Skippy's Blog

I came across this video via the K9 Facebook group, it was published a while ago, when I get chance I will sit down and listen to it.

2021/02/21 14:49 · skippy · 1 Comment

Having printed the Nose Gun and Ears files from the STLs attached to this page:

Unforchantly the ears as designed don't fit together, and the gun holder has no flat faces on which it prints nicely, I am going to ask Ian Hughes nicely if he can let me have a copy of his K9 as .f3s files so I can try and get a design of the Nose gun that will print nicer on an FDM printer, and design some ears that will print better either on an FDM or a Photo Polymer printer

Mat Prentis in 2019 wrote the following two documents that I should be able to use as source material to design my own.:

I am also going to have a look at re-working the nose gun to see if I can make a better solution that uses less plastic.

2021/03/07 17:00 · 0 Comments

After having a go at assembling the ears printed in the last post, I decided to have a go at making something a little easier to assemble. Mat Prentis assembled this guide that gave me the dimensions below:

Heading into Fusion360 I generated the following model:

Bob Sliced it and sent it to his Photopolymer 3D printer for me:

I managed to get these photos of the first one I got printed:

However, the second one failed:

Failed Ear :(

If you want to make use of the files they are Ear.f3d and Ear.stl.

2021/01/01 16:21 · skippy · 0 Comments

To avoid this joke in future, I have started printing my K9's head by printing the two parts of the nose first:

2021/03/07 17:00 · 0 Comments

This LEGO-compatible Servo Mount was designed BearGrylls and until LEGO go on a DMCA takedown, it should be available on Thingiverse, however after that happens it will still be available for download via this link.

I printed two of these to use with my LEGO supper car, the 8880 has four-wheel steering, so it makes sense to allow for independent control when I get round to making it self driving.

It turns out that they are not compatible with Towerpro MG996R Servos, but luckily I had two generic servos that are compatible.

I have a large number of Towerpro MG996R Servos, so chances are that if I need to use them I will have to re-mix this and make my own mounting system.

2020/12/29 17:36 · skippy · 19 Comments

I have been trying to design a K9 for 3D printing for a while, even using Fusion 360 getting the body designed has been a stumbling block, On Facebook, there is a k-9 builders community and a link to an OneDrive account with 200 x 200 sliced STLs compiled by Ian Hughes.

I have started with the front left corner, the corners are about 300 g of filament, according to the readme it has a requirement for about 7 rolls of natural PLA.

2020/09/20 00:00 · skippy · 202 Comments

Every so often I update my CV, I am not a huge fan of Microsoft Word or other Word Processors.

Texmaker is a free open source LaTeX editor that works cross-platform, on my Mac it makes generating my CV simpler.

My CV is now stored in my GitHub account which makes it easy to grab the latest version and roll back changes where I have made errors.

As a fix to my last name apparently not working well on computers, I have added a specific style file, that other people can use if they have the same issue.

So with my nice new PCB rule business card, Professional site, and Linked In; people finding me to do small amounts of freelance work should be easier.

2020/03/26 00:00 · skippy · 0 Comments

I have got my PCB rule business card PCBs back from JLCPCB, so now to check everything works and build one up

2020/03/18 00:00 · skippy · 212 Comments
The Mystery of Mc vs. Mac

This page will attempt to solve the mystery of Mc versus Mac, the alphabetization of Mc, as well as the mystery of the raised c often used in Mc.

Historically, Mac was a surname prefix for Irish or Scottish sons. Many people believe that Mc is Irish and Mac is Scottish, but Mc is merely an abbreviation of Mac, and both forms are in use in both places. Mac was often abbreviated as M’ or M’c (with the apostrophe to indicate it was an abbreviation). After the invention of the printing press, it was common to typeset abbreviations with raised letters, so M’c became Mʿ (Mc). In handwritten form, the c was often raised, and sometimes had one or two lines or two dots underneath to indicate it as raised (and therefore as an abbreviation). Since Mc is an abbreviation of Mac, Mc names are often seen alphabetized (as they properly should be) as though they are spelled Mac.

