Archive for March, 2014

March 25, 2014

My posts don’t seem to be showing up in people’s readers. I had to unfollow and refollow myself for it to start showing up in mine again. Of course, no one whose reader is failing to display my posts will be able to see this… but it’s worth a shot. In case this has happened to anyone else I’m going to go check peoples’ blogs today and see if I missed any updates.

Early morning rambling update

March 25, 2014

I have this thing I do where instead of writing essays staying up the night before class, I wake up at 4AM to write them the morning of. Class is at 8. Why exactly am I blogging instead of writing it right now? For some reason I feel like I blog about “The Imp of the Perverse” all the time, but I probably don’t.

I did finish rewiring the guitar I was working on. It sounds … like a guitar. It sounds kind of farty but I think I just need to lower the pickups. Having a hard time with the setup because everything is rusty. Honestly it might sound better on my old solid-state amp than my new tube amp. I’ll have to try that out later today.

Still haven’t drilled the PCB I made yet though. I don’t think I even have a digital version of the schematic. Also I haven’t decided what transistor to use. Shouldn’t make a whole lot of difference. Maybe I should find some classic silicon transistor designs and make a study of how much difference it actually makes. For theĀ  most part I just design around vBE and hFE and that’s it. For some fuzzes vCE matters, but that’s more of a “plug and pray” design process anyway.

Overall I’m actually doing well in school this semester, actually. That’s always a surprise.

DIY PCB Etching process pictures

March 22, 2014

My first etch! It’ll be a single transistor overdrive for guitar, maybe.

Nail polish on copper on fiberglass:
20140322-193228.jpg

Ferric Chloride solution:
20140322-193241.jpg

Etching:
20140322-193427.jpg

Nail polish dissolves in acetone:
20140322-193502.jpg

Finished etched board:
20140322-193553.jpg

Now … drilling is next. How exactly I will drill 40 holes in that, we’ll find out later. :)

PCB Etching and Guitar Rewiring

March 21, 2014

Supposedly this is everything I need to etch a PCB.

20140321-222208.jpg

Also I’m rewiring a guitar. I already “dewired” it, lol. When my friend Travis moved he let me have it. That was almost a year ago I’m just getting around to fixing it.

20140321-222506.jpg

I might need to sand some of that flaky looking wood? IDK.

Not sure if there’s a way to get the rust off some of this hardware other than by buying new. Also three wood screws are missing.

20140321-222633.jpg

It looks like the rear cavity was shielded with conductive paint but much of it has worn off. Redoing that might be unnecessary though. If I did I would use copper tape instead.

DIY PCB Etching

March 20, 2014

Did I mention that I’m going to try etching my own PCB for the first time this weekend?

I’m going to do it super quick and dirty: hand drawn traces with nail polish, etched with ferric chloride, etch resist removed with acetone. I make a design for a single-transistor boost/dirtbox and that’s what I’ll be etching. My etchant and my board comes in today in the mail. We’ll see how this goes.

Anyone here ever etched their own PCB? What’s your process like?

Update, lots of DIY thoughts, not much DIY progress

March 13, 2014

Sorry for no update. Really not that much going on.

Haven’t touched my diy-guitar amp. It still sounds great but no change. Haven’t recorded with it yet. I have a few things I need to do before I am capable of recording anything at all.

I’m thinking about using some hart pine my dad has to construct a cabinet for the amp head. IDK exactly what I’m doing in terms of DIY joinery, but it’s worth a shot. Main problem is that the best tool I own is a dremel. Worst case scenario I just use lots of brackets and screws. Also I have never finished wood. Anyone know the best way to finish hart pine?

Another problem with finishing the amp is that I’ll need to completely disassemble it in order to repaint the chassis. Should have done that first instead of last… oops.

I also just bought materials for etching my own PCB. I’m going to try and throw together a single-transistor dirtbox sometime that I planned a layout for.

I haven’t touched the antique tube radio I bought on ebay. I’ll post about that sometime. It’s going to take quite a bit of work to get restored.

I’ve gotten heavily into a new hobby: mining and trading cryptocurrencies. For the scope of this blog, the less said about it the better, I’m sure. I guess I actually mentioned it in passing last time. I taught myself python so that I could write an automatic daytrading bot. It’s been making me an average of a dollar or two per day, so that’s cool. Python is exactly like how xkcd described it. It makes programming fun again.

I always WANT to blog more and I WANT to record more music and I WANT to make youtube videos but sometimes these things just don’t happen. I scribbled down some music today at least, but unfortunately I have to do things to my computers before they can even record at the quality that I have in mind.

Here, listen to a cover I recordedĀ three years ago: