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About ELItheICEman

  • Birthday 06/23/1988

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    Jacksonville FL
  • Interests
    Lego Mindstorms, DACTA, Technic and Aquazone. Listening to and playing music


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  1. I will answer both of these questions with one answer. We tried to shoot a quick video of the model but the touch sensor on the front of the model wasn't respond well to hitting the tire. I have a short video of failed attempts and much laughter, driving back and forth against the tire only to have the arm close just above the tire. The pictures were also taken very hastily, my brother was filling in as photographer with only a few minutes before he had to leave. My usual method involves the camera on my tablet and disappointing quality. That is not to say it's a bad model, I was very impressed with it. I literally avoided "spoiler" videos online to see one in action in person. The RC element only enhances the play-ability. I haven't touched this model in a while due to lack of time. I plan on swapping the touch sensor (maybe the 2x4 yellow one from the DACTA line?), or at least playing with the threshold to get it right. Also, anyone have any ideas on how to make an RCX mimic the original code pilot and make the engine noises? if you don't know what I am talking about check out this link for an explanation
  2. A while back I was Pouring over Blakbird's Technicopdia (again), I was enamored by the old Code Pilot Truck from 1997. I never realized the complexity of the model from just drooling over Lego Shop-At-Home catalogs. I decided then and there that I would build it. Initially I debated on buying the code pilot and associated bar code pad, but never made good on this. I ordered the 20L Flex Cables, and surprisingly few parts (Ok I cheated on a couple of pieces), and I had my code pilot dump truck (complete with 2 motors!). I used an RCX to control the dump / arm motor, and used the same control scheme as the original model. Either of the two touch sensors on the same port runs the motor for about 11 seconds. So why stop there? I decided to do a quick RC addon to the model. I added a Power Functions IR Receiver to control the motor for the driven axle, and added another motor for steering. A few converter cables where necessary to blend the old and new elements. The IR Receiver is powered by two "ganged" ports on the RCX. In order to power an IR receiver using the standard converter cable you must use the Power Functions Battery Pack (with no batteries) to get power through to the correct wires. With little space and a battery pack full of corrosion I decided to use just the top plug and a 2 wire jumper. Of course, it didn't happen...Without Pics
  3. ELItheICEman

    Lego Podcasts

    I looked up LegoLee329 and all I could find was video. In the mean time I seem to have answered my on question. It seems iTunes (Shudders) still has LAML Radio back to episode 10! Still looking for the first 9 out of curiosity, I love to watch these kind of projects grow from humble beginnings. Hopefully someone will find some of this info useful, Feel free to contact me if you need any archived podcasts from yesteryear, They aren't easy to find!
  4. ELItheICEman