Personally, I think it is wrong to write Mc names with a lower c, as there is nothing to indicate that this is actually an abbreviated form of the original name. This raises a problem in that there are many people with Mc names that write their names with a raised c, yet the computer-age has forced people to typeset their names with a lower c.

– Megan.L. M’Clure.

My last name is McGaw, which is supposed to be written with the ‘c’ at a higher level, According to people online; the ‘upper-c’ is a type of diacritical mark, often in older handwritten or in manually sign written locations there was drawn a line under the superscript c called a macron (macron below).

There are a few forum posts online that relate to this topic1)2) because of course there is…

Reddit’s AnticoIt and a few others have pointed out this image, which shows it isn’t a scaled-down letter, but rather a separate letterform:

The most common ‘easy’ way to achieve something that works on a computer is to write McGaw, However when typed into forms often turns into Mcgaw as apparently computer programmers are amazing with names. Megan’s page continues:

In HTML Mc can be typeset with3):

or Mʿ can be typeset with HTML character code 703:


In LaTeX Mʿ (Mc) can be typeset perfectly with:


A while ago I found the following online that I can use in LaTeX:

      \[email protected]\fontsize{\[email protected]}{0}\selectfont

This means that I can use:

  Philip \Mc Gaw

to make my last name render closer to correct.

3) This doesn’t work with browsers like Lynx, and even with graphical browsers the c can appear too high or too low with some fonts.
2020/01/06 00:00 · skippy · 202 Comments

One of the problems I have when designing PCBs, or working in CAD with a view to 3D printing it is easy to lose sight of how big things on the screen are in real life.

A lot of the time when you move away from working with through-hole components towards SMD your components move away from a nice convenient 2.54 mm pitch, and onto obscure sizings.

This is just a list of two-terminal passives such as Resistors, Capacitors and Inductors (Tantalum and Aluminium capacitors have a different sizing as well). As you can see from the image the packages are a little small and hard to envisage.

Bob managed to get a Digi-Key ruler, I have been after getting one like this, however, I have not been able to find one I like (NVIDIA also have a nice one):

Online there are a number of different designs showcasing people’s work:

Kicad is shipped with a range of passive footprints, at the sizes of 0603/1608 (0.6 mm × 0.3 mm), 0805/2012 (2.0 mm × 1.25 mm), 1206/3216 (3.2 mm × 1.6 mm), and 2512/6432 (6.3 mm × 3.2 mm) there are two versions, the normal ones, and ones that are 'suitable' for hand soldering.

And this is before we move onto smaller or more complicated components.

I am working on making my own PCBs that I can hand out and use as a reference for designing PCBs. on the other side, I plan on putting a small circuit for people to have a go at soldering.

If KiCAD doesn’t have the parts or footprints you need, then you can make your own going from the data-sheet to 3D model, Component, and schematic.

2019/12/05 00:00 · skippy · 0 Comments

A while ago I picked up these buttons for my Dr Who’s K-9 robot from AliExpress, Hobby Components have similar available online.

The ones I purchased are SPDT with a 24 V DC incandescent bulb in them, regardless of the button colour they are all illuminated with a white incandescent bulb because I want to use them with an Arduino microcontroller, I am swapping the bulb for LEDs in the same colour as the switch front:

I am now ready to print the Back of K9 and I have found out that Bob is going to get his CNC machine working over Christmas 😀

I have asked a number of times if FizzPOP’s CNC router is working, however despite it having a web page the status has not been updated in over a year!

2018/12/17 18:20 · 0 Comments

Jason managed to strip out K-9’s voice from the video in the previous K9 post, so now I have a selection of words and phrases as John Leeson said them.

