Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Evaluation 3.2


I think that my prototype box went relatively well. During the process I needed quite a lot of help and guidance but I finished it on time, it works, and the outside appearance is pretty good.

To begin with I had no problems. We started the prototype in week 2 of term 2 when we were given the solar garden light to pull apart. The solar panel, circuit and battery were the parts that we needed. Once this was done we were given the top plate of the box. I sanded it and filed it down. I then scribed, measured, and drilled out the holes for the LED’s and the wires of the solar panel. I bent the box into box shape. Then cut out the brackets, scribed, drilled and bent them. I learnt that next time I need to push the drill through slower so that it doesn’t get stuck.

When I was drilling the holes for the rivets they kept slipping so a lot of the rivets went on wonky. But that is a very small issue. The actual putting in of the rivets was difficult too as I wasn’t strong enough to use the rivet gun but that is not a fault of the design and as I won’t be using rivets in my final design it doesn’t matter at all.

I sanded, with 220, and filed the bottom plate, bent it and drilled the holes in the side for the screw. After I screwed the bottom plate on I got out the circuit from the solar light. I detached and de-soldered the wires leading to the solar panel, the battery, and the LED. The board was very small so when I was de-soldering the solder sometimes escaped to other parts of the board, making it hard for me to get it off. If the circuit I use for my final design is that small I will be more careful when using the solder sucker to ensure this doesn’t happen again.

I attached the first set of wires onto the circuit fine but when it came to attaching wires and LED’s to these wires I had a bit of trouble. To attach these wires to each other they had to be wound around one another and then soldered. I would wind one around but before I could solder it had detached itself again. In my final design I will use metal crocodile clip holder so that I don’t have to try and hold it together and solder it at the same time. Because that didn’t work.

A major problem I had throughout the whole of the last half of the process of making the prototype box was that the wires kept breaking off. The joins to the board and the other pieces of wire were not strong enough no matter how well, or how many times, I soldered them. I’m not sure if this was a problem with my soldering, the strength of the wires, or just me not being careful enough. So in my final design I will solder and handle my circuit with more care. If they still break I could use stronger wire.

When the circuit was finished I had another problem with things snapping off. The hot glue was not really the best thing to hold the LED’s to the top of the box. It took three tries to get them to stick and even then they are not the most stable things ever. The glue seemed to work fine sticking the battery snap and circuit board to the sides of the box, but if I did it again I would use something different to hold the LED’s to the top of the box.

I probably wouldn’t change anything about the metal design because it worked well and was easy to assemble. I would attach the wires closer to the board as the way they are is very flimsy, if I were to change the circuit. Because of them being flimsy they come loose and stop the circuit from working. But in my final design I think the wires will be further away from my circuit board anyway, so it doesn’t make any difference.

At the end of it all I think it went pretty well. Although there were quite a few things I would change if I did it again, it was a first try and it does what its supposed to do without too much hassle to get there. In my final design I will watch my soldering and de-soldering, handle the circuit more carefully and (if I need to) use a different kind of glue.

Week 2 Term 3

On Tuesday we had practical. I put silicon on my box, around the solar panel, to seal it. Then I started my mock up. After I had a talk with Terry I changed the diameters of the discs on my Solid works design. Originally all four were 10mm across. After talking I changed them to 200mm (on the bottom), 150mm, 125mm and 50mm (on the top). I then cut out all these discs. I attached the bottom to the next one with a 200mm piece of cardboard. I put the first strip of corrugated cardboard to be the outside of the bottom sphere. Om Friday I will work on finishing the rest of my mock up. We have two periods of practical.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Week 1 Term 3

On Tuesday we were in the computer lab. I commented on Henry's blog, and he commented on mine. He said "Your blog is looking good and you seem to have everything needed and the solid works design is looking good but you may find it hard to build. P.s I enjoyed Terry's comment!" On Wednesday I was sick so not at school. This was a problem because I didn't get any work done. On Friday I did my blog and calendar (which I would have done on Wednesday). After that I got my prototype almost finished. I removed the glue from the solar panel and sanded down the scratches on the top, with a ? machine. When we tried to stick it down it was difficult because the the soldering that attaches the wires to the solar panel did not fit in the holes that were made for them. We used a different type of glue and balanced some weights on top so that it would stick without having to be right on the top of the box.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Week 9 Term 2

+Tuesday we were in the computer lab. We had been given a checklist of postings we need on our blog. An updated version of the old one we got. I did my blog for the week before and updated my calendar. I added photos of my work on my circuit last week and wrote a Freehand evaluation. Today I am so tired so all I have done is write this blog. Because I can't concentrate. On Friday I will take the photos of the inside of my box and add them. I will also stick the fallen down or out bits back with one of the new glue guns. Tonight or tomorrow night I have to take a photo of the box working, inside and outside.