactured. The image below is a not-photoshopped rendition of two possible options: As the text in the image says, If they can do backlit panels, I'll opt for option A. If they are unable to do backlighting of the panel text, then I will try to opt for option B. If they can do neither, I will ask if I can purchase the switches in bulk, like the original plan, and do it myself. They do not offer a 5-gang switch configuration, and their 4-gang switch is widely spaced, with each switch having it's own pair of guards. It seems all their switches use only single, double, or triple gang switch guards. I suspect they only make those three sizes. I suggested that if one guard is cut off, pairing a 2 + 3 gang guard could work. Alternately, cutting a pair of 3 gang guards through the center of one of the end holes would also provide a solution. I almost prefer to go with option B, as I have a really interesting idea for backlit nomenclature. Meanwhile, I cut the first opening for the toggle switch to control the lights on my desk. I dropped my Dremel in my lap while doing this! I was using the serrated wood cutting wheel, and it was set to medium speed. It caught on my leg fortunately, preserving my dignity, skitted itself out of my lap and across my thigh under it's own power, and then landed on the floor. Bleeding was fortunately quite minimal. I used the Dremel to cut out a recess for the switch to mount from behind the wood panel. it'll be secured to the wood from behind. The protective electrical box will also screw onto the back of the wood. The result is a very clean look, no exposed screws. I'm gonna make the recess a tiny bit deeper yet, cause I want the switch to be flush with the front. This will also help to cover any exposed end grain of the wood. Then I get to repeat the process for the outlets I install next. Hopefully Concord Aerospace gets back to me quickly. I'd love to get the switches ordered soon!
  7. @AlamoVampire You got me tearin' up again... Today is just the day to feel emotionally drained feeling sorrow for other people's losses and sufferings. Dementia terrifies me. I can't even begin to understand the drawn out toll it puts on you emotionally, as you helplessly watch your mother's decline. I'm so sorry... I agree with everyone's advice, and I think your intuition was spot on. Save her from the unnecessary pain of having to experience that loss over and over. It's just one of the burdens we carry for loved ones who suffer from cognitive decline. I wish you only the best, but also strength for when it's the worst. As for me, today has been... something else... I dropped my Dremel in my lap today. I was using the serrated wood cutting wheel at medium speed. Fortunately for my dignity, the wheel caught my leg and dragged itself out of my lap, across my thigh, and onto the floor. The bleeding was minimal. My day was heavenly compared to what happened at my sister's place of employment... My sister works at a farm implement dealer, basically, they sell and service stuff like tractors, harvesters, field equipment, etcetera. Today was the first day of her vacation, and as she was getting ready to hit the road, she heard sirens, and later saw a helicopter leaving the nearby hospital... She had no idea that helicopter was carrying one of her coworkers till later on in the day, when she was already on the road. The unfortunate young man was working on the pivot of an articulated tractor... To steer, this type of machine flexes a front frame and a rear frame in the center, between the front and rear axles. Hydraulic cylinders actuate the pivot mechanism, and like any machine, occasionally require service. It sounds like he had his head inside the pivot mechanism when someone turned the steering wheel, not realizing he was there. He did not make it. The pivot crushed his head. Only 27, with a 2 year old daughter... I don't even know the guy, but I went to school with one of his aunts, and knew a few other members of his extended family... God, it just randomly hits me that his little girl just lost her father, and I'm a wreck all over again. I think about how miserable my sister must be feeling right now... She knew him. She worked with him, and now she's off starting a vacation while everyone has started their grieving... I'm just completely emotionally strung out, spent, overwhelmed... And I didn't even know the guy, just his extended family... I know they are grieving too, and that hurts the most. I can't even comprehend how much pain his family is feeling right now. This day can hurry up and just be over...
