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  1. #21
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    WTF is a Nerf?????

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    Quote Originally Posted by moonlight machine View Post
    WTF is a Nerf?????
    some politicians in your country might call it a "gateway drug" which inevitably will lead to owning one of these:
    cover-759x500.jpg


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  4. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by jz79 View Post
    some politicians in your country might call it a "gateway drug" which inevitably will lead to owning one of these:
    cover-759x500.jpg

    I'v owned those for years without knowing what a Nerf is.

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    if there were things like these around, wouldn't you want to get the real thing as soon as possible?
    asdfas.jpg

    I'm not serious about the implication, just making fun of the logic behind a political agenda

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    Quote Originally Posted by jz79 View Post
    if there were things like these around, wouldn't you want to get the real thing as soon as possible?
    asdfas.jpg

    I'm not serious about the implication, just making fun of the logic behind a political agenda
    So a Nerf is a toy gun?

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    Blasters & Accessories, Online Games, Videos - Nerf

    Nerf is a brand of toy guns that shoot foam darts. Some people like to mod them to make them more powerful. Something like stacking nickels under the power spring is a common first step. Then, usually, something breaks. Hence the market for improved aftermarket parts.
    Last edited by kenton; 07-15-2019 at 10:05 AM.

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    I hope the best for you guys on your journey.....please continue to update, it's very interesting. I like the old iron you have. The Johnson saw is great, I worked with one for a few years, at the time it was 40 or 50 years old and worked great.
    A friend of mine has been in business for 15 years doing job shop work and after he established a reputation for delivering quality parts, he didn't have to 'pound the pavement' anymore, he received his jobs by word of mouth, from all across the entire USA.
    Continue working hard and you guys will do well....

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  12. #28
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    Some tentatively good news after the shitshow of last week!

    Lance, the owner of the cabinetry/furniture company that previously rented space on the floor directly below us, has a few buildings in the area (not sure why he was renting here in the first place, he has property all over the state apparently), and one of them has a bunch of empty space in it. It's constructed similarly to our current space, but it's from the 50s, and was built for the DoD during the Cold War. I've been told it's missile-resistant.





    I haven't been there yet, but Kevin and Isaiah met with him on Saturday, and are meeting with him again tomorrow evening to discuss details (as much as I'd like to, I can't make it and we gotta get moving on this ASAP). The floor loading is nearly double what we have in our current space, the floors themselves are larger, and the building has not one but THREE freight elevators - two 5k lb capacity and one 10k that's also physically larger inside than the one in our current building, apparently large enough to be able to drive a Suburban inside and comfortably walk all the way around it (how it was described to me). For reference, Kevin's Suburban needed the bumpers removed to just barely squeeze between the gates in our current one.

    Lance also actually cares about this building, because he's running his business out of it. He spent over a million dollars renovating the first floor alone, and is gradually working his way up so that all of them will be modernized eventually. Gary (current landlord) told us to put out some buckets when we told him the roof leaked. Lance has leftover heaters that he's willing to let us use, and said that he just needs a two week heads-up before we move in so his guys can repaint everything and install new LED lighting for us. So, that's already a huge step above what we're used to.

    Now, the really good part. Lance's company just furnished 2,000 rooms of one of the largest hotels in Manhattan, and he's currently having to turn away most of his jobs due to a lack of capacity or specific capabilities, including metalworking and powder coating. He can't stand dealing with the powder coaters in the area and wants us to take over coating all of his metal parts. He also wants us to machine stuff for him so he can expand into the architectural metalworking side of things, where there's a TON of money and apparently a ton of work as well right now. This means there's a good chance we won't be paying rent (whether that's literally or effectively). Like I said, we haven't worked out the details yet, but he was extremely excited to have us in the building the last we talked, and he suggested trading work for rent. Obviously, we'll need to get everything in writing with clear definitions of the value we need to provide per month before he pays us for the excess and so on, but we should have that figured out this week if we can come to an agreement.

    We're gonna try to be out of our current space within the first week of August if this all works out the way we want because why the hell would we stick around here when that's on the table? Newer building, potentially no rent, a landlord who gives a shit and will actually fix things, a better view, etc.

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    Trading werk for rent sounds good up front, but that's about as good as having a business partner, and you have two of them....

