07nov2005 - Seventh Assignment

More or less back on track, I developed some probes for use with the kinds of boards that we are producing in the class. Initial tests with basic stick probes were kind of boring, but were a good way to test methods of securing the adhesive copper to the probes, as well as press fit and spring properties of acrylic. One notable finding is that the adhesive copper does not withstand being sandwiched in a sliding press fit brace - it will often tear, under this kind of load.

Recalling the probes that I used in high school, which had a little hook on the end that could be pushed out and sprung back around a wire (for through mount stuff, this was quite useful), it occurs to me that the same kind of functionality would be nice for surface mount pieces. So I set out to design a little clamp that can simply be set around the board. Interesting design problems, here, were producing a robust joint and acrylic spring system that allowed appropriate freedom and also appropriately restricted motion. Plus, they make nice rocket ship ornaments.

31oct2005 - Seventh Assignment

My assignment for this week is to work on 'probes.' Not completely understanding the simplicity of the assignment (not to make any assumptions about the complexity of solutions to simple assignments), I did a bit of experimenting with making capacitive sensors and solenoids, using the vinyl cutter. The topological possibilities of flexible circuit board making is really exciting. One could design cylindrical, mobius strip circuits, etc...