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Answering questions from the comments on the recent Q&A videos while showcasing the glamorous world of prop-making.
A link to the original prototype prop test video:-
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8hWQbQJMf5s
If you enjoy these videos you can help support the channel with a dollar for coffee, cookies and random gadgets for disassembly at:-
http://www.bigclive.com/coffee.htm
This also keeps the channel independent of YouTube's advertising algorithms allowing it to be a bit more dangerous and naughty.
#ElectronicsCreators

It's time for a questions and answers, video answering questions that were asked in the comments of a recent question and answers video and while i'm doing i'm going to be demonstrating just how boring it is in real life. Uh working on the electronics behind props for television and film because i'm going to be making a loom up for a theater presentation and it's going to involve lots of repetitive work. So, let's start with these wires that are solid, core wires, that i'll be putting crimps onto for those of you wondering if you can actually put crimps onto solid cores. I looked at this through a magnifying glass.

I even took a picture of it, but it's very grainy and when you actually use this crimping tool and it curls the wings of these crimps down into the wire with the solid core wire actually indents right into it, actually cleaves into the wire. So it does seem to provide good, solid connection. That's what i'm going to be doing first question: jc lowe asks, could a neon tube glow when near an ozone generator. Well, i suppose it depends on the ozone generators.

Some some of the really old ones in the past were literally pairs of neon tubes connected to high voltage 50 or 60 hertz transformer just in the vicinity of each other. This is a standard, uh draper, nows6, wire, stripping tool. I've got here just a generic fixed size stripping tool, but in reality uh most ozone generators don't create a super high. Well, a high voltage radiated field, it's usually enclosed across the plate or the points that generate the ozone.

So it's doubtful that you could make a neon tube glow with an ozone generator. You could always try it. The high voltage supply inside could power a neon tube, though i'm just stripping all these wires see. This is this is what i mean it just it's very time consuming it just it eats time, but the end result is usually worth it.

Next question echelon rank says: stop eating trashy food and drinking junk. Well, uh! I don't really. I do drink in the live streams. Uh and the food isn't really what i'd call i'm not a meat in two veggie types of person, i'll eat, tins of like macaroni, cheese or ravioli and stuff like that or noodles i'll eat porridge in the morning.

The food is relatively healthy in that respect, but uh being sort of technically inclined. I could happily live off generic astronaut space food. You know just little sashes of paste that you that had a theme - and it was just all your nutrients combined into one - i'm not really too fussy about food. Almost near the end of the first batch, there's 20 of these wire arrangements being made and there's for each one, there's a green and a brown core.

The reason for the green and brown is that these are the branches of a plant that will be dropping petals. If you want to see the prototype of the prop uh, just look up uh, i can't remember where i called it, but it was basically it was a an experiment, it's something for beauty and the beast that would actually drop the petals on cue and it's very Simple approach i took was to attach the petals onto resistors plugged into connectors with a blob of wax, so that when you turn the power on after a short time delay it just gently flops down, then it drops there's a video specifically about that. Then comes the next bunch of wire tries to pull an led in with it. Um tries to pull lots of stuff into it.

This is the pearl of lots of loose wires at your bench, i'll try not to poke them into live terminals in the process, and i shall keep stripping them and answering questions so i'll get into the swing of stripping these first next question. Melted camera asks what is something that you really want to learn or expand your knowledge on um, i'd like to get more comfortable with welding, the different styles of welding, not just sort of meg and arc, but actually take as well with different materials. Ideally, i'd want to master welding aluminium, but that is quite a complex thing. It also requires specific welding equipment because, with welding aluminium, you really have to have a welder that can pulse alternate the polarity on the tip of the welding rod, because, ultimately, the on one, the oxide causes huge problems electrically by forming an insulation layer, aluminum oxide and Also, a thermal barrier.

So really that's why aluminium is so rugged. It's that oxide layer in the surface and uh when you change the polarity, it actually cleans the surface and then it welds it, and then it cleans the next bit and welds it as it goes along. So that's something i'd really like to get more involved with and if everything goes to plan. If i get the workshop, i'm looking for with more space and less stuff to go on fire in the vicinity, then that will be an option.

