Obsessive hobbies....

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spkrdctr

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RC, I still marvel at your ability to make things that you have made and what I assume is an enormous amount of time it must take to do all this. I am VERY impressed. If I had your talents when I was a young pup, I would have started a company making something. You represent a guy with a great brain and hard work ethic. All I can say is WOW!
 

RCHeliGuy

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RC, I still marvel at your ability to make things that you have made and what I assume is an enormous amount of time it must take to do all this. I am VERY impressed. If I had your talents when I was a young pup, I would have started a company making something. You represent a guy with a great brain and hard work ethic. All I can say is WOW!
I started my first company in 1999 and designed and had manufactured for me a steel fabricated indoor slalom ski trainer. I had a dealer network, an endorsement from a top waterskier and sold that product for 3 years. However I kept my full time job during all of this and didn't make that much money, but I learned a lot. I developed 3 more products and almost put my second, a fin calibration tool, into production.

I've been 100% self employed as a contractor for almost 13 years now. I've only traveled on site about 10 days over that period. My specialty is business process automation. I'm getting pulled into more on projects that have had 1 or more failed attempts. So far I have a 100% success rate with my projects. I'm interviewing with a hospital today and over the next week. for another large job that has had 2 failed attempts just like the last large project I finished a couple weeks ago. I've recently teamed up with an excellent Project Manager who tends to find himself on similar projects that can use someone with my skill set. He also has an excellent skill set and enjoys a good challenge.

I keep very busy with my software work which can be very challenging, which I like, and it pays well. Over the years I have became proficient at a number of things that could have been turned into a revenue stream, but manufacturing doesn't pay well enough.

So these projects are more a labor of love and a creative outlet that I share at no cost with others. Thingiverse - Digital Designs for Physical Objects

I found that while I enjoy my challenging work, that I also like to create things that are tangible. So I got into wood working and then a bit of metal working and 3D printing has been a great creative outlet for me.

Fusion 360 has become almost an extension of my consciousness and you might be surprised at how quickly some of these designs come together. The button box was the most time consuming because I was figuring out what worked and there were many many steps.

Some designs are incremental, like the one below. I started off making an integral mount for my flight stick, then I decided to make a cosmetic cover, then a guide to help it slide into position and stay there.

I've just added a Magswitch to the design which will speed things up further. I have 2x 95lb strength Magswitches coming tomorrow, some M4 threaded inserts and M4 SS bolts, along with some cold rolled steel that I'll need to cut to size, drill and bevel for the Magswitch to have something to secure to. I'm printing the test parts right now.

MagSwitchFirstAttempt.jpg
 

Robert D

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I started my first company in 1999 and designed and had manufactured for me a steel fabricated indoor slalom ski trainer. I had a dealer network, an endorsement from a top waterskier and sold that product for 3 years. However I kept my full time job during all of this and didn't make that much money, but I learned a lot. I developed 3 more products and almost put my second, a fin calibration tool, into production.

I've been 100% self employed as a contractor for almost 13 years now. I've only traveled on site about 10 days over that period. My specialty is business process automation. I'm getting pulled into more on projects that have had 1 or more failed attempts. So far I have a 100% success rate with my projects. I'm interviewing with a hospital today and over the next week. for another large job that has had 2 failed attempts just like the last large project I finished a couple weeks ago. I've recently teamed up with an excellent Project Manager who tends to find himself on similar projects that can use someone with my skill set. He also has an excellent skill set and enjoys a good challenge.

I keep very busy with my software work which can be very challenging, which I like, and it pays well. Over the years I have became proficient at a number of things that could have been turned into a revenue stream, but manufacturing doesn't pay well enough.

So these projects are more a labor of love and a creative outlet that I share at no cost with others. Thingiverse - Digital Designs for Physical Objects

I found that while I enjoy my challenging work, that I also like to create things that are tangible. So I got into wood working and then a bit of metal working and 3D printing has been a great creative outlet for me.

Fusion 360 has become almost an extension of my consciousness and you might be surprised at how quickly some of these designs come together. The button box was the most time consuming because I was figuring out what worked and there were many many steps.

Some designs are incremental, like the one below. I started off making an integral mount for my flight stick, then I decided to make a cosmetic cover, then a guide to help it slide into position and stay there.

