Monday, March 31, 2014

                I have a real problem focusing on any one project when left to my own devices. I spent the weekend stripping light fixtures from the old RV and fabricating a 12v drop light,
 playing with very crude fabrications for aluminium-air batteries and trying to find uses for the minuscule, but,  very long term, power that I seem to be able to get out of current designs.

 Coyote skull is stewing away in a light potassium  hydroxide solution and the flesh is slowly turning into "Lutecoyote", A culinary treat that I'm sure even "Pickmans model" would find "Ripe"

 But the bones are cleaning up nicely and I'm confident that I'll be able to turn it into a high voltage spot welder and eventual ATOMIC HYDROGEN TORCH. as the simplest method of achieving the required voltages appears to be "read up on how to make a spot welder out of a microwave, and do exactly what they tell you NOT to do with the transformer" IE use it without any modification whatsoever, 2 kv right out of the box! (Don't do this at home kids!) The management at Aftermath Technologies is a certified nutjob with the survival potential of a small balloon animal lovingly nuzzling a claymore mine. 

 Other than that, some editing of a discussion of potential salvage opportunities in local landfills/transfer stations, particularly in regards to electric vehicles for inclusion in a future post,  Some clean up for a future (semi) pro gig involving solar equipment in the third world, and I still need to come up with vanes for the wind turbine   

Friday, March 28, 2014

 UPDATE: IT WORKS: see below.

   Weather fluctuations have caused some old orthopaedic issues to flare up and after I took meds to deal with them I wasn't much of a documentarian,  or for that matter all that literate. So yesterday requires a bit of reconstruction.

  It appears that I was inspired by Kent Barnes' commenting on how he used to joke about recharging the batteries in his drill by spinning the drill head and a repurposed 12 volt drill by Jake of Spaz (haven't heard from him recently, hope all is well)

The drill worked fine but the battery pack had died, so Jake took the battery pack and removed the cells and wired the casing so that it would plug into my twelve volt, off grid, system.

 It worked and quite well, but I kept breaking it so now it's a permanent fixture of the drill and any failures inherent in the current design are mine.

 So I attempted to take this:

and turn it into a generator head, I'd discovered that in my previous flailings that the drill motors speed was really high and that to get useful power out of them I'd need either gearing, or some sort of dc-dc conversion.

  The object here is to use the existing gearing and if possible without harming the drill (total pigs breakfast, see below)

 This is a VERY old makita single speed reversible. No PWM, the trigger is just a switch. I figured that I could rewire a battery pack, plug it in, pull the trigger, spin the nob and power! right? Wrong! that is an assumption for people with manual dexterity!  Not semi- conscious fiddlers.

 So far so good, right? after this the battery came apart in a big pile of corroded cadmium toxicity and the inside of the casing was filled with sludge, So the task became one of containment, rather than conversion

So instead, with trepidation,  I opened the casing of the drill. Note this has not  worked out well in the past. In fact the term "SPROING! and a rain of small, essential and apparently, evaporative parts have followed every previous attempt. This time I didn't suck.
  so at this point I wanted to solder wires to the leads from the motor and run them out a vent hole in the side.

 So I lit up the aftermath soldering system. (Ah yeah, "system")

 A old 100 watt radio shack soldering iron plugged into a salvaged 300 watt inverter connected to an old 84w/h battery wired into a 15 watt solar panel

 Don't expect to solder too long or too often and it works for a given measure of "work" If you accept burned thumbs and poor solder joints as proof, I can provide proof.

what it looks like as of 11:30 3.28.14 if I hook a meter to the end of the repurposed extension cord and spin the head I get about 1 volt at finger speeds. If I apply current the drill spins. I seem to be stuck in the "low" setting and the clutch is locked. Plus I have a small pile of parts, but to quote Dave Lister "there's always a few bits and bobs left over when you try a bit of  do it yourself"

     Vast improvement over just motor, was getting millivolts at finger speeds. I expect to get much better than finger speeds with turbine (I expect 4-6 volts). I think I can claim a usable (if unusual) generated voltage.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

       Going to snow tonight. Want to heat the lab and work on windmill, not curl up next to fireplace and watch tv. Quite possibly mad. Problem: have something called "Reynauds syndrome" and my fingers get all blue and wrinkly, So, heat is required.

 Built this:

 An oil burning stove that'll burn wax,fat,veggie oil among nastier things.

 Actually just a bunch of parts that I reconfigure as I need.

Uses charcoal as wick in a metal screen bowl, cookie tin lid as fuel holder,shallow plate as overflow and splatter catch, clay pot is sitting on 3 aluminium ingots from earlier casting experiments. Burns for about 7-10 (edit: actually measured it and  4-6 hours on soybean oil is realistic)hours on cup of oil, I think it is the functional equivalent of a 300-500 watt heater.

other configs:



 I know it seems very crude, but the ability to generate consistent amounts of heat (if not variable) for a period of time opens up all sorts of things.                                                                                                                                                   

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

     Fell back and regrouped on the vertical wind turbine and decided that I need to come up with  a simple way to ad vane assemblies to whatever I end up using as a generator head. So I dug through the junk and pulled the remains of a lamp that looks like this :

 It unscrews into pieces (not shown, I got excited) And I added the drillbit holders (is there a better term?) did some work with a cheap Faux-Dremel and came up with this:

 Shown here: two high quality mounted bearings, (I dissected another drill) two versatile connectors capable of connecting to a wide variety of potential generator/gear assemblies, A shaft that can be varied in length from roughly 1.5 to 4.5 feet.