Aluminium is also very difficult. Uh metal to weld because of the heat you have to vary the power uh as you come in from one end and then peak the power in the middle of the weld and then tail off. It then, because uh there's less at the ends. There's less heat! Dissipation through the aluminium, because it's a less surface area being uh that the heat can be taken away, but then that also depends on the depth of the aluminium.

It's a complex subject. That's why i'm kind of interested in that one welding stainless should be quite good. As well, but that's easier, especially with tig right, that should be all these wires stripped. Now i get onto crimping and more questions, so the connector i'm using is my favorite connector.

I often refer to as a molex connector, but in reality it's not a molex connector. The online name is kf25 kf2510 and it's a 10th of an inch pitch connector very common. This particular batch that came through has really easy to separate contacts. They come in a strip.

Normally, if you buy these connectors from say a supplier like rs components or rapid electronics, you buy just the shells, but then you have to buy strips of the contacts as well in the case of rapid. I think they they just sell them in rolls. Now, i'm not sure that's where i usually get them from, but they don't do the black ones. The black ones came from an ebay seller.

Next question: jeremiah fieldhaven: where do all the calculators go? Well, i'm supposed to say silicon heaven here, but in reality people hoard calculators. They can't let go of them, they have favorite calculators and even though they get a new one, they will hoard the old one. Olly fan 37. What do you call an adjustable wrench here? I would call it - and this might not be typical - it's just the company that i serve my apprenticeship with called a shifter, i'm not sure why they call it shift.

I suppose it's because it shifts things and electrical industry would be used with violence, to shift things right to what we're on to crimping terminals. Now so here's my crimping tool from rapid electronics. It's not an ebay special, so each terminal gets placed in uh closed down a bit. The wire gets tucked in with just enough to for the insulation to actually be caught and then crimped.

It's very much a touchy. Feely bad feel thing, but that's one terminal done so. Let's just keep plodding my way through these load, the crimp pin and crimp it very very time consuming immediately thinking of uh productions. I worked on for a company called the quickening uh, where, because it's easier for me just to make the wiring limbs up and all the circuit boards for the props and then just hand them to the prop maker.

So they can build them in when they want to. It meant that everything had to be done as wiring limbs and i'd spend entire evenings at my bench. Just making huge wiring limbs with all this a tails coming out them and then send a drawing in with the guys to tell the guys where everything plugs together and then everything just went together on set. If it was a big production, i would often give them spare wiring looms.

So if anything went wrong at all, they could just plug a new lumen and it meant i didn't have to be there on the set because uh, that is just a very boring thing, might sound glamorous, might look glamorous, isn't glamorous it's just very it's a long Day, but having said that, working on the sets getting them all built up in the first place is quite fun, particularly those with a sci-fi theme. Let's just grab this green wire since it's in the way next question batdragon71: when is your shop going to reopen? Okay? I've got a website shop, just a page on my website that i used to sell circuit boards and kits on. I don't have the full range of stuff like some of the more recent circuit boards. I've just put the files up because ultimately, the postal service - something happened in the trump era.

Uh donald trump did something to the postal service in america, whereby the postal service started charging for parcels come in. It was a wee go at china, unfortunately also to go at the rest of the world and uh because of the increased charges and processing the royal mail responded in the uk. Also, this happened round about covet, which is just terrible uh. They responded by adding on the cost, for the the america ended up that so little price of chart with astronomic astronomical prices, and then they marked them up further because they uh were struggling to ship stuff during covered.

It was costing them a lot to ship stuff. So they handed that price on to at the same time as the trump addition was made, and it resulted in the most convoluted, most complicated system that even the smallest little package would cost a fortune. And there were significant price differences between sending everything in one box or sending lots and lots of little packages all with their own label and stuff, like that, it's just turned into a nightmare. It is so hard sending stuff to america.

