Reader Contributions Amateur Gemstone Faceting

This page contains material submitted by readers.

Jarex Schmidt kindly provided an enhanced version of Figure 10-38, the Index Transposition Wheel. His version, available here, includes the 77-index gear.

In addition to the improved Index Transposition Wheel, Jarex Schmidt provided an OMNI Protractor (Figure 17-26) which boasts nine different symmetries. You can download it here.

Based on feedback, it seems that several readers have undertaken the homebuilt encoder project described in Chapter 20. Every faceting machine, and indeed every project, is different. This section provides readers' experience and wisdom.

Robert successfully added a homebuilt encoder to his Ultra Tec using a few custom machined parts (see images below). Note the beautiful free-standing display adapted from a tablet stand. Robert writes:

“(The encoder) consists of a centering “pin” turned out of a threaded rod that screws into the threads in the side of the ultratec. There is one visible on the back side. There is a small bearing in the brass block that fits on the pin and another bearing in the 1/4" aluminum that the encoder is mounted on. This keeps the encoder shaft running true. The connecting rod is held in place with set screws. Not pretty but it works.”

He also provided useful insight on the differences between some LCD displays and Arduino microcontroller boards. He writes:

“I finally have all the bugs worked out of my encoder and sketch. I am using an UNO board and couldn't get the welcome message to print correctly (It would only print "scintillator" on the first line) until I put lcd.begin(16,2); above the lcd.print ("-=Polymetric=-"); line. Plus the led would stay on all the time and would not blink at the recalibration point until I set #define led 13 and moved the led to pin 13 instead of pin 5.  I stumbled upon a discussion talking about pin 13 having a pull-down resistor built-in. Having figured this out proves "that even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while". I thought I would pass this info along to you in case some other technology challenged geezer with an UNO board asks you for help. Thanks again.

Click on the images below for a larger version. Thanks for your contribution and congratulations, Robert!

Site Manager: Tom Herbst

Last Updated:

6 September 2016