Monday, May 26, 2014

5-C Collet Cloture - Part 1

Since my lathe's pathetically small spindle bore won't allow me to hold longer workpieces over 3/4" diameter, I decided to build a 5-C collet attachment.  It is a spindle attachment that goes on in place of the 3 jaw chuck to allow the use of 5-C collets to hold material, and since 5-C collet sizes go up to 1.125", this increases the work holding capability.  The fixture includes two assemblies, the spindle attachment itself (see poorly drawn blueprint), and the draw bar (see part 2).

I decided to make the collet cloture (there's something about the word cloture that just begs to be used outside of the U.S. Senate) out of two pieces welded together, a 2" and 4" diameter piece.  There wasn't much to the functional aspect of the design, just the 10ยบ taper, room for the collet and draw bar, and an anti-rotation pin. The real challenge was figuring the best chronological order to machine it while maintaining the most accuracy.
5-C collet attachment dimensions
Actual 5-C collet threading is 1.238"-20 rather than 1.25"-20 as the drawing suggests

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Bottling Day: "Burning Bear" Amber Ale

Tonight we ended up bottling "Burning Bear" Amber Ale after 9 days of dry hopping. It was only supposed to be dry hopped for 7 days, but the flavors the hops left are still pretty good. All I can say is I haven't had as much time in the last week to be doing stuff, but I'll be trying to get back on the normal routine next week.
Burning Bear Amber Ale color
Good color

Sunday, May 11, 2014

4 reasons why you shouldn't grow carrots in your garden

Carrot and Quarter
For a carrot this big, I'd need a few people to help me finish it
Don't let my words or the article title discourage you from growing carrots. The beauty of gardening is the ability to grow any plant you like. That being said, if your garden setup is anything like mine, you have very little space to plant things. I've found that carrots do not do grow too well and tend to be difficult to manage in small gardens. Here are some reasons why planting carrots in your garden is not a wise decision.

Friday, May 9, 2014

"Burning Bear" Amber Ale to Secondary

Finally got around to transferring the amber ale to secondary. The beer was done fermenting likely a week ago, but letting it sit for this long allowed for more settling. The final gravity reading was 1.008, giving an ABV of 4.9%.
Burning Bear Amber Ale
Not infected!
The beer currently tastes somewhat like caramel, but is lacking definition. After dry hopping is done, I think the flavor profile will be a lot better. 1 oz of Willamette hops were thrown into the fermenter today for dry hopping. Next week is bottling day.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Lettuce Time! -- Garden Update May 8

Lettuce harvested for consumption
Yum, breakfast!
It's been hectic and crazy. The weather has been really weird the past two weeks. Last week had temperatures exceeding 90 and this week it's dropped down to 70 (we even had a freaky sun shower the other night). I specifically bought a new sheet to shade my lettuce with since it wasn't ready for the heat yet. The cloth worked and I was able to harvest at least 4 heads of lettuce total from the garden since then. All of the salad bowl variety (as pictured to the left).

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Naturally Scented Coffee Soap

I had the opportunity to visit the coffee lab on my campus and roast some coffee beans to take home. Roasting the beans is pretty cool and might turn into a future project later. But anyway, aside from making some delicious light roast, I figured it might be a good idea to turn some of the beans into fresh smelling soap. I've heard rumors that caffeine can be absorbed through the skin, so this might be a way to get a daily dose in the morning. Interestingly enough, I did not need to use isopropyl alcohol to remove the bubbles when making this.
Coffee Beans
The beans
Also because neither me or anyone in my apartment complex owns a coffee grinder, I had to use a Slap Chop to grind the beans by hand. It worked surprisingly well.

See more scented soaps
Slap Chop Coffee
Slap Chop your troubles away!