Files in namespace wiki:projects:k9:audio
016.mp316.4 KB2020/12/29 13:32
007.mp313.9 KB2020/12/29 13:32
curiosity-killed-the-cat.wav906 KB2020/12/29 13:31
006.mp316.7 KB2020/12/29 13:32
computing_sound.wav52.3 KB2020/12/29 13:29
i_am_k9.wav22.8 KB2020/12/29 13:29
it_is_my_designation_mistress.wav32.4 KB2020/12/29 13:29
most_satisfactory.wav22.3 KB2020/12/29 13:29
i-spoke-mistress.wav228 KB2018/02/20 17:41
farewell.wav15.3 KB2020/12/29 13:29
an-efficient-machine.wav218 KB2020/12/29 13:31
negative.wav10.9 KB2020/12/29 13:29
computing_sound2.wav63.8 KB2020/12/29 13:29
please-be-specific.wav186 KB2020/12/29 13:31
018.mp342 KB2020/12/29 13:32
good_bye.wav15.7 KB2020/12/29 13:29
give_sarah_jane_smith_my_fondest_love_-_tell_her_i_will_remember_her_always.wav95 KB2020/12/29 13:29
i_kdo_not_know_when_or_where_i_am_-_commencing_orientation_protocols.wav111 KB2020/12/29 13:29
019.mp312.8 KB2020/12/29 13:32
reject.wav154 KB2020/12/29 13:31
022.mp322.9 KB2020/12/29 13:32
ill_be_good.wav11.7 KB2020/12/29 13:29
quicker-and-better.wav174 KB2020/12/29 13:31
affirmative.wav128 KB2018/02/20 17:41
still_able_to_assist_doctor_master.wav56.9 KB2020/12/29 13:29
most_sa.mp317.8 KB2020/12/29 13:32
better.wav104 KB2018/02/20 17:41
ready_master.wav19.3 KB2020/12/29 13:29
insufficent_data.wav44.6 KB2020/12/29 13:29
great-danger.wav144 KB2018/02/20 17:41
master2.wav7.4 KB2020/12/29 13:29
023.mp330.2 KB2020/12/29 13:32
naturally.wav160 KB2018/02/20 17:41
data-print-out.wav236 KB2018/02/20 17:41
hello_i_am_k9.mp341.3 KB2020/12/29 13:32
mistress2.wav17.9 KB2020/12/29 13:29
alien_threat_detected.wav83.6 KB2020/12/29 13:29
master.wav9.8 KB2020/12/29 13:29
computing-bleeps.wav214 KB2020/12/29 13:31
i_am_still_fully_functional.wav40.7 KB2020/12/29 13:29
afirmative_mistress.wav23.3 KB2020/12/29 13:29
please_adjust_your_coordinates.wav28.1 KB2020/12/29 13:29
015.mp335.9 KB2020/12/29 13:32
my-precise-meaning.wav448 KB2020/12/29 13:31
mistress.wav106 KB2018/02/20 17:41
accessing_k9_unit_memory_bank.wav62 KB2020/12/29 13:29
my_tail_is_not_between_my_legs.wav58 KB2020/12/29 13:29
my_name_is_k9.wav38 KB2020/12/29 13:29
no-available-data.wav430 KB2020/12/29 13:31
025.mp322.8 KB2020/12/29 13:32
illogical.wav21.8 KB2020/12/29 13:29
020.mp328.3 KB2020/12/29 13:32
congrats.wav280 KB2020/12/29 13:31
i_am_k9_mark_3.wav39.3 KB2020/12/29 13:29
it_does_not_matter.wav16.6 KB2020/12/29 13:29
026.mp318.8 KB2020/12/29 13:32
most_satisfactory2.wav28.2 KB2020/12/29 13:29
affirmative4.wav12.8 KB2020/12/29 13:29
014.mp319.2 KB2020/12/29 13:32
i-am-able-to-assist.wav184 KB2020/12/29 13:31
024.mp314.1 KB2020/12/29 13:32
010.mp341.3 KB2020/12/29 13:32
affirmative3.wav17.2 KB2020/12/29 13:29
primitive.wav836 KB2020/12/29 13:31
netagive2.wav11.7 KB2020/12/29 13:29
hello_master.wav19.7 KB2020/12/29 13:29
horticulture.wav300 KB2020/12/29 13:31
hello_master2.wav22.8 KB2020/12/29 13:29
an_efficent_machine.wav28.4 KB2020/12/29 13:29
danger_doctor_danger.wav32.7 KB2020/12/29 13:29
008.mp320.7 KB2020/12/29 13:32
i_must_check_my_records.wav28.4 KB2020/12/29 13:29
013.mp335.3 KB2020/12/29 13:32
laser.wav49 KB2020/12/29 13:29
i-am-k9-mk-3.wav280 KB2020/12/29 13:31
009.mp327.4 KB2020/12/29 13:32
011.mp344.7 KB2020/12/29 13:32
the_doctors_faithful_friend.wav40.1 KB2020/12/29 13:29
from-the-doctor.wav148 KB2018/02/20 17:41
affirmative-1.wav102 KB2018/02/20 17:41
data-witchcraft.wav374 KB2020/12/29 13:31
i-spoke.wav124 KB2020/12/29 13:31
affirmative2.wav15.8 KB2020/12/29 13:29
affirmative5.wav9.1 KB2020/12/29 13:29
laser2.wav26.5 KB2020/12/29 13:29
i_think_weve_met_before.wav29.2 KB2020/12/29 13:29
insufficent_data_to_forumulate_a_reply.wav5.7 KB2020/12/29 13:29
my-fondest-love.wav172 KB2020/12/29 13:31
insufficient-data.wav186 KB2020/12/29 13:31
021.mp310.8 KB2020/12/29 13:32
012.mp331.4 KB2020/12/29 13:32
merry-xmas.wav1.1 MB2020/12/29 13:31
no-available-data-1.wav186 KB2020/12/29 13:31
unitl_tomorrow_master.wav26.2 KB2020/12/29 13:29
017.mp333.1 KB2020/12/29 13:32
it-is-my-designation.wav204 KB2018/02/20 17:41
i_must_return_to_gallefry.wav44.8 KB2020/12/29 13:29
affirmative-x-2.wav222 KB2020/12/29 13:31
mistress3.wav8.9 KB2020/12/29 13:29
i-rendered-aggressor.wav490 KB2020/12/29 13:31
available-data-considerable.wav300 KB2020/12/29 13:31
operating_in_data_acquisition_mode.wav47.7 KB2020/12/29 13:29
2014/09/30 17:10 · skippy · 0 Comments

