So, how am I going to go about doing this? Well, I've thought about it for quite some time. Probably the best way is to just jump in and get started. On the 1st of January, 2009, I had the honor of meeting up with four other builders here in my area (Greater Sacramento Region) who were all in various stages of completing their droids. (As I'm already learning, your droid is NEVER finished)
Ed, Ryan, Gerard and Matt, thanks so much! You guys were kind, helpful and patient! I'm really looking forward to learning from all of you.
At first, before meeting everyone, I was thinking of tackling the wooden frame. But, after some thought and conversation with the guys, I've come to the understanding it may be better to start with the dome. Instead of trying to find a dome to fit the exact dimensions of a wooden frame I build, I'll now be able to build the frame to fit the dimensions of the dome. Plus, the dome is WAAAY cool sitting on a workbench!
Right now, there is a parts run with the R2 Builder's Club on the Aluminum Laser Cut Dome. So, I've managed to get my name on the next run and should have a dome in the next couple of months. I also ordered my Rockler Bearings for the dome. For those who don't know, the bearing is what turns the dome. (Here's a shot of both the raw aluminum dome and the Rockler bearing)
Besides the aluminum dome, which seems expensive, what other alternatives did I have? Well, plastic. And honestly, with a bit of work, the plastic can look pretty darn...no, scratch that...damn good! Ed's droid had a plastic dome on it when I saw it for the first time on 1 January, and I forgot it was plastic until he said something. The picture at the top of this blog entry is a shot of his R2, seconds after I first saw him...
...see, not too bad at all, eh?! Well, then I saw Ryan's work on his aluminum dome (below), along with discussing it with Ed (Ed is in the process of upgrading his plastic to aluminum as well). I decided to go with aluminum. So, that's where I am as of 5 January,2009. Stay tuned! This should be an interesting ride!