Sunday, 5 January 2014

Worst. Blogger. Ever.

Yes, I've been away for a while but you know what? I've been feeling lazy recently and I felt some pressure to finish the Christmas model in time. So much so that I avoided doing it and ultimately did not complete it in time for Christmas. That probably says something about myself and highlights a personality defect but I wasn't enjoying it. 

Whilst making the model I had ideas for 3 other models which seemed more interesting and I wanted to work on those instead! The Christmas model seems to me as if I'm rehashing an old idea (even if it is slightly different this time). I'm interested in doing things I want to do, rather than putting pressure on myself to finish something which is not interesting me. 

I am finishing off the Christmas model and will probably get it done in February. What I'll probably do is create one large blog post with all the photos and videos and also a postmortem on what went well and what didn't. 

You shall all see it soon. Hopefully I'll be a little quicker with posts this year, 

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Over 4000 blog views!

Well, it may not seem like a lot to other blog writers but over 4000 people have viewed my blog. Thanks everyone!

I have now put my Cupid model onto eBay. Hopefully it will find a good home.Take a look if you fancy a bid! :)

The Christmas model continues. I have made the frame, a bed and am working on the worm drive. Pics soon.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

7 months too late for Valentine's day (or is it 5 months too early?)

Well, it's finished and I'm happy with the way it has turned out. The mechanism took me a long time to figure out (as always) but it was valuable experience. 

Onto the next one! :)

Friday, 20 September 2013

A few pics and stuff

Well, a day late but here are some pics and some video. 

First, here is the video of the old mechanism and the way it was working (not very well):

The wheel on the left was meant to move an escapement thing which would stop the friction slave wheel and hold it in position, until the escapement let it pass again. I couldn't quite get the timing right.

Here is the new mechanism. 

I've gone back to the worm drive as I can handle them quite well now but there is a slight dwell in the movement meaning the movement is quite jerky. I made 2 sets of snail cams but the first set made the movement too slow, so I made a new one to speed things up. The first one wasn't as jerky though. Hmmm. But, it does work and it stops the mechanism precisely where I want it. Now to fit the snail cams and see if they work. 

Definite inspiration from Paul Spooner and his mechanisms. Thanks Paul!

Here are more pics:

I like the new design. It looks a lot cleaner. Hopefully I'll have it finished by next week. Not a good time of year to sell a Valentine's themed model though :)

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Well what d'you know?

I've cracked the mechanism for my valentine's model! It's a bit slow so I need to make a faster gearing system but it actually works!

Inspiration for this goes to Paul Spooner who gave me an idea for an escapement mechanism. Pics to follow tomorrow. 

I now have to wait until February to try and sell it though. 


Sorry for the long gap between posts. Now that I've got the hard part of this model out of the way, I can hopefully finish it soon and start on my Christmas model. 

Saturday, 27 July 2013


Just trying to clean up some files on my computer when I came across these video files of old models. Enjoy!

UPDATE: and more I found

I've actually made quite a few models now. Hadn't really thought about it...

Mind you, not all of them were good ;)

Wednesday, 24 July 2013


I know, I know...I've been rubbish. No post for ages and not a lot to show for it.

The problem is, I'm not enjoying this model.

It's interesting and there are a lot of challenges, but that's part of the problem I've found. All my other models have been relatively small and this means it is easier in a sense to create parts. When you go big, previous small mistakes which you could get away with, now become even bigger and there a smaller tolerances for any errors. Every time I look at the model it seems that with every piece I make there are more and more things acting against each other which interrupt the intended operation of the piece.

Plus I find myself getting bored with longer projects.

Yep, I'm gonna admit defeat with this one. I'm gonna pack it up in case I come back to it at a later point. I'll still have the motor for another project if I want to use it.

If I were to do a post-mortem, I would have to say that I'm trying to run before I can walk and I really need to develop my skills as well as accurate measuring. I also think my tool skills are not quite there yet, especially in terms of making holes. It might be that my drill press is inaccurate which is causing deeper holes to go off the intended 90 degree cuts. I would need to invest in a better drill press. 

I'll practice with smaller models first. I still need to finish my valentines model as well as think about another Christmas model. If I start now, I should hopefully have enough time, but I'm being quite lazy at the moment. That's probably another thing I need to work on. 


Big thanks to J E Johnston who directed me to his blog with instructions on making a geneva wheel (Maths! ARRRGHHH!!!). See below for the link:

Also to Dug North who gave me the idea of using a geneva wheel in the first place (I could have hit myself for not thinking to use one! Sometimes I overthink things and I cannot see the easiest solutions. Thanks Dug!)