Sunday, December 15, 2013

scuba flatbed scanner

I've been busy working on the SCUBA flatbed scanner project for the last week. It has to be finished this week, so I'm trying like mad to get it completed. I wanted to lighten it up a bit, so I put the side plates of the box on the Tormach and wrote a little pocketing operation so I could remove some of the excess material. I used the pockets to measure and space out the holes that would be used to mount the aluminum bottom plate and the acrylic top plate. I drilled and threaded these holes and then matched them to the bottom plate so I could secure the bottom of the box. This bottom plate will also act as a jig when I weld all of the side plates together to form the outside perimeter of the box. The corners will be welded and then dressed so that the box has filleted corners. Once this is complete I'll layout the holes for the top acrylic sheet which the scanner will "see" or scan through. We are counting on some distortion since the acrylic is so thick, but that's part of the "art" (we're fine with it and actually hoping it will add to the images of the coral reef). I also milled the divider plate to allow for cables to be routed through and to be secured. This divider will help to lessen the distance that the acrylic has to span and I'm hoping this will lessen the amount of deflection at three atmospheres of pressure. The divider will also keep the electronics compartments separate in case we take on some water. Better to loose one set of components versus the entire scanner. Of course all of this is one giant experiment and I'm hoping it works. Still a lot of details to wrap up. Wish me luck... I'm going to need it.

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