For my K-9 project, I will need to have some voices, this is the set of sections I have stripped out of the K-9 film, I am going to ask Jason from work to strip out just the audio files for me.

This is not the full video and is less than 10% of the entire thing, K-9 doesn't “talk” very much. the copyright is held with the BBC.

2014/09/28 17:14 · skippy · 24 Comments

K-9 and Company Titles. For a very long time, I have been planning on making an RC K-9 from the BBCs Doctor Who, recently I acquired a copy of “K9 and Company: A Girl's Best Friend”

K-9 and Company was a proposed television spin-off of the original programme run of Doctor Who (1963–1989). It was to feature former series regulars Sarah Jane Smith, an investigative journalist played by Elisabeth Sladen, and K-9, a robotic dog. Both characters had been companions of the Fourth Doctor, but they had not appeared together before. A single episode, “A Girl's Best Friend”, was produced as a pilot for a proposed programme, but was not taken up. “A Girl's Best Friend” was broadcast by BBC1 as a Christmas special on 28 December 1981.

Copies of the K-9 and Company pilot episode can be found on certain websites.

I have currently got the video sat in iMovie on my mac, waiting for me to start trying to export the audio of the Mark III K-9 (voiced by John Leeson). I think it would be an awesome thing to have at Comic Cons :D

I have also started on working out the designs for panels, and parts (taking stills from the film). David Readman has made some k9 ears and put them up on Thingiverse (Joseph Larson has made a mini K-9 on Thingiverse as well).

I will continue to keep this site up to date with progress.

2014/09/13 17:18 · skippy · 0 Comments
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