Saturday, January 26, 2013

Compressor build yesterdays(Friday) progress.

Compressor update!(if anyone actually cares :P)  Heres a scale pic so you get an idea of its size.  Some seemed to think it was huge-  but its about half the size of a soda bottle.  Keep in mind the part we're working with is the round black thing.  The rest is just the crap its temporarily bolted to :)   Its cold and raining today,  so I doubt I get to work on it :(
So,  With the wiring finally solved on Wednesday on Thursday I was able to pickup a few bitz at Harbor Freight I thought I was going to need.  Mostly hose fittings, and a set of star wrenches to undo the mounting bolts holding it to the plate.  Ironically- it turned out I didnt need any of it.  But- I did score a great deal on a clearance roofers airhose(super light weight, rated 250 psi) 7$ for 25 ft.  and got a bottle of compressor oil for 2$.   The first thing I wanted to test Thursday morning was to make sure it would work under pressure and actually fill a tank.  So I did some temporary fittings,  emptied my 5 gallon tank and started filling it.  mentioned stopping and starting it with it under load- and as that seemed like a prudent suggestion I stopped it at 35 psi, and 70psi.  This type of compressor isnt designed for rapid cycling so I did give it a moment before turning it back on and there was no air loss while waiting.  Both times it came back on without any issues.  And as the pressure loads increased it actually seems to fill faster.  The noise level never increased either.   Total run time, not counting the stops, to fill the 5gallon tank to 100 psi was about 11 minutes
 By comparison,  the shop compressor in the pic below can do it in about 5 minutes I think- I've never actually timed it.  Even though its outside,  and around a corner.  I generally turn it on and basically run away because its so damn loud.  Dont get me wrong- its a great piece of hardware- years of solid service and all that.  But it doesnt really cooperate with my migraines at all.  And in case anyone asks- yes,  the bird poop is an advanced weathering technique- and no I will not share the secret of how to do it with you.  I will however sell you a kit with the ingredients...

Anyways,  in the pics are a few of the steps I took pics of.  The out flow pipe is actually steel rather than copper-  which caught me by surprise.  I had to adapt some different bending techniques so it didnt crimp.  Luckily I had some extra gas in the torch and a fat socket nearby to give me a radius to bend around.   On the plus side- its less likely to get bent in the future from an accidental bump like a copper tube would.
 During the bending I discovered the outer diameter of the tube is nearly the same as the inner diameter of ther quick connect air hose fittings I have laying around.  Even for my littler airbrush stuff I try to use mostly standard 1/4" connectors just to make swapping stuff around easier.   I went the the process of trimming this fitting on my redneck lathe(aka power drill clamped to a bench and used a hacksaw on the spinning part).  But I might instead go with a threaded fitting and put a moisture/oil trap in place- as this is an oil filled compressor I need to keep that in mind and have the filter in line at the compressor or tank before it hits the hose to my brushes.

My phone died before I got pics pics more pics,  but I got it off the mounting plate, and the wiring cover in place.   I'm almost certainly going to have to paint it up to look like some sort of goofy little robot.

Finally- I do not know what the hell is up with the formatting on Blogger today- everytime I try to preview its changing things around.  If it does something hideous with the text on the actual post I'll try to fix it.


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

First video post- free compressor build ^_^

So,  this wasn't on the agenda perse',  more of a random inspiration idea that Im currently crusading about on.  Im salvaging an old fridge compressor into use as a silent indoor airbush compressor.  Theres several vids of them on youtube, and others have done it on various hobby forums over the years.

Any how-  its my first video post- since pics just wouldnt do and I want to get used to talking you guys :)

So- up to the vid I've yanked the compressor out of old fridge,  and banged my head on my keyboard for a couple days trying to figure out how the wiring works because like most modern stuff there seems to be way more than is really necessary.  Anyhow-  once I stopped overthinking it-  it was pretty easy.  Tomorrow I'll pick up some oil and basic fittings to give it a test run on filling up a tank :)

If  theres any enthusiasm for recycled and repurposed tooling for our hobby work, drop a comment and let me know if theres anything specific you'd like to see covered :)  If I havent already thought of a way to do something,  Im always up for a challenge and figuring out ways to save us some cash so we can buy more miniatures!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Damn migraines! Down, but not out!

So, 19 days of migraines!   Hopefully that shit is done and over with so I can get down to getting some content generated!

Sneak previews of upcoming stuff in the next couple of weeks.

Crayons and miniatures!! (Yes really, and its AWESOME!)

Right round baby right round...(rotary tools for our hobby)

Hack your paint!  How to make you paint do more with stuff already in your hobby tool kit!


Shopping!  Its come to my attention most gamers are shitty shoppers.  Im going to share some tips with you guys on how to get your hobby supplies at some crazy discounts(if you're willing to get off your ass!).