  8. I officially have both floor panels moved to my place, and have just started finish work on the desk. I know floor panels might not seem special, but I know my chair will move nicely on these as compared to carpet. It's just one more step knocked out. I also found where I packed away my spool of Romex (three conductor wire with proper color coded hot, neutral, and ground conductors meant for residential house wiring), and started disassembling the access panels on the front legs... And now I'm getting sick. Started with a sore throat, and now I've got a runny nose and head congestion. Not looking forward to this one... In better news, I see that there is yet another Navball listed on the great internet money sink... Honestly, I'm glad they don't seem to be complete unobtanium these days. Means if someone else wants one, they actually have a chance at getting one! ... OH! I see why... This guy has sold at least two of these Navballs in the past couple months. I just spotted this in the guy's feedback history. They must have multiples, and are just selling one at a time. No wonder they've been so available lately! EDIT Oof... I was really sick over the weekend and start of the week. So much for progress... Mostly slept the day away trying to recover.
  9. It's home! I am so happy right now! No pictures, but now that it's home, I plan to attach all the lighting and outlets and the monitor mounts and such stuff. I'll have to tear down the old desk, and get it all set up properly, preferably with a lot of velcro ties to organize the wiring a bit better... I hope...
  10. Made the first floor panel. This is just to give me a nice surface for a chair to roll on. I looked at office mats, and came to one simple conclusion... They all either suck, or are insanely expensive. I decided that some plywood plus laminate flooring would make a great... checks notes... Floor. Turns out floor makes a good floor. Who knew. Got the laminate flooring for cheap, clearance pricing from a local hardware store. Not my first color choice, but a perfectly fine color. My wallet voted. Here are the 8 trim pieces for the two floor panels I'll be making. I had to use the oil based stain on these, cause I ran out of the water based stains I used on much of the desk. It's fine. I'll give these a few days to cure. I have also made arrangements to transport the desk tomorrow after work. I'll have it home, and I will be able to install the lighting, outlets, etc. Very excited!
  11. Just a small heads up for any interested party... I see someone listed a Three-Axis Navball on a certain popular auction site. It is similar to the two that I have. I saw that one sold last week too, but I was rather busy and didn't get a chance to post it. I'm gonna be working on some floor mats made from plywood and laminate flooring today. Just a surface to be able to roll a chair on. I also am going to see if I can transport my desk home this week. Each piece is small enough I can get it home in my car, probably in a few trips, but I have family with a truck, and they offered to help, so long as schedules work out.
  12. @DDE It's a non pressurized system. It's simply gravity fed, so if algae blocks the drainpipe, then at best you have the weight of the water in the pipe. Since most blockages form near the top, there will be no significant water mass to push against them, and the flow tends to be just a drip, so no water column will tend to form below to create suction from down the line. It's super easy for these clogs to form, and once algae gets growing, it can be hard to stop. @AlamoVampire Consider the volume of the AC's drip pan and the pipe itself will be the only significant volume the vacuum will need to contain. Even a small wetvac ought to be fine. If the wetvac has a float valve, then you're doubly fine. Worst case, is you stop mid way, dump the vacuum tank, and then continue sucking out the blockage from the drain. As for power... Algae boogers are pretty soft and slimy. Doesn't take much force. BRAVE souls have used nothing more than their lungs to blow out a blockage... My mouth is going no where near one of those nasty pipes...
  13. @AlamoVampire A small wet-vac might save you some suffering when you'd otherwise have to wait for a technician to come over and clean things up. Literally just suck the algae blockages out the drain pipe. I'd still have the service calls for routine cleaning, and for follow up after blockages, particularly since you said you have a service contract... Still consider the vacuum option, as it might save you from suffering the heat while you wait.
