MadInventor

Environmental Impact of our hobby.

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1 hour ago, Ann3x said:

If Shapeways can get prices down to a sensible level - totally agree, atm it is not really affordable for anything other than custom parts. Also, your substrates need to come from somewhere - right? At some point shipping is going to happen, minimising it is the key.

I totally get you. The technology just isn't there yet to have a machine running without the need for a specialized crew to maintain it. At least not on this scale or quality. The ultimate vision of course would be to have a printing hub with pick-up desk in every major city that's capable of printing at the industrial quality. I don't think we're that far away from it yet.

For me it's just very easy since I work there. No shipping needed :D

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18 hours ago, Ann3x said:

If Shapeways can get prices down to a sensible level - totally agree, atm it is not really affordable for anything other than custom parts. Also, your substrates need to come from somewhere - right? At some point shipping is going to happen, minimising it is the key.

Repairing stuff gets "unusual " as it usually cheaper to replace the whole thing.

Funny fact out of the last few days ,   i got this 56020 with a mfu what got waterboarded by the wife..  ( don't ask )

Now, its a SMD board , so out of my range of repairs and diagnose  ( im old school ;p ) , It is above my abilities to do it myself.

So, i was looking for a company ( they use to have those tv / audio repair shops ) to take a peek at it.  ( i have a idea its a easy fix , and suspect what the issue is )

I spend a long time, just finding -a shop- who still repairs at component level .   

These days, they replace the board or the screen.. or scrap it straight away  .       Shame..     i would happy pay 100,- euro to repair a board costing new 260,- euro.

 

So much stuff you can just repair easy .. what does not need replacement ( and , new off the factory )

But then,  im from the generation who repairs stuff / fixes / builds stuff when they need to..  Seems these days its the norm to replace entire units.

** feeling old ** ...  and not even 40 yet .. :) :)

 

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2 hours ago, Stefan(2) said:

Repairing stuff gets "unusual " as it usually cheaper to replace the whole thing.

So much stuff you can just repair easy .. what does not need replacement ( and , new off the factory )

But then,  im from the generation who repairs stuff / fixes / builds stuff when they need to..  Seems these days its the norm to replace entire units.

** feeling old ** ...  and not even 40 yet .. :) :)

 

So, while the other half was cooking lunch on the weekend, the knob on the cooker 'fell apart in her hand'. Cheap piece of moulded plastic 20 years old suffering from heat stress, so I said, 'just leave it with me'. Made this from a piece of scrap metal:

SAM_1347.jpg

Only problem now is, she likes it better than the stock items and wants 2 more to replace the other knobs.

I think I've just 'metal blinged' the cooker …….

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2 hours ago, MadInventor said:

I think I've just 'metal blinged' the cooker …….

For the next ones anodise them blue and charge her a fortune for them.

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4 hours ago, MadInventor said:

So, while the other half was cooking lunch on the weekend, the knob on the cooker 'fell apart in her hand'. Cheap piece of moulded plastic 20 years old suffering from heat stress, so I said, 'just leave it with me'. Made this from a piece of scrap metal:

 

Funny, I did the same thing this week. For our new house we needed an oven. Found a second hand one, but when going to pick it up the seller noticed it was missing a brass washer holding the glass in the door. We got a discount on the oven so it was an absolute bargain. Took me less than 5 minutes to make a new brass piece for it. Everyone else my age (28) would probably scrap it and buy a brand new oven...

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7 hours ago, Stefan(2) said:

So, i was looking for a company ( they use to have those tv / audio repair shops ) to take a peek at it.  ( i have a idea its a easy fix , and suspect what the issue is )

I spend a long time, just finding -a shop- who still repairs at component level .   

These days, they replace the board or the screen.. or scrap it straight away  . 

The problem here is that circuit boards used to be soldered by hand or by cumbersome machines.  It wasn't so hard to desolder a chip or transistor and replace it with a new one if there was a fault.  As robot assembly lines got better, so the boards got smaller and smaller.  I'm not sure about a tank MFU but a PC motherboard of 20 years ago might have had 10 or more layers of track, all assembled by intricate machines.

