New Hobby: Radio Control

I’ve always been a little interested in RC planes and multirotors and model/toy aviation but not enough to really try to get into it. I’ve had a few off-the-shelf drones from Toys ‘R Us but it always seemed too expensive and difficult to get into any real hobby grade stuff.

Enter FliteTest. They’re a YouTube channel that focuses on model aviation and teaching people how they can get into the hobby. They also talk about full scale general aviation but their main focus is definitely on multirotors and foamboard aircraft. I found them a little under 2 years ago when I stumbled upon their Avengers Helicarrier video. It looked really fun and they way they gave the build information in the video was very approachable. However, at that time I wasn’t quite invested in it enough to do anything but enjoy the video and show a few friends. It wasn’t until about 6 months ago that another of their videos popped up on my feed and I got sucked down a rabbit hole for like an hour. After that I was hooked!

I still couldn’t really get too much into the hobby grade stuff since it is a little expensive and definitely time consuming so I kept playing around with the off-the-shelf drones. I got better and better at flying those and began learning more and more about the hobby. But just yesterday I got my first hobby grade quadcopter! I’ll write another post soon about my first experiences with it.

I’ve got a couple plans for things that I’m wanting to build including: a racing/acrobatic quadcopter, a VTOL plane of my own design and a brushless micro quad among other things.

I’m super pumped​ and I can’t wait to really get in there and share my experiences!

 

I built a 3D Printer!

I finally had time to sit down and build our printer! Unfortunately I didn’t take any good pictures of the process, I was too excited.

All in all it took about 12 hours to build and calibrate to get to my first print. The build was difficult, not too difficult but it took all of those 10 or so hours of build time. If it hadn’t have been for the online manual I really don’t know if I could have done it, the high resolution photos were a life saver.

The most difficult part was, in all honesty, dealing with the printed parts. Most of them were fine and worked first try, but there were a couple that made things nearly impossible. The worst parts were those involving placing M3 nuts in deep holes in which the tolerances didn’t allow for a friction fit, namely in the extruder assembly. In a few other areas there were some screw holes that were either slightly too small making threading difficult or the holes were a little out of place. The other major issue I had was in the height of the P.I.N.D.A. probe but I’ll touch on that in a sec. But for the most part it was smooth sailing.

Calibration was also a little troublesome. My main issues were as follows:

  1. My first issue came in during the self test when the Y-axis stop switch was not being triggered. It turns out that the placement of the Y belt pully/motor was more important than I thought from the instructions and that moving the Y-axis motor assembly would be very difficult later. In my opinion they should have supplied specific measurements for that like they did with the nuts for securing to the upright frame. Either way, it took about 15-20 minutes to get that right.
  2. I managed to seat the Y frame in the upright VERY unevenly, honestly I impressed myself with how bad it was and how much I missed it, which caused the right side calibration points to be unreachable but that was an easy fix, just loosening the double M4 nuts and seating the frame correctly.
  3. The P.I.N.D.A. probe. This thing is actually still giving me problems requiring me to test different Z-heights for almost every print because I don’t want to keep adjusting it physically cause I’m lazy, I expect this to come back to bite me. Like the Y belt pulleys I wish they would have provided specific measurements rather than having us eyeball it.

Since then it’s been mostly live Z-height adjusts and playing with Slic3r settings.

Despite these issues the printer has been absolutely fantastic. Now I have nothing to compare it to but from the research I’ve done into other printers mine is performing admirably. I’m excited to continue learning about the machine and finding more and more way to improve upon it and my methods.

 

New PC! Tanyoon 2.0

I’ve finally obtained all the parts for my new PC build!

(Part reviews below)

I built my first PC, named Tanyoon, in 2014 when I was at my first internship and was finally making not Dairy Queen money. It was not a great build.

