Do-it-yourself projects and technology updates

March 15, 2011

Eggs Hatching

Filed under: Logs Greg Lipscomb @ 11:26 am

Well I have 25 chicks now. They all hatched a day or two early which was surprising. They are supposed to take 21 days to hatch but I guess that they hatched in 19 days. I suppose my temperature in my incubator was a little too high. The temp is supposed to be 99.5 degrees F. I guess I was 100-100.5 I will know next time. (That is if my wife lets me do it again. I accidentally messed up our kitchen table with some water that leaked out. whoops).

They are definitely lots of fun. They are just messy. My dad is going to come get them this weekend. He is going to raise them up.

I would like to give a DIY project on making your own incubator next.

March 10, 2011


Filed under: Logs Greg Lipscomb @ 2:08 pm

Well, I honestly don’t have time to edit out all of the spam comments that I get. There are thousands. I made it where you have to login to leave a comment. I hate doing that, but otherwise it is a waste of everyone’s time to comment. Please do join, and post comments. I am going to try to be better. Money is tight right now, and this site used to make me some excess dough, which would be nice :) I noticed that Google picked it back up just after a few posts. I guess I have to keep it current haha

DIY Backyard Chickens

Filed under: Logs Greg Lipscomb @ 9:44 am

Well, I am incubating 27 baby chicks right now. I started having backyard chickens around last year this time. I have 3 hens, and yes I live in the city, with a very small yard. They do provide me with some of the most amazing tasting fresh eggs that I have ever had.

3 eggs a day actually adds up. I have a wife and 2 kids, and it is enough that we never have to buy eggs anymore. They actually pay for themselves.

Right now, I am incubating these eggs for my Dad. I will take some pics of them when they are born and share them on this site. I actually made my own DIY incubator and I can share how to build one yourself. My wife and I have started making all kinds of stuff for ourselves, including DIY rainwater collection, DIY yogurt making, and DIY laundry detergent.

I will hopefully start adding some of these soon.


December 12, 2010

DIY Christmas Cards

Filed under: Logs Greg Lipscomb @ 3:09 pm

Well, this is not exactly what I was talking about when I said I was going to start with more posts. (My wife forced me to post this. LOL) I promise though I will find a good post soon.

Although most non-verbal forms of communication have evolved to an electronic format, traditional Christmas cards still remain. Most people still send their cards through the USPS just like it has always been done. However, we no longer have to go to the stationary store and pick up a box set that a lot of others might buy. We get to choose from thousands, and customize them with pictures and personal sentiments. Well, if you love the simplicity of ordering your Christmas cards online like I do… Shutterfly is the way to go. It is easy to use, and you will end up with beautiful, fun Christmas cards! I can’t wait to receive mine in the mail!

I have ordered several personalized birthday cards from Shutterfly in the past. I was very impressed with the quality and speed.

Check out some of my favorite Christmas photo card options from Shutterfly:

Sweet Chocolate

Joy Ornament

Love 2010: I really like how you can add lots of personal events to this one.

In addition to ordering my Christmas cards from Shutterfly this year, I may order some of these adorable coffee mugs for Christmas gifts.

ATTENTION: Shutterfly is offering 50 FREE Holiday Cards from Shutterfly.  Check out this offer here.

October 28, 2010

Is DIY LIVE dead?

Filed under: Logs Greg Lipscomb @ 11:44 am

Well, to tell you the truth, after starting residency, I have been busy, and my old site has taken a back seat I guess you could say. The site was doing well, but unfortunately while I was not watching it, it went down for about a month, and I was dropped from Google. I used to have a lot of visits per month, but it has drastically decreased.

I am thinking about starting back up again. I have done a lot of projects over the time including, RC airplanes, salt water reef aquarium, and have recently built a HTPC (home theater pc) which functions as my DVR as well as media center. It is a lot of fun. I hope to start writing about a broader range of DIY projects. I just have not had a lot of time to tinker with electrical projects so I might as well write about what I am doing.

Let me know if there is still anyone following by adding comment, and if there is any interest in seeing a broader range of DIY projects.

By the way, I do now have 2 wonderful children, and am about a year and a half from finishing my Neurology residency.

If any of you know how to get my site back onto Google, let me know by adding a comment. (I know the site is full of spam comments, but I don’t know if I will ever be able to clean all of that up)


June 16, 2008

Residency Starts Soon

Filed under: Logs Greg Lipscomb @ 10:02 am

Well, I start residency soon. I will be starting on July 1. I have been out of the country for a few weeks, and it seemed that my site went dead for a few weeks. It is rather unfortunate. I have lost a lot of traffic in the process. It seems that some of the search engines dropped my page. Hopefully I can get it put back up.

I had a chance to go visit Thailand, Cambodia, and Laos. They are truly great places, and very different than home.

March 22, 2008

DIY Battery Backup (UPS)

Filed under: Logs Greg Lipscomb @ 10:02 am

I just recently talked about me starting a saltwater reef aquarium. A lot of time and money goes into starting such a device, and the rewards are great. There is one problem though with having a piece of the ocean sitting in your living room. You have to have a constant supply of electricity. (I have actually found that even on my little 20 gallon tank, that it cost about $25/month to run.) Anyway, if the power cuts off for more than 4-5 hours, it could have devastating results on the poor inhabitants. I almost feel a moral obligation to not let that happen.