    If you can come on here 3 yrs from now with all good stories - it'll be the first time ....


    Double your already high floor load, yet only a 10K elevator?


    -------------------

    Think Snow Eh!
    Ox

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    Quote Originally Posted by jz79 View Post
    some politicians in your country might call it a "gateway drug" which inevitably will lead to owning one of these:
    cover-759x500.jpg

    Hey, I like both. Problem is, you can't really run around and shoot your friends with one of those (at least not more than once) and they usually don't appreciate it too much...

    Anyway, I lost a bunch of my old photos and my photobucket account from that time is broken, but here's some stuff I made, mostly during high school. People in the Nerf community both modify existing blasters (the term we use to avoid too much media attention ) and build their own from scratch. It started out as a bunch of teenagers and 20-somethings with duct tape and epoxy putty hacksawing things apart and sticking them together in their garages, but with the availability of 3D printing and machining services these days, things have gotten quite a bit more advanced. 11 years ago, I was one of maybe 3 people in the entire online community with a lathe that I proudly bought at age 13. You were hot shit if you had a dremel and a drill press, and now easily half of the hobby has or has access to 3D printers and other digital manufacturing resources. I'm a moderator of the largest Facebook group for the hobby and it's been wild to see things grow.





    I built this 5 or 6 years ago for a good friend - it's a single shot, pullback pistol with about a 32 lb spring in it that consistently hits over 220 feet per second. I wish I had a brighter photo of it on hand because those don't really show the whole thing and it won't make as much sense to people outside the hobby without that context, but the low-effort render at the end is good enough I guess. It's got 3d printed, machined, waterjet cut, and formed parts on it, and it pretty much represents the gamut of tools and skills I had at my disposal at that point in time. It's in Singapore now, where my buddy keeps it as a display piece because he knows damn well there will never be another one. That's got the crispest trigger I've ever felt on a toy.



    It's weird when you have to google your own username + keywords to find stuff you made from years ago...
    Anyway, I made a bunch of these in various configurations and sold them for not nearly enough money because I had no idea how to value my time in high school. They were pretty neat, pump-action for the most part, and used a "hopper" system for feeding (1/2" PVC wye that venturi-loaded darts from a tube into the barrel).




    Also found this while digging, possibly the dumbest thing I've ever been roped into making.




    Yeah, that's an ice cream scoop. I guess some students in the intro to engineering design class at RPI came to the head of the mfg. dept. and asked him if they could have this part machined, and apparently I don't have enough on my plate, so he asked me to help them out (I was also still in school at the time and had just barely started the Grizzly conversion, so I guess this was about 2 years ago). Never once did they consider driving down to Walmart and buying a metal scoop to modify, nor did they consider that machining might not be the best process for mass-production, as they seemed convinced this would be fine as a real product. This scoop was designed with a heating element in it, a full PID temperature controller, wireless charging (???), and bluetooth connectivity to set it up.

    Ran that on an '01 mini mill in one of the campus shops and completed the entire part including programming in 7 hours flat on a machine I wasn't familiar with. It's not perfect (you can see where I left it rough around the shank), but IMO that ain't bad for a machine that originally came with a floppy drive and mostly minimum effort on my part. The students were thrilled and never learned why this was a horrible, horrible decision. Instead, they learned that if you throw enough time and imaginary money at something, you too can wind up with a $700 ice cream scoop that satisfies your project requirements/professor/boss instead of taking the time to design something that someone might actually want, is feasible to manufacture, and hits a reasonable price point. But hey, this is an engineering school, why would we teach people that?

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  17. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ox View Post
    Trading werk for rent sounds good up front, but that's about as good as having a business partner, and you have two of them....

    If you can come on here 3 yrs from now with all good stories - it'll be the first time ....


    Double your already high floor load, yet only a 10K elevator?


    -------------------

    Think Snow Eh!
    Ox
    Oh, I'm not expecting everything to work out perfectly, and if we wind up paying rent sometimes, that's still fine with me. We're hoping for an arrangement where there's a fixed monthly value that we either pay as rent or pay for with work at our quoted rate, which is effectively the same thing with fewer steps. From the sounds of it right now, he has more than enough work for us to cover rent and then some every month, which would be fantastic. We're planning on staying until we can buy our own building within 5 years, hopefully less. If it all falls apart, it all falls apart I guess, about the same as the landlord selling our current place out from under us with no advance warning. Best case it works out, worst case we learn some good lessons (again). I'm expecting an outcome somewhere in between those two.

