Friday, March 12, 2010

Follow the bouncing Butt

Ahh the opportunity for redemption. After being bested by the chocolate, I needed this one.Force jump from a sitting position. I'm not sure when this would be used, but it is very much like levitation, but with greater acceleration provided by Jedi-flexing the buttocks. A quick tensing of the muscles while levitating will propel you bodily upwards out of your seat.
Three pictures taken 0.22 seconds apart show this technique in action.

With practice, a sufficient altitude may be achieved so that you can unfold your legs, and land in a dignified manner on your feet ready for battle (or running away as the situation requires)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The anguish of defeat

For Captain Kirk, it was the Kobayashi Maru. for Luke Skywalker, it was the tree on Dagobah, for Dylan Hunt, it was the black hole. For every hero, there is an unconquerable foe. A point in their career where they must accept that some things in the universe are not achievable, and accepting defeat and moving on is the only option no matter how painful.

For this Cheddar monk, it was not alien environments, feats of engineering, or battling great armies that has done me in. Nay, it was a mere confection that has brought me to my knees.
A simple task, or so I thought, Create Chocolate dice...child's play, simple sweets, a novelty below the skills of one with such lofty goals such as I.
Alas, it was not to be. While my plans were near perfect, the results were less than envisioned.

I started off with the finest ingredients and tools.
High quality dark chocolate, the finest of synthetic fibre brushes, Laser cheese knife, and assorted confectioners buttons and chips.

Inspecting the chocolate showed quality workmanship in the raw product along with care in packaging. The regular not quite square divisions of chocolate, lovingly crafted just called to my creative side.

Carefully separating the pieces with a kitchen Laser knife, and paring the beveled edges square, then crafting the individual pieces in to a (near) perfect cube and welding the pieced together with melted chocolate provided the foundation for the dice. The micro fractures where the pieces did not quite fit together, were filled with a 70% cocoa dark chocolate slightly softened with a drop of olive oil.

(Base Cube seen with Cheese knife for scale)

The final step was to apply the `dots' of the die, which consisted of white chocolate chips fastened with a glue made from confectioners sugar then refrigerated until hardened.

The dots seem to have migrated during the process, I believe the cause of this to be a combination of planetary axial tilt, continental drift, and a recent Earth quake in South America.

The results, some what less than spectacular, were sufficient to cast a saving throw of five.
Perhaps next time I will be more successful if I Stay away from the dark (chocolate) side.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Freedom of the open road

Cheddar monks are all about freedom. Freedom to eat cheese. Freedom to roam the galaxy. Freedom to explore strange planets, and freedom to race at break neck speeds in home built hot rods.
One such garage or backyard built hotrod is the Pod-Racer. Pairs of two or four over-powered turbine engines linked by power coupling energy fields and a control harness to a small control cockpit (or `pod') which is stripped of every ounce of unnecessary weight. Of course, the first thing on the `unnecessary' list is every last safety feature that might have at one time existed.
Jumping from basic mechanical skills of building a lasersword, to a full sized pod racer is a big step and should be approached with caution.
The first step is to determine the laws of the land where you intend to build and fly your pod racer. Of course if you are on a planet where the cheddar monks enforce the law, you've got it made.
Researching the types of turbine jets and power plants is essential before you start the design phase. knowing all the technical mumble-jumble such as power/lift ratios, control phase delay loops and materials strengths will ensure success of your project.
Design and construction Phase is the most time consuming, You want your vehical to look as impressive as it functions, The psychological conquest of your opponent is the first step of beating them in the race.
Finally once construction and component testing is completed it is time to test all the parts together. Test flights, while great fun, should not be referred to as 'going for a joy ride' (at least not with in the hearing of the cheddar masters).
It's always good to document your process, including any failures, for the cheddar

Full size Youtube video here
Note: YouTube videos load faster and are larger.