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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Mon 29, 2019 8:06 pm 
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the plastic cards i sent you do punch out fine with the punch tool i have


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Mon 29, 2019 8:30 pm 
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Location: Dayton, OH
anchorman wrote:
I tried to open those files, the .dxf was unreadable by both autocad and illustrator. the .pdf worked fine. I'm assuming the solid black circles don't get punched? Better just to leave those off, or put them in their own layer. If it's not getting cut, it doesn't need to be in the file.


Understood, as I said, it was a test. The first PDF should have given you a "blank" card with all holes punched out.

Quote:
The first attempt at cutting what I think is.022" thick acrylic/plexiglass was less than stellar. The settings weren't quite right, so it left the holes not completely cut through. trying to punch them out by hand after did more harm than good, and defeats the purpose of quick reproductions, too :)


Would heavier line weights help with that? - I would think the acrylic would be likely the most long "life", and I can adjust as necessary.

Quote:

heavy cardstock cuts like a dream, but I wonder about longevity of the cards?


The above being said, heavy cardstock seems to have worked pretty well so far. :)

I'll generate something a little better tonight...

David


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Mon 29, 2019 9:52 pm 
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Location: Monte Vista, CO. USA
Don't forget the card reader is very picky about the thickness of the card.


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Tue 30, 2019 12:27 am 
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PhilF wrote:
Don't forget the card reader is very picky about the thickness of the card.


does this mean thinner cards are a problem or thicker ones Phil ?
Cheers Don


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Tue 30, 2019 1:02 am 
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Thicker ones are the problem. Those flimsy thin cards work well if they are strong enough to not be damaged by the pins when the reader slams shut.


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Tue 30, 2019 1:18 am 
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Thanks Phil
was thinking the plastic one's needed to be twice as thick as they come , seems to be same as originals for thickness then
Cheers Don


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Tue 30, 2019 1:57 am 
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Location: Dayton, OH
card3.pl (with an array of ImageMagick, and other PERL scripts.)

Took this image:
Attachment:
12ax7-1.jpg
12ax7-1.jpg [ 44.03 KiB | Viewed 594 times ]


And turned it into this:
Code:
fig2dev -D-100 -L gif 12ax7-1.fig 12ax7-1.gif

Attachment:
12ax7-1.gif
12ax7-1.gif [ 5.83 KiB | Viewed 594 times ]


"Cut-able"(?) version: (All this PDF contains is the card outline, and the holes to cut out.)
Code:
fig2dev -D+25,+50 -L pdf 12ax7-1.fig 12ax7-1-prn.pdf

Attachment:
12ax7-1-prn.pdf [8.54 KiB]
Downloaded 16 times


I guess from my perspective the only things left are:
    Figure out what line weights will permit laser cutting the holes successfully.
    What to put on the PDF version of the cards so they'll come out labelled appropriately.

Looks like the oldradiofixerupper's scans consisted of about 506 assorted cards. If my scripts hold up, I'll be able to process them into FIG files with minimal to no human interaction.

The ball is back to you anchorman. :-)

David


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Tue 30, 2019 2:20 pm 
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this is looking fantastic guy's wish i was more pc friendly , 506 cards out of 3000 i think i read some place , that's a fantastic start

Cheers Don


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Tue 30, 2019 4:36 pm 
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The line weight needs to essentially be null/zero. anything smaller than 0.07 pt (0.001") is seen as a vector line by the cutter. vector lines cut faster and cleaner normally. anything wider than this get treated as a raster/bitmap image, and takes forever to cut/etch. You can etch part way into the material, or you can cut all the way through. some materials, such as anodized aluminum can only be etched by these cutters. thin materials like letter paper can only be cut, since there isn't enough to remove in an etching operation.

the colors tell it what power to use for the etch or cut, and in what order to perform these operations. In the attached .pdf, I converted all of the empty holes to pure RGB magenta (FF00FF in hexadecimal), the outside of the card needs cutting after all of the holes, so it is made RGB cyan (00FFFF). The machine is set up to go through the list of colors, Black, Red, Green, Yellow, Blue, Magenta, Cyan, Orange and cut them in that order. We have Black turned off, so it is strictly for alignment purposes. Red, Green, Yellow, and Blue are set for different etching depths, Magenta and Cyan are first and second through cuts. Orange is also off. You can change any of these to do any operation, but that is what we have them set to for general work.

