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July 26 2018

Building Professional Electronics Hardware with Autodesk EAGLE on Aug 05

July 25 2018

Intro to Circuit Board Design with Autodesk EAGLE on Aug 04

July 24 2018

Free NYC Autodesk EAGLE PCB Design Meetup on Aug 03

July 18 2018

Laser Cutting: Cut and Etch Your Own Designs with Our Laser Cutter on July 28th

TOG Dublin Maker BBQ

On Sunday 22nd July, from 14:00-18:00, we’ll be holding a BBQ in the space as a bit of a wind-down following Dublin Maker 2018.

Maker is always a hectic day, but great fun too. It’s great for us to have a lazy, wind-down afternoon in the space. Drop in and say hello. We’ll have some food and drinks on the go, and a bit of banter too. Hope to see you there. We’ll be sure to give you a tour of the space if you’ve never been in to see us before.

 

July 17 2018

Maker Faire Kansas City 2018

Once again, members of the Omaha Maker Group participated in the Kansas City Maker Faire. Due to a general lack of interest, we forwent an “official” OMG booth entirely this year, focusing instead on the Power Racing Series. Garrick and the Tesla coil crew had quite the show, though, and even got a photo of their setup in the Make Magazine article.

After the Faire on Saturday night, most of the gang went to the new Hammerspace, the local Makerspace which is “like a gym for people who like to make things. WITH ROBOTS!  AND LASERS! AND 3D PRINTERS!”.  Their new location is HUGE, and it sounds like things are going really well.

We did a lot of things “right” this year, staying downtown (the new Home2 is an easy walk to Union Station, as long as you’re not carrying a cooler), skipping the booth (so everyone gets to hang out together and no one is “stuck” for their shift) and not waiting 3 hours for “pretty good” barbecue (Sorry guys!).

Race Results

Our amazing Power Wheels crew scored a FIRST PLACE in Moxie for the Amazon Box Car this weekend in KC!! With strong driving and an almost unbreakable car, we came home with a 3rd-place overall for the weekend! WOW! Great job to everyone who had a hand in it!

The BMW car had a very respectable finish, too. Again, great driving and a great design proved their worth – 90 seconds to change a tire? That’s amazing! The body, unfortunately, did not fare too well – it stayed behind in KC, destined for the trash bin. But the car is home and is a ready platform to build on our successes.

Thanks again to everyone for a great weekend.

July 09 2018

EAGLE weekend! August 3 meetup, Sat 4/Sun 5 classes

July 06 2018

Upgrading the 3D Printer

After some TLC was offered up to Tog’s 3D printer, by way of a little restoration and tuning, it became very clear that the current hotend was on its way out.

Tog’s Lulzbot Taz 3.0 FDM 3D Printer has been deprecated and is approximately 3 versions behind the current technology. What’s worse is that the nozzles for the extruder were not standardised, byt comparison the E3D V6 style hotend and nozzles have been almost universally adopted. Even by manufacturers.

So, in case you’ve been wondering why Tog’s 3D printer has been out of action for approximately the past 2 weeks, thats why. I have started the process of upgrading the extrusion system to use an E3D V6 style hotend. Initally I tried some chinese clones (the designs are GPL’d after all!) but found their quality seriously wanting. I cannot comment on the genuine article as the order appears to have been lost in the UK postal system for the time being.

The main issue with changing from the Lulzbot Budaschnozzle v2.0 configuration to an E3D V6 is that there is apparently no models or designs we can draw from to make a mount. So I had to design one from scratch. I say design one, but actually there were many designs. The first was a laser cut wood mount – It worked but it just didnt feel like it what I was experiencing was truely level.

[See image gallery at www.tog.ie] [See image gallery at www.tog.ie]

As I am lucky enough to have a Prusa i3 MK3 printer of my own, so I have been iterating over the design and protyping a lot of different variations to see what works. When I say a lot, I do really mean a lot…

[See image gallery at www.tog.ie]

 

I think now I have finally I settled on this design:

[See image gallery at www.tog.ie] [See image gallery at www.tog.ie]

The current backplate – which is already a reasonably good hot-plug-able system, is replaced with an altered one. This new one comes with a 5 x 7 grid (14mm spacing) of 4mm hex cavities which will be used as a ‘mechanical key’ to home whatever tool is installed. This way we come a little bit closer to achieving “true level”, mostly. It also has the added feature of supporting many different applications in the one piece – wheras originally it only supported the extruder assembly and the stock nozzle, this new design could even be used for things such as drawing circuits or as a plotter.

As I’ve been using AutoDesk Fusion 360 to design it, you can use this link to see the current model and download it if you so desire. It is still very much a work in progress,  however.

