Saturday, February 28, 2015

A little Saturday night build

I decided to put the Com8 A1 frame together tonight with a little help from my family.

One of these days I will actually find out what I have in the manner of "extra" parts for this droid.  Again, I am not sure if this is an upgrade, or a re-do.  Could be a little of both.  I seriously do not want to scavenge parts from my existing droid.

New regulations on part runs through our club means that the parts may be a little more scarce in the future.  Meaning, the parts must be in hand by the maker before any money is collected.  This will certainly put a different spin on "part runs" in the future, as whoever is hosting the run will need to pony up the funds to create the parts, as opposed to having members pay and source the money from their interest.  Apparently a few runs have gone south recently.   Which means, a good number of members paying for parts, and the organizer of the run not being able to produce the final product.  This has caused the builders council to change their approval process of parts runs - nothing will be offered unless the parts are complete and ready to ship when payment is made.  The long and short of it, a maker who would offer a run of 100 shoulder hydraulics would have to front around $10,000 in costs for a shop to fabricate the items, then hoe there was enough interest to sell all of the parts.

These clubs have always operated on a blind trust basis, backed by the insurance of a forum of users.  The parts run organizer offers a service, you pay some money, and wait for the parts to be made.  The only thing that keeps people from skating with the dough is the respect for and from the community.  Again, a few runs have not gone smoothly as of late which has changed the game a bit.  I have been very fortunate in my experience, and have not lost money, but I foresee longer wait times and less parts being available in the future.

Parts come available from time to time, but with the emergence of Tapatalk - a forum app, these "used" parts rarely stay available for more than a minute.  Tapatalk will send users notifications of posts on the forum, and the for sale threads are responded to almost as quickly as they are posted.  That said, it may take a while to get any remaining parts that I need for this build.  But this build is meant to be leisurely - not the race I participated in on the last go-round.

Here are a couple photos from tonight's session.  The Com8 frame is a thing of beauty in engineering.  Everything fits together without a hitch, and is machined to perfection.

My nephew Kaden is no stranger to an R2 build.  He was pretty much there from day one on my first build.  He knows which way to turn the allen key to make it tighter.

Upon completion, every screw is then garnished with a "look what I did !"  Good job, young man.

Dad gets in on the action as well.  Being a guy who worked in the brazing industry for 40 years, Dad once considered aluminum the enemy.  That said, I have to believe he sees the beauty in this frame.

Somewhere behind the frame lurks a no-neck monster.......

Here is a pretty good shot of the slide mechanism for the center foot.  The carriage runs up and down on 4 rods with derlin bushings as slides.  The center leg lock is right in front of dad.  It has a key that locks the foot in the up or down position.  The actuated 2-3-2 mechanism is being manufactured at this point and will be available in a few months.

This is really a test fit for the frame, as I am sure it will be in various stages of construction throughout the build.

I will post more photos of the frame at a later date, but it is really a thing of beauty.  Almost a shame to cover it up with skins.  The plan on this build is to make it as clean and organized as possible.  Armed with the knowledge that I achieved from the last build, I foresee saving at least 3-7 swear words per build day.

Edit : here is a photo of the new foot drives for R2.  I will be using the NPC 2212 motors on this droid.  I love having my name on a part being made.  (2nd from the bottom left)

More to come on this as well....

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