 Now I'm working on vane assemblies. Great wind today. Need to find a chuck key. Studying dc-dc converters. 

   Most of the ick on the coyote skull has turned to goo. (not sure if pics a good idea) going to go from wood ash solution to well water simmer. Then rinse, brush off bits, dry, repair, wire as spot welder, etc. getting more and more creatively stupid until I achieve an atomic hydrogen torch, or something explodes. (win win!)


 Radio aftermath: a broken, very cheap, fm transmitter of the type that you would normally plug into a cigarette lighter. Tuned to the bottom of the band (approx 107) It saves me from having to listen to rural AM radio and can act as a one way radio public address system through the use of the microphone jack. Pairs very nicely with a solar powered radio, leaving me with an effective range of 100+ yards while working out and about. Has been playing Gwar for the last 24 hours or will be done around 10 am pst in memory of Dave Brockie (1963-2014). Former front man and latex clad manifestation of Oderus Urungus, who died march 23rd.

 Normally it plays my ripped cd's and audiobooks and can be deployed at both the Wendel and remote facility. Total garbage, Was cheap and disposable when new.  I expect to be using it for at least 5 years after it was "broken"

Monday, March 24, 2014

   today's victim, an older Makita 9.6 volt reversible, variable speed drill.
                          Description from left to right up to down.                                  (note lots of screws in tub above and springs that flew all over the room)
   Dead battery pack, determined by plugging into known working charger overnight. no charge whatsoever.

Plastic shell: dont know what I'll use this for yet.
plastic ring: ditto.
motor:  # rs-750SH attached to what I believe is a  8-12 volt PWM  controller with trigger throttle and battery connector.
Gears: I dunno, Count teeth?
Bit holder: also drive shaft and bearing.

 The motors ID# actually lead to a class of motors as seen here  I believe that this is the second one on the chart the " " 8028 model.

 This is not good from a windmill standpoint as I think that I'm going to need to  reach speeds of over 15000-18000 rpm to generate 12 volts. At least according to my ignorant understanding of the matter and the specs on that chart. But at least my wattage will be pretty good! I guess I'll have to do something serious in gearing or dc-dc conversion to get anything useful out of this motor as a windmill. On the other hand, the PWM/trigger combo leads to vehicle ideas.

 Any ideas?

                          Oderus Urungus is silent! Long live his memory!

   In commemoration of the infinite humanitarian (with recipes!) and public benefit inherent in purging meat monkeys from the universe, radio aftermath will be broadcasting Gwar to the stars all day march 24th-25th 2014

 A fallen hero, we will send his voice back to the stars. All hail Dave Brockie!
The only human slime with the balls to ever channel the majesty that is Oderus. We will not see his glory again.Rest in peace.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

           Facilities and projects :

       Aftermath technologies downtown facility:
 State of the art equipment: 
 ample power : 

 Remote secondary facilities:

Mobile response unit:
 And ample research material:


 The shed, Somewhere in Wendel

  built in the late 1800's no power no water. Both nearby.  (See "Power" below.)

  The lab,

   The table surface is the roll out table from my hearse. With a history of over 300 cadaver carries, I believe it is well suited to the task of acting as the "slab" for this project. It reposes on six firewood rounds.

 Lab equipment/past projects: (all equipment found/derived from salvage unless specified otherwise)

   wood lye production equipment,hydrogen gas production,aluminium/air batteries, oil burner/heater/boiler, 300 watt inverter (see power)  FM transmitter, radio, 5 watt light, small battery charger, swamp cooler,composting toilet. Probably more but I should go on. 


      Currently fifty nominal watts regulated, on a 144 watt/hr battery but panel position is far from optimal and battery is well past it's functional lifespan. Can bring this to 400+ watts and 1200watt/hr storage with available resources 

 Have 300 watt inverter online, can bring this up to 1500 watts. 

 Remote Facilities:


Mobile response unit:

   A 76 Tioga. Runs. Mostly works, mostly. Does not float. This is important.

 Research material. 

  Some of my own but mostly stuff I've found in various piles/holes around Wendel and on the side of the road. I think the other denizens of Wendel  assume that I eat it. Not running out. 

 So here we have a (very) basic off grid re use lab with not so basic lunatic operator.

  Next post: tear down of a makita 9.6 volt drill and part identification with an eye to making a VAWT (vertical axis wind turbine) from the innards.

ok prelim announcement. Aftermath technologies has undergone darwinian stresses, survived, and will be returning to active intertubal presence in the very near future. I/We will be pulling material out of the waste stream, documenting the material on the web, doing teardowns of the material and then repairing, improving, or remaking products with (hopefully) crowd sourced ideas and expertise. Our first focus will be on dead power tools. With any luck I'll have the first vict... uhm test subject on the slab (my work bench is the corpse table from my hearse) today and will have pics and be open for comments on the old blog at Please, come on down to the lab and see what's on the slab. Our first "subjects" will be a bunch of old makita 9.6 volt drills. I'm thinking Vertical axis wind turbines, bicycle power assist, drill presses, etc and am hoping that I hear at least a couple of more ideas.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Big changes coming soon! digital/vestigial limbs removed New directions and projects! New materials! and what might laughingly be called facilities!

 Major Update soon!

 Question to occupy the probably fictional readers: what would you do with a selection of broken battery powered tools and broken appliances? And what do you think would be the most probable failure modes?  Think outside the box as limits will present themselves