 

July 05 2018

Intro to Arduino: Sensors and Input/Output on July 15th

Memory Lane -> 2009

Sometimes we get a bit nostalgic for the early days in Tog.  We had our first tiny place in Arran Quay, a small three room office unit. We started running our first workshops and open days for the public there. We have changed a lot in the last nine plus years. To showcase the early space and show oof photos of when we were all much younger, we have created a photo collage of what we got upto in 2009. It was started way back during Science Hackday Dublin but only finished during our recent finishaton.  You can now see it hanging on the wall in our space or view the individual photos on our gallery

Supporting Dublin Raspberry Pi Jam

We are supporting the great Dublin Raspberry Pi Jam crew to put on their first jam.  It will be hosted in the Science Gallery on Saturday August 11th from 12:30. Unfortunately as of now all tickets are sold out. You can join the waiting list on the main event page -> https://ti.to/dublin-raspberry-pi-jam/first-pi-jam

 

June 29 2018

Join us at Dublin Maker, Saturday, 21st July in Merrion Square

TOG is delighted to be accepted into Dublin Maker again in 2018. We are really excited to join the maker community from Ireland and the world to show off our projects and meet other makers and the public.

A duck shooting stand and tent with TOG's stall at Dublin Maker in sunny Dublin

TOG at Dublin Maker last year

We will have some of our old favourites, but we also have some really exciting new interactive projects from our members and we want to give you a sneak peek of what we will do.

We have an interactive Duck made from K’Nex and LEDs, We have a real world Wireshark, and a microscope showing just what is inside microchips.

June 20 2018

3D Printer Restoration and Tuning

In 2014 Tog won a Lulzbot Taz 3, since then it has been used on and off and mostly off for the past 2 yrs. During this time, there was very little, if any maintenance carried out on the printer. As a result, it had become gunked up with the remains of previous prints. From shavings in the extruder to melted plastic stuck all over the nozzle and heat brake, it was pretty messy.

As I had recently ordered a Prusa i3 MK3 for myself, I thought it was as good an excuse to reintroduce myself to the nitty gritty of 3D printing – by restoring the Tog Lulzbot Taz 3.

The first issue was that because the Lulzbot Taz 3, or at least our version of it, had no endstop switches on one side of the Z Axis (they’re are actually only one for each axis, presumably only used for homing), it was incredibly easy to instruct the 3D Printer to break itself – and that’s precisely what had happened.

[See image gallery at www.tog.ie] [See image gallery at www.tog.ie]

One of the Z-Axis followers had been broken into two while the X-Axis and Extruder assembly was being raised too high and hit into the main frame of the printer. This resulted in a broken part. 

The emergency fix for this was to use zip ties to hold the follower together just long enough to print replacement parts (pictured right). We were actually incredibly lucky that this worked! If it hadn’t there would’ve been no way to fix this part without finding another 3D printer to produce the necessary part – but as it was, the temporary fix worked just long enough for us to do a few test prints and to print an actual working replacement part. Albeit in PLA which is not ideal, but it works!

[See image gallery at www.tog.ie] [See image gallery at www.tog.ie]

Once the 3D Printer was back to being somewhat functional, I set to task to begin calibrating and cleaning and doing basic maintenance on it – something which has been sorely missing for the past 4 or so years of its operation.

The print bed had years worth of hair spray caked onto it, so a lot of time was spent scraping that off and wiping it clean with isopropyl alcohol (99%). Then doing basic tasks such as levelling the bed, re-homing the z-axis etc. After all that we printed some calibration prints

[See image gallery at www.tog.ie] [See image gallery at www.tog.ie]

After a little tweaking, we measured that the prints were +/- within 5% of the expected outcome. So for a 20mm part, it could be anywhere between 19 and 21mm. This is far from ideal for mechanical fitting parts, but its a good start. 

The next task on the docket was to clean up the hot-end. It had accrued quite a lot of grime over the years, so I set to task to cleaning it up. First I tried some acetone, which removed some of the lingering ABS plastic, but the PLA was completely untouched. After inspecting the nozzle, it became clear that it has been seriously worn out after years of use, so I was okay with being a little less delicate with it than I would ordinarily, so I used a wire wheel to clean and polish both the heat brake and the nozzle itself.

[See image gallery at www.tog.ie] [See image gallery at www.tog.ie]

This is only the start, we have a lot more maintenance and upgrade tasks. 

June 19 2018

How to make an “Omaha Maker Group” patch!

Our embroidery machine can embroider text and borders very easily thanks to our wonderful donor.

If you are unclear at any step, please consult the babylock manual for the machine. It’s in the drawer labelled “Embroidery Machine Manual”.

You will need at least the medium hoop for our standard patch.

Cut a piece of fabric about 3/4″ larger than the hoop. Cut a piece of embroidery stabilizer that same size. Place the stabilizer over the inner portion of the hoop. Place the fabric over both of these. Then place the outer portion of the hoop over all of that, ensuring the post holes are opening towards the floor and the right-side of your fabric is on top. Flip this over and gently tug the fabric and stabilizer taut. Cinch down the hoop and tug fabric and stabilizer even more taut.

On the machine, ensure the embroidery foot, embroidery needle and embroidery arm are attached. Turn on the machine (do not attach the hoop to the machine yet). The machine will do a calibration. Now attach the hoop.