To be fair it was fine, I didn’t really know what I was doing but it served me well until now. The plan was light gaming and moderate development and while the part decisions for that weren’t the worst, the biggest mistake I made was having zero future proofing in place. I had an AMD APU (which worked well for light gaming, I could even play Fallout 4) and a 430W PSU. The problem was in needing to replace the motherboard to use anything but an AMD APU and having too small a PSU for much else, and actually it was just a poor PSU choice in general as it didn’t even have the power cable to support my new GPU. (yes I could have bought one but running the system that close to the max output of the PSU made me feel uncomfortable)

So rather than replace those parts I built a completely new system, and here it is:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

(prices do not include shipping/tax)

Type Item Price
CPU Intel Core i7-6700K 4.0GHz Quad-Core Processor Purchased For $299.99
CPU Cooler NZXT Kraken X52 Liquid CPU Cooler Purchased For $149.99
Motherboard Gigabyte GA-Z170N-Gaming 5 Mini ITX LGA1151 Motherboard Purchased For $129.99
Memory Corsair Vengeance LED 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-3200 Memory Purchased For $129.83
Storage Transcend MTS800 128GB M.2-2280 Solid State Drive Christmas Gift from Wife
Storage Seagate Barracuda 3TB 3.5″ 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive Purchased For $89.99
Video Card Asus GeForce GTX 1070 8GB Video Card Purchased For $419.99
Case Phanteks Enthoo EVOLV ITX Mini ITX Tower Case Purchased For $69.99
Power Supply EVGA SuperNOVA P2 750W 80+ Platinum Certified Fully-Modular ATX Power Supply Purchased For $128.09
Operating System Microsoft Windows 10 Home Full – USB 32/64-bit Purchased For $109.99
Total $1527.85

CPU: Not much to say here. This thing kills it. And by ‘it’ I mean everything that I throw at it. I do plan to overclock someday but for right now I’m satisfied with just having a real CPU.

Cooler: I’m not one to freak out about temps so I won’t be posting anything like that, it’s a well made water cooler, it’s going to be quite effective. I will talk about the freaking awesome lighting effects and how much larger the CPU block was than I expected. It was much larger than I expected. With that out of the way let’s talk about those lights. They’re amazing. I’ll post some pictures or gifs or something. Or just watch HardwareCanucks’ video.

Motherboard: Very easy to work with, connections are well placed and everything seems sturdy. I really like the included USB-C port, #nexus6P, as well as the built in Wifi and Bluetooth even though I’ll likely rarely use either. The number of ports is great for me. Two things that I wish were different would be the location of the front header plug and the proximity of the RAM to the cooler bracket. The front header plug is kinda in the middle-ish and makes cable management difficult, especially since the cable is very inflexible. The RAM was too close to the CPU cooler and I had to install the cooler sideways due to the placement of the tubes leaving the water block. Thankfully it still looks totally fine.

RAM: For the most part RAM is RAM but this has white LEDs built into the heat spreader. And it’s awesome. Hopefully Corsair releases some software to allow control of the LEDs because right now they aren’t synced and seem to breathe randomly.

Storage: 3TB whoo! This should leave me plenty of space for games, recordings and movies/tv shows as well as web and coding projects.

GPU: This thing is great. It’s the first dGPU I’ve ever had and so far it’s been more than capable of handling everything I’ve thrown at it. Also it has RGB LEDs even though they’re facing down in the case. (Thankfully it has an RGB area on the bottom of the card, opposite the fans, so it still looks neat)

Case: When I picked this case I thought it was going to be smaller than my current case and it’s actually a little bigger but that turned out to be ok because I like it so much better. The cable management was very easy and I like the PSU chamber that hides all those connections. There are several SSD mounts, that I’m not using but may in the future, and I’ve got space for another HDD down the road too. I really like the top radiator bracket which made installing the x52 super easy. The included 200mm fan runs quietly even if it may not be as effective as it could be due to the restrictive front panel, I may need to do some work there.

PSU: Nice fully modular PSU, not much to say.

OS: It’s Windows 10, not much to say, personally I love it.

Whiskey Advent Calendar

Yeah, so that’s a thing.