    I think the floor loading was for that missile resistance I mentioned. Those large columns in the photo are solid concrete somewhere around 10' in diameter, and there's a bunch of them on every floor. Elevators are quite a bit harder to scale up, I guess. It's not quite double the load, but it's 300psf I believe, so close to it.

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    ice cream scoop seems underdeveloped, no selfie camera?!

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    Quote Originally Posted by jz79 View Post
    ice cream scoop seems underdeveloped, no selfie camera?!
    Hey, YOU try getting a mirror finish with whatever worn out tools you can find in a drawer, I'm lucky we even had a 1/4" ballnose!

    Besides, there's only so much work I'm willing to put in as a favor before my hours become billable, and that seems to be shrinking the more people ask...

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    Hoooo boy, this rollercoaster just doesn't stop.

    The shop I contract for was originally going to have us handle a 10k pc job that's two countersunk holes in some steel plates with wide open tolerances. Cool. Had plenty of time to prepare, was just waiting on a PO to order tooling, and then they told us a couple weeks ago that they were bringing it back in house. Not so cool.

    Well, they can't make it happen for some reason, so they're subbing 5 or 7k of those parts back to us (they haven't decided yet, but are issuing a PO for 5k immediately and leaning towards 7k eventually). Stock delivers tomorrow 9AM (they provide, already cut to size), will have the PO in my hand in 5 minutes, tooling will arrive tomorrow - got a neat little Guhring drill on the way that absolutely FLIES through this garbage A36.

    No time to plan some kind of automation or even a pallet because they gave us no notice whatsoever, so I guess we'll be taking turns hand loading somewhere between 7 and 10k lbs of steel one part at a time for now. Sucks, but we need the money bad. I'd kill for a bridgeport or something that I could make a fixture on while we got the first parts running in a vise, but that's not an option right now.

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    Question for Roboman: I realize this may not be a priority for you but I'd like to know more about your hardwood floor. You say 1" thick, thickest I've seen here is 7/8" which is pretty common. I've got a bunch from an old knitting factory. Is your 1" tongue and groove? 2 1/4" wide? or something else? You say it appears to be nailed directly into the concrete. Seems unlikely to me but... Is it face nailed or something? Tongue and groove is always nailed at 45 degrees on the tongue, the next board covers the nail. I don't think they could have done that 100 or 150 years ago with the materials and tools they had at the time. Driving nails directly into concrete is a more modern process. When they poured the concrete floor could they have set 2x6s into the wet concrete flush with the top of the concrete so they had something to nail into.

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    Man, what a whirlwind. We delivered 7000 parts last Tuesday (minus marking, for reasons that I'll probably get into later but don't really want to type out right now), and I'm no longer employed as a contractor at the company that gave us this job for related reasons (my decision). Thankfully, I have a lot of savings because I've been living like a broke college student while making contractor money, so I'll be fine until we can start paying ourselves sometime around next month.

    I made the mini mill do things it was NEVER meant to do and got those parts down to a 24 second cycle by the end of the run. Not really sure if I can post pictures because they're for subs and I don't wanna accidentally break ITAR rules that I'm not terribly familiar with. Let me tell you, 15 haaspower does not like driving a 1" countersink to full diameter in steel. Wound up G73 pecking it, which worked shockingly well to reduce spindle load and birdsnesting. Titan's 1 flute carbide countersinks impressed the hell out of me, and we were pretty consistently getting 2000-2500 holes per tool except for one or two that hit a bunch of nasty hard spots in a row. Not bad for an $80 (with discount) countersink. Kept pushing the feed and speed until I was at more than twice the mfg recommendations and STILL got >1000 holes per tool at ~525 SFM and .0045/rev. Taught the other guys how to use the advanced tool management screen to track spindle load and let me know when we needed to swap tools and inserts, which was pretty cool. Wound up paying a couple of our friends from RPI to come in and help us push the button so we could take shifts and keep everything going constantly - they were happy to make some extra cash and play with cool tools and we REALLY appreciated their help.