  14. It's a shame the unit is in the attic. My AC is just a simple wall mounted window/wall all in one unit. It was designed to allow condensation from inside to drip into a tray at the back of the unit, where a ring on the fan picks up the water and sprays it on the condenser coil to help cool it off. I've been dropping algaecide tablets into the tray in back to try and keep algae growth down, but it hasn't been perfect... I think my own ports are blocked, and I have to manually add water to the tray every few days, or it eventually runs low. The difference has been like night and day. Once I add water to the system, the cooling comes back and it's immediately noticeable. I know with mini-split systems, or central systems, the indoor units need a drain line to give the condensation from the evaporator somewhere to go. Many years back, I had a central air system in my basement that had it's drain pipe run across a floor to a floor drain, but there was insufficient slope, and it would frequently clog with pink algae. For me, part of the issue was that there was an established growth in the pipe already, so each time it came back, it came back sooner and worse. If I recall, I think I bleached the pipe, and eventually just replaced it with a bigger pipe. Maybe yearly accumulation on the drainage pipe has led to the repeated and more frequent blockages? While I used compressed air at the source of the pipe, another, often far easier option, is to use a vacuum at the destination of the drain pipe. If it drains to the ground, then you should be able to have easy access, and if it drains to the pan of the external AC unit, then it should be as simple as detaching it temporarily... Use a Wet Vac to try to literally suck the obstruction out of the pipe. I've seen literal rags be used to wrap the drain and adapt the drain's size to the vacuum's hose size. You don't need fancy adapters. Algae obstructions are generally soft and pliable, so they should be able to be drawn out with relative ease, so long as they are located in the main drain. Best of all, no climbing needed. just find where your AC drains to. Even if you don't have a wet vac, buying one to have on hand is probably cheaper than an HVAC technician, and you don't have to wait to give it a try. They do also make something like a big pipecleaner brush on the end of a long flexible wire... I have no idea what those cost, or how long they make them, but you could probably use something like that to scour out algae buildup inside the drain pipe too, but if you only go at it from the bottom of the pipe, or might push a clog up the pipe. Suppose you can always try vacuuming it back out. Worst case, is the HVAC guy clears the clog from the top end if that happens.
  15. Construction of the desk is complete! Check out my Build Thread to see the entire process of building it! There were no plans made up for this one. Everything was done one piece at a time, the concept pulled right out of my head as I went along. Honestly, the design changed from my original concepts, even as it all came together, and I saw better ways to implement the build. Hopefully I will soon return to the controller itself. Currently I am communicating with Concord Aerospace about buying their replica Apollo style switches.
  16. Construction of the desk is completed! I only need to transport it home and once there, I'll attach the electrical bits, like lighting, outlets, etc. The last bit of actual construction was the extensions for the keyboard tray. This ensures there are no gaps when extended. I started out by staining the top shelf, since the top is least visible, and I wanted to ensure the stain went on well and looked good. I decided that under the desk, I would use the darker stain I had. Next to be stained was the cross-frame. I made sure to use the lighter stain for the rear panel of the cross frame, so it would match the rest of the lighter desk surface. Continuing the theme, I used the dark stain underneath the desk, and light stain for the exposed surfaces. I also added additional vertical bracing for the two inner feet. Man, it's really starting to come together, and is so close to finished! I love the colors too! I considered doing more dark accents, but I realized having just the two vertical beams be darker just seems to look nice to me. The dark under-desk space and the paneling accents is all the contrast the lighter desk surface needed! I still can't get over how nice those little wainscot panels ended up looking with the two stain tones... As much work as sanding the dark stain off was... I'm now GLAD that I put that way too dark stain on first! The two tone effect that resulted is perfection! Tested the fit one last time... I gave all the top and front facing surfaces a light sand and applied a second coat... I am still blown away by the finished result! It's so spectacular! I MADE SURE it stayed spectacular! I stayed up till 3:40 in the morning with an air nozzle, blowing away any bug that dared come close to the drying final coat! In the end, it was worth all the effort! I am super happy with the final result, and I am incredibly pleased that this idea that has sat in my head for literally years is now in my physical presence! Of course, I will follow up with the electrification and monitor equipping of the desk... My next step in the Kerbal instrument panel progress is likely to be buying switches. I am currently communicating with Concord Aerospace about purchasing some switches. Originally, I had looked into ideas like 3D printing tab levers