3D Printing Back on Track – Verticals Community Learning Center Drone Cinematography – Remote Sensing and Other News
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3D Printing Back on Track
I purchased a printer to print models and parts I need. I used the printer, I made a few good prints, and I applied some accounting formulas to the available data to determine a pricing structure.
I completed a rethread when the filament broke off due to winding tension – the PLA was entering the feedline with a couple of twists off the spool. The line eventually sheared off at the mechanism atop the stepper motor. I pulled the butt end of the feed approaching the hot end and pushed the tubing back with a pair of pliers and clamped down on the PLA before I snipped the end of the filament off at a right angle. When I released the pliers, the PLA receded into the tubing. I reattached the new filament to the feeder, reattached the collar, and then realigned the plate. After a quick test, and bed alignment, I resumed printing.
The belts are fine, the motors are fine, the gantry is solid, the feed is smooth, the temps stable, and the quality is decent. This is a raw print covered with permanent ink in Figure 1. I am going to sell models of this size for $21.
I printed the good luck cat, determined its dimensions, noted the print time, and from that bit of data, I was able to create a rough break-even analysis to determine a pricing strategy to pay off the printer based on my BOM. In the best of all possible worlds, this printer would be running five days a week for 9 hours for two months, and at the end of the 60th day, I would have enough money to buy a second printer. In any case, there would be profits. I did the math for a five-year run. Visit the service page to learn about a groovy update.
Verticals Community Learning Center
How It’s Going: Drone Cinematography Sessions started Thursday 04/28/2022
The three days I participate as a volunteer instructor are as follows: April 28th, May 5th and May 12th, 2022. Those are Thursdays, all day events. The first class went better than expected. Students developed flying and movie production skills. They flew indoor and outdoor drones, hobby to pro, and they formed groups to brainstorm some movie ideas. I have some unofficial footage of the event. A hot take report for the drone class is going to the director today. This was my first time teaching a drone cinematography class, and it was awesome!
The students astounded me. I will have more footage of the event later. I tried filming with GoPro on my head indoors, but the footage is unusable. The Tellos video feed is super choppy. I practiced flying automated loiters in a high school art class the day before the event. I did a classroom rehearsal onsite, and I brought drones. In Figure 2, you can see me waving a recreational pilot down to an LZ in the parking lot next to Verticals after he flew back from the river.
- We could use timers on pilots for more rotations.
- We need more pilots!
- We need a list of WiFi handles for the Tellos drones, so students know which drone they link to controls. We had four drones going in a 25′ x 20′-foot room. These could be given to the students with their Worksheet. Solved.
- Some students flew effortlessly, and some needed practice. Solved.
- One group decided on a music video parody, and another decided to do a story that focuses on community. Solved.
- A few more batteries would help for students who want to focus more on flying than filming, which is fine. We are developing future pilots here. I found another battery, and I will bring an extra drone battery charger. Solved.
- Two drones needed new prop guards. Installed. Solved.
- Drone feed was choppy in playback. It is possible that the Wi-Fi signal needs to be amplified in certain places of the building. This needs a solution.
- We need more pizza. Solved.
- Anticipating confusion over editing apps during the next class. I offered students choices, and I urged them to consider using free apps they already knew how to use. I am creating a worksheet to distribute to students to aid them with filming and editing. Solved.
Verticals is a local community development center that gives kids a choice of after-school programs that enrich young lives and provide a sense of pride in community. A link to the group is provided. Some school districts, like Monessen and Brownsville, pony up transportation. It makes a huge difference to the kids, and I am grateful to meet the van drivers. They like the class, too!
I signed on as a drone coach to use drones to give students some positive experiences in the community. I teach students, but I meet parents and staff, too. It actually improves my relationship with other students. As a nerd, I count myself among students, and teaching is incidental.
- How to fly recreational drones with basic and advanced maneuvers.
- How to plan flights for capturing media.
- Get the soon-to-be mandatory – and EASILY OBTAINED – TRUST flyer certificate from the FAA, online for free.
- How to film, edit, and share a video you make with drone footage and apps.
- How to fly a drone with Scratch Python block code.
- Provide information about industrial drone applications and jobs.
This module was planned to integrate within an ecosystem of courses in technology applications, physical well-being, and business development. These are hands-on tangible experiences that have lifelong value.
Local Resource in Action
Community groups will have some authority to determine the nature of its flight operations in local airspace come this fall 2022. As long as a responsible pilot is connected to the group, the area can develop flight operations that best suits the needs of the group. A FRIA is basically an area supported by a Part 107 drone pilot or more qualified pilots. The FAA determines the location and quality of FRIAs.
I can see a drone academy being a part of an 21st-century community, so I am studying what we need to do to qualify to become a FRIA. I have a break from school in a month, and I like to read legislation. One of the problems is that it’s not 1986 anymore. These rules were written before the Internet absolutely debased the concept of community. It used to involve, at the very least, physical mail for remote correspondence, on land lines, even. Brick and mortar have given way to ones and zeros. The architecture is in an electric field instead of a dirt lot. “Model aviation” was a concept that existed before FPV, before streaming, before smart phones, before laptops. Ridiculous changes continue to occur and need to occur more quickly because of climate change.
- (1) is described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986;
- (2) is exempt from tax under section 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986;
- (3) the mission of which is demonstrably the furtherance of model aviation;
- (4) provides a comprehensive set of safety guidelines for all aspects of model aviation addressing the assembly and operation of model aircraft and that emphasize safe aeromodelling operations within the national airspace system and the protection and safety of individuals and property on the ground, and may provide a comprehensive set of safety rules and programming for the operation of unmanned aircraft that have the advanced flight capabilities enabling active, sustained, and controlled navigation of the aircraft beyond visual line of sight of the operator;
- (5) provides programming and support for any local charter organizations, affiliates, or clubs; and
- (6) provides assistance and support in the development and operation of locally designated model aircraft flying sites.
Topics in the Verticals Youth Empowerment program include artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, drones, digital fabrication, coding, media production, design studio, blockchain, and crypto. Courses in the topics are presented alongside fitness and wellness resources. The center director is retired NFL pro-football player William James, who stepped off the gridiron and into a new life arena. William has an amazing base of supporters, collaborators, volunteers, and stakeholders who help make this happen. Very grateful.
Verticals Youth Empowerment Center is designed to stimulate young minds, give parents an inclusive environment in which to socialize, and to offer youth a sense of pride in themselves and their community. There are other facilities in the works.
Local air traffic livestream under construction
Nothing happening this week, except for commercial space flight to the ISS, Artemis fouls, CERN powered up, JWST nearly aligned, specter of nuclear war, and a continued complete disruption of local fried okra stocks due to the supply chain issue. Sigh, I’m from Mississippi. Rope buffer rope, seriously, break your neck.