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Hacking the Acurite 0077XW / 00592TX Wireless Remote Temperature Probe - Part 4 - low battery bit - 05-08-2016
This post continues the tear down and reverse engineering of the Acurite 0077XW / 00592TX Wireless Remote Temperature Probe Part 1 & Part 2 & Part 3. A small update to the decoding of the bit stream coming from the remote temperature probes....
Moving my Wordpress Site - 08-16-2015
I recently moved TechSpin to a new host, it was not a pain-free transition. This post contains a running list of things I encountered when moving my Wordpress Site. I expect to continually update this post as I finish the transition, and hopefully fi...
Hacking the Acurite 0077XW / 00592TX Wireless Remote Temperature Probe - Part 3 - capturing and decoding the data stream - 02-26-2015
This post continues the tear down and reverse engineering of the Acurite 0077XW / 00592TX Wireless Remote Temperature Probe Part 1 & Part 2. After tearing apart the wireless temperature base station and seeing the straightforward electrical conn...
Hacking the Acurite 0077XW / 00592TX Wireless Remote Temperature Probe - Part 2 - decoding the protocol - 02-25-2015
This post continues the tear down and reverse engineering of the Acurite 0077XW / 00592TX Wireless Remote Temperature Probe [Part 1] . Knowing that the signals between the logic board and wireless module are standard 3.3 volt logic level signals wit...
Hacking the Acurite 0077XW / 00592TX Wireless Remote Temperature Probe - Part 1 - hacking the hardware - 02-25-2015
Were I live, up against the foothills just east of the Rocky Mountains, the temperatures can vary wildly in a single day, 40F degree swings are common and 60F+ degree swings are not unheard of. For a while now I have been wanting to measure and recor...
Supporting a Github-Flow workflow - raw commands - 02-16-2015
I've been using Git as my main source control system for a few years now. I've finally gotten around to documenting a set of commands that support a github-flow style workflow. A google search for github flow will turn up a wealth of links pro and co...
Microchip PIC18F25K50 development board on black friday sale at pololu.com - 11-26-2014
Pololu has their P-Star 25K50 microcontroller on black friday sale for $3.95 each, limit 5. That's a heck of a price. Even the normal price of $9.75 is not bad at all. I snagged some of these last night and I'll be using them as part o...
USB on the Microchip PIC microcontrollers - Part II - Tool Chains and Development Environments - 11-26-2014
This is Part II of the USB on the Microchip PIC series of articles. In order to do anything interesting on the PIC we’ll need to install a development tool chain. Typically a tool chain consists of at least a compiler, assembler, and linker. Any...
Soccer Acrobatics - 11-17-2014
Soccer acrobatics with a twist, fun to watch... Old Man Soccer Prank Soccer Samurai in Brazil http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbu_KLZlCIU http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IN4h2QNP9Hg
USB on the Microchip PIC microcontrollers - 11-09-2014
I am working on a project that needs high speed real time data acquisition, large data storage, and a rich interface to the web. Put these requirements together and one solution is to use an embedded real time system for the data acquisition and a ge...
Vex Cortex Teardown - part 1 - 11-02-2014
The Innovation First VEX line of robotic components consists of a wide range of structural, sensing, and motion actuating elements. All of these sensing and actuating components are driven by the one and only control component, the Vex Cortex. Th...
Vegetarian Vegan Vegetable Curry Soup - 11-01-2014
One of our favorite meals is a vegetarian vegetable curry soup over rice, with or without grilled chicken. We like this curry for multiple reasons; first it is delicious, second, it lets us use up vegetables that are on the brink, and third, it freez...
MendelMax cooling fan upgrade - 03-24-2014
I have two 3D printers, both are the FDM types that squirt out plastic filament and build up an object layer by layer. My first printer is MendelMax 2.0 cartesian printer I built from a kit a couple years ago and the second is a RostockMax delta sty...
DrawbotOne - mounting the parts - 02-28-2014
Progress is being made on the hardware. The motors are mounted, the EggBot controller board is mounted, new spools are printed and installed. Here is the overall mounting scheme so far I ended up printing these small spools from thingivers...