to epoxy onto retail toggle switches, and buying rubber grommets from Aliexpress to mimic the hermetic seal boot, and making switch guards from wire pipe hangers welded together... It absolutely would have worked, But Concord offers me a literal easy button. Given how long this project has taken me, I have zero reservations with just buying quality replica Apollo/NASA style switches. I'm probably gonna even let them make the panels, so long as they can offer backlighting options. Honestly, it'll be one less thing for me to have to do, and I'm willing to throw money at the problem to just get it done with. So far, I've come up with the idea of two banks of 5 action group switches, and I think I want to group RCS and SAS with the Resource Meter mode [TOTAL/STAGE] and the [PRO/ALT/ANTI] switch that will be grouped with my target indicator selection dial (4 toggle switches and 1 rotary dial with 5 positions), and then have Lights, Brakes, and Gear be it's own group of 3 switches. I want a pair of safety covered toggles to arm the Stage and Abort buttons. I still need to make room for toggles that will control power supplies, etc... I'm gonna have a 5V DC bus (Arduino logic), a 12VDC bus (LED lighting controllers), a 24V AC bus (Atmospheric Density meter), Aux 24V AC bus (Hakko soldering iron socket), and a 120V AC bus (Navball). If I also include a Main power toggle on the panel, I could do that using 6 switches. Probably do a pair of 3 gang switch panels. I don't know if I need any other switches or not, but that's kinda where I'm sitting. I want to figure out how to fit the Fairchild Channel F controller into the panel for translation control, since it is practically identical to the Shuttle control and functionally equivalent to the Apollo controller. I have the joystick for attitude control, and I have the T-Bar Fader lever for throttle control... That puts me at 25 switches... I have a locking lever switch I want to use for the Aux 24VAC, and I have some colored red and green plastic tab lever switches from my local tractor dealership that I want to use for something... That means I will need to get 21 switches from Concord Aerospace, and have panels made for 25 switches total, with one mounting hole being undersized to accommodate the locking toggle. I also wanna finish the Vertical Velocity meter, since it was SO CLOSE to done last time I worked on it... After that... I suppose I need to repair the Radar altimeter... Man, I am still bummed out about it getting damaged... I also need to figure out how to print the scale onto the tape... I kinda feel like it would be a massive cop out to just settle on 355-0 representing meters x10 or something... 3550 meters is only 1/3 of the Radar Altimeter's range! ... Unless............... I just had a stupid thought... What if I tried to create a flag system? I strip an analog meter of it's guts... Instead of a pointer, a film... middle position is nothing. Positive position is "00". Negative position is "0". The tape could display as follows... The first stage would have the tape meter show 500 meter increments from 10000m to 4000m, after which it would change the scale to indicate 3550m to 400m in 50m increments. Finally, the last 355 meters would be displayed in 5m increments. 100[00] 95[00] 90[00] 85[00] -------- 55[00] 50[00] 45[00] 40[00] At this point, the tape meter quickly spools down from 40 to 355 at max speed (40, 35, 30, 25, 20, 15, 10, 5, 0, 355... a span of only 9 digits on the display), and the flag meter flips polarity to show [0] instead. The meter would now indicate 3550m to 400m in 50m increments. 355[0] 350[0] 345[0] 340[0] -------- 55[0] 50[0] 45[0] 40[0] Finally, the tape meter quickly spools down to 355 at max speed, and the flag meter shuts off, showing nothing. The tape meter can then count down the last 355 meters in 5 meter increments, all utilizing the existing printing... 355 350 345 340 ----- 15 10 5 0 This method would require rigging up either a mechanical flag of some kind, probably made out of an analog meter, solenoids, or a servo, or it would require utilizing LEDs... I want the readout to be mechanical. I'll likely duplicate the radar altimeter value as a digital readout somewhere, possibly even above the tape meter itself. I know there may be moments where the mechanical limits of the tape meter are overwhelmed. I will have a "Rate Lag" LED that lights up the meter to indicate that changes are occurring faster than the motor can keep up. This would indicate that the reading of the meter is unreliable. I have considered a simple front light to illuminate the tape meter, and If I do this, simply toggling the light from the blue-green I'm backlighting everything with, to a red glow would be a very simple means to indicate readout lag, without wasting precious panel space, though I may still have a "Rate Lag" annunciator on the DSKY too. I'll probably have a similar indicator for the Delta V meter as well. Woah... if the flag either had 5 positions, or I implemented a second flag to cover the tape meter tape itself, I could have a "40" flag that pops out in front of the tape meter and covers the cursor mark, so the meter would still read [40][00] or [40][0] during the short tape transition where it quickly spools from 40 down to 355. Could easily do this with a pair of servos and some long axles to rotate the flags on. I still have some work to do, as far as getting my workspaces properly set up again... most of all, I need good chairs. I still need to deal with this issue... Everything one step at a time...