Master of Malt sells different versions of their advent calendar including gin, tequila and rum variants as well as higher priced whisky versions with more expensive samples. For example, the cheapest calendar is the Vodka version for $105 and the most expensive is the Very Old and Rare version for $10,568 (that’s not a typo, the oldest spirit in that one is aged 60 years and a full bottle costs $14,790). Each calendar includes 24 3cl samples in a wide range of their respective spirit.

The full list of their calendars can be found here.

We ordered the basic Whiskey Advent Calendar (red version ’cause Christmas) and it shipped very quickly. I had it shipped to work because a signature was required and I knew that my co-workers would get a kick out of it. haha

I plan on writing a review of each week as we taste them. That said, I generally have no idea what I’m talking about. You won’t be getting any kind of in-depth review with specific tasting notes here. What you will get is the most basic review of some whiskey from someone who likes whiskey and wants to share in this experience, I’ll tell you if I like it or not and why and if anything sticks out.

Hopefully this goes well, I’m pretty excited!

Update 12/14: So this is hard and I really don’t know what I’m talking about… Soooo I’m not gonna post reviews. I will however update this post again when it’s over and give a general overview and maybe my favorite.

We ordered a 3D Printer!

Finally!

Yesterday (11/28) I placed an order for the Prusa i3 MK2 with black printed parts. At the time of purchase the kit was $699 plus shipping, which to Ohio for 2-3 day was ~$70. The kit included a 1kg spool of white PLA, unfortunately when I placed my order the silver was unavailable (but I’ll probably order it after the white runs out, or before) and the site said that orders would not ship by Christmas due to 5-6 weeks of lead time. Oh well, it’ll give me time to work on my 3D modeling skills which haven’t been touched since those 3 weeks in 2011 during my only semester of Mechanical Engineering.

Prusa Research also sells the MK2 as a pre-assembled and tested product for $899. My wife and I opted for the kit because it sounded more fun (we hope). I felt comfortable doing that due to the inbuilt tests that Prusa has included to make sure that you’ve put it together correctly, which is great since this is our first printer and we’ll have no idea what we’re doing…

I’m in the process of building a new PC for development/modeling/gaming/Netflix (let’s be honest) so I plan on reconfiguring my old build to be the home server and dedicated printing machine. Or I’ll give it to my wife and use hers, we’ll see, depends on if she gets that laptop.

I don’t have a first print planned but I’ve certainly got a few ideas:

  • 3D Catan Pieces
  • A dice tower for D&D
  • Nerf stuff (so many things…)
  • Enclosures for the home automation system I want to build (but that’s a whole ‘nother post of its own…)
  • A fix for my car’s horrible cupholders
  • ALL THE THINGS
  • But for real, a lot of stuff

I can’t wait to get it and put it together! I’ll be sure to make another post detailing our experience building it and doing our first print!

UPDATE 12/6: I noticed that the silver PLA was back in stock so I messaged customer service to see if they would switch out the white I chose for the silver and within a few hours I got a response that said they would! Great customer service!

Welcome!

Hi there!

I’m Tyler and this is a website.

This is my first attempt at actually keeping a blog so we’ll see where things go!

If you’re wondering about the name Tanyoon you wouldn’t be the only one. I made up the name Tanyoon Kamani years and years ago, probably around the age of 10, for a comic that I thought I was going to write with my friend. Tanyoon was based off of Samus Aran and by based I mean a essentially a re-color (please don’t sue me Nintendo). I thought I was the coolest kid ever cause I came up with a character that had the same initials as me. I still think it’s pretty cool. Maybe someday I’ll get good enough at 3D modeling and I’ll print him or maybe I’ll just try to find my old sketches…

I’ll be posting about different projects that I’m working on in my free time around my job as a Web Developer. I have quite a few hobby interests ranging from woodworking to 3D Printing to Nerf Blaster modification and a bunch of geeky stuff like Dungeons and Dragons and PC Gaming. I’ll also likely just post about things that I think are interesting and that I want share my thoughts on.

So if any of those things interest you and you want to read about them stick around!

Thanks!

-Tyler