**Under each picture is the link to the full res picture**
First thing was fixing someone elses radio. The backlight for the car radio was lit using some filimant based tiny light, which burned out, and there was no voltage present after I removed the bulb, so I decided on putting in a LED instead.
For some reason It was near impossible to get the led out, the solder on the PCB refused to melt and let go of the leads of the bulb. Don't know why, but after a few minutes I finally got it out. After the bulb finally got out, I had to fit a tiny set up becuase there was barely any room between the plastic case and the PCB. I used a small basic free form circuit, using the leads of the components to hold them in place. The negative pin of the LED is attached to the hole that was meant for the negative pin of the bulb. Then the positive lead of the LED goes to a resistor, which goes to a wire that I managed to find a hole for, goes to the other side of the PCB, and gets attached to a 5V bus I found on the board.
I found a BGA chip on my desk, and noticed that the solder balls were missing on it, so I decided to do a quick reball. First ever time I did this, so forgive me if I did a horrible job.
Before re balling:
Fluxing up for re balling:
After re balling:
After that, I started to take apart the water chiller thing and see what I could do with it. One thing I noticed was the way the water was cooled and heated.
Big metal pot that is used to cool the water. It was surrounded earlier with Styrofoam and a lot of tape, but I took it off to see what the actual chiller looked like. The tube at the top is a place for water to go if the chamber over flows.
That is how it looks under the top of the unit. Above the picture is the chamber that I just mentioned earlier. From what I see, water flows into the top chamber, gets cooled or left alone, depending on the temperature, and then flows into the lower chamber. On the right of the picture you can see the heating chamber, it is wrapped with some sort of insulating foam to prevent heat from escaping. The top two "ports" are connections to thermostats that sense the temperature of the liquid inside. Under those two "ports" are four connections to what I think is the heating element. I was unable to take apart this chamber, hence so little information about it. The tube that is in the middle of the picture is wrapped in a sort of foam, also for insulating the tube.
What strikes me as the tube being inefficient is the way that water travels. The water is stored in a massive plastic tub onto of the unit, those 55 gallon plastic tank things that are usually see through. Lets say you want cold water. The water from the tub (room temperature) travels to the cooled chamber (cooling itself), then through the heating chamber (heating self), and then into the faucet for cold water. What about if you want warm water? The water travels from the tank (room temperature), into the cooled chamber (cools self), into the warm chamber (warms self), and finally the warm faucet. In both cases the water goes through an unnecessary temperature change.
This is the cooling chamber without some of the stryofoam.
This is another wierd thing I saw that could have been improoved. The only way the coils take away heat is through the tiny contact point between the metal chamber and the copper tubing, which is not much area to transfer heat at all. Why have they not done something else, for example used a heat conductive gel between the tubes and chamber, or something like that to increase area for heat absorbtion? I ran the unit for a few minutes to see the frost on the tubing. I am a sucker for frost, what can I say?
More frost at the base of the compressor. If I understand phase change systems well, if the system is designed well, there should be no frost that close to the compressor. Though I may be wrong about that.
Ahh, never can one have too much frost.
And the last picture, frost building up inside the chamber.
I am planning on getting another chamber around the coils and the original chamber, so I can pour a medium in between the chamber and coils. I am thinking anti freeze or something like that, since air is a horrible heat conductor compared to such liquids. Hopefully that will make the cooling effect more extreme. Overall the unit when chilling uses up 240 watts. I did not get to mess with the heating element of it yet, but while playing around with the unit I did unplug the heating element to avoid things overheating (no water in the unit).
And here is my desk in the aftermath of these things I did today.
Hope you guys enjoyed the pictures.