I've just stopped. It's not nothing! Against americans, it's everything about both the royal mail and the what the usps did. They messed up the postal system royally and it's just made life difficult for people selling stuff online. I could open it up again.

The shop i could just say to rest of the world only but not america, it feels like i'm discriminating against the americans, but unfortunately that's what might end up happening. Um or i could add, an auxiliary postage charge to americans, but they probably wouldn't like that, because it would be huge, it's just really messed up at the moment. This is what happens when multiple layers of bureaucracy get involved, but that will resolve itself at some point. I'm sure, maybe in the meantime, if you like the circuit boards, all the files are on my website.

You can go and you can download the garber files while most of the files, the circuit boards and you can get a batch of five made uh in china and shipped to you in america, for less than i can get them manufactured and ship just one, because Postal services, bureaucracy, that was a mini rant, wasn't it next question getting away from that rant, dystopian paradise, first major shock and most pleasurable. What's the question is that most pleasurable, my first major shock i've often mentioned this - was in a supermarket on an automatic barrel gate that had been serviced the control box. I was fitting had been serviced by someone who wasn't really very competent and they'd missed off. Spacers they'd missed off the nylon spacers that separated the circuit board from the metal case, but they'd also missed off the brass space or the earth metal case from the circuit board, which was the main connection point.

So the case was unearthed, as i pulled the control module out. The circuit board got pulled against the case, but only as soon as the wires had a bit of tension on them and in front of all these people. I was given a full a hand to hand across the chest, womp electric shock, and it was my first major electric shock and jeez trying to maintain your dignity, and that happens is really not fun. Uh and then you have to kind of recover from it and, like the barrier gate was closed.

I had to open it, but the thing was potentially alive because of what had happened, and so i had to climb up the ladder and uh disconnect the spur that fed that gate then come down and pull the gate open. So people could go through and then slump down behind the gate. Yeah it was joyous and then the first person that went through a fat lady went over and said you got a shock, didn't you and it's like it was very embarrassing, a most pleasurable shock. I won't lie uh when i've been testing how much current i can with hand withstand passing electrical current through myself in a controlled manner with resistance in series.

There is a certain level just about the four milliamp level that is actually quite a nice sensation. Is that weird, yes, it is oh well did i mention how boring this uh? This task is, i suppose, ultimately, it's not boring. If you're listening to me chatting and and ranting next question uh kiba wolf, my impression of the furry community. There are a lot of furries that watch this channel.

The reason for that is because a lot of the people who do the furry fandom thing, that's the people who dress in the mascot style suits for those who don't know a lot of them are super technical, geeky people, and i get the feeling it's that classic Thing it's a little twist of autism that they're, basically they're so shy in real life that they kind of have an alter ego in their fursuit, but they're, usually extremely technical. But i've got the opinion that most fursuits have an engineer inside like engineers with very high profile, jobs and interesting yeah, interesting careers and like fairly prominent technical skills. Just seems to be that's a weird thing. I'm going to have to turn the page over i'm on to the next page of questions.

Tom miller says ntc for a 2000 kva, 240 210 volt site transformer right. That's 2k, va by the way that not 2000 kva. That would be 2 megawatt. That would be really that would be very heavy.

So in the uk we have building site transformers the building site. Transformers uh are basically a yellow box, they handle on top and they convert 240 volts down to 110 volts center tap to ground. So it's 55 volts either side and it's considered a safe voltage. You know there's less risk of electric shock um, but they because they're, basically big transformers, uh potted in resin.

They tend to have quite high interest current. This causes problems with type b in particular circuit breakers tripping when you plug them in so adding an ntc inrush. Limiting resistor is actually a good idea, but i recommend getting ceramic terminal block for that because they can get hot well, they they rely on getting hot. That's how they work, they start off with a fairly high resistance.

