Brother-proofing: the revenge

Last year I decided to revive a childhood game, so brother-proofed my brothers Christmas card by welding it into a steel envelope; this year in retaliation he presented me with this:
The outermost layer

It had various sharp pieces of wire poking through the parcel tape and smelt strongly of epoxy resin. He handed me a pair of gloves and told me to open it outdoors.

Removing the tape revealed layers of wire mesh and fibreglass matting, both set into resin.
The first resined layer

Luckily they were not fully saturated, which allowed me to first get hold of the wire and wrench it free.
Wire defeated
Then grab hold of the exposed matting and tear through it using a pair of pliers.

Inside the fibreglass was a bunch of gravel; within, the end of the next layer was peeking out.
The gravel layer

A good, hard yank broke this inner package free and I smashed most of the gravel off with a claw hammer. At this point, Chris helpfully informed me that what I was looking at was a heavy duty trauma bandage (soaked in yet more bloody fibreglass resin).
It's getting more card-shaped

Trying to open this with pliers was futile; to get in I had to split the seam using a bolster and a lump hammer.
The split seam

The inner layers of bandage were not soaked in resin, so I took a knife to them. I did put a couple of nicks in the edge when I hit the strands of garden wire that he had embedded, but got through in the end.
Getting closer

Inside the parcel tape, was a layer of bubble-wrap, that my knife made short work of.
I can see the envelope!

I was finally able to slide out my slightly crumpled but intact card, now wrapped only in its envelope and a vacuum seal bag.
Almost there

The card itself contained this message:
The message
While he may have won this round (I was too busy with my new job to do anything), expect another update about this time next year.

One thought on “Brother-proofing: the revenge

  1. Jeffrey Ohlson

    Mike, Great website and very cool projects. On the welder, for varying the welding current, take an mot core with no windings on it, and wind 5 turns, loop out for a tap, 5 turns, tap 5 turns, tap, etc. etc. till you have 5 or 6 sections. Place this adjustable “choke” in series with the welding rod lead. By varying the number of turns the welding current goes through, you will vary your welding current. Use a wire size large enough for the highest current the welder will supply. The finer current control you desire, the more taps and the fewer turns seperating each tap. You will need to experiment with the total amount of turns, which will determine the lowest welding current you want to weld with. A choke will lower the current without disipating wattage or reducing the voltage at the arc.

    If you are interested, I’ll explain how you can use two matching MOT’s (they must be identical, with the primary windings still intact.) adding the reactance winding, and use them as a saturable reactor, and with a DC power supply, can vary your welding current from minimum to maximum with the turn of a knob.

    My current welder, I made aprox. 45 years ago, after several experimental ones that I ended up giving to people, has a 1.75 KVA transformer core with a 120vac primary, a 55vac secondary wound with #4 alum. wire. I use a saturable reactor that I wound myself. I have two ranges of current. With the turn of a knob, I can vary from aprox. 10 amps to 125 amps , and on the high tap 90 amps to about 200 amps. If I come straight off the transformer (no choke) I get about 250 amps, but with a very limited welding time. Most of the welding I do is 125 amps or less.


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