DrawbotWilba update - 02-28-2014
I've combed through enough of Wilba's code to understand the fundamentals. I've done some cleanup and added comments and a bit of debugging functionality. I've uploaded the latest updates to github. Searching the web for drawbot stuff I came acr...
DrawbotWilba uploaded to github - 02-21-2014
I've taken Wilba6582's eggbot drawbot code and cleaned it up enough to build under Processing 2.0. It requires grabbing the latest controlP5 library and I've removed the gamepad control. I haven't tried running it against an EiBotBoard yet but th...
Drawbot software - first pass bits and pieces - 02-18-2014
I mentioned in an earlier post I had found a video on youtube of someone else using an EggBotBoard to drive a drawbot. That was pretty exciting because most of the drawbots out there (and maybe we'll find later for good reason) are based on the Ardu...
Drawbot electronics - test driving the EiBotBoard (EggBotBoard) - 02-17-2014
As mentioned in an earlier post I have decided to use the Eggbot control board (EiBotBoard) to drive my drawbot. I've gotten the electronics up and running, mostly just plug it in, screw down the stepper motor wires, and plug in the pen lift servo mo...
Drawbot update - 02-09-2014
Not a huge amount of progress on my drawbot but I've stumbled across a couple interesting ideas I want to capture as part of this build stream. I have printed a gondola and a couple spools. I printed this gondola and it looks good. I...
Updating my 3D printer firmware and Host App - 02-03-2014
I built my 3D printer from a kit a couple years ago. It is a MendelMax style and it came with a modified version of Marlin as the firmware and printrun as the host app. One of the first things I did after putting everything together was update ...
Polargraphic Plotter - printing the motor mounts - 02-02-2014
I just finished printing both motor mounts for my work-in-progress Polargraphic Plotter / Drawbot / Plotterbot. I decided on these motor mounts on Thingiverse. They fit a NEMA 17 motor and they looked simple and easy to print. Although I am a litt...
Polargraphic plotter - parts and pieces - 02-02-2014
I've decided to use an Eggbot control board, the EiBotBoard, to drive my polar plotter. Not for any particularly wonderful reason. The board costs right at $50, which is the cost of an Arduino uno R3 ($30) plus an Adafruit Motor Shield ($20). ...
Building a Polargraphic Plotter (a Drawbot) - 01-31-2014
Ever since I saw a post about a drawbot on Hackaday I've been wanting to build my own. A quick search of drawbot or plotterbot or polargraphic plotter will lead you to plenty of youtube videos and websites describing and demoing polargaphic style ...
Software for the Sparkfun LED bargraph breakout kit - 01-30-2014
One of the cool things about buying a widget from Sparkfun, or Adafruit, or Pololu is that almost invariably there is some reference software posted with the product to get you off the ground immediately. For the Sparkfun LED bargraph kit the refe...
Sparkfun LED Bargraph breakout kit - 01-28-2014
I'm in the middle of a project that would benefit from an analog style display. Something to visualize an approximate value, within a min and max range, simply and clearly. I like to browse Sparkfun's inventory when I'm looking for new or intere...
Atmel AVR based robots, Redbot, 3pi, Zumo – getting the build environment ready - 01-16-2014
Download and install a build environment The Sparkfun Redbot, Pololu 3pi, and Pololu Zumo robots are all based on the Atmel atmega328p processor. All three have a wealth of libraries and supporting software. All three support at least the two most...
why husbands cant be trusted to do anything right - 01-16-2014
why husbands cant be trusted to do anything right -- or really -- why husbands are AWESOME!! http://www.buzzfeed.com/awesomer/husbands-cant-be-trusted-to-do-anything-right
Spark plug thread inserts and getting the valves closed - 01-13-2014
Insuring that the intake and exhaust valves are closed in each cylinder before working on that cylinder requires turning the engine over by hand. I assume anyone doing major work on an in vehicle engine knows enough to disconnect the battery and the...
Competitive Robotics - introduction - 01-09-2014
I've always been interested in competitive robotics. Two (or more) robots duking it out on the field of honor. Trying to solve a problem as fast or efficiently as possible, all the while trying to avoid, out score, or destroy the competitions robot...
xkcd - photo - 01-08-2014
xkcd/photos
Nightstand Finish and Finish - 01-08-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Nightstand 6 Here's a few pics and a link to the finished project page.
