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Technobreath is midiboxing

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technobreath

YES! Finally an update on my StereoSID build - the reason why I started the blog anyway. As many of you know I have an ongoing project - the mb6582 - too, but this stereoSID project I am doing at least 50% becasue of the learning value of it - not electronics, but the rest.

To make a long story short - my late grandpa was working almost all his career as the head of the model workshop (they made all kinds of things mainly cast iron stuff for the industry). When my grandpa retired, another younger guy filled his position, and did so for almost 30 years until he started his own workshop, which his son has now taken over when he retired. OK no short story, but it really is :P.

This guy knows what there is to know about model making.

Today I visited him in his former workshop (now his son's) to ask him bunch of questions on how to turn my wooden model into a neat fiberglass box for the synth.

So I gotta brag a little bit by myself too. This guy was really impressed by the model. couldn't understand that I with no real experience in model making had actually made this model just like that. He said I probably had some of those carpenter genes from my grandpa :P. He told me to do some minor changes to the model - u can't even see the changes if u don't know they are there - to allow the fiberglass to release from the model. The changes was to sand down the edges on both sides of the release-line (where the cast is gonna be split apart when I get that far) about 1 degree - so no real changes. You can feel it when u drag the fingers across the release line, but nothing more.

So what I learnt from the visit:

First of all I need to fix some minor stuff - I sanded a bit too much a couple of places, so I need to fix that.

Then I am to paint it with some kind of laquer - clear coat or something - just something to seal the wood with.

Then - again the short version, there will be pics later on - I gotta wax it with a release wax a couple of times and polish it - much like waxing your car.

Then I'm building a plywood frame around the model to pour half the model - to cast a "negative" of it using epoxy. Then pour the other half.

That way I have an epoxy negative cast of the case, which allows me to paint the insides of it with gelcoat and fiberglass, then out comes a nice, neat, box from outer space.

And I can do everything together with him in the workshop. Bonus.

So - I obviously know a thing or two about model making already, but not what materials to use, where to get it locally, and the small tricks and details that makes this simple without all the beginner misstakes.

So as you see, this case project is really more about me learning how to turn complex models drawn on CAD to the finished product, all by hand - I find this extremely fun. I have probably used close to 100 hours in total on the design and model making until now, and I figure I'll use a 100 more for the rest - at least time on the first box.

Since I'm making a negative with poured epoxy, I will be able to produce many more from the same model. MMmmm. So in theory I can sell this thing, but in reality I fear that making one offs by hand will take too long for anyone willing to actually pay what it will cost for a finished product :P.

Anyway - much text, no photos - no worries - here is the one photo I managed to shoot today.

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technobreath

Yo!

Just a short update.

The usians finally came through, and sent me the cloth I ordered a long time ago. This is gonna be used for the front panel. Rest of the case is being cast in plain fibreglass. Colors for the case was originally green / black, but the cloth wich is gonna be cast in transparent epoxy, were not available in green, so it the theme changed to blue / black :).

Thanks to www.compositeenvisions.com for delivering promptly - NOT. Well well, I got it in the end...

Well here it is - a small teaser - Have a look and enjoy!

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Stay tuned for the case build soon!

Tbreath

technobreath

First of all, gotta say - sorry - no pictures, my crappy htc phone is at repair, and I have no card reader for that tiny mem card in the computer, so pictures gotta come later on, I have em, but phone crashed before I could load them onto the computer :)..

This saturday i have been working a lot on the model. A heavy dose of "bondo" to fix some mistakes I made while sanding the release-edge on it.

To make sure all the surfaces was even (it's hard to feel every tiny uneven bump in the wood / bondo with the fingers - even hard to look for them), I sprayed it with a extremely light coat of red paint and started sanding it with 240 grit and a very even sanding block. this way I can sand the tops off there, and the "valleys" are left red colored :). Then I can sand more if it's not much or I can fill in some more with bondo. I did both methods on the box depending on how serious it was. Smart trick I learnt from an auto painter I know.

After sanding the entire box, making sure every little error was corrected, i resprayed it with the same red color, now two heavy coats. That is how far I got this saturday.

Now i am going to sand it first with 240 grit to remove the "orange-skin" which is hard to avoid using cheap spraycans and a non-controlled enviorment :P. Surface will then become all flat and smooth. Then I am gonna wet sand it with 800 grit to make it even smoother.

Then I hit it with the car-wax. If that's not enough to make it shine, I'll give it a round with my angled polisher. When that is done, the surface should be very pianofinish-like.

The paint is really just to seal off the wood, so that release wax will do it's job properly. but since I'm using gelcoat as part of the finish on the box when I cast it, it doesn't hurt if the surface is as perfect as it can be on the model - polishing it like this aint really nessecary if u don't care that much for that job :P. But it will probably mean more work later on anyway...

