Thursday, 11 June 2009

Wonder if that worked?

Website forms. Aaaaaarrrrgh!
I went to the Royal Mail site, had to register, and set all the details to pay my fee (apparently only £8 of it is customs fee) - but then there was nowhere to go to request redelivery. So, back to the start and I went through the section for a parcel that couldn't be put through the letterbox and nobody was in. This doesn't have anywhere to explain that the fee is paid, that the receipt number is....

Anyway, I'll wait to see if it is delivered on Saturday as requested.

Preparations for the next stage

I bought a cheap frying pan yesterday, but haven't decided whether to sacrifice one of our existing ones or use the shiny new one for the "cooking" of the circuit boards on the gas hob. The new one has a bigger base - what is the biggest size board I'll need to make, I wonder?

TK Maxx sub-total £7 on the ticket, reduced at checkout to £6 something just under the 7.

Also, today I got a Royal Mail card through the door: "Unfortunately we can't deliver your item because there's a fee to pay" - ah ha, that'll be the other electronics from the states then!

The payment due is £16.66, which I can either pay online (apparently), but no details are given, or by affixing the right postage to the card and sending it back to them, or in person if I go to collect the item. I guess I'll try option 1, as I can then elect a delivery day to suit.

I must get on and order some components and solder paste now. I've already learnt (thanks Nophead) that my thermistor I bought isn't good enough. Unfortunately, there is precious little information on the RepRap site about specifics required for the components to go on the circuit boards. I expect a few more errors in my orders (if anyone has a parts list for RadioSpares (RS) suitable for any of the 3rd generation boards, I'd be very VERY grateful....).

I've contacted RS, and despite their terms and conditions, and the fact that their registration form requires a company name, individuals are welcome to order from them. Companies get free delivery, but the rest of us have to pay around a fiver, apparently. Or pick up from a local depot within a couple of hours of ordering - I checked the local (Manchester) one, and discovered it is actually in Stockport - which is where I am! That may be useful, if my walking is up to it, as it's a bit of a way off the nearest bus-route.

Time to update the running total costs: the RRRF store order, which was supposted to be 9.70 actually came to £9.69 according to my credit card bill with no extra costs, the Makerbot order came to £58.11, with now an extra £16.66 import tax and fees .

Running total (excluding last set of washers and screws from B&Q in May) = £262.88
(Can I say "ouch" now?)

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Exciting stuff

I've just received my first shipment from the States. This one comes from the RepRapResearchFoundation store. Which reminds me, I forgot to mention that my last little motor was supposed to be "signed for" - but the postie just shoved the Jiffy-type bag through the letterbox. Today's delivery was even more bizarre; I was sat upstairs when I heard the post being delivered. Later on, I went to the fron door to get the post, and planned to take it outside to read over lunch, only there in the open back door way, was more post: envelopes and this parcel.
Today's comes with a customs declaration label stating it to be "sample engineering research materiasl" (sic). The sender's signature is printed. I would have expected that would have to be a signature. Zachary sounds very proper.
Parcelling has been cushioned with, I presume, the US version of Yellow Pages. Good idea. (But a category for "syrups"?) I think this paper tears white, so we can recycle it here.

I ordered 3 opto endstop PCBs, and I seem to have 6. I'll email and see what they say. Not that I mind having 6...

Goods were ordered on 18th May. I had my email notification of despatch on Thursday 28th.
USPS mailing office online postage date is 27th, Royal Mail customs cleared date is 31st, arrived today (2nd June). That's 15 days all told, with no extra customs charges on this one.