Then they heat up and the resistance goes down, but they do run warm and it might be. Poss might be better. You don't have to take much of that current spike off, so you can use a fairly low resistance one, but they tend to be rated on the diameter of the disc and the current they're designed to handle and they're and their start resistance don't be too greedy And go for a massively high resistance, because it puts a lot more strain on the ndc and rush limiting thermistors they're. The little black discs that you see, often inside i'm just trying to see if i've got one handy here.

Have i got one handy here, yeah that little black disc, tucked in between the capacitors, where it's out of sight, that is an ndc inrush disc, but they they do them in quite big sizes and uh. If you put one of those in a ceramic turner block in series with the transformer, when you first turn it on, it will take away that initial zap. It will put a resistor in series briefly and that can stop the circuit breaker stripping, which is useful. Ah, the glamour of showbiz definitely not as bad as many of the wiring rooms.

I've made, though this one only has about 40 tails to be made next question eric swiger says i worked with an electrician who would test live circuits by licking his finger and thumb and holding the bare wires now, as you get if you work in the construction Industry or engineering you tend to have quite thick skin. You end up with just a thick hardened skin layer. Mine is not so thick these days. I must be leaving a pampered life, but it used to be very rough and hard to the point it used to snag in some materials and if you've got that thick skin, the layer of dead cells will limit the current through your butt.

Although it used to be fairly common practice and then the first electrician's guide that was ever printed, the first guidebook, they actually said you can sense when electricity is there by holding a wire, and you will feel a strong tingle from the wire in reality, they removed That very quickly, because it turned out the difference between a strong tingle and sudden and violent convulsing death, isn't really that much when you're using your bare fingers because, as you may have seen, the recent spam electrocution video, i did uh the juicy meat inside. You is very, very conductive and the only thing that's insulating. Your most instances is the environment you're in and the layer of dead skin cells in the front, if you lick your fingers, that's making it worse, i'm guessing that guy was in a fairly isolated environment, but you can't always rely on that. If you got used to just dabbing wires and feeling if they were tingly or not, you might do it while outdoors standing in the wet and that would suddenly be a terrible experience, water and ground coupling you to ground makes a massive difference.

Even wet wood or concrete makes a massive difference, so i don't recommend doing that. The old timers did it for reference. Some was saying that their uh dads used to um test wires by touching them and uh then say: i suppose you better turn the power off. So nobody panics uh, but so, despite the fact he deliberately gave himself shocks this used to be really common uh.

He lived till the age of 99., so that kind of hints that uh the odd electric shock isn't necessarily harmful. I mean that's just maybe just a coincidence. I don't think it will increase the length of your life, not really sure that's down to genetics and eating habits. We're back to eating habits again.

Next question kj asks: do i play video games? No, i don't i just no time for it. I know a lot of people spend a lot of time playing games june of the mbc plays games a lot. I just don't the patience or time to actually uh get into games, but occasionally i'll look at some of the game play on youtube and particularly when some things go wrong down marvel at the extent the software has evolved, because the software is absolutely spectacular these days, The environments - well, it's games have always driven the progress of computers. The reason we have super high power graphic cards is because of games, and that's also why the computers run at such high speeds.

I don't even know what the current typical speed of a modern computer is, these days probably a lot more than my first computer, which ran at something like 25 or 40 megahertz. I guess they've evolved somewhat they're well into the multiple gigahertz these days. Probably i don't know i just not checked, i do not have need for a high power computer for designing circuit boards and writing software and stuff like that or just browsing the internet. I use a chromebook for that next question: how do you control the zoom of your camera i'll, tell you what i'm just going to grab a camera and show you here's the camera i'm using for the live streams, uh open camera, the color is going to be All skewed uh swap that round uh to zoom.

I enable the little zoom slider here on the side, and a lot of the secret of this is the fact that ultimately, i have the camera here mounted on a fairly solid bench, so i can actually zoom in and out without you actually seeing the camera bouncing Up and down a lot, it's all about mounting the camera rigidly and most shitty tripods. Don't do that. I shall put that out to the side. I just showed you a nice picture of my ceiling with acoustic foam pads on it.