Nightstand surfacing - 01-08-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Nightstand 5 Even though I clamped and cauled the top and shelf during the glue up there was still a slight offset between the panels, maybe around a 64th or so, maybe a little less. ...
Nightstand dry fit - 01-08-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Nightstand 4 After milling up the pieces and parts it was time to begin cutting to size and fitting up. The construction is all mortise and tenon and sliding panel. At this point the piece...
Nightstand progress - 01-08-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Nightstand 3 Making some progress, better be, xmas is coming soon. Got the raw lumber milled and cut to size. Here's the raw lumber. Pieces milled and cut to size. Shelf g...
Nightstand plans redraw - 01-08-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Nightstand 2 Still working on redrawing the plans and I came across an anomaly. The back and sides are solid wood panels. The side panels fit tight edge to edge. The back panels have a 3...
A nightstand for Travis - 01-08-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Nightstand 1 I'm building a beside table / nightstand for my son. I found a set of plans I liked on the net, purchased from PlansNow originally published in Workbench Magazine. E...
Small Box, Purple Heart pegs, Canary Wood - 01-08-2014
A gift for a friend. A mix of walnut, yellowheart, and purpleheart. The top is canary wood. I made the lid last. If I’d have known how good the canary wood was going to turn out I would have probably used it throughout. The end sides are pr...
Twin Sliding Lid Boxes - 01-08-2014
A couple of boxes for xmas gifts. Purple heart sides, leopardwood top, birdseye maple on one end, cherry on the other, and a piece of birch for the bottom. Everything that was sitting in the cutoffs that was about the right size. Two co...
A discussion on Spalted Maple - 01-08-2014
In reply to post Tapered Box Don K. replied: Beautiful…bet she will like this almost as much as the pendant. I real keep sake !!!! scrappy replied: Very nice box. Like the tapered sides/lid and great choice of woods. Keep it up. Topamax...
Tapered box, padauk and ambrosia maple - 01-08-2014
I made this box for my lady friends birthday. The box isn’t so much the present as a container for the present. I bought her a pendant and I wanted more than a cardboard box to give it to her in. So I whipped this out. The woods are ambr...
Letter Box - 01-08-2014
My daughter is a letter saver. She probably has every card, note, and random letter she has ever received. Heck, she probably has the actual winning Ed McMahon Sweepstakes letter crammed in there somewhere. Anyhow, she needed something to put th...
Secret Boxes - 01-07-2014
Here is the original project posted over at Lumberjocks.com Secret Boxes About this time last year a friend showed me a little wooden box she had. She knows I'm a woodworker and she said "I'll bet you can make these". I took a quic...
Knife Scales Question - 01-07-2014
Here is the original question thread posted over at Lumberjocks.com how do you glue / epoxy knife scales on ? Mine fell off coloradoclimber asked the question: I bought some fixed blade knife kits from Woodcraft to make for Christmas. The “k...
Shoe Bench - Finish and Finished - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Shoe bench 9 To finish the bench I used my favorite finish, a few coats of thinned tung oil followed by paste wax. I like an oil finish because I think it leaves the most natural feeling s...
Shoe Bench - Finish Planing - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Shoe Bench 8 Got the clamps off and now it's time to clean up the glue joints and prep the surfaces for finish. First thing to do was remove the clamps, flip the bench on it's side, and ...
Shoe Bench Assembly - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Shoe Bench 7 If the fun part was the joinery, the miserable part was the assembly. The bench has 22 sliding dovetails, two 12 inch half blind dovetails, and 8 through mortises that all h...
Shoe Bench Joints - Cutting - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Shoe Bench 6 Ok, here comes the interesting part, not the hardest part, but the most interesting part. Getting all of the joints to line up and come together snug without a lot of slop was...
Shoe Bench Flattening - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Shoe Bench 5 I looked at various woods for the bench and ended up deciding on poplar, why, because it was relatively cheap, and I could get it in wide boards. I wanted to build the top...