  17. The desk is structurally complete! All that remains is to install electrical elements and stain it! This has been a long time coming, and I am SO thrilled to finally have the desk standing in front of me! It's been a busy weekend! Here's what went down for the final construction session... I created this grooved piece to allow the keyboard tray to slide seamlessly out of the desk, but also provide a structural support for the right side of the Kerbal Console itself. Done strictly with a table saw. Had to notch out a few bits so it would sit flush with the understructure of the desk. In place, it allows the right side of the console to have a surface to sit on, without interfering with the keyboard tray. It also joins the three cross brace beams together. The keyboard tray extends nicely. Okay, i did lie about one thing... I'll have to attach the extension to the keyboard tray to cover the gap in the control panel where the keyboard will sit when the tray is pushed into the desk... Other than that... pretty much done. Next step was to make the top shelf... Yes, I ended up having enough oak left over to make the shelf. I used the table saw with the blade set at an angle to create the two reinforcement boards in the front... Cut the plank in half with an angle, then flipped one board and cut the opposing angle, then sanded it round. I like the resulting look! Table saw doubled as a workbench here. Clamped things nice and tight and let the glue dry and screwed everything together. Say hello to my dad's vintage Farmall 230. It's his favorite old tractor. It has had a few cameos in these photos, but this one really looks nice! I want the top shelf to be VERY structurally sound, so everything is glued and screwed together. I went ahead and put plugs into the pocket screw holes and buttons over the round screw holes and glued it all down. I added additional bracing and test fitted the lighting I found. I really like how it's all coming together here! The light fixtures are LED, and have three selectable color temperatures. Should be dimmable too, so I want to add a dimmer to the setup as well. Here's a test fit using clamps to hold the top shelf in place, and the console roughly inserted. The two clamps really are all it takes to temporarily secure everything and measure out bolt placement. I still just can't get over how nice this turned out! Honestly, is this not a spectacular build! Anyway, on to inserting the threaded inserts. I want this top shelf to be stable, strong, and easy to assemble! The threaded inserts thread into the wood, and provide a metal thread that a standard bolt can then thread into. One last check of the understructure... Just making sure everything that needs to be screwed in is indeed screwed in. You can see here that the cross-frame is actually incredibly simple... Just a few planks with boards screwing them together. Honestly, all the real structure is in the right and left segments. And here we have it... Structurally complete! The top shelf is bolted in, and everything is as it needs to be. The keyboard tray rolls out, the top shelf is stable, and everything is structurally sound! As I said... I just need to stain it, and then transport it home, where I'll do the final electrical work on it. Then I'll be back to the instrument panel itself!
  18. struct vesselPointingMessage #include <PayloadStructs.h> A vessel orientation information message, including velocity orientation. Public Members float heading Heading of the vessel (between 0 and 360, as indicated in the navball. 90 when pointing east, 180 when pointing south). float pitch Pitch angle of the vessel (between -90 and +90. 0 for an horizontal craft, +90 when pointing up, -90 when pointing down). float roll Roll angle of the vessel (between -180 and +180. 0 for a plane on the runway, ready to takeoff). I'm trying to understand why the Heading (Yaw), Pitch, and Roll values here are done in entirely different scales and ranges here? Heading is what I would have expected. 0-360 degrees. Simple. It's what the Navball shows. Roll is... acceptable... -180 to +180 is still a 360 degree range. I can adjust for that... Pitch though... -90 to +90 degrees? what even is this? It's only 180 degree range!? How do I even depict the other 180 degrees on my navball with half a rotation's worth of range? In space, vessels can be in retrograde, you know, and this pitch range does not seem to account for this. My original plan for my navball was to have three Arduino Minis handle each axis, doing the same calculations on just different parts of the data packet, but this... confuzzles me? How can this show the full range of a vessel's attitude if it doesn't encompass the full 360 degrees of pitch?
