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Category Archives: miscellaneous

  • Hubsan X4 H107C

    Really a great little quadcopter. Much fun to be had with it, I’m almost ready to take it outside.

  • 3D Printed Snowglobe

    Here’s a cool idea for a present, model someone’s house, 3D print it and stick it in a snow globe. Bonus points if the person is really attached to their house and live in a place that gets good snow.

    How hard can this be right? Well it’s actually pretty hard but I feel like with all the gotchas researched and out of the way, that I would be able to do another one easily.

    Here’s the process in a nutshell:

    1. Sketchup for modeling
    2. Shapeways for 3D printing
    3. Painting
    4. Sticking in snow globe

    Here’s the actual process with all the gotchas:

    1. Sketchup for modeling

    Sketchup is perfect for the job and can export models to DAE natively and STL using this plugin, both formats can be imported by Shapeways. But it can be very hard to model a solid with no leaks. And leaks will really fuck things up. Also if you have a leaky model, fixing it it out of the question requiring starting from scratch. This other plugin is quite good at finding leaks but horrible a pointing them out, I only found it later in the process but I found it useful to check the model with it every time I made a change. The same way you compile after every added line of code right? There are other products out there to find the leaks and point them out, all of them horrible and requiring various exports imports to see results. Ultimately you know you have a leak when your model looks like shit in the finder preview on your mac (yes *.daes are previewable) or in Shapeways’ excellent viewer.

    Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 21.54.02

    2. Shapeways for 3D printing

    Absolutely nothing bad to say there, Shapeways is amazing and light years ahead of the competition in terms of service & useability. I used their “strong & flexible plastic” material as it’s cheap and I had done extended submersion tests with it but it is quite limited in the small details it can render. The minimum wall size with it is 0.7 millimeters and anything around this size doesn’t look super sharp. They just came up with a line of “Detail Acrylic” materials which promise much better resolution but I was too far in the process and hadn’t tested the material in water. To compound the issue the empty snowglobes I found are on the small side and so a lot of details that make a house special to someone got lost.

    Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 16.50.27


    3. Painting

    This is where small didn’t help, it was tedious but not impossible. Definitely being able to 3D print the color would have been nice but the only material that allows this at the moment (full color sandstone) doesn’t lend itself well to this project. You also want to varnish it for good measure. As far as gluing the house and subsequently the globe on its wooden base I’ve used E6000 which was recommended by the manufacturer and many custom snowglobe making blogs.


    4. Sticking in snowglobe

    This is the trickiest operation where everything can go wrong. First of all it’s good to play with how to insert the rubber gasket before you glue a house to it. Putting in in the freezer for 5 minutes and adding water to its edges will help slide it in.

    Now about 80% of the snowflakes that were provided floated and wanted to do nothing else than float. A good idea is to put the flakes in another glass of water, scoop the shitty floating ones out and then add the rest to the globe upside down right before you add the house. Quite frankly I wish I had even filtered the snowflakes, they came with particles that gray out the water a bit. Some recommend adding glycerin to slow the falling of the flakes, I felt like they were falling at an acceptable rate with only water.

    Another issue is one of bacteria growth. Per recommendations I’ve disinfected everything and used distilled water and added 1 drop of rubbing alcohol to the water. In the submersion tests I’ve done (not using distilled water or alcohol) the water would get noticeably funky after ~3 months. I don’t know how the new method holds over time.

    Pull a bit of the gasket away to fill with distilled water, add some E6000 glue around the joint between the rubber and the glass and you’re set.


    Hard truth #1: A simple house isn’t a great subject to put in a snow globe, it kind of depends on it shape but it will occupy only the bottom part of the globe. I’m still happy about the result.

    Hard truth #2: Snow globe distort the view of what is inside them. Not a huge deal, this just caught me off guard.


    The finished product


  • Vermont Winter

    Crazy drivingIMG_1351

    Power outagesIMG_1364

    No water? No problem with all the snowIMG_1373

    Out of this worldIMG_1383

    Pretty decent breakfast viewIMG_1387

    Not all trees can take it  IMG_1319

    All this untainted snow to play inIMG_1221

    Do you want to build a snowmaaaaaaan?IMG_1174

    Yup, same oneIMG_1303

    Not just majestic; Maple majesticIMG_1306

  • Can’t catch a fucking break from all the buying.


    Marketing: lining your pockets while contributing nothing to the world. A weird mix of hedonism and nihilism.

  • Setting stuff on fire

    bringing humans together since 1,600,000 B.C.


  • Chicken coop moved to our land

    First the snow, then the mud, then we’re building a house. The chicken coop needed to be moved before all this. It’s weird to see it there.IMG_0763It took only 1:30 hours to move it 6 miles, flatbed trailers and good friends are awesome.

  • Cemetery


    Ever since I saw it on the survey map, I’ve been curious to find this cemetery. It’s not on our land but right next to it.cemetery survey


    It’s tricky to find as it doesn’t stand out much from the rest of the forest. Lots of graves from the early 1800s, cool stuff!