The R2D2 Build Begins!

     The first installments or stages of this build focus on R2's dome head.  Stages 5-8 introduce parts for this assembly which include a tough resin/plastic frame secured by metal hubs and discs on the top and bottom.  There are a number of features that are mounted to this framework such as the LED logic boards and the holographic projector to name but a few.  So let's tear open the first packets and get started....

  The Head Frame
        Stages 6-8 focus on the development of the dome framework.  The LCD Diagnostic Display has already been assembled in Stage 5 and will be mounted later to the frame.

     The dome chassis or frame consists of black resin/plastic parts firmly secured to the white metal disc or hub using threaded sheet metal screws.  This hub also mounts a sealed bearing in its center thus allowing R2's head to rotate.  You can see the mounted bearing in the picture below left.  In Stage 9 and 10, we have completed the installation of the chassis ring which is mounted to the base of the dome top. Assembly was quick and very straightforward.

       Pictured below left, we have mounted the chassis ring and the last of the resin/plastic frames for the dome top.  There will be more that make up the sides of the dome however. In stages 11 and 12, we added four frame extensions to R2's dome or head assembly.  These are secured once again by machine screws.  A stand for the dome is included in the next stages which will make working on this assembly easier.
       In Stages 14 and 16, we added another baseplate or chassis ring to the larger diameter frame on the dome.  The stand that was included in Stage 21 was assembled and has proven to be very useful in storing the dome when not in use.  Another LED Logic Function Display was included in installment or Stage 21 as well. 
     Pictured above we have assembled the lower base ring and secured ig to the dome or head frame as seen in the picture to the right. We have also completed Stage 25 which includes the last of the head frame components.  The head frame is essentially complete but there is much more to be done before R2's head dome is finished. 

  The LED Processor State Indicator
        R2D2's Processor State Indicator lights blue and red according to what he is doing and what his mood might be.  In the Stage 1 we are fitting the LED cluster into its mount or housing as pictured below. The LED cluster is secured to the plastic mounting followed by the installation of the power cord,  Stage 7 features the assembly of the LCD Diagnostic display.  This module cycles through a complex pattern of red, green and yellow lights regulated by its own LCD control board.  There are only four main components to this particular feature and assembly can be accomplished in about four minutes.  We used our battery pack supplied in Stage Four to make sure everything was operating correctly.

     Pictured below we have began the assembly of the Projector Display Screen by mounting the control board to a plastic mount.  The LED module is mounted on the side of this component.  A short patch cord is then fastened to the back of the control board.  In Stage 30, we have mounted one small plastic lens into the projector housing and two larger lens into the main housing which magnifies the image from the LED chip located inside the module.  The LED projector shows a "holographic" image of Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia.
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