Before cutting a particular material, one loads the settings for that material into the print driver, and it tells it the power, speed, and a few other parameters necessary to cut and/or etch that material efficiently and without catching it on fire.

I'm only familiar with the drivers to run the machines that we have, which are from Universal Laser Systems. Other machines, such as epilog, trotec, or any of the random chinese hobby machines might use totally different ways of handling the files.

I've attached a picture of the file I used to cut a test, and the results of said test. I selected the circles I thought needed cutting and assigned the proper line weight to them, and made them "first cut" (magenta). Then selected the outline, joined the individual lines into a complete shape (it cuts less randomly when it's all a single shape rather than separate lines, speeds up the process), and assigned the color for "second cut" (cyan). I made the small text in the corner red so that it would etch that what I thought was an appropriate amount, and sent the file to the machine.

It looks like I got it all backwards, and the black dots get punched, and the empty circles do not... The machine didn't cut all the way through on most of the dots due to me not getting the material settings quite right on the plastic. I either need to bump up the power, or change the settings for the PPI (pulses per inch) in order to burn all the way though consistently. The PPI setting can be used to help control how much heat goes in to a specific area of the material while maintaining the same average power input to it. Helpful with melty stuff like plastic to keep it from overheating and melting the edges back together. The material was cut from top left to right and then down to the next row, etc. I noticed when cutting that the material was warping from the heat input at some point, which throws off the focus and makes it harder to cut efficiently. It might be possible that I need to have it cut one circle, then move an inch away and cut another, etc, to spread the heat input and reduce the warping. Or I need to figure out a frame to hold it flat while it cuts.

The holes cut are only about 0.010" larger in diameter than those drawn, but this might get worse as the process gets refined. There is no offset for the cut, it goes straight down the line, so any offset needs to already be in the drawing. From a materials engineering perspective, the smaller the holes are, the stronger the card will be, so we need to make them as small as is reasonable to do. closely spaced holes tend to lose the space between them too, as there is less mass to soak up excess heat from the cutting operation, and the narrow spaces get disproportionately burned away. There becomes a point where the spaces between are not possible to achieve, and we're near that on these for the material I was cutting. The drawings seem to have relatively larger holes than the scan you posed of an actual card.

Attachment:
test card1.jpg
test card1.jpg [ 95.34 KiB | Viewed 576 times ]
Attachment:
test card 1 file.jpg
test card 1 file.jpg [ 50.84 KiB | Viewed 576 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Tue 30, 2019 4:42 pm 
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I don't know if it's needed for your project, but my offer still stands for anyone that wants to scan my (assumed to be) full set from Alan Douglas estate for the KS-15874-L2. There is 1/2 to 2/3 of a full Hickok case of them. All you have to do is come to Ohio....I'm not going to let them out of my sight ;-)

There are mostly factory cards, and a good assortment of "homemade" that someone made with hand writing on them as to the tube they go with. They were done on apparently original Hickok blanks.

I intend to eventually scan them myself, but it's way down on the priority list so who knows.

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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: Apr Tue 30, 2019 4:46 pm 
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with a high quality scan of the hickok logo, it would be easy to etch that and other info directly in place with the rest of the card. if they were on some kind of card stock that could make it though a printer, that info could be printed directly on the card and then the card would get cut after.

Most important is the fact that you were able to get a very reasonable drawing directly from the database info. Whatever I end up making happen is only going to be optimized for the machines and materials I have. If anyone wants to take this info and use it on a different cutter, they'll need to optimized the process for those machines. Simply having the holes the right size and in the right place is very nice. If there is a way to easily change the hole diameter for the end user so that they could tweak the kerf offset themselves before generating drawings, it would be a smart thing to add to the drawing parameters.

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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: May Wed 01, 2019 1:37 am 
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Ok, updated the script slightly.

Already thought of the hole size problem. The hole size is simply one line in the script. The original PDF's above were with 3/16" holes. This one is 5/32". (There was a thread recently discussing punch sizes. I picked the larger one initially.)
Code:
$hole_size = ceil((3.0/16.0) * 1200);   # 3/16"
$hole_size = ceil((5.0/32.0) * 1200);   # 5/32"
The 1200 comes from XFig's 1200ppi resolution. That part is easy (and works.)