  19. Spent a little time working on the desk during my day off on US's Independence Day. Got the keyboard tray mounted. Made a simple pin and socket joint for the front of the slide to help support the weight on the end a little bit. If the cross-frame is unbolted, this should just release, without the need for extra bolts in the front. This is a major milestone for this build... It's effectively the last precision element. Everything else is just internal framing to support the console, and mounting the top shelf. Nothing left needs sub millimeter precision anymore, simply to fit together properly. I might be only one build session away from structural completion at this point! (translation, I will somehow take three more sessions... LOL). In seriousness though, I'm very confident that this is the endgame! The next real hurdle will be staining everything, and the new stain I selected seems to actually go on very nicely with the brush I got for it. If I were to tear it all down, and measure all the parts, and draw up plans, then it'd probably be a pretty neat project, but that's a lotta work! In reality, it's been a pretty expensive build... Just the two main vertical beams for the top shelf were $90 for the pair. Granted, yes, I'm working in Red Oak, but still. If I were to sell something like this, the materials cost and the labor involved... Weeeeeeellllllll....
  20. The two halves are now linked together as one desk! Ten bolts secure the main beams of the crossframe together, tying everything together. This is a HUGE milestone, but not half as big as finally knocking out sanding those side panels that were stained way too dark! Believe me, that took a stupid amount of time! A third plank adds rigidity to the rear beam, and will further serve as a mounting point for frame work that will serve as the console mount and the left keyboard slide mount. As of yet, nothing is joining the front and rear support beams, besides the left and right desk segments. Here, I am test fitting the keyboard tray. I am going to buy a small hand plane, cause the top of the keyboard surface has a small seam that would definitely interfere with a mouse. It also has a small warp that I need to plane down. It'll be a non-issue once I tackle it with a good plane. I could just sand it, but i may as well just get a plane for all the sandpaper and effort sanding would take... I had marked an estimated alignment mark on the extension of the left desk segment, to mark where I felt the keyboard slide should go... It was dead on! My plans might not exist on paper anywhere, but the build progress in my head has definitely been validated by that accuracy. Remember that my build style effectively is in the form of a sequence of part additions... There is only one order the parts can assemble... And the reverse order is necessary for disassembly. The catch with this method, is that error can be additive... Seems all my steps ended up with less than 0.5mm of error. The key difference with the cross frame, is that it will be able to be easily unbolted from the two end segments. The keyboard drawer will first detatch, then the top shelf can be removed, and finally, the cross frame bolts can be removed, and it will all come apart. Very modular! Yesterday ended up being a tedious labor/thinkin' day... I got the worst of the sanding dealt with, and then did a lot of thinking about the ways the cross frame will go together to interact with the other components, particularly the keyboard slide.
  21. It's beginning to actually look like a desk! The third leg, rear panel, and cross-frame support have all been installed on the left side, and you can see all the support structure bracing the support. The left and right desk segments are effectively complete now, and can each stand entirely independently. All that remains is mounting the supports for the top shelf, drilling holes for the cross-frame to bolt to, and staining. Sanding and re-staining the panels was so worth the effort! I like how it turned out! It's all coming together! I laid two planks across the the cross frame supports, and set the console in place to see how it would all look. I must say, I am absolutely excited at the prospect of finishing this desk upgrade soon! Part of me wishes I had plans for this desk on paper... Would have made building it go much faster, but then again, the design has evolved as I went along with the build, and that might not have happened had I not built it on the fly the way I did... I know already, that it is much improved over some of my original panel ideas.