I had to start thinking of what I would do in case of a power outage. The oxygen saturation in a saltwater aquarium is much less than that of a freshwater, and if the water stagnates, it can have devastating effects. I also live in a hurricane zone, so that could be a disaster. The obvious solution is to get a generator. This would work for any long term outages. But what happens when the power goes off at 8AM, and you don’t come home for 9 hours?

I thought about getting a battery backup UPS system for a computer. I quickly found that they are very expensive, and don’t contain enough energy to last very long at all. I need at least my main circulating pump to run, and I want it to run for up to 24 hours. The first thing I did was go buy a 13$ battery back up air pump that plugs into the electricity, and turns on if the power is cut. This would at least keep some of the oxygen levels up, and was a quick and cheap fix.

The next thing which I have not built yet because I don’t have the time or money is to build my own battery backup. The design of one is relatively straight forward. All you need is a marine deep cycle battery, which will allow for multiple charges and discharges. I need a trickle charger to always keep the battery topped off, and I need a power inverter. I simply plug the circulating pump into the inverter, and it will run off the battery.

Now that doesn’t make much sense. I need a way of detecting if the electricity is on or off.


All you realy need for that is a double pole double throw switching relay. You connect the coil to the electricity in the wall. If the power is on, the switch will swing one way, and if the power is off, it will swing the other way. Then you connect the “on” switch straight to the electricity. When the power is connected, the pump will be plugged in, and will get its power from the outlet. You also will connect the “off” switch to the power inverter. If the power is cut, the relay will change, and your pump will continue to run off of the battery power through the inverter. You simply buy a nice charger that will turn itself off when the battery is charged, and you now have a great DIY battery backup.

Here is a simple parts list found

-Marine 95ah deep cycle battery $45 (auto zone)
-Battery case $10 (auto zone)
-Schumaker auto trickle charger $25 (auto zone)
-Inverter- I used a really nice one that runs about $75, but you can get a 150w for about $40
-120v 3pdt relay (I found cheap 4pdt) $5 (all electronics)
-Extension cord for line in/out of the xfer box $5 (HD)
-misc. components… electrical and project boxes, ac outlet, wire, spade connectors, in-line fuse holder and connectors $20 (all electronics, radio shack)

This could also be used for a battery backup for a computer. See this great project here.

March 21, 2008

Residency Match

Filed under: Logs Greg Lipscomb @ 2:58 pm

Well, I found out that I matched for Residency in Neurology. What a relief. I am also in the process of getting a house. Yeah, it is true that the fourth year of medical school is much easier than the earlier years, but there is stress, and time consuming things of another kind. Just thought I would give a quick update.

I have started a 20 gallon Long salt water reef aquarium. It has been a blast so far. I will write an article telling how to do it soon. There is a fairly steep learning curve involved in starting a reef aquarium.

January 23, 2008

Sound Seeking Robot

Filed under: Robots Greg Lipscomb @ 9:00 am

I have done several posts from the Cornell University electrical engineering senior design site. Here is a robot that follows sound. It sounds like a really cool project. It apparently has three microphones, and a microprocessor detects which microphone is receiving the strongest signal. It will then turn the robot to the microphone that hears the noise the most.

” The PeanutBot robot consists of three microphone circuits, three servo motors, an MCU and a PC. The three microphones were used to triangulate the angle of the source relative to the robot. The audio source plays a continuous stream of pulses. Pulses were chosen over a continuous tone because, instead of detecting phase difference in the audio signal, our system detects the arrival time of the signal at a certain amplitude at each microphone. The robot is designed to be autonomous and is, therefore, not synchronized with the pulse generator. As a result, the time of flight of each impulse is not available and the robot is unable to quantify the distance to the source. Instead, the robot advances by a small predetermined distance and listens for the signal again. To find the sound source, the robot listens for the arrival of an impulse on any of the three microphones. Once an impulse has been detected at one of the microphones, the robot records the microphone data at 10 microsecond intervals for 10 milliseconds. Using this data, the arrival time of the impulse at e! ach microphone is calculated and the direction of the source is obtained. Once the angle of the source has been identified, the robot rotates and pursues the source for a short period, and then promptly resumes triangulation of the signal to repeat the process.”

Check out this cool robot here.

This article was found from DIY Live’s friend Alan over at Hacked Gadgets

January 22, 2008


Filed under: Uncategorized — Greg Lipscomb @ 6:02 pm

Things have been kind of crazy here lately, and finally I have gotten some breathing room. I passed step 2 of my boards, and have realized how much I miss writing for DIY Live. I have not forgotten about it. I have plans of writing some here very soon.

I decided to do Neurology, and am hoping to stay here at my school. My wife and I are even looking for a house. I am sick of living in an apartment. Anyway, maybe I have not lost all of my readers, and in time to come, I can do some cool stuff again.