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Saturday, January 7, 2006

Soil Sampler and my favorite popcorn bowl

On the B9 front, I scrapped my sensor holders because they looked like crap. It's back to the drawing board for them. The sensors came out great though.

For quite awhile it's bugged me that I didn't cut a soil sampler door in my B9. After laminating the styrene over the mdf, I decided not to take a chance cutting a door into the tread section. I just didn't know how to do it without messing up the tread section. And that's one part of the robot I do not want to redo.

So after a few months in a fit of genius I decided to cut out a piece of styrene the size of the door and attach it on top of the tread section so it looks like there's a door. I used a 3x5 card as a template for the styrene cutout. Then I primed and painted it with hammered paint. Looks pretty good. I'll attach it with a little goop in the morning.

The bender project is much more work than anticipated. After multiple passes of filling and sanding the resin dome, I realized it would take a miracle to make the dome look nice. So I rummaged around my wife's bowls and found a good fit. And it was my favorite popcorn bowl. You got to make sacrifices I guess. First I cut the plastic band off the top of the bowl using my band saw. Then I trimmed and sanded the bottom of the resin dome to match the height of the smooth plastic bowl. Construction adhesive attached the resin dome firmly inside the bowl and anchored the dome to the lower part of the head. It all lined up pretty well but there was a little overlap from the bowl to the lower part of the head. It was a pain to sand and try to match. Unfortunately the back of Bender's head is going to be a little off but I'll smooth it with bondo the best I can.

The eye piece is going very well and is actually pretty complicated. I covered the MDF piece I made with styrene and have been sanding the edges and filling areas with bondo spot putty. That stuff works great. After priming everything, it looks like I'll be able to soon attach the eye area and eyes to the head. The eyes have been sanded and primed also today. I had to sand two sides of the eyes to fit them into the eye piece. But that's good because you want the eyes to fill that area as much as possible.

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