Friday, July 30, 2010

One last detail

So before R6-C9 goes anywhere, I thought it a good idea to glue the top and bottom disc and the shoulder support boards. Now he's solid.

This past week I've been working on a harness for the battery. Due to the location of the center ankle and the tilt bar attached to it I had to locate the battery in the very front of the body.
Using my handsaw, I cut out a small piece of 1/2" plywood about the same size as the battery. I made the board a little longer than needed which I adjusted later on. I then drilled four 3/8" holes and then used a 1/2" spade bit to drill a recess halfway through so the bolt heads would be flush with the surface. I am using two small pieces of "L" channel steel railing with pre-drilled holes as brackets to connect the board to the existing railing the center ankle is bolted to (exact same railing in fact).
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I was going to use 3/8" bolts to connect to the ankle rails but, if you look closely in the next picture, you can see the holes don't line up on both sides. To fix this, I used 1/4" bolts with washers.

As an after thought, I decided to add a back on the battery harness to support the battery when the body is tilted back. I also screwed on some Velcro to help hold the battery in place.
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In addition to the battery harness, I've still been working on the skins. I just recently got these four panels glued together.

Also, I got the power switches installed. From top left to right: Main power switch, battery meter circuit LEDs, battery meter momentary push button (you press the button to activate the LEDs to see the voltage level), bottom: Sabertooth 2X25 speed controller, SyRen 10A speed controller, speakers & C6C PS2 receiver, arduino & VMusic2.
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So with all this done, though still not finished, I think R6-C9 is ready for his public debut. From this point on all work will stop and packing begin. Already I have the feet plus hardware in boxes. My next posting should be the the day I leave for Orlando (August 10th). I'm taking my laptop with me so I can give daily updates at the convention.

Until then,


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Never Say Never - R6-C9 Standing

You know how I said last time I won't be getting R6-C9 to stand in time for the convention? Well, disregard that.

I got thinking this past week, "why not just do things the old fashioned way?" So I bought a hand saw. It's not exactly a table saw, but it works.

This is a 14-1/2" long by 1-1/4" wide by 1/8" thick steel L channel. I shall name it the "tilt support bar," or "tilt bar" for short. It's purpose is to hold the shoulder pipes that go through the body in place so the legs can be tilted back at the correct angle and stay there. I drilled four holes into it (two 3/8" and two 5/16").
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I modified the center ankle to fit into the body without bumping into the PCB Tray. Then drilled two more holes (3/8") to bolt on the Tilt Bar.
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In the two 5/16 holes I installed a 1-1/4" U-bolt which is what wraps around the shoulder pipe and holds it snug.
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According to the Club's blueprints, an Astromech droid's legs are rotated 36 degrees back behind the body.
And now, the final result.
First time standing 1 First time standing 2 First time standing 3 First time standing 4

TADA!!!! Lookin' good!

Note that R6 is just sitting on top of the feet. I don't have them bolted on yet. To do that I need to enlarge the holes in the ankles and I absolutely need a drill press to do this to ensure the holes are kept straight.

So what's next? Good question. I have achieved my primary goal and got him standing. I might do some more painting but I think I'm done preparing R6 for Celebration 5. Only two more weeks to go.


Sunday, July 18, 2010

Power is GO

Custom Voltage Regulator

This electronic schematic is what I'll be using to power the C6C PS2 controller receiver and the Speakers. First is the L7806 voltage regulator IC chip. This reduces the 12V battery to 6V for the C6C. Next is the LM317 voltage regulator IC chip. This, combined with a 220 Ohm and a 1.1K Ohm resistor, reduces the 12V battery to 7.5V for the speakers. The capacitors on both regulators job is to ensure the voltage level remains constant in case there are any momentary surges or voltage drops caused by another device. I have built this circuit on a prototyping breadboard and it works just like it should. So I have designed a PCB of this circuit and ordered it. Should arrive this Thursday.

While I was at it, I connected the voltage regulator to the rest of R6's wiring and also connected the battery for the first time to R6. I am happy to say all power testing was successful. Now I just need to finalize the placement of the switches and the battery.

Only 3 weeks left until Star Wars Celebration V. It's starting to become more and more clear now that I will not be able to have R6 standing in time for the convention due to not having access to the proper tools by then. Oh well. I tried. R6 will just have to be on display as is. But fear not. There's still the "Return Of The Jedi" 30th anniversary, Celebration VI. Let's make that the new goal for completing R6 (or mostly completing him).


Monday, July 12, 2010

Painting of Feet - Complete

Ready to assemble Painting complete

Finally! The feet are completely painted. They turned out very nicely I think. I attached the detail pieces to the outer feet, but the inner foot's detail pieces can't go on by itself. For that I need two additional pieces plus other pieces to complete the feet. But for now I'm done with them.

1st Set

Here's the skin pieces I also finished. These are done. I'll keep them in storage until I'm ready to assemble the skin onto the body. In the mean time, I still have other skin pieces to finish painting. The fun just doesn't stop :)


Thursday, July 8, 2010

....and even more painting....

"Will this never end?" C-3PO, Ep4 ANH

Truer words were never said. The painting just keeps going.

Today I sanded smooth some of the skin panels for their final coat of paint. So they are DONE! YAY! I then painted the bottom half of the feet. Next time I'll paint the top half once more and then that should be it for the feet....I hope. Only 3 skin panels left to finish painting; one more coat, sand, then final coat. After all that I can start the remaining skin pieces and maybe the skins themselves.

The clock is ticking. Four weeks left until convention time. Sadly I didn't get as much done as I wanted, but in the least I'm going to have him standing....hopefully.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

....and more painting....

Happy Fourth of July, celebrating Independence from high taxes....wait a minute.

Today I did some more painting. I lightly sanded the feet to make them smooth and then gave them a fresh coat. However, the spray can I was using was nearly empty so I don't think much paint got on them. Should have sprayed them once more with the fresh can. Guess I'll have to give one more coat next time. Besides the feet, I also painted the skin panels which makes 3 coats now I think. They look very smooth so I may stop here and move on to other pieces.

I've also been continuing work on the electrical system. Thus far I have the wiring to and from the power switches ready for the switches, but before I connect them I need to devise a mounting plate or something to put the switches into. Also I still need to devise a way to mount the battery.