The Witch Doctor

The Witch Doctor
The Witch Doctor v.?

Chugs and I decided to have a drone-off, as it were. Wow, what a cool journey and pain-in-the-ass it has turned in to. First off, I can’t fly! Secondly, I still can’t fly. But, that’s besides the point. We each set a budget for our birds (boy, went WAY over on that one! HAHAHAHAHA, but I digress …). I jumped right in to body design, not knowing a damned thing about drones. Well, that’s me. Both feet and head first.

I wanted something aggressive looking, so I started there. Get a rough shape down and start making it look mean, electronic position be damned! I’d figure that out later.

The name came much later, after I realize when the doc was standing on his back legs, he looked like some tribal shaman witch doctor with one of those huge tribal masks (I might have watched a lot of Johnny Quest as a kid), and so the name was born.

Round One

Round Two

First design was a flop. I was perfectly unaware of motor mixes at the time. I just wanted to get some height. Who knew then just how fast these friggin’ things really are? Well, it flopped over and tried to land itself while I was swooping it up out of the rocks that it was kicking all over me and Moose, and thwack! Hit my thumb. Ouch. Busted the motor right through the ill conceived motor mounts. So, on to version two! COOL! IT FLEW. I learned more about Cleanflight. I crashed it into the house! hehehehehehehe

Test Flight One

Test Flight Two — Whoopsie

Round Three

Ok, wood isn’t working. When I crashed into the house, the prop sliced right through the body and arm. Nope! Time to learn how to make carbon fiber plates.

First round of that went OK with the newly acquired vacuum pump from Harbor Freight, but I determined I needed a vacuum table. So, built that and DAMN, it sucks. Sucked so hard that air went right through the particle board! Yikes. Duct tape fixed that problem. (See below Chugs doing a walk of shame after showing off how awesome he could already fly. I’ll never catch up.)

Round Something — There were a few iterations in here

Well, the body and arms got a complete redesign. It was too much of a pain to take apart the earlier, arms/computer/body stacked design. So, back to a simpler design that is much quicker to take apart. This included buying a PDB instead of using the earlier homegrown one. Not sure I like it, but like all things, this probably won’t be the final Witch Doctor.

Chugs TOTALLY Tearing It Up

Zamir and The Witch Doctor

Best friends!

Not Done By Any Means

Looking forward to future designs. A quick note about the original 20A Lumenier ESCs: they were complete rubbish. A complete waste of money that killed many of my Cobra 2206/20 motors, and them ain’t cheap, son! Looking forward to getting back in the sky.

Wesley’s Retrofit: A Guitar Hack

Wesley's Retrofit
Wesley’s Retrofit

Ok, yes. It is scary putting your CNC to someone else’s wood. ESPECIALLY, when that wood is already a perfectly functioning guitfiddle.

The goal was to retrofit some Roland GK-2A electronics into a Peavey guitar. Doable? I thought so. Here is how it turned out. I used most of the parts and integrated them into the pick guard. The switches were some I already had, as the original switches weren’t quite right. It was a challenge and I really hope there are no cold solders, but all-in-all, a really fun and challenging project. I hope it works when Wes plugs it in.

P.S., I didn’t take a photo of every drill I made, or all the steps. This is just an overview.


Mad-Eye, 2012

Well, Halloween has finally come and gone. Time to upload the build for my Mad-Eye Moody costume. But first, I had to recover the files from my failed RAID. I had an HDD go bad in my garage PC. Upon replacement and rebuilding, the rebuild failed! And, it totally hosed the partition. I still don’t know what happened. But, I have my files back. (So much for RAID!)

So, this was the first 3D carving on the machine, where I actually had to flip the part. That was interesting, and not quite successful, but it worked. Lots of parts later, I had a Mad-Eye eye. The staff was not documented. It was built with PVC pipe, plaster, elbow-greese, lots of cussing, and paint. It held together long enough to get me through the night!

The wand was hand-carved with a Dremel, out of a limb I chopped off some smoking plum wood. It was a smashing success and I was voted best costume, this year. So, it was worth it :D

The video attached does not have anything to do with my costume, but it was a brief display of very fine routing of the base for best couple’s costume.