Assembly of Scott Sanderson's Brain Kit
I received the Brain Kit on March 6, 2001. In the days leading up to March 6, I spent many hours practicing my soldering. Thanks Scott for answering all my questions about the materials used. You helped quite a bit.

Scott Sanderson recommends using magnetic clamps. But I did not have a surface to use the magnetic clamps on. So, I decided to use a jig instead. My jig was constructed out of 1/2" plywood. I used the bottom plate of the Brain traced the outline onto the plywood. I then used a jig saw and cut out the template.

I then followed the instructions that came with the Brain Kit and made the proper bends. After all the bends were made, the back plate fit nicely into the jig. I then cut blocks of wood and placed them inside the jig. These block will hold the bottom plate at the proper height for soldering. The bottom plate was placed into the jig. I then put the front plate into the jig. I was ready to solder.

Flux The recommended flux is #5 flux available at Home Depot. Unfortunately, I could not find this flux. I used WaterFlow 2000 flux and it worked nicely.

Fire warning Since the jig is made of wood, you want to make sure you don't catch the jig on fire. I wrapped Aluminum Foil around the edges of the jig and that did a nice job of keeping the wood from burning.

Soldering The next step is to start soldering the bottom plate to the back and front plates. Since the jig held things together tightly, this was a fairly easy process. But, don't rush. I elected to start at the back and work up each side to the front. The last piece was the front plate.

Cut blocks of wood to hold the top ring in place while soldering. Again, I worked from the back to the front.

Light Bar The light bar is formed into a triangle from three pieces of 6" brass. Each end was soldered together. Then, I drilled a hole in each end of the Light Bar and mounted three 6/32 brass machine screws and held each in place with brass nuts. I then placed the Light Bar into the brain and soldered the heads of the machine screws onto the bottom plate.

Glass Bead Blasting I highly recommend you have your brain glass bead blasted. It makes cleanup a snap and it only cost about $25.00. It also gives the primer coat a nice surface for painting.

Wiring Oh what a task. I spent two days getting a wiring scheme that I was happy with. The toughest part of the wiring is making sure you don't open a circuit. The problem that I had was when I put the top plate on the brain, it would open the circuit -- causing the lights to go out.

I had to re wire the "up-lights". These are the lights that stick up through the top plate. I think I might try insulating the bottom of the top plate with some type of plastic or rubber. That way, if one of the wires does touch the top plate, the circuit will still function.

I'll have photos of the lighted brain by the end of the week.

Painting The last step will be painting. I should start painting over the weekend.
Click to enlarge

The jig


Brain in jig


Brain in jig


Brain in jig


Light bar


Light bar in brain


Glass bead blasted


Glass bead blasted


Primed