Monday, April 07, 2008

Snap to grid

Serious construction begins. This has to be, want it or not, the last stretch of the building process for the Creator stage.

But before I begin this section I want to share a tip that I take for granted, but friends that see it are always amused by it. You know that when you work on a project involving dozens or hundreds of small pieces, screws, washers and what not, things like to go amiss. Lost socks pale in comparison, specially when you lose a servo screw that you won't find in any hardware store (unless you live in the Bay Area, how I miss that!). And ordering a screw or two online just does not cut it.

So, I use a big magnet block (which I don't remember where I got) and simply and literally throw all those little pieces at it, even from quite a distance and it just snaps them as they try to go by. Sometimes I am working on an odd position, (upside down ?) and as I disassemble something, which happens more and more often as I try to refine my design, I start collecting all these little pieces in my hand and mouth that are eager to disappear in the cracks of the floor or my stomach. Well, just toss'em up like a chef flipping pancakes towards the magnetic field and , snap! they are not going anywhere.

Now, mind you that this is not a very powerful magnet, like those neodymium or ceramic magnets that you find in hard drives otherwise getting a washer back would probably be impossible, but it is strong enough to hold quite a bit of stuff. Sometimes you cannot even see the magnet anymore, just a weird nut screwy sculpture. I'll add a pic like that so you can see it.

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