I don't know if they really helped or not how's the time here, 22 minutes and 54 seconds. I won't go too long with this uh, partly because i've run out of questions, and it really is just me doing this and i'll be soldering connectors afterwards. That's it! It's a very repetitive thing: making looms like this: the same thing for the guys that are molding lots and lots of props. They make they sculpt one master, and then it's all about casting the other ones in resin in the molds they make.

The prop industry seems glamorous from outside, partly because it's connected to films and stuff like that, but in reality it's not that glamorous, like the lighting industry as well. It's ultimately when it comes to crunch, it's a truss with lots of fairly similar lights on it. All being addressed, the only thing that's really different between them is the styles of lights and addresses, and then just being on standby, once you've hung them all to fix things when they go wrong, hopefully not in the middle of a show which puts a lot of Pressure on you next question, the electronic guy. What was the most dangerous situation for me for you? Maybe i don't know the most dangerous situation.

Maybe because it didn't happen it wasn't. It wasn't known. I just smacked the camera with the bar there, but the most dangerous one that i know of the biggest f up. I did was working on a compressor pack, a refrigeration, compressor pack and you couldn't isolate the whole thing.

So i had to isolate one compressor in it for disconnection because we're changing the compressor big carry engine sized, compressors and uh. I was tired, very noisy room, sweating, a lot because it was just like yeah, just a very loud, noisy, hot room, overall soaked and sweat lying across the top, because the whole all the compressors, which were hot to gain access to a poor access location. And i tried the my deep socket for size on the terminal, the compressor i was about to disconnect because the one i'd isolated and it turned out - i hadn't isolated it and i put it on uh and it fitted and just right at the point i took It off the terminal, the phase terminal holding the metal ratchet. Just to the point i cleared it, the compressor suddenly went bump and it started that would have been possibly terminal if i'd uh that would have been like nobody would have heard me.

I don't think i would have been able to scream if something like that had happened, because uh current would have been flowing through me at considerable volume. Uh, wake up, call to double check every time and also keep double checking when you're working things, because just because uh, you've isolated a compressor doesn't mean it's been wired correctly and it may have other control circuits running through it. This is the health and safety executive's lockout tag out before working is gibberish in many applications it doesn't work, but i suppose it ticks their bots and that's all they're interested in uh next uh question. I bet clive works on alien technology, but doesn't discuss.

It says great, lord well, i obviously couldn't discuss it if i did work in alien technology, because my alien masters would then punish me. Sometimes i feel like i'm working alien technology, particularly when you see some of the weird crap that comes from china um. That is all the wiring rooms made, so that will end this section of the questions and answers. I may make another section when i solder things together, but i don't think it'll be very long, so i don't think i've got that.

I think i've got one page of questions left so uh. I shall end this video here uh, that's how exciting it is working in the prop industry for real and wiring up all the looms for leds and uh other components. That's uh, a little taste of reality.

18 thoughts on “Q a while making prop stuff part-1”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Last Born says:

    AvE dropped a conversation you and he had about YT community and community detractors (to para-phrase) … I was curious what institutional knowledge you as a long standing world of YT content creator would share if any about the subject?

    I read thru these early comments and sort them into those who have seen/participated in the wizards operations behind the curtain … and those whom are still being wow’d by the powerful oz … right now the later seam to be winning the numbers game!!!

    Happy Jaded/Non-Jades day to you sir. Looking forward to part 2 for my non scientific social observation experiment…

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars ss says:

    I wish there were left-handed crimping tools. They are awkward to use. I'm surprised you're not using your IWISS crimper. I got a shock as I worked on an early model Otari MX5050 Mk.1 tape recorder. It was 240v and across my chest. I ended up in hospital for that. Unlike the later version, that bloody tape recorder didn't have any insulation shielding around the power switch.

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Sunny Afternoon says:

    Clive I just wanted to say thanks, your soothing, friendly voice helps take my mind off whatever horrors are sure to await me in dream land as I fall asleep.