You end up with a much smaller board, so less board medium is used and less wire trace between the components - less material cost.  Also smaller overall product packaging, so less material overall.  Also less transport cost in shipping it to the end user.  All of these things are of benefit to the environment.

The downside is that you can't replace parts by hand, and the machines that do the assembly are designed just for assembly, not strip-down and repair.  So the trade-off of smaller boards is that they're non-repairable, so over the life of the product more parts will end up scrapped.  You'd have to do a fairly complex analysis to be sure which is better for the environment in the long run, as it depends on so many factors.

The best compromise, IMO, is for complex products to have multiple boards that plug together.  If one board fails you don't scrap the entire product, you just replace that one board.  A lot of hardware is made like that now.  Even my Turnigy transmitters have multiple boards inside instead of just one.  Products where compact size is important (e.g. cellphones) just have one board.

4 hours ago, MadInventor said:

So, while the other half was cooking lunch on the weekend, the knob on the cooker 'fell apart in her hand'. Cheap piece of moulded plastic 20 years old suffering from heat stress

One of the plastic knobs broke on our gas oven when it was just over 12 month old.  A few weeks later another broke, and another.  They split around the shank where it slips over the shaft.  I temporarily fixed them with two-part epoxy and zip ties to reinforce the shank, but it interfered with the holes and the knobs would get stuck (which is a bit of a safety issue on a gas hob).  Eventually I bit the bullet and replaced them with new from the same manufacturer, intending to reinforce them with wire and epoxy before I fitted them, but was pleased to discover the new ones already had a metal reinforcing ring around them - I guess the manufacturer had had a lot of complaints and updated the design!

Incidentally we only bought that oven to replace and ancient one that had stopped working because the flame failure sensor developed a fault.  The oven would be burning away quite nicely for 30 mins or so and suddenly the flame would go out.  If I'd put in a roast turkey to cook slowly for a few hours we'd have a ruined dinner when it came out raw.  The flame failure sensor shouldn't be a complex part to replace but no gas certified engineer was prepared to touch it for safety reasons.

While I understand their point entirely, it meant a perfectly good gas oven was scrapped.

On the plus side, I expect a very large percentage of a gas oven is recyclable.

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True,  sad story is, once up a time , i actually was repairing crt monitors for my work ! And was even considered by others,  good at it.

( real long story.. boring.. but.. basically, without any electronic education .. i was , in a large company, litterly, solder-repairing and repairing monitors )

In those times you just "rolled into it" and well.. somebody figured that .. ( his words ) , i had a sense for the job so .. i got it    ( weard .. but ... ) 

Its not hard once you get your head around it and understand what the parts do , and .. should do.. and if not,  fix it.

Once smd really hit the market.. i litterly could just not keep up ( and.. company closing down anyway so... )   i went back to being a cook .    ( no.. no joke )

 

But, my luck is that the MFU board in my case, is a single layer ( 2 sided however, but minimal parts. ) , and my guess ( slightly educated ) , is that a proper

tech can diagnose and fix the issue .      But,  today did manage to find a company that want to have a go at it.  Worth the 30 euro's to try it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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On 5/15/2019 at 2:17 AM, Juggular said:

Hip replacement is about $16,000 in UK.

I've not had a hip replacement....yet, but as far as I'm aware they are free on the NHS,  and in Scotland all the medication is free (and so is the parking, just to wind the neighbouring country up....💣, but we pay more tax so 🤷‍♂️)

12 hours ago, MadInventor said:

so I said, 'just leave it with me'. Made this from a piece of scrap metal

This is what I mean about our hobby, the type of people who gravitate towards it are generally, hands on, kind of people, who don't let things go to waste! (Although you are more hands on than most, as your name suggests @MadInventor 😂

 

15 hours ago, Stefan(2) said:

Repairing stuff gets "unusual " as it usually cheaper to replace the whole thing.