Unfortunately, the line weights can't be adjusted any further down. They're already as light as they'll go.

But along with the smaller circles, the attached PDF has:

The outline in Cyan (#00ffff).
The holes to cut out in Magenta (#ff00ff).
The card text in Red (#ff0000).
A Hickok logo in Blue (#0000ff). Is the highest resolution logo I have.
Attachment:
12ax7-1-prn.pdf [39.88 KiB]
Downloaded 27 times

David

Barry, your offer is appreciated, but ummm, would you really want any of us sitting up there for several days scanning cards? (I don't expect scanning a full set to be instantaneous.)

That being said, I would offer to come up in person, pick them up, and bring them back in a week or two. Perhaps even pester you to buy one of those Tek 310's you have sitting on the shelf. :-)


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: May Wed 01, 2019 4:19 am 
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that sure looks fantastic , only thing i would like to see 1234 printed on them
Cheers Don


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: May Wed 01, 2019 5:01 am 
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I’ll check out the new pdf in the morning and see what it does when cut. The only flaw in this that I see is that even at 2.5 minutes per card, it would take 100 hours to cut all 3000 or so :) for me, not such a big problem, as I can cut what I need when I need, but this might prove to be a stumbling block for anyone trying to make a full set on someone else’s laser cutter. I like the idea of the data being out there somewhere, and available for posterity.

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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: May Wed 01, 2019 10:30 am 
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Quote:
Barry, your offer is appreciated, but ummm, would you really want any of us sitting up there for several days scanning cards? (I don't expect scanning a full set to be instantaneous.) That being said, I would offer to come up in person, pick them up, and bring them back in a week or two. Perhaps even pester you to buy one of those Tek 310's you have sitting on the shelf. :-)


David, bug me in a few weeks when I have time to breathe again. That sounds like a possible option. Along with the Tek 310 I have a few duplicate GR instruments and other things that weigh over 60 pounds lol.

barry

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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: May Wed 01, 2019 12:41 pm 
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anchorman: LOL - Yeah, I guess I can see where that might be a problem. Let me know how it goes.

Barry: Will do - Thanks!

David


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: May Wed 01, 2019 2:22 pm 
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Barry could you tell me the dimensions of the original hickok card box i would love to build one
pictures would be nice also .

Cheers Don


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: May Sun 05, 2019 8:02 pm 
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PhilF wrote:
The 123 cards are included in the Computerized Cardmatic's database. If you have a card that isn't listed on this page, please let me know:

http://www.tubesontheweb.com/tubelist.htm



Years ago, I needed to test a bunch of military surplus #10, 10Y and similar tubes. At the time, I could not find a card for any of them, even though they are all fairly common tubes, somewhat in demand by "glass audio" folks. So I improvised by using the settings for a few similar types that DO have cards in the standard deck, and interpolating / extrapolating to make a half dozen or so "cards" for those tubes. Unfortunately, I lost track of the cards after I finished testing and selling my stash of tubes.

As far as I know, there are STILL no "official" cards for the #10 or any of its variant types.


^^;;^^


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: May Sun 05, 2019 8:19 pm 
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That is correct, although I did program a test for a Type 10. It isn't included in the database, but I do send out a memo that instructs customers on how to add it. That is my sneaky way of getting users familiar with creating their own tests.

Back in the 1950's, I guess the engineers at Hickok decided the Type 10 was just too obsolete to include. Little did they know there would be an audio revolution decades later that would bring the oldest, most primitive tube types back in vogue, lol.


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 Post subject: Re: Digitizing Hickok Cardmatic Test Card data
PostPosted: May Sun 05, 2019 9:58 pm 
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The Hickok punch card case is 19 x 15-1/2 x 6 for the card caddy part. The lid when closed adds about 3" so it's 19 x 15-1/2 x 9 closed. All dimensions are approximate. The photos show the inside, and the nameplate. It weighs approximately about as much as the treads from a Sherman Tank, and would probably survive being run over by one.

Attachment:
fullsizeoutput_752.jpeg
fullsizeoutput_752.jpeg [ 114.84 KiB | Viewed 463 times ]
Attachment:
fullsizeoutput_74d.jpeg
fullsizeoutput_74d.jpeg [ 124 KiB | Viewed 463 times ]

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