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars strongandco says:

    Ya, an adjustable wrench seems to be universally known as a Shifter in the UK. I work in the oil industry at the other end of the British Isles from Clive and that's what we call it.

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars JamesAllmond says:

    Clive, we Americans are more than aware of the BS happening at our Post Service. One guy, appointed by that, well you know, getting stuff cheaper from China should be a hint, is being a total PITA and there is nothing we can do about him…sucks. If it costs more to get stuff here, makes us pay for it. Out vendors here do it al the time, to us!

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Shadetree Mechanic Racing says:

    Tig welding aluminum is tricky get it too hot, you end up with a puddle of metal. I noticed the shipping problem. I tried ordering the floating lights from a UK seller when ordering multiple ones each one multiplied the shipping.

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars d00dEEE says:

    I recently wanted to buy a book from The British Museum, the cost of the book was about US$40. Went to check out and the cost of shipping to US from London was going to be an additional $70. WTF. Didn't buy the book.

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Edie Hicks says:

    I think he's watching this right now or the next. I noticed that you complained about Trump and I'm curious if you think that the moron in the white house is any better because most of the world thinks him the woman are worthless. I did like listening to you normally. I just don't care for Trump bashing

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Mark Punt says:

    Well said on food – sometimes I think it’s a complete inconvenience that we have to eat.

    Has BBC outside broadcasts used to say – don’t waste valuable eating time eating. 😂

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars ss says:

    Clive, what a coincidence, I just watched your video on making an array of red LEDs for christmas then you put them in your little bush. Calculators, if you own an old HP RPN calculator, you NEVER EVER, just … "get rid of it". They are something to be revered, cherished, looked after and if you're like me, you augment your collection with more of them. Even better, get all the user and programming manuals to them and programme modules. My favorite is the HP-48GX. I aim to get more of them …. because.

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars James Wyatt says:

    If shipping to the US costs more, give the US folks an option to purchase. Whiners aside, an honest "this costs $n.nn to ship to US, sorry." would seem best. Let's people make their own informed decision. At least one Texan knows you don't unjustly disrespect. See you next video no matter what.

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Phonotical says:

    Two things, you should make sure you do go on set to handle any problems that arise because you can charge by the hour and get some easy work, and the other is transformers contain mineral oil, if they were potted they would get very hot very quickly!

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Stubby Phillips says:

    "Bachelor Chow" needs to be a thing. I don't like having to spend more time dealing with food than it takes to eat it. To me, gathering and preparing it is just a nuisance. I get that some people actually enjoy spending chunks of their day fiddling with food. I'm just not one of them.

  14. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Eremon1 says:

    Years ago I got poked pretty good by a 277/480v line that was supposed to have been turned off. That was the day I learned the guy working on the wiring should be the guy that verifies the circuit is actually off.

  15. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Sparky Projects says:

    We installed an ioniser into the duct of a conference room where i worked, it came with a piece of circuit board with a neon and resistor to test if it was working, and it worked, though this was a commercial unit
    I have just bought a double decker plate ioniser and will be doing a vid on it soon
    SVseeker has done a lot of aluminium welding and he shows what equipment he uses, including a spool gun for the wire
    You can easily hold a live wire without problems as long as you are wearing shoes and not touching anything else, wetting the finger may help to feel it, though i don't advise anyone doing it.

  16. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Chris W says:

    When I have to do repetitive cable work (like making 100 BNC cables) I listen to BigClive videos. The boss can't complain since it is work related.

  17. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Massimo says:

    I have a variac that I had to modify exactly because it popped the breaker due to its inrush current. In a pinch I had a small lightbulb (recovered from a microwave) in series which I had to bypass manually, then I finally decided to make a more permanent modification adding an internal NTC (well spaced from other stuff) which I had actually managed to get as free sample

  18. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Eiv Gaming says:

    Would love to see an update to your Soldering 101. How you feel about USB powered irons and maybe some surface mount tips.

    All in one vid 🙂

    Keep up the good work chief, you're doing Scotland proud.

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