So if my guess is right, I'm done with the model this week, then I head to the plastic workshop to get some epoxy around it. If I get hold of the right kinda gelcoat within this week, I actually might be able to start to make the real case this weekend. well... that would be sunday - saturday I'm playing in a wedding :P.

Now time for a nap after work / dinner :) have fun!

technobreath

EDIT: I deleted the old pics from the blog, and replaced them with lower resolution ones, so it doesn't take ages to load with internet speeds I take for granted :P hihi.

Finally! :sorcerer:

The case build has started! Keep in mind when looking at these pictures: The actual case is going to be cast with fibreglass, and this is only the wood model wich is gonna be used for making a mold. So this is a L O T of work!

I have shot tons of pictures during the work, and some of them make it in here :thumbsup: :

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Drawing up some drafts with dimensions to bring with me to the workshop.

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Drawing up the bottom plate on a piece of 15mm plywood.

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A must have tool in a wood workshop - this has served my grandfather before me for many years!

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Another must have tool in a workshop - as the bandsaw, this has also served my grandfather for many years before me!

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Drawing currently in use on the wall with the ensemble of screwdrivers :).

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A must have tool for making stuff like this - for transfering angles.

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Angle transfered from one side to the other.

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The bottom panel under the bandsaw - yes I was already finished with it, I just had to shoot the pic of it there, because it looked cool.

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Sanding the sides. It isn't easy to cut to the final shape with the bandsaw, so, for not spending 10 minutes on each cut, I speed through it and sand it a little bit afterwards.

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Also, yet another must have tool - not only for acurate measurements (wich is not the case at all working with wood as u don't measure plywood in 1/10 of a millimeter anyway) but also great for transfering measurements quickly!

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A lesson in: How to cut plywood with a worn-down bandsaw blade? Short story: DON'T! Long story: My brother in law had used the bandsaw for cutting aluminum window shaders to size some days before, and left me with a totally distroyed blade. If I knew, I would have gotten a new one, but none of the shops who has them was open on saturday :angry:

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The "cable cave" on the back.

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AND - I had my head under my arm or something, because the first cave-frame wasn't high enough - fixed with yet another layer of plywood.

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Backside of the case taking form.

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Inside just thrown together - doesn't matter at all, since it's only support for the mold making process anyway!

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Setting up some support ribs inside. These also has the right angle for the front panel to just lay on top of them. This way I can easily make the sides and the rest of the case, without having to think about getting all the angles perfect before mounting the front panel plate.

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Front panel cut to shape - almost. The horn on the front is gonna have a steeper angle, see the 3D drawing.

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Here, the angle for the front panel is clearly showing.

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A carved out angle on the bottom front. Used one of those machines you sharpen knifes with to carve this out, and sanded it afterwards to final shape - in lack of a better tool I had to improvise!

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A final picture together with a lighter, so u guys can see the approx. size of the whole thing. Roughly 20x40x10cm.

Hope you like it so far. Will post more pictures when I build more. No more work today on this, as this has taken me about 8 hours of work. A lot of sanding and making sure the 90 degree angles are correct - if they are not, the mold won't release from the model!

Have a great evening / morning!

Technobreath

technobreath

Finally had some time to sit down figure out the cable configuration for J10 / J14 on stereo SID setup. Also made the connectors for audio outs on the sid modules.

There's gonna be some weeks before I get the custom case going, as I am building my future studio at the moment - that has to be done now, as the window for using money on that, and real help came along.

I'm really looking forward to getting started on the case for this. A concept drawing of it is uploaded in my gallery some time ago if you missed it and want to see it.

See below for the photoshoot of the modules :P

technobreath

Midiboxing

Thought I'd try setting up this blog. Get stuff gathered in one place. Until now I have been "blogging" in the gallery. Anyway... I have never ever tought of doing a blog before, so I guess it's gonna be funny to see what comes up here - probably the usual shit :).

technobreath

Today the nylon spacers arrived, yesterday the smd leds arrived. So I etched the upper board, drilled it, soldered the LEDs sandwitched it all together and tested the leds with some normal resistors. I haven't yet ordered the smd resistors that is going on this board, as I am searching for them on ebay - as soon as I find the right ones, I'll get to them too.

But at least I got to test the board. Have a look :).

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Looks nice yeah? :D I am very pleased with it so far ;) (sorry, can't hide my enthusiasm :P)

technobreath

Yo!

Just thought I'd do a small blog entry on the sideproject (I consider the synths my main projects). A midibox 64e. This is a short term project, and all parts have arrived or are on their way. It's gonna have 9 encoders, lcd and some buttons + 4 expression pedal connections. One pedal is soon built - waiting for the last parts to arrive from the states :).