    Lego Podcasts

    I've been searching all over for ANY Lego podcasts on the internet. The reason I am attracted to podcasts is that I can put them on my phone and listen to them while I am driving (which is quite a lot). Even podcasts from several years ago still hold my interest with interviews and trivia I may have missed out on. So far I have found LAML Radio (one of my favorites), Beyond the Brick (formally known as "A look at Lego"), and a few others that were very short lived. After several lineup changes LAML radio stopped recording podcasts in mid 2012. I am still looking for the first 63 episodes of LAML if anyone happens to have them. Episodes 64 through 112 are still available on their website. Beyond the Brick is also very entertaining, but they eventually moved to a video format which doesn't really suit my needs. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated, I have a lot of driving time to occupy :)
  5. In your case I would just dab a cotton swab with vinegar on the small areas then flip it over to dry it off after a few seconds. I have found boards covered with corrosion (or corrosion in hard to reach areas), I usually soak the entire board in vinegar, lightly scrub with a toothbrush and then rinse with water and let it dry out for a while. I don't think this will have any effect on the LCD freaking out though, did you ever have any problems with the LCD before disassembling the unit? If you did then it could possibly be something else causing the issue. I had an RCX that would not communicate with the IR tower, I tried using swapping the IR LED's and the IR Sensor from another unit and it did not fix the problem. I never tried going any further from there. I have several working units so I try not to spend too much time on one unit, they are fairly easy to obtain in the US and I wouldn't resell any units that had major repairs (including battery corrosion). I'm not sure what you mean about upgrading an RCX from another, do you mean swapping the board from another RCX?
  6. yea that doesn't look bad at all, you should see some of the ones I've gotten over the past year. In my previous post I meant a replacement RCX I don't know of anyone selling replacement boards..... yet. If I ever fix a board with the same symptoms as yours I will share the info. I checked Bricklink and I don't see any RCX's available in Norway. I know shipping overseas is very expensive, maybe a neighboring country? Do you have any means of obtaining a replacement RCX at a reasonable price? Also feel free to share what you are planning to build, I kind of want to know now :)
  7. I have used an adapter before with no issues. As long as the program is given the correct COM port it should work. There were no drivers released for 64 Bit windows so this is an issue on newer computers. Philo has a link to the newest drivers, his site is a great resource for mindstorms info! http://www.philohome...sdk25/sdk25.htm Also the SDK 2.5 on the same link has the latest RCX Firmware
  8. yea, I suppose an electrical short could of killed it, so sad. Is there any corrosion on the board itself? If you have noticed anything out of the ordinary you can post a picture. I do a lot of component level repairs with various circuit boards at work, but haven't had much success with fixing RCX boards. I noticed you are in Norway, would a replacement be hard to come by there?
  9. did you use vinegar? This is important because you need to neutralize the base with an acid to make sure it doesn't come back. Does the RCX start to update at all? You should see a steadily increasing number on the display as the firmware is uploading, If there is a problem it will start over at the last successful increment of 20. You can make sure the tower is working with a digital camera (such as a phone) just start the download and point the camera at the tower you should see purple light from the IR LED's. You can also point the camera at the black IR sheild of the RCX to see if it is talking back. What Tower are you using (USB or Serial)? Also keep in mind ambient light can really make things more difficult, avoid sunlight and any devices that use IR communication (power functions remotes, tv remotes etc.). The distance between them also effects the signal.
  10. The RCX will always "forget" their firmware if power is removed for even a few seconds. The display should only show the program # (1-5) and the little man (he won't do any running without any programs uploaded). I've had a couple of RCX's over the past few years that I couldn't get working (I probably have about 20 total). How did you clean the unit? I completely disassemble them and soak the circuit board and battery contacts in white distilled vinegar (this is assuming the batteries were alkaline, they leak the green and white "Fuzz", Other battery types may leak acid in which case baking soda is used). Also BrickxCC is a great tool for using mindstorms Pbricks. You can program ANYTHING, The blue scout units (which Lego never provided a way to program), cybermaster and spybotics just to name a few. You can upload firmware, remote control your unit and run all kinds of diagnostics. Programs are written in NQC (or other text based languages), Which is a lot of fun but has a little but of a learning curve (there are tons of good books and sites with tutorials). Nevertheless the program should come in handy even if you never use it to program anything. http://bricxcc.sourceforge.net/
  11. ELItheICEman


    I remember stumbling on your site years ago, I read all there was at the time in my downtime at work. I didn't notice any updates since and really didn't expect any (Lego fan websites and podcasts in particular seem to stop updates abruptly and often without explanation). It seems I have some reading to do! Thank you so much for your contribution to the technic community! Also I noticed Philo posting in this thread, I reference your website constantly, mostly for the motor characteristics page so I don't overload my poor RCX's outputs :p And yes I'll say it again, THANK YOU!
  12. ELItheICEman

    GBC General Discussion

    This.... I would like to see I'm stuck using marbles for the moment, I can't seem to find any official lego balls for less than ~2$ each, am I missing some secret supplier or is this an investment every GBC builder makes?
  13. Nice Screen name ;). Here is a link to some information, and the program I am using to control the unit live (Great diagnostic tool). http://lgauge.com/ Scroll down and download LEGOInterfaceBexe.zip. You must use the official lego cable or a Null Modem cable with a gender adapter (I had to make my own). If you want to program the Interface B I would recommend finding a copy of RoboLab (Just sold my copy but it comes up on ebay from time to time). I plan on making some videos with tips and tricks for the classic Lego 9V system, Information is out there but not in video form. Good Luck! If you have any questions feel free to PM me
  14. ELItheICEman

    LEGO WeDO with Linux and Mindstorms EV3

    Wow, This is great stuff. I am probably a LONG way away from using one, the EV3's are way out of my price range (I've repaired several RCX's and a few scouts to control my projects). I recently saw a broken WeDo hub for sale on bricklink and considered buying it. Assuming I could repair the problem I wondered what I could use it for...
  15. Well, I just made my last edit to my post on this project. I uploaded one last video and a few pictures on brickshelf of the deconstruction and sorting. It was a fun project, but a little too ambitious for my current situation (Inventory, space, time etc.). Mods feel free to move this topic to the technic forum seeing as how it leans more to that theme. Stay tuned for some aquazone MOC's in the future ;)