  22. With the return of income, comes the return to being able to afford projects! Finally began work on "modifying" my old desk to fit the Kerbal controller... By modify, I mean that I took a look at every piece of the old desk and replaced it with new material. Behold, the Desk of Thesus! I could build a whole desk out of the parts I'm throwing out! Each side is free standing, having three legs, and a cross-frame will bolt to each side to both join them into one desk, and support the console. More details of the progress of the build can be found on my dedicated build thread. After completing my new desk, I plan to start back into the Instrument Panel build by finishing my Vertical Velocity Meter first, which should be easy, and then working on repairing the Radar Altimeter, which sadly encountered a rapid unplanned lithobraking incident. Future plans include starting the Delta V Carriage Meter mechanism, and designing the LED rate meters and designing a 3D printable bezel to support the Navball, rate meter LEDs, and the Velocity Readout. I have also gotten back in touch with Concord Aerospace, and plan to invest in some of their NASA styled replica switches!
  23. I was on a huge streak, and worked later than any other night, but made crazy progress! This will look so incredible once the instrument panel is installed! I'm just blown away by the one day progress! Again, the light stain was the only correct choice. It just looks so good! Knowing where the pocket holes needed to be, and knowing how it all needed to go together absolutely streamlined things! The sanding though... Even with an electric sander though... Yikes! It was a lot of effort to get deep enough to expose the bare wood again... Well worth the effort though! Just gotta finish the third leg + crossframe anchor, and the left side will be nearly done!
  24. LOL... I forgot, I didnt like how dark the extremely porous panels were, so I was considering sanding them and staining them a lighter color, leaving the grooves dark. I'll experiment with some of the scraps and see how I like that. This is the way!
  25. Here, I install the front-facing rear beam trim into place. Most of the screws are through the trim, directly into the other structural components for best strength. No pocket screws on this one... Like I said, straight on through to the other side. The side panel is held into place by slots that I cut into the sides of the surrounding wood pieces. The panel just slides in and I screw in the rear beam trim to lock it into place. Had to sit it upside-down to work on this, but it worked out nicely. Pocket screws were used to mount the main beam to the trim. I also made sure the additional weight hanging over the end of my work surface was well supported. Lookin' mighty fine propped up... This small square panel was originally going to cover the whole side based on the original desk's design, but the benefit of building off the tip of your head, is the design can evolve on the fly. The material turned out to be very porous, and really sucked in the stain. I was not quite happy with how dark it ended up. What I do like, is it being a differently shaded accent piece. The stain on the rear beam still ended up darker and browner than I would have preferred (I was going for a lighter, more reddish hue)... I've decided I am okay with "speed stripes"... I will find an even lighter yet stain for the majority of the desk, and let the beam and panels act as dark accents. I will also use the darker stain underneath, to help mask the underside of the desk. Let's get the third leg mounted... And feet. I used a little extra wood to make simple, but very securely mounted feet. I mimicked the side and cut slots intonthe leg and surrounding trim, and installed another panel segment. This here as the heart of this desk build. This angled board will be the cross-frame support. Note that it is insanely supported... It is pocket screwed on 3 sides and then further braced by a pair of bracing boards that are straight screwed into primary support structure. When I construct the cross frame, I will mount it to this. I will drill out bolt holes in appropriate places, and then install self mounting nuts to those holes. And with that, the right desk module is practically complete, structurally. I still have to mount the top shelf support, but it's already made, and is just a handful of screws. It'll cover the pocket screws holes at the tip of the beam. It will be one of the areas where I use "buttons" to cover the screw holes. Filling the rear space with a narrow panel seemed like the right away to go. I like it anyway. I'm a bit more tolerant of exposed screws on the rear, and the three exposed are there for strength. That leg will help to support the cross-frame. And here we have it! Right side all but done! I know I'm glossing over staining, and the shelf support, but this is it! It's happening! Even better news, is most of the pieces for the left side are already cut. Mostly just need to drill the pocket holes and assemble, so it should go together even faster! After that, the cross-frame and instrument panel mounts get figured out!
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