As a manufacturer, you don't want people to repair, you want people to replace. I know someone in the car industry, who had to redesign a part on a heater matrix, as it was too well made and would outlive the car, so was redesigned to be considerably cheaper/poorer quality, (it was a while ago) but I think the life span was 6yrs at time, as people who bought a new car, bought one every 3-4 yrs, then the main dealers got them and warrantied them for a year or 2 on extended. Ideally, you'd want the car to fall apart, like a comedy clown car, all at the same time. Unfortunately the likes of Saab and Volvo made cars that lasted...

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That replacement knob makes me think of a guitar amp that I had a while back. The reverb knob was broken off right at the face (cheap plastic-stemmed potentiometer instead of a real metal one). My fix: a 3x15mm self-tapping screw and a 19 tooth Tamiya alloy pinion gear (see, the ARE good for something), and a dab of red paint for the pointer. Worked like a charm... and somebody out there now has a Fender Princeton amp with one "custom" knob.

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9 hours ago, markbt73 said:

My fix: a 3x15mm self-tapping screw and a 19 tooth Tamiya alloy pinion gear (see, the ARE good for something), and a dab of red paint for the pointer.

Now that's great, I do little fixes like that too.  A few years ago when I was redecorating my studio, I re-painted the huge pine chest of drawers that I'd had since I was very young into pure white with a black top.  It was going to be storage for my clothes with a diorama display on top.  But the wooden knobs didn't look right, so I used touring car wheels for handles.  They look awesome.

I could probably have rigged up some old wheels for the cooker knobs too, or made some out of what I had around, but my finish would never be up to mass-produced factory standards (especially not with the sort of free time I have these days) and it wouldn't pass the standards of the wife :p 

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On 5/3/2019 at 10:57 PM, MadInventor said:

It's really driven from the fact that I recently bought a NIB Globe Liner kit, and was a bit dismayed about the amount of clear plastic bags that ended up in bin after the kit was assembled, 

I can see this being the same, maybe not as many as a Globe Liner, but looking at around 10 bags per bag! 

 

2019-05-20_03-32-12

 

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Recently been building an MST RMX2.0S, it comes in a much smaller box than any 1:10 Tamiya I've built (OK, so it doesn't have a body or wheels to package) but there are literally many clear plastic bags to dispose of.

It's a mass-produced factory packing method endemic to all boxed goods of this type, not just Tamiya and not just RC cars.

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True ,  however..

Say.. they would -toss- all small parts in one bag .. ( more cheap for the producer also , no packing line needed anymore )

Meaning ( especially first time builders ) , going to spend a great deal of time and effort  , hopefully sorting out the correct little screw with the correct part..

People would be not happy  , buying a puzzle , instead of a rc car. 

 

They could consider using a hard ( plastic ) box for parts , could be reused as a parts-storage , and hard plastic is way more easy to recycle..

( however, way more expensive also )  And bigger... and more heavy .. for shipping around.

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7 hours ago, Stefan(2) said:

True ,  however..

Say.. they would -toss- all small parts in one bag .. ( more cheap for the producer also , no packing line needed anymore )

Meaning ( especially first time builders ) , going to spend a great deal of time and effort  , hopefully sorting out the correct little screw with the correct part..

People would be not happy  , buying a puzzle , instead of a rc car. 

 

They could consider using a hard ( plastic ) box for parts , could be reused as a parts-storage , and hard plastic is way more easy to recycle..

( however, way more expensive also )  And bigger... and more heavy .. for shipping around.

Everybody knows real engineers never read the instructions till the magic smoke comes out :). Sorting out the screws is part of the fun. Besides, Tamiya more or less standardise on a few easily distinguishable sizes anyway.

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Confirming the manual should only be consulted when :

 

It does not work

It does not fit

Strange sounds come out

And indeed, it started to smoke and now it does not work

 

 

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