Friday, November 23, 2007


I know how you kids all love those disaster movies that have been so popular for the last few years. Perhaps this post will spike readership, as it's something of a disaster itself.

This is a good lesson in planning. Plan ahead. And test as you go. I don't know why I didn't think of this earlier, but I guess I'm glad I thought of it when I did.

I decided I should test the hinges to make sure that current will pass through them properly. After all, I need to get power to the lower half to light up a few blinkies. So I rigged up my power supply, attached an LED to it and... nothing.

I scratched my head for a while, played around with the wires, tried to isolate the problem... nothing.

I took a break, and came back at the problem later. After some thinking and testing, I realized that there is a coating of some kind on the hinges that is retarding transmission. I cannot believe I didn't think to test for this when I first soldered the wires in place.

The only solution I could come up with for this problem is to take out the hinges, use some solvent to strip off the retarding/retarded coating, and put them back in. Bummer is, I've already done a lot of work to get the hinges in place, and I'll have to undo that. Could even damage the tricorder along the way.

The thought occurred to me to just plow ahead, and make this tricorder a non working one. I do have another kit which I could start up later, and make that one working. That way, any lessons I learned on this build up (and I've already learned a lot) could be employed in the new build.

I actually committed myself to doing a static build up, but changed my mind over night. I've sunk too much work into this one to back out now. And besides, I'd rather have on working tricorder, than a static one now, and MAYBE a working one later.

So next up, I'll be pulling out the hinges. Ugh.

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