The MakerBarn recently added the capability to cast non-ferrous metals. One of the simpler ways to cast metal is to use sand to make the mold. At the Barn we have Petrobond, a special sand mix for casting. This training video shows the making of a branding iron with “The MakerBarn” on it. First a pattern was cut from Corian using the CNC router. This pattern was used to make the sand mold. Scrap aluminum is then melted and poured into the mold.
Overhead projectors are not used in schools anymore. So you can usually get them for just a few bucks at the online school auctions. If the projector works, it can be a good way to enlarge objects and trace them on pieces of plywood. But they’re even more fun to disassemble and scavenge parts for future projects. My grandson and I took two projectors apart this afternoon (we have more). One of the best finds is the fresnel lens located just below the glass platen. These lenses are about 12″ square and have a focal length of just a few inches. Just what you need for solar energy projects. Be careful, it’s easy to start fires with these. Other parts such as power cords, power switches, limit switches, super bright lamp holders, fans, metal pieces, and optics can be found. The projection head almost always contains a high quality first-surface mirror. … Read More