I've just added a Magswitch to the design which will speed things up further. I have 2x 95lb strength Magswitches coming tomorrow, some M4 threaded inserts and M4 SS bolts, along with some cold rolled steel that I'll need to cut to size, drill and bevel for the Magswitch to have something to secure to. I'm printing the test parts right now.

View attachment 21522
I've got a close friend that has been running his own IT company now between 25 and 30 years and he is similar. He does his main business but also fixes up old pinball machines. He then finds businesses like bars that would like to have his machines there and basically rents the space I guess you could say. The income from the coins on those pays for all of the pinball expenses and allows him to make more. It's a fun outlet for him. His business he enjoys too I think, but it's still more like work.
 

RCHeliGuy

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The problem with many of these labor of loves, is that if you turn them in a money making venture, it becomes less fun. I tooled up and created a bunch of those Delrin wedges to hold wheels for SimuCube 2 owners. Creating the tooling and figuring out how to make them was the fun part. The actual manufacturing was just tedious and I got through the first batch knowing I would never make another batch.
 

Robert D

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The problem with many of these labor of loves, is that if you turn them in a money making venture, it becomes less fun. I tooled up and created a bunch of those Delrin wedges to hold wheels for SimuCube 2 owners. Creating the tooling and figuring out how to make them was the fun part. The actual manufacturing was just tedious and I got through the first batch knowing I would never make another batch.
Exactly!
 

RCHeliGuy

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I think I just figured out how to make this completely tool-less and have no loose parts :)
I'm pretty excited about this, and I think it will work!

StickQuickRelease2.jpg
StickQuickRelease.jpg
StickQuickRelease_6525.jpg
 

RCHeliGuy

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In case you were curious, here is how the Magswitch quick release works.


Also added a 2nd cable guide at the bottom to keep the cable from getting out where my feet are, then run it through an existing Velcro loop for good measure. I think it is all dialed in now :)

AdditionalGuide_6586.jpg
 

RCHeliGuy

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I came to the realization yesterday that my sim rig was complete. I've dotted every i and crossed every t. There is nothing left to do until I move to a new home and have room to build a full 6 DOF motion system. This hit my like a ton of bricks. :(

Right now I'm refinishing the slightly water damaged ( because they were not finished properly ) solid wood Alderwood cabinets in the master bath under the double sinks. I've been cleaning my office and organizing things in the house. In one way I feel a bit freed because I don't have any more ideas that are compelling me to design things, but I also feel like there is something missing.

I may actually use my rig and listen to my stereo a bit more too :)
 

Robert D

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I came to the realization yesterday that my sim rig was complete. I've dotted every i and crossed every t. There is nothing left to do until I move to a new home and have room to build a full 6 DOF motion system. This hit my like a ton of bricks. :(

Right now I'm refinishing the slightly water damaged ( because they were not finished properly ) solid wood Alderwood cabinets in the master bath under the double sinks. I've been cleaning my office and organizing things in the house. In one way I feel a bit freed because I don't have any more ideas that are compelling me to design things, but I also feel like there is something missing.

I may actually use my rig and listen to my stereo a bit more too :)
Makes sense. Is it the finished product or the path it takes to get there that supplies the satisfaction?
 

RCHeliGuy

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I think I enjoyed the process of designing and building solutions to issues I found more than actually having it all complete.
 

RCHeliGuy

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I am still learning things about how all this works for flight. DCS is very deep.

For example the throttle has detents that can be set fairly high so you have an a push through detent just before the afterburners kick in and then another set at the idle, cutt-off threshold when you are on the runway. You can hear the afterburners kick in as well.

The motion is quite good and I'm impressed with how it handles barrel rolls.

The transducer support for effects with my NLRv3 is not as advanced as what I have in SimHub for racing, but it is still interesting. It is impressive when you depress the trigger and feel the gun/cannons spin up on the F18, fire and then spin down when you let off the trigger.

I also started mapping controls to my button box. I configured an eject button. You have to hit it 3 times. The first press lights things up, the 2nd press jettisons the canopy and the 3rd press launches you and your seat and the parachute opens.

So part of the adventure still awaits as I get things configured and actually start to see what my rig is capable of. I've barely scratched the surface.

DialinginDCS.jpg
 
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