Shoe Bench Joints - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Shoe Bench 4 If you download and try to use the Sketchup design from the previous blog entry a couple of things changed in the final implementation. First I changed the dados to sliding do...
Shoe Bench - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Shoe Bench 3 My shoe bench is going to be the cubby style, flat on the top to sit, little cubbies all in a row to organize shoes. First things first it has to fit where I want it. I wan...
Shoe Bench Ideas - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Shoe Bench 2 So now I know I want a shoe bench, the next step is to see what I can find. I like to make things but if it turns out I can find the perfect bench a dime a dozen that drops ri...
Shoe Bench - a problem in need of a solution - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Shoe Bench 1 I live in a house with 7 people, 5 of them teenagers and 3 of the females. We have a LOT of shoes in our home. We don't wear shoes in the house so we always kick off our shoe...
Router Table Drawer Joints - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Router Table 3 Not a lot of progress since the last entry but I have decided to go with simple box drawers with lock rabbeted joints. I watched a video from Wood Magazine where they ...
Router Table Drawers - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Router Table 2 Finally decided on a drawer configuration I can live with. Overlay fronts and full extension slides. The cabinet doors will be frame and panel, I just didnt get around to...
New Router Table - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Router Table 1 I've been wanting to upgrade my router table and over time I've been accumulating the pieces. I'm building my table around the Incra LS 17 Router Fence and a Woodpecker PRL ...
Loft bed - crying uncle - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Loft Bed 3 Well my grand concepts finally gave way to practical realities. I wanted to build a bed with minimal to no mechanical fastener that would knock down to a bundle of sticks, easil...
Loft Bed - next steps - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Loft Bed 2 I put together some concept drawings to solicit some feedback from my kids. Here's one concept with a desk shelf, cork board, and cubby shelf. I had other ideas with no desk ju...
Loft Bed - concepts - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Loft Bed 1 My kids are getting bigger and they need more floor space in their rooms. We've decided loft beds might be the way to go. Get the beds up in the air, create some desk space und...
Coat Locker progress - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Coat Locker 1 The box is made out of 1/2 inch plywood throughout with 1/4 by 3/4 hardwood edging. The similar colored pieces are either identical or mirrors. All of the joinery is e...
Coat Locker - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Coat Locker 1 I need a coat locker near the front the door for the kids to throw their shoes, coats, and back packs in when they get home from school. Right now they just pile it all up ...
Spring (blade) cleaning - 01-07-2014
Here is the original blog post over at Lumberjocks.com Spring (blade) cleaning Spring is here and the itch to get back in the shop is biting. First things first though and the first of the first things is cleaning up. It's a wonder how much a...
New Radio for an Old Truck - 01-07-2014
I decided it was time to upgrade the radio in my truck. The truck had the stock CD/Cassette/Radio head unit but what I really wanted was the ability to jack in an MP3 player. It turns out it is a lot easier to install a radio these days than it was...
Insert Update - so far so good - 01-06-2014
Just returned from a 1300 mile trip through the Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming Rocky Mountains. Uphill grades for 4 hours straight, downhill for 40 miles at 6 and 7 percent. I could do 70, 75, 80 mph, uphill on 6% grades for 20+ miles without slowing ...
FTDI programmer for the Arduino Pro on the cheap(er) - 12-31-2013
The Arduino Pro comes with a bootloader installed, meaning it is plug and play ready to work with the Arduino environment. All you need is a way to hook it up to upload new firmware. The Pro is a stripped down version of the Arduino UNO. One o...
Sparkfun Arduino Pro 328 - 5V/16MHz Buzzer - 12-29-2013
I picked up an Arduino Pro from Sparkfun during their cyber monday sale. The Pro is a stripped down version of an Arduino UNO for about half to a third the price. It is missing quite a few features so if you are just starting out a standard Arduino...
Romeo or Windsor - 12-12-2013
It turns out somewhere along the way Ford changed the head design on the Triton and changed the way the spark plugs seat in the head. This affects how the insert tools cut, or don't cut, the seats for the insert. You can read the Timesert paper o...
Insert -- success -- here - 12-10-2013
It's been a while since I updated the status on putting inserts into my Ford Triton V10 aluminum engine head. Since my last post in this series I've installed inserts in all 10 cylinders, created a series of videos on the process, and driven a coupl...
