Showing posts from October, 2023

Playing Trains - Don't Get a Resin Printer to Build Custom Parts!

Replaced my old delta FDM printer with a resin printer, on the strength of web articles claiming water washable is "low oder." The FUCK it is!!! Of course, once I'd bought the damned thing, my searches for "resin toxicity" yielded fruit. Not before, though! I searched for "resin toxicity" before I bought, but Google gave me no articles, so I boaught a Geeetech ALKAID on the strength of Jaycar also saying their eSun water washable resin was "low odour" and implied "low toxicity." <-- Now this last statement might be defamatory, but this article is in the public interest - eSUN water washable resin IS NOT LOW ODOUR AND IT SURE AS EGGS IS AS TOXIC AS ANY ALCOHOL WASHABLE RESIN. AND DO NOT GET ME STARTED ON THE PLANT BASED RESINS! That shit is nasty! My professionally printed rail motor bodies sitting on a preliminary simple raill yard layout. So, here are some facts about any photoset hobby or engineering resin. The chemistry of

Microsoft Engineering Australia's Cybersecurity

For my personal infosec, I use Apple's Macintosh platform. An industrial, POSIX compliant, locked-up-tight OS that is both easy to use and hardened against attack. From system integrity protection that disables root access and many other common attack vectors to server grade firewalling, it's one of the safest platforms available, in my opinion. I also have 2 virtual machines I occassionally run for node.js platform target building. Building apps for Windows and Linux. The Linux VM is as reliable as the Mac it's running as a guest on. The "Dozer" VM... ARRRGH!!! So, the Australian Government have contracted "Macroslop" to strengthen Australia's cyber security. Really, like the ACMA, the CSIRO, the ABC or the Bureau of Meteorology have acknowledged expertise that Parliament can request changes to, but those changes need only be made as they apply to science, expertise and law, Australian infosec needs a statutory authority in charge, not Parliame

Adventure Calls to My Soul

“Deep down inside me a tiny voice was calling. At first scarcely audible, it persisted until I could no longer ignore it. It was the voice of the wild places, and I knew that it was now part of me forever.” ― Percy Fawcett, source Goodreads It's been so long since my last actual attempt at adventure. 2018! The plan was cycling Melbourne to Adelaide via the Great Ocean Rd. The result was a bail at Port Campbell, nothing left in the tank after a week of relentless, coastal undulations into headwinds and awful traffic. 5 years! Intervening since then, the death of both my parents, within a month of each other, in unrelated circumstances, then covid lockdown and a heart attack. Day 3 of my ride to Sydney in 2015. The latter clipped my wings. Yikes! Then, last year, I hatched a plot for a pilot adventure "series", Wacky Weekend Adventures. Walking, cycling, paddling, sailing - all with the aim of finding adventure locally. Then mum in-law got ill, and there were many r

Going From 240x180x50 To 600x1200x70

I have a "toy" CNC router. It's OK for small brackets, even in aluminium... if I'm patient and keep the feed rates low and the revs on the spindle high-ish. It cost me as much "aussie" as its working X dimension, has an AnnoyTools control board, works well with OpenBuilds Control and jscut in an app wrapper does a fine job of creating 2.5D gcodes for brackets and other basic eng-ops. It's just useless for big boy shit. Nema17 steppers will do fine for the work I do, so they're staying. I'm not doing this stuff for money, it's a retirement hobby zone here. The spindle is an oversized slotcar motor, so I just know that will have to be replaced towards the end of the project but, until then, all I need to do is build a bigger frame. The above is it. My local MakerStore is in Carrum and just near my railway line. They stock aluminium V-wheels, a rack-and-pinion drive system that's compatible with v-slot and the necessary V-slot extrusio

That Trike Project

I'm a coward. That trike, above, is cut, has most of the parts ready, complex joint jigs have been 3D printed AND I STILL HAVEN"T ATTEMPTED EVEN A PRACTICE WELD ON SOME SCRAP! Like a I say, I am a cowardly custard. The welder scares the shit out of me. Yeah, pissweak, I know. So, tips and encouragement, please. It's coming on to Aussie summer again and I need to finish this beast. Good grief!

This Is Not Democracy

An open letter to the Prime Minister of Australia, the Parliament and to those who might be looking for ideas to rectify this sorry mess. Please share widely. So #australiavotesno to recognition of first nations in our constitution. Overwhelmingly no. That’s democracy? Dutton's fat-cop arse it is. I'll make it clear first. I voted Yes. It was the only right thing to do, but from the beginning, I felt this referendum was the Labor Party's "plebiscite moment." I had hoped that the majority of Australians would have the sense and compassion to vote yes, like they did for the gay marriage plebiscite. That poll was 62% of Australians voting for the bigots and haters to MIND THEIR OWN FUCKING BUSINESS! It was also a vote for Parliament to do their very overpaid jobs. This was worse than Labor’s plebiscite moment, this was a disaster. Anthony Albanese PM should "throw himself on his sword" and call a spill for the party leadership. Unlike the gay mar

On Koans

On Koans beautiful flow poetry drawn as line art stick figures as words Crunchysteve, 11:22, Sunday October 8, 2023. Source: iStock

On Train For...

My late dad was a first a clerk, then a draftsman, then a civil engineering technical officer, then the field engineering officer for track rehabilitation and derailments for the Tasmanian Government Railways. He seemed to always be studying by night, and working by day. He started as a clerk with not even a Tasmanian High School Certificate. My maternal grandfather was a foundryman with the TGR at the Launceston yards. He died when I was about 2, I think, when he died. I say this because, well, to say that trains and railways are in my blood, even though I went into a career in media support, more like my mum, but trains are a passion. I changed city for love and for Melbourne's railways in my late 40s. If you're ever in Tasmania for a visit, just hire a car. I don't encourage car use, I actively stand against it, but Tasmania has no passenger rail, has overcrowded, untimely buses, almost no bus service worth the money between the major cities of Hobart, Launceston and D