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 Post subject: Tips of the Trade
PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2016 8:25 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2015 6:01 am
Posts: 26
The March issue of Servo will include my article on "Tips of the Trade" for the animatronic builder. Please add your tips and comments here so that we can share our experience with this wonderful community of builders!



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 Post subject: Re: Tips of the Trade
PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2016 5:54 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2015 6:01 am
Posts: 26
I'll get things started.
Hot glue can be very useful when you need to make a temporary connection (OK, sometimes it ends up being permanent). Use some Rubbing Alcohol to easily loosen the bond and make removal a breeze!



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 Post subject: Re: Tips of the Trade
PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2016 11:13 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2003 1:01 am
Posts: 256
Location: Austin Texas
One I took to heart: "Darkness is your friend".. when you make something you can light it in shadows that make the flaws disappear! :smile:

Oh! Here's another one: "No one but you will know what isn't done".. Don't stress over the parts your didn't finish before deadline. what you did is what the people will notice.. also DON'T POINT OUT what you didn't finish! It lessens the experience for the person observing your work and being impressed by it. :cool:

Vern



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Vern Graner
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 Post subject: Re: Tips of the Trade
PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2016 9:56 pm 

Joined: Wed Feb 24, 2016 3:06 pm
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Reference Double check power wires.......can be damaged by reverse polarity.
As a designer and builder of model and high power launch controllers I am very aware that the systems need to be connected to a battery or batteries.
As a standard practice I include a power diode in series with the positive connection point as the first component. The diode is rated for double the expected
maximum current and provides reverse polarity protection for the system(s). If polarity is reversed the diode prevents current flow and drops the applied voltage across its terminals. This primarily protects the numerous LED indicators in the system but is a good practice. Not really a new idea as the reverse polarity diode has been standard in auto radio power input for years and is often found in other electronic devices where reverse polarity is a possibility.



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George Shaifer
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 Post subject: Re: Tips of the Trade
PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 4:58 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:11 pm
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Location: Maryland
The series diode certainly is preferred for most low power circuits, but occasionally it may have some downsides. If the voltage drop accross the diode cannot be tolerated by the equipment, or if the size of the normal load current is large, which would determine the diode heat dissipaton and size to be impractical. A reverse polarity diode parallel to the input will short and blow the power input fuse, which is a nusiance, but eliminates the series diode shortcomings. The shunt diode should be husky so it can blow the line fuse, and if you want the best, you could use both!



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Len

“To invent, you need a good imagination and a big pile of junk.” (T. Edison)
"I must be on the way to success since I already have the junk". (Me)
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 Post subject: Re: Tips of the Trade
PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2016 9:26 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2015 6:01 am
Posts: 26
Continuing on the power theme, always check a new power supply with a meter. Although their is an abundant availability of inexpensive units on eBay, the quality of some can be an issue. Never trust the stated voltage!



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 Post subject: Re: Tips of the Trade
PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 5:44 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2016 8:06 am
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Check everything twice.

Check twice that you are connecting the proper wires.
Check twice that you are using the right parts.
Check twice that nothing is shorted.
Check twice that you are using the right power supply.
Check thrice that your beer isn't getting warm.


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