Anyway, some of you might have seen my picture of the encoder PCB. Now, here is a couple of pics of the finished built pcb. Also fitted on top is a PCB mockup (thick paper). This is gonna be housing all the smd leds for the knob backlights. This hasn't been etched yet because I discovered I needed to do a couple of layout changes - the leds are a bit too close to the encoder shaft than I'd like it to be... :).

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As you can see, this is gonna be a encoder control surface sandwitch :D. The cables are rainbow ribbon cable from tim's and I have split them up and put on some nylon stockings :P. Heat shrink tubes holds them in place ;).

technobreath

Today I etched a few more PCBs. Now the control surface is complete. Or that is - I haven't yet soldered on most of the cables on the new boards, but components are soldered, backlight on the menu encoder is tested, ok (looks good as expected hehe) and I laid it out on the workbench to see how I want the frontpanel to be. I think I'm gonna use this setup here, unless I get any bright ideas or any bright tips :).

It has 8 general purpose encoders, 8 general purpose buttons, encoder for left/right navigation, it got the enter button (besides the menu encoder, and it got the snapshot button by itself - on the same pcb as the enter button :).

The buttons is just the same as in the mb6582. I have looked around the net (especially on ALBS) and found many very cool tactile switches that I could easily used for this box, but the reason why I used these buttons is that I had them in my drawer NOW, and I had a lot of em, so I figured - simple and fast - no waiting for parts etc etc. so that's why the buttons are rather boring - but I suspect they'll do the job anyway hehe.

In addition - its gonna have 4 analog inputs on the back (via mini-xlr) - for expression pedals mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. Since I have only one pedal now, I have to have a way to ground the unsused input easily without opening the case - so I have ordered in a bunch of dip-switches. I have thought and thought, and I think this is a cool solution - dips available from the back panel. Makes it easy to "program" when I need it, and hard to accidentally operate :).

It got the 16x2 LED - wich has green letters on black background, and green backlight for knobs.

Any day now, the Core8, AIN, DIN and a bunch of other goodies are dropping in my mailbox from smashTV, and once I get those, I can wire everything up and actually test it. If everything works in a satisfying way, I'm building the case next - I'm doing it simple - just bending some alu plates and put together. Give it a coat and 10 of cool paint, and we're there. If I come across a case I can use, I'll do that instead of making my own - wich takes long time even if it's simple design.

Well, enough talking, lets see the picture :). - yes there is only one today :P.

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technobreath

:w00t:

Today I used up some hours of my day off for enclosure construction!

A couple of pictures of the build so far:

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A picture of the front. Didn't have all the right tools, so it was a pain getting everything line up, so some bondo work will be needed to correct everything before making the mold.

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Just a quick shot that shows the horns on the front. The angle is gonna be approx. how I hold the "horn".

Hope u like it :)

Until next time, have fun :)

technobreath

Yo,

I had a small update on this blog yesterday, but promised a new one today, and here it is. The finished model (except for a spray paint coat to seal up the wood - that comes next).

I am assuming now that the build is gonna be a bit slower the days to come, because I need to figure out a couple of things when it comes to casting the mold. Gotta get hold of release wax too, so I don't think I'm gonna be able to do more with the enclosure before after easter...

Anyway, here's the pictures:

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Main coat of bondo sanded down (took a while yes) and the second and third layer waiting to dry up for moooooore sanding :pinch:

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Shoot of front panel, all sanded and cute looking.

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Detail shoot of the right horn muhahahaha.

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I am still proud and amazed of how cool it looks in profile. hehe.

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Details from the left horn.

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Backside-ish photoshoot.

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Upside down

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Upside down horn details. Just like a turtle on it's back :laugh:

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I had a sudden stroke of inspiration - I think it looks so evil - I just had to add some accessories to it :). I don't know how well they will stay on during transport though! :devil:

So, That's it folks. Next time I add a blog entry for this build, it will be of me casting the mold! Yeey!

Have fun!

technobreath

:nuke: The enclosure is soon ready for the warp core!

Today, before and after easter dinner party at the in-law's place :yawn: , I killed some time in the workshop. Enclosure model is due to be finished tomorrow - or at least the wood work part of it. Still needs heavy bondo work to be all there, but I am pretty sure I'm starting that tomorrow.

I haz some new pics too of course! :w00t:

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First sidewall for the right horn installed. Lots of angles, lots of work.

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Here is a picture of the front, where you can see all the cool angles all around.

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Magic :sorcerer: Suddenly all the side panels is installed, and even the top panel of the horns :)

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Mmmmm. angles!

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Front.

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Sidepanels. mmmm... more angles :drool:

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And that is about how far I got today. The only thing missing is the small pieces of the back panel. Give me 30 minutes tomorrow and they're installed too :super:

Until tomorrow, have fun with the pics :).

PS. If anyone have suggestions to what to call it (it needs a logo!!) please share your ideas! :)