Category Archives: Engineering

Circuit Mechanix – December 2016

A re-post of December’s Circuit Mechanix:

 

Welcome to the fourth and last issue of Circuit Mechanix for 2016. In this month’s issue the theme of reliability in electronics is looked at and how this can be addressed at each stage of the PCB design and manufacturing process This issue also has a look at how OrCAD’s Sigrity can assist […]

via Circuit Mechanix December 2016 — circuitmechanix

Remembering – Duxford IWM

Duxford Imperial War Museum is one of those places that one cannot help but find interesting. It’s able to capture the imagination of people of all ages. I’ve been gathering together and selecting pictures for this post for a long time.

It’s huge (and it is damn huge) main hangar houses some of the most iconic aircraft that’s come from these shores and many others. Including the original Concorde prototype, you’re able to get on and see just how cramped the Concorde was and get that feel for what supersonic flight was actually like.

The Harrier – the first aircraft (and perhaps still the only) to be able to take off and land vertically on a singe engine.

The huge wings of the Vulcan with it’s huge open bomb bay that is likely to have held God only knows what kind of nuclear weapon.

Through to the Mosquito – built from Balsa Wood and powered with twin Merlin engines. As a fighter bomber it was unmatched as nothing at the time could catch it!

 


 

Then there’s the American Museum where all kinds of aircraft old and new can be found in a building cut into the hill.

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They’ve wedged in a strato cruiser (literally wedged, everything else is fitted in around it).

The amazing Blackbird can be seen, it’s engine on full display. Until I came here I never thought I would see this plane!

With a sprinkling of Phantoms and WWII fighters and bombers hung from the roof there’s so much to see. This place isn’t as clean as it seems, there’s still the smell of aviation fuel and these planes still leak oil! The smell makes this other dimension that you never normally get.


 

In an inconspicuous corner of Duxford, there’s the restoration hanger. I’m sure this is the hanger that was blown to smithereen’s in the Battle of Britain movie as it happens! In here are a collection of old favourites. The Memphis Belle is here, Spitfires and all kinds of aircraft I don’t recognise!


 

Duxford is a place where they preserve aircraft. Many of these machines saw battle at dark times in human history. These machines are preserved so the stories behind them and the acts of bravery of many people can be remembered. Because maybe, hope against hope we can learn the mistakes of our history.

Never forget!

Simon 🙂

Taking things apart to fix them

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These kinds of things have been my friend for many years. For longer than I can remember I’ve been taking things apart. I’ve not necessarily fixed them, but it’s certainly given me clues to how things go together and work.

So when some of the keys on the phone don’t work, I have two choices:

  1. Buy a new phone
  2. Take it apart and see if I can fix it.

So, what do I do? Take it apart of course duh! A quick inspection reveals some stick stuff behind the key pads. Don’t ask how it got there, I haven’t got a clue!

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A bit of cotton and nail varnish remover – aka Acetone, put the damn thing back together and hey presto it works!

This is the result of a mis spent youth taking things apart, zero social skills but an ability and will to solve problems and fix things!

Simon 🙂

The Spitfire

I’ve always love airplanes, as a child my father was showing me what the different WWII aircraft were and the story or history behind the designs. My favourite was of course the beautiful Spitfire.

While most aircraft have a military purpose, I’ve always loved the engineering and the wonder that went into. The Spitfire wasn’t originally a military fighter, it was built to race. When WWII broke out it was made into a fighter plane and won the hearts and minds of the people at the time, becoming an inspiration during the Battle of Britain. In some ways it was too fast for the aircraft at the time, pilots often flew part the targets before they had a chance to engage.

The pilots that flew these planes were very young, when they started they had only a matter of hours training before being left to pilot them in combat. Many died flying them and many died coming against the Spitfire. The Spitfire is still a symbol, a symbol of triumph against adversity

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These picture were taken at Duxford Imperial War Museum a few years ago. Forgetting it’s role, it’s still a beautiful aircraft.

Simon 🙂