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

You're doing it right! Privateer Press.

Its always nice to be pleasantly surprised when your favorite game companies do something that makes you remember why you like them in the first place.

Not only are they offering all the MKII books in digital format,  they are priced lower than paper versions, and you can update them as errata fixes are made!  Anyone familiar with Privateer knows theyre much more prompt about 'patching' their rules when a problem is found than some of the others out there.

Not to mention the IKRPG books,  and all the issues of NQ will be available as well(including subscriptions- no more relying on that pesky mailman!)

I dont have an e-reader yet,  but knowing I wont have to try and force some PDFs to work and I can play the game off a small tablet or reader has me much more motivated to get one.

Also,  it seems they have learned from the mistakes of thier recent past,  as some of you may recall the War Room app that was released with much fanfare but kind of fizzled.   It was a great attempt,  but fell short in the QC department as the programming staff hired really wasn't up to a job of that size.    This time however- they went to a reputable professional company with Leeway/Hertz.

Is Privateer the first major gaming company to do this?  I havent heard of any others doing it for more than some PDFs.

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

2013 and what we'll be seeing here on my lil blog ^_^

So,  2012 was a rather sparse year in terms of getting much blogging done.   My health probs haven't gotten much better, so I still tend to focus on actually painting and converting stuff more than setting up the lighting and all required to get decent pics.

For those of you that have been following me here,  or for the recent subscribers that may have actually read back to the earliest posts I made in this blog,  I've had to make many adjustments and adaptations to how I paint and to a lesser extent how I do any of the modeling stuff.   Its taken a bit over 3 years,  but Im finally getting back to the same level of 'skill' and finished miniatures.   I've been able to do that by learning new techniques,  some I found online,  others I figured out on my own- a sort of invention by necessity process.   A big part of that process has been finding the right materials and products(or making them) to simplify things.   As lets be honest,  many of the products available for the modeling and painting we do have been traditionally a pain in the ass to use(prime example is Green stuff).

The day after christmas I was chatting with a fellow blogger,  I had commented on a youtube vid he had done.  I'll let him remain anonymous for now(and he can step forward and accept the blame if he wants ;) ) but it was a rather benifical discussion for me.  As he liked the content of my blog and suggested I could do some Youtube vids of my own.   I didnt really think anything in my blog was really that great- I mean at best my posts get maybe a dozen replies right?   But thats not really how the internet works is it?  On a good day the average high quality content forum post will get maybe 1 reply for every 30 or 40 people that view it- and depending on the forums,  that reply might just be pointless trolling.  So, as the conversation with this fellow continued I realized that if an established video blogger thought I had content that was worthwhile maybe I needed to give it a try.   But, that brought up the next hurdle- being that I have about zero equipment to do any sort of decent quality posts.  

I've been using my phone cam for pics for over a year, and while its an 8mp cam,  its sitll only working off a celphone sized lens arrangement.   Lacking just a HD cam to do some video wouldnt normally be an issue,  but those aforementioned health probs have caused a long term lack of income- so I dont have the disposable income to just buy one.  Much to my surprise, this guy actually offered to spot me a camera if I would use it to start doing some appropriate vids.  This kind of surprised me to be honest,  as I still barely know this guy- and yet a random act of kindness transpired.

So, Im not gonna lie,  Im no movie star and generally hate being on camera.  But,  I can let my minis do thier job and handle the camera time right?   When I actually started thinking about what I can offer in terms of sharing knowledge I came up with more than a few ideas,  which in turn each sort of spun off a few more of thier own.

Im not going to be doing lengthy or in depth vid's any time soon- as for stuff like painting theres painters out there with much more skill/talent using traditional methods that are already doing excellent and detailed tutorials.   Same for sculpting, terrain making and even making molds and casting.   What does that leave me to cover?  Alot actually,  theres alot of very useful info that can fall between the cracks of the bigger video tutorials,  not to mention the stuff I only learned when I had to adjust my techniques to deal with the onset of some disbilities- and info like that might really help others enjoy the hobby alot more.  

So, I'm going to be making vids on stuff like what tools Ive acquired over the years that make various modeling tasks easier,  how I paint stuff really fast but still get good results,  How to make your hobby budget go a little farther,  products you might not be aware of, and one Im surprised that no one else have ever really done much with-  recycling household stuff to use for making models, terrain,  tools and other 'equipment'  that can save us time or money :)

So keep an eye out,  I should actually be getting out some regular content at least a couple times per month.   To start off Im going to be focusing on useful content of getting a super polished shiny video,  I'll hone my video editing as I go rather than trying to make perfect vids from day one(which would keep me from posting anything while I figure out how to use Vegas...).