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View Full Version : Pixel matrix Construction - ?? Help holes rotating along the PVC pipe when drilling??



T.D.Sutton
09-19-2017, 04:53 AM
How much rotation in the holes from one end to the other can be tolerated from a viewers perspective when building a Pixel Matrix out of PVC pipe. I am having difficulty keeping the holes in a perfectly straight line no matter how finicky I am in setting up the drilling jig using Matt Johnson's method. The setup planned is for 50 bullet Pixels at 2" spacing per pipe, 20 strands high for the matrix.

Terry

tgodfrey
09-19-2017, 11:29 PM
I can't answer your question about rotation tolerance but I understand your problem. I spent this past weekend in the garage playing with the drill press and having the same problem as you not being able to keep the holes straight enough over a 10 foot pvc pipe. I ended up ordering some chromaTrim from boscoyo since I need to order other stuff from them and will just attach that to the pvc for my roofline, windows and doors. Not sure if they ship to New Zealand.

Another way would be to look into picking up some sheets of coroplast, cutting them into strips (say 2 inch strips), drilling holes and then attaching to the pvc. Should be easier to drill the flat coroplast in a straight line. I did this with some columns I have to make some vertical matrix's. I cut the sheets to 12 inch sections and drilled 10 holes horizontal with 45 rows vertical. Not perfect but I'm happy with it.

jerry72
09-20-2017, 01:05 AM
Biggest issue i had was rotating. the rotating was due to the hole being larger than the dowel used for spacing. I had to make a new dowel at 13mm to match the holes, after that i no longer had any rotation issues.

T.D.Sutton
09-20-2017, 10:28 AM
Many thanks gentlemen for your helpfull comments, I will not say I have cured my problems but I think I have now got it under control to a point that I am "Almost Happy" with the results.

The first step was to do as was suggested and draw a line along the pipe to provide a guide as to the start position, and the other idea was to do as suggested and drop a piece of, in my case an 18 inch length of fiberglass rod, through the second hole, once it was clear of the jig and let it "flop" back and forth providing a visual vertical cue if the holes were rotating. I found I needed to provide a constant rotating load on the pipe as I progressed along it. The fiberglass rod was salvaged from the bendable frame from a defunct hikers "Pup Tent", I have found the stuff very usefull for all sorts of things in my display.

The suggestion about "Peg" size is interesting because I had to turn mine down to about 11.6 or so mm because the holes that my 12 mm step drill were making were decidedly under-size and would not go over the peg, no matter how hard I tried to push it!! The other inconsistency I encountered was with the first hole in the pipe that requires being drilled right through to start the process off. I found it rather difficult to get the registration correct unless I forced the step drill slightly further through the pipe than was necessary to produce a dimple or mark on the other side of the pipe to use as a drilling reference. If I got the start wrong, it took several pairs of holes before the positioning was accurate, and consistent.

This has turned into a somewhat more expensive exercise than was planned, because I have so far about $120.00 worth of PVC pipes with holes in them that I really cannot use and will need another trip to the Big Box store to re-stock :-( I have re-drilled some of the rotated ones at 90 Deg to the original holes to test the methodology of the drilling system, and if I am very carefull/lucky I may be able to salvage some lengths if I cover the incorrect holes with tape before painting, I don't think the viewing public will notice the covered up holes at a viewing distance of 30+ feet. My "OCD" doesn't like doing this sort of fudging though!!!!!

Many thanks again,

Terry

jerry72
09-20-2017, 12:03 PM
WHen i made my first hole, i did not use the step bit, i used an 1/8" drill bit, drilled the first hole through the front, then looked through the end of the pipe to see that the bit went straight through. Then i was able to use the step bit to finish it off then placed the pipe in the jig.

didjareally
09-20-2017, 05:18 PM
I used a forstner bit and drilled all the way through the pipe in one step, instead of flipping the pipe for the 2nd hole. I found that when flipping the pipe is when I was getting the spiraling issue. After building the matrix, I had regrets of using the pvc as it was a pain all the way around imo. Instead I plan to rebuild it, probably using the home depot deer fencing to hold the pixels.

jerry72
09-20-2017, 09:18 PM
I used a forstner bit and drilled all the way through the pipe in one step, instead of flipping the pipe for the 2nd hole. I found that when flipping the pipe is when I was getting the spiraling issue. After building the matrix, I had regrets of using the pvc as it was a pain all the way around imo. Instead I plan to rebuild it, probably using the home depot deer fencing to hold the pixels.

You should order one from Boscoyo, he will do custom spacing, got mine set at 1-7/8" spacing.

didjareally
09-20-2017, 10:18 PM
You should order one from Boscoyo, he will do custom spacing, got mine set at 1-7/8" spacing.

the chromamesh? yeah maybe, the deer fencing is so much cheaper though