Maker Portfolio

Maker Project #1: The Drill Bit Storage Cabinet

This is my Maker portfolio for the Sonoma State University Maker Certificate program.

Drill Bit RackMaker Project #1

This drill bit cabinet is my solution to a need for storing drill bits handily accessible to a new location for a drill press in our wood shop . I used a series of programs to design and fabricate this cabinet.

  • 3D design was made on Sketchup.
  • A flat vector set got sent to V-carve pro to generate the code for the ShopBot to cut out the slots.
  • The ShopBot (a computer numerically controlled router) cut out the slots in the plywood sides.
  • Although I had roughly located the drill bits in the Sketchup Drawing, I used pencil and paper to calculate and layout the exact spacing so the bits could be removed and replaced without touching.
  • Adobe Illustrator was the software to position the lettering and holes precisely.
  • Illustrator went to Retina engrave to mark off the holes and the engraved lettering.
  • Holes were drilled on the drill press.
  • Assembly, gluing and hanging was done with hand tools except:
  • I needed to use a router Table to gouge out a part for an electrical box that was in the way.

Take a look through this slide show to see the entire process.

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Maker Project #2

Soon-to-be Solar Car

I gave my high school engineering students the project of designing and building solar-powered cars. They will be competing to see whose goes the fastest or steepest. So far, I have given them  real quick lessons on circuits; Adobe Illustrator to design their wooden parts to be cut on the laser cutter; soldering small wires; using a multimeter; and not much else.

They asked if I would be entering the competition. I decided I would, and also thought that since they were making stuff, I at least should have a go at it. I took it a step beyond what I thought they could accomplish by designing gears on Autodesk Inventor. Also, since I will be teaching them that program next semester I wanted to keep in practice.

The gear generator in Inventor took some getting used-to and I found that there is a lot that I don’t know about gears. For the hole spacing for the axle, gear shaft and motor shaft I exported a .dxf file to Inkscape to prepare for the laser cutting of the sides of the gear box. The first time I tried it, the gears jammed. I found I needed to give them a couple of pixels more spacing. The second time it worked fine.

I assembled some small solar cells to sit on top of the car. But today there was no sun, so there was not enough power to really test out the solar function.

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