Monday, September 9, 2013

3D Printable Adjustable Volume Pipette

IMG_1752_display_large.jpgPipettes are prolific in laboratories everywhere and used to transfer variable amounts of liquid. Professional tools are calibrated and have dials that allow the user to set the volume. The following instructions are the result of an experiment to develop 3D printable and low cost alternatives to standard lab tools, such as the pipette. This simpler version uses a straw and allows the user to adjust volume using two limit thumb nuts. It should be very useful around any wet lab and works nicely with a relatively high range of possible volume settings. You can calibrate the volume but it is generally only good for low precision work. With the exception of a balloon or rubber glove, spring, straw, and some tape, all the parts are 3D printable without support using a variety of low cost printers. This is a very nice example of alternative lab tools and I hope will contribute to further work in the area. You can also find this model and some user remixes on thingiverse: IMG_1758_display_large.jpgPrint the upper body, lower body, plunger, and two thumb gears using a 3D printer, the STL files are attached. I printed all the pieces on a Makerbot Replicator 2 at 0.1mm with 15% fill and 100% fill for the plunger.

You will need a spring, which I got from a kids Pez dispenser for its form factor. The balloon membrane or rubber glove is elastic so you may get away without the spring but it is nicer to have it. You also need some tape to seal the gap, and a straw. It is designed for standard straw diameter (which also works with the standard pipette tip) but I can upload others if there is demand, let me know.

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Self watering vertical garden with recycled water bottles

20130605_110043.jpgHere how i made my vertical vegetable garden, starting from used big water bottles as planters. An automatic watering system keep the right moisture, collecting water in excess, using power from pv panels and a little wind turbine (vawt)skp 2.jpgThe green wall is composed by 72 water bottles cut and placed upside-down on a wooden shelf. 
Two independent  water reservoir are present: the main is placed on the side of the building and composed by eight 200 liters barrels linked together, for collecting rain water. The second one is composed by three plastic "new jersey" street barriers, that can contain 80 - 100 liters each, placed under the shelf.
The circulating system is composed by two 12v pumps, powered by a hybrid power system, a vawt turbine in conjunction with two 10w pv panels.
Energy is stored in a 12v car battery via charge controller and a timer regulate the watering cycle (at this moment the set up is 1 min at 7 am and 1 minute at 7 pm.
Water is pumped from second reservoir to the top of the shelf, into a PVC pipe ( Dia 4 cm) where i drilled eighteen 3 mm holes (one for each planter of the first row). After moisten the first row, water go down to the rows below until go back to the starting tank.
With hand activated valve i can refill the second reservoir with rain water from blue barrels.

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Star Wars Ornithopter / X-Wing vs TIE Fighter

Ornithopter: (n) A machine designed to achieve flight by means of flapping wings.

       This instruction will show you how to fashion an ornithopter that depicts the fight between an X-Wing and a TIE Fighter. As you see in the photo, the two spacecrafts are built into a single ornithopter. The X-Wing's change of wing shape contributes to the flapping of the wings, where as the TIE Fighter is used as a horizontal & vertical stabilizer. 

       I didn't mean to be so chatty with the instructions but I figured that would help some makers more than just a photo set with one liners. Click through the steps to find out how you can make your own! And don't forget to vote for this Instructables! 

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Here's the List of Macs Compatible With OS X Mavericks

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How to make silver rings the perfect size!

ss-rings.jpgI can't find on here the method I use to get my sterling silver rings sized JUST right, so here you guys go!

There is a glossary at the end, let me know if there is any other info you want me to add!

-lined white paper
-half round sterling silver wire 12g (2mm wide x 1mm thick)
-hard solder
-pickle solution
-sand paper: 400, 600, 1000, etc
-liver of sulphur (optional, for awesome black oxidized ring)

-pickle pot
-quenching pot/cup
-copper tongs
-caliper (optional)
-steel ring mandrel with ring sizes
-steel ring mandrel without sizes (optional)
-finger gauge (optional)
-jewelry saw and saw blade
-files (large flat and small round)
-.925 stamp
-plastic jawed pliers
-tumbler with steel shot (optional, otherwise more finer sandpaper and polishing cloth)
-rawhide hammer
-steel hammer
-steel block or ring stamping block

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DIY beauty

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