Hit the white “Embroidery” menu button on the screen.

Click on the on-screen button with a bunch of shapes. This will allow you to create the border. Select the rectangular option and then the solid bold line. On the next screen click the “layout” button. On the layout screen, resize the rectangle to 4.5 cm x 6.3 cm and orient it however you’d please. You’ll need to match this orientation for your words.

If you have not done so, thread the machine with a bobbin matching your fabric (or your top thread) and the top thread in the color of your preference. OMG’s official patch has a dark purple border with a white fabric background.

Lower the presser foot and click the green back-lit “Start/Stop” button. If this is not green, stop, something’s wrong. Consult the manual or Sarah if she’s available.

In about 3 minutes, you’ll have a border.

Clean up the extra few stitches the machine puts in the middle with a seam ripper.

Click the white “Embroidery” button on the screen. Click the letters with the serifs. Assuming your border is the OMG dark purple, click on the “L M S” button until “S” is highlights, and then type in “Group” (lower-case letters are in the visual tab below the upper-case letters). Now click “Layout”. Orient the words with your border. Next, position the needle near the bottom middle of the interior of the border. If you’re doing math, it’s 0.2 cm from the bottom.

Again, lower the presser foot (if needed) and click the green back-lit “Start/Stop” button. If this is not green, stop, something’s wrong. Consult the manual or Sarah if she’s available.

In about 3 minutes, you’ll have the word “Group”.

Switch the top thread out to light purple. Click the white “Embroidery” button on the screen. Click the letters with the serifs. Click on the “L M S” button until “S” is highlights, and then type in “Maker” (lower-case letters are in the visual tab below the upper-case letters). Now click “Layout”. Orient the words with your border. Next, position the needle near the bottom middle of the interior of the border. If you’re doing math, it’s 1.5 cm from the bottom.

Again, lower the presser foot (if needed) and click the green back-lit “Start/Stop” button. If this is not green, stop, something’s wrong. Consult the manual or Sarah if she’s available.

In about 3 minutes, you’ll have the word “Maker”.

Switch the top thread out to bright blue. Click the white “Embroidery” button on the screen. Click the letters with the serifs. Click on the “L M S” button until “S” is highlights, and then type in “Omaha” (lower-case letters are in the visual tab below the upper-case letters). Now click “Layout”. Orient the words with your border. Next, position the needle near the bottom middle of the interior of the border. If you’re doing math, it’s 2.25 cm from the bottom.

Again, lower the presser foot (if needed) and click the green back-lit “Start/Stop” button. If this is not green, stop, something’s wrong. Consult the manual or Sarah if she’s available.

In about 3 minutes, you’ll have the word “Omaha”.

Lift the presser foot and pull up the hoop. You now have a completed embroidered pattern! Remove the fabric from the hoop. Removing as much of the backing as you can. Cut a piece of iron-on adhesive to fit the size of your patch. Attach this with an iron per the adhesive’s instructions. Peel off the paper backing from the adhesive. Carefully cut out your patch!

Now, clean up the extra stitches the machine added between each letter and you’re done! Iron-on that patch wherever you please!

June 16 2018

CNC Workshop

This July 7th TOG will be collaborating with guest Prof. Steve Potter and hosting a CNC wood milling workshop.

The event aims to introduce CNC wood-working and computer aided design (CAD) for beginners. It will cover the design and creation of items in free CAD software (Fusion 360) and the carving of those designs out of wood using the Handibot, a portable CNC router.

This event is open to both TOG members, and members of the public over 18 years of age,

Attendees will be required to bring a reasonably powered laptop and a 2-button wheel mouse (see f360spec), if not otherwise arranged.

Cost to members of the public is 25 EUR, including evening snacks/catering.

See eventbrite page for details.

Solar Powered Glow Writer at tonight’s Interactive Show!

June 14 2018

Sandwiches by NLPanini at the Interactive Show 6/16
Looking Glass Lightfield + Volumetric Display at the Interactive Show Saturday 6/16

June 13 2018

Robot Bread at the Interactive Show 6/16

You’re Invited!!

Greetings Makers, My name is Fred Mitchell and I’m on the South Milwaukee Parade Committee. The Parade is Saturday July 28th, 2018 at 11 am. I’m inviting any and all who would like to take part. Esteemed members of Dalek Asylum Milwaukee are in. Colleen (even though she’s going to Maker Faire Detroit) is having some of her Cosplay on a trailer in the Parade. Small objects you made won’t really be easily seen from the sidewalks, but your Robot, or large art display or your favorite Cosplay outfit will. Did you make that really cool thing that nobody sees and deserves attention in a Parade? Let me know. How about the excellent costume that you only wear once a year? Let’s make it twice. Just want to be part of the fun? I’ll find something for you. I’m also looking for a Phone Booth by the 4th of July and a human skeleton by July 28th. I’ll pay to rent those. (A little.) Talk soon! Fred

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