Borescope images - 12-10-2013
Here are the images of the inside of the cylinders at different stages of tapping and cleaning. With the valves open and the original spark plug seats and threads: In these first two images you can see the edge of the valves. Hitting one of th...
Timesert Thread Insert Kit for Ford Triton Engines - 09-28-2013
Why the cost difference and what do you get for your money. Looking at the two kits the most obvious differences are that the 5553 comes with 5 inserts, some oil and loctite, and a few extra tools. 4412E 5553 Is a smal...
Blown Spark Plug - Now What - 09-12-2013
Ok, so I know I have a blown spark plug. I found the ignition coil and plug rolling around on top of the head, instead of in the plug well where they belong. It's pretty obvious what the problem is. The next question is, what do I do to fix it. ...
Blown Spark Plugs on the Triton Modular Engines - 09-08-2013
Searching online for Ford Triton blow spark plug issues will immediately turn up a dismaying number of links. I did a little bit of research before buying the V10 and I knew a blown plug was a risk for this engine. Actually a blown plug is a risk f...
My new (to me) Ford 2001 F250 XLT Crew Cab - 09-08-2013
We moved homes about a year ago, out of the burbs to a place with a little bit of land. Over time, living at the new house, it became apparent to me I could use a pickup truck. Between hauling construction materials to the house to build and repair...
BlinkyPov - the light dawn (or at least brightens) - 10-18-2012
I'm man enough to admit when I'm wrong, or at least only 50% right. If you've been reading my blog posts you know we bought and built a blinky pov and have since struggled to get it to program reliably. When you're a 14 year old with a 14 year o...
BlinkyPov - an issue in the programming web page - 10-15-2012
It looks like there is an issue in the BlinkyPov programming web page. The blinky pov reads data on each low to high and high to low transition of the clock. The data is set, high or low (white or black), and the clock is transitioned, low to h...
BlinkyPov - a possible solution to programming failures? - 10-13-2012
Looking at the traces from the last post I wonder if something as simple as a capacitor in parallel with R1 and R2 from SCLK and SDAT to ground wouldn't be enough to filter the LCD update noise and allow the BlinkyPov to finally program. The q...
BlinkyPov - clock and data phasing issues - 10-13-2012
I was beginning to look at the blinky pov firmware and how it interprets the SCLK and SDAT signals but got sidetracked looking at the scope traces and phasing between the clock and data signals. I scoped both the clock (yellow) and data (blue) and...
BlinkyPov - measuring SCLK and SDAT - 10-13-2012
To repeat the intro to the last post, the blinky pov uses a neat little trick to read in new words and symbols to program into the blinky pov display. Two light emitting diodes are mounted on the blinky pov and used in a fashion that causes them t...
BlinkyPov - Sensing the data - 10-13-2012
The blinky pov uses a neat little trick to program new words and symbols into the blinky pov to display. Two light emitting diodes are mounted on the blinky pov and used in a fashion that causes them to act as light receptors rather than the tradi...
BlinkyPOV Programming - time to crash and burn - 06-07-2012
Like apparently so many others we can't get our blinky_pov to program. Perusing the BlinkyPov forums shows we are far from the only ones having problems programming the blinky pov. I'm not thrilled with the technical feedback from Wayne and Lay...
BlinkyPOV Assembly - so far - so good - 06-07-2012
Wayne and Layne have put up a nice series of photos and instructions on building the BlinkyPOV, ala LadyAda over at Adafruit. Following these instructions and using a reasonable soldering iron (not a hot pointy death stick like I learned on), my 14 ...
BlinkyPOV - how cool is that - 05-17-2012
I was online the other day poking around, buying some parts for my latest project and stumbled across a persistence of vision (POV) toy / project that had a neat twist, the ability to upload and program new messages into the device non contact by poi...
About - 05-25-2011
Welcome to TechSpin, my little dust speck of geekdom in the endless swirling maelstrom of data. My name is Brad, I'm a technologist / geek / nerd / software developer / roboticist / mentor / manager / mechanic / woodworker / ditch digger / photograph...

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