Contact me

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Drilling out light bulbs

Time is flying so I need to kick it into high gear to finish Robby in time for the show. Today was spent drilling out small light bulbs to replace the filament with superbright blinking LED's. After experimenting with a drill press, bench sander and a few other tools, I took the plunge and started the tedius task of hollowing out small light bulbs.

The "living life on the edge" part was I had to drill 4 bulbs and I only had one spare bulb in case of an accident. Sure enough, one of the bulbs cracked and disintegrated so the next bulbs were high pressure jobs. Because these bulbs are not easy to come by and were specially painted a very beautiful blue color.

I'm happy to report that with the help of hot glue and a lot of patience, I was able to redo the blue "eyes" of robby to now use blue blinker LED's. Not only do LED's rarely burn out, there's less heat and they take less electricity. And in this case, there's no filament to be seen in the bulb. The bulb now blinks with a really beautiful blue glow. Looks very different than a standard light bulb. And the icing on the cake is no light blinker controller is needed. It was a lot of work but well worth the trouble in the long run.

Another accomplishment, the motors were installed in the ears and the radar was tested. As the shaft is not completely centered in the radar pieces, there is a little wobble and I was worried that the side radar (the one mounted on a right angle) might vibrate out while turning. I let it run for an hour on the bench turning off and on and it seemed to work just fine. The motors were installed with a vex bracket I fashioned and hot glue.

Robby was moved out to the garage tonight and tomorrow (between watching playoff games) will be spent wiring him up. Most of the pieces are ready so hopefully tomorrow we'll have a working robot (at least the first stage).

No comments: