16959Re: Question about Factor e Farm
- Apr 9, 2013The solder making machine is just like a bullet core making machine used for jacketed bullets. It's a heavy wall sleeve with a plunger and a bolt on die. The die is just a thick piece of metal with a hole and a curved/tapered entry. The whole thing is thrown on a press and the solder is extruded. I do have to cast slugs to feed it, and I've used known material wheel weights and of course recovered solder from electronics parts harvesting.
The flux is just pine tree resin and alcohol, heated, stirred, cooled in a freezer and filtered. The cooling separates the fats? from the mix.
I'm also working on a water based flux from lemons.
As for my solar project, I decided to "sell out with benefits". I have a corporate contract now for commercial development, but I did make sure that I reserved both the rights and time to make an open source version. Oddly they were o.k. with that as they feel many won't want to work with castings, weld, or solder and will want to buy parts from the commercial version. I was originally developing the open source version first but got stuck at the needing money for prototype materials and a much more powerful computer to do sim work. Currently I'm about 90% complete on the working scale model, and unless someone at the business level is lying I should be making full size models this summer or fall. I'm aiming for less than a dollar(us) a watt including the electronics, inverter, chargers, and batteries. It's also possible to build with entirely scrounged parts if ones needs can be limited to 12v dc.
As for the questions about factor e being off topic I don't really know. All forms of development, especially when the developers are giving away their time or making an open source version will need help at some point. Whether the developer is even able to build show models is sometimes a problem in and of itself. And sometimes you have to make a super expensive version of something in order to show that it works to the satisfaction of others. I expect that the multimachine will follow the example of e-Farm in that someone will do a TED talk or other public forum where interested parties (and donators/investors) will grow. Then it seems likely that lots of building will take place and the design will be refined and changed.
One of the things that my own funding will allow me to do is to take some of Tyler's awesome drawings and run them through my simulation computer and then I can get involved again!
A significant amount of people with money who want to help want to make materials and machinery here and either send it as a kit to those who need it or set up an operation where it's needed. I've also noticed that quite a few also have little or no mechanical knowledge and refer to any such problems as "we'll just get the people"!
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