Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Building a radio from a Haynes kit

We had a bunch of fun this morning building a radio from a Haynes Retro Radio kit. It was very doable with two adults and a six year old. 

We did this as a learning experience for our six year old and it worked well. He enjoyed pushing wires into the breadboard, and was in charge of wire stripping. 

We only needed this one page of the instruction manual, so that was quick and easy to follow:

All the parts were included and made a really interesting setup.

We met a whole bunch of interesting components. Here are some photos of them. 

The kit comes with a box that looks like a radio, and the electronic parts are put inside to complete the setup.

This is the box, open and ready to go. 

and this is the radio all wired up and put inside the box. 

We got a good signal and were able to listen to BBC Radio Cambridgeshire. 

This was a great kit for a bit of summer holiday fun. :-) It also helped my son to understand why it is that there are no pictures on internet radio stations. He's previously been a bit perplexed about why internet radio does not have pictures just like the iplayer and Youtube videos that we watch. Making a radio from scratch really helped clarify that. 

If the Haynes designers are listening - we would really like to buy more kits like this. :-) 
Thanks for designing this one. It was great. :-)

Saturday, 13 August 2016

x10 magnification with a teleconverter

This follows on from Test shot of computer component.

I have now added a canon x2 teleconverter to my macro setup to try to take x10 magnification shots. Here is the new setup below and a test image.

This is the camera with the cream coloured teleconverter in between the camera and the MP-E lens. 

This is the teleconverter, 

Here is my test subject stuck in a blob of blue tac on a paint tin, ready to be photographed. 

Here is a proper photo of the pin, for scale. 

This is one of the 1000 focus stacking "slices" that I took as the microscope block gradually moved the camera towards the subject. 

The slices were taken on 100 ISO at 1/60th second exposure, with two flashes (undiffused, one a couple of inches away on the left and one a foot way on the right.)

This is the final image, focus stacked using Helicon Focus software. 

I am pleased with this result. I don't think many people are working with the combination of the MP-E and the 2x teleconverter, so it's great to see that it works. I'm going to do a few more tests and also try to germinate some fern spores, if I can find some.