    Speaking of help, one of our old professors managed to pull some strings at the school and get funding for interns for us. We now have two lined up for this fall and two more in the spring, each making $5k for the semester, paid for by RPI. Not sure how that worked out, but I will GLADLY take it. One of our fall interns is Alec, our buddy who helped us with this run and is really interested in what we do. He's also getting a bunch of welding certs soon, so that's a great incentive for us to get our TIG welders up and running sooner than we would otherwise. Our other intern is Gavin, a rising junior in aerospace/mechanical engineering with a 2.low GPA just like the rest of us. He's into cars and does cool art stuff as a hobby, and from the interview last Friday, I think he's gonna fit in super well with our group.

    We have a running joke that our GPA cutoff for potential hires is a 3.0 - you can't have higher than that if you wanna work here. None of us had over a 2.5 by the time we graduated, and we've found that the high GPA kids lack the willingness to break out of their comfort zones that we want. Most of them don't really have to try very hard to do well in school, whereas the kids with sub-3.0s are trying REALLY hard to make it through their programs, and they tend to be a lot more dedicated to what they're doing. They also usually have cool outside interests and actual social skills. I don't want paper pushers or cubicle engineers, though we may take one in the future to do our paperwork and help with our ISO:9001 program that we're gonna start developing in the spring. None of us really wanna write that up and I know we can find someone who would be thrilled to make that documentation. Those people scare me a bit.

    In terms of upcoming work, we've got a high-paying repeat job for once - a one-off of those calibration jigs we've made in the past that needs to get done fast, as well as some cool performance automotive stuff for a major aftermarket brand that our friend works at. That's gonna be our first stainless stuff on the mini mill, which should be interesting. I did plenty of stainless at my contracting job, so I'm interested to see how the SMM does. They're also definitely lathe parts. Assuming we get the PO, I'm gonna try to get permission to share photos when we're done because they're relatively standard V-band flanges that they need on very short notice for BIG turbos (>100mm ) on exotic cars, so I don't think they'll have a problem with it. I'm pretty sure they care a lot more about keeping actual dimensions and design info under wraps, but I still gotta ask.

    Got a new girl in my life too who works at a bakery and is super into what we're doing, and she's been feeding us pastries and fancy bread as much as possible. What more can you ask for? It's a godsend when we're too busy to remember to eat, and I've definitely been a lot more productive in general lately.

    We got in touch with the new owners of the building and they apparently hate our old landlord almost as much as we do now. They gave us a free month of rent because the landlord never returned anyone's security deposits nor forwarded them to the new owners, and they've been super cool about the transition process. We asked for more time and they seemed really confused that Gary told us we had to be out by the end of August - we now have pretty much as long as we want and we're currently shooting for October/November to be completely out of our current space. Our new landlord is already working on the renovations, and we worked out a deal for rent with him at a rate very close to what we're currently paying. We'll be at $2.00psf/yr for the first year, $2.25 for the year after that, and $2.50 for the third year (3 year lease), and he'll have more than enough work for us to cover that, all of our other overhead, and a lot of nice new tools. He's still working on the paperwork, but it should be done in a week or two.

    That's about it for where we're at since the last time I updated the thread. Time to go disappear for a while again thanks to these rush jobs .


    Quote Originally Posted by adh2000 View Post
    Question for Roboman: I realize this may not be a priority for you but I'd like to know more about your hardwood floor. You say 1" thick, thickest I've seen here is 7/8" which is pretty common. I've got a bunch from an old knitting factory. Is your 1" tongue and groove? 2 1/4" wide? or something else? You say it appears to be nailed directly into the concrete. Seems unlikely to me but... Is it face nailed or something? Tongue and groove is always nailed at 45 degrees on the tongue, the next board covers the nail. I don't think they could have done that 100 or 150 years ago with the materials and tools they had at the time. Driving nails directly into concrete is a more modern process. When they poured the concrete floor could they have set 2x6s into the wet concrete flush with the top of the concrete so they had something to nail into.
    I'm actually not sure now that you ask, but we're going to take a couple floorboards each from a spot that's already missing some when we move out so I'll know more then I guess. One of my business partners said he thinks there's a subfloor of some kind, but I'm not sure what it's made of. 1" thick is just an estimate, but they are 3 1/2" wide. It's really hard to tell what's original and what was added later/repaired, but I'll see what I can find out.

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