R5's new dome bearing tape

I don't know why, but after a while of using the dome, the rubber motor wheel slips and won't turn the dome. A reverse spin usually sorts this.......no idea why as the wheel is a tight fit??

But also you get kids try spinning the dome, which can be annoying as then others start doing it and R5's usually trapped so can't drive away...backup... is the 'scream' sound effect lol.

Now, this tape is the anti-slip stuff you find fitted on steps etc. It's grippy like sandpaper, but not as course, plus it comes with adhesive backing which (as you'd expect) is good sticky stuff.
R5-D4 bearing wheel tape
And of course, it had to be Red......well, orangey red lol
I test wrapped the tape around the inside edge first and cut to length. Next up was applying to the inside edge of the bearing face.

R5-D4 bearing wheel tape

I started and unwrapped the adhesive backing tape.

R5-D4 bearing wheel tape
 I fed the tape/bearing around as I applied it. The wheel liked this.

R5-D4 bearing wheel tape
And here it is all wrapped up.
Next was to trim off the excess tape. Yes I could of trimmed to size before applying, but as it was my first time using this tape, this way you can do without any issues with messing up fitting and have excess tape (on the overhang).

R5-D4 bearing wheel tape
Trimming off the excess
And here it is finished.

I was asked if the rubber wheel will wear....it should be ok, imagine a car tyre on the road, it wears through use. This should be good as well as it grips better and there's no slippage.


Solo - 3D printed trading card display

After designing the display for holding the four Solo cards from the Odeon cinema.
(see past post)

I wanted to have a stand to show off, individually, the four Astromech Droid trading cards, with a single Solo card. Three have their own cards, R2-F1P, R2-S8 & R5-PHT.

R2-F1P, R2-S8 & R5-PHT.
There is another astromech seen in the film, but it doesn't have a trading card. The fourth droid (see picture below) are also the droids from the Disney Droid Factory, toy set.

So I used the slot size I had used on the previous stand & then measured up the cards. I display my cards in protective plastic sleeves, so these are the dimensions I used for the trading card slot. The above three droid cards are vertical, the final card, of R5-232, who doesn't have a card like the above, can be seen on base card no.57. This card features an Imperial Stormtrooper, is a horizontal style.

I'll add some paint to the text to make it stand out
This was a test print and it lifted off the bed a bit, but it worked and the cards fitted well.
I then redesigned the slot to fit the vertical cards.

I've added these 3D stl files to my Thingiverse account.


My Thingiverse page - for 3D design work - UPDATE

Just a small post to say that I've added some more work to my Thingiverse page.

These include:

  • The 'Fake electronics panel'.
  • And the components I had created that would eventually be combined into it.
  • The Holo Projector ring (not a standard component) I made to cover up the Holo securing screw heads.

All these are free to use. They maybe of use to you or help with other projects.
If you do use, it would be great to see, my Thingiverse page is => here


R5's sound system - maintenance work

I was never happy with the 12 Channel remote controller as it's relays were ALL over the place, not as you'd expect, fitted to the board 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 etc. Plus the fact that some of the relays don't even work!!

Sometimes some of the sounds don't play either, even tho they do when on the test bench.

One sound that didn't work was the Bad Motivator 'pop-bang' effect. This I noticed when at MCM London the other week.

So I pulled out the board and give it an inspection/maintenance once over. This is where I found one of the wires had actually broken.....The Motivator 'pop-bang' sound effect.

With the actual motivator only recently re-fitted, I didn't realise it was down to this break.

So a quick re-wire and all's now working again.

Future Upgrade: I keep looking at replacing the large board with a smaller 'digital' version of the 12 Channel unit. It has no relays, just a chip!
Digital chip version

12 channel 's still
Mentioned this to Simon B recently at MCM London, as he also had problems with the relay version. This 'chip' version is on my list of upgrades to try out!

My R5-D4 Patch

Patches are heading off, all over the world.

The majority have gone to Astromech builders,
from the UK, America, Spain & the furthest so far....Australia!
Patch (black boarder) and the smaller sticker version
Also sold to non astromech builders,
but who are fans of R5-D4.

I've almost sold out of the stickers,
but think I'll order some more of these.

Patch price is £5.00
Postage worldwide is £2.00 (UK just 50p)

If you would like one, follow the link below to my

James_R5D4 Instagram

interested?? Then send me a DM,

If your not on Instagram, follow this link to R5-D4's Facebook page

Solo - The Official Guide Book (no spoilers)

This post has no film spoilers so its safe to carry on reading.

With events & family life, and the fact I can't stand waiting for things I've ordered lol, I'd decided I would go out and buy the book....when I had time....

....well, after seeing a post that ASDA that they were selling the book with a reduced price, £8. I knew now was the time to go buy it! So last Friday lunchtime I did just that.

That's another one added to the book collection & my youngest loved reading up on all the stuff she saw in the film....and some stuff she missed!

MCM London - Sunday 27th May - UK R2D2 Builders Club

Day two for early starts and a long drive up to London. The last time I was here was 2016, for Celebration Europe! That was THE best event I have ever been too!

Checkout my past posts on the event reports start here

Easy drive up and around the M25, which brings you right round to the Excel turn-off. Think I actually passed the hotel I previously stayed in back in 2016. Once cleared with security I parked up and unloaded R5 with the help of fellow R2D2 builder Sam Prentice. We set up next to the 501st. We were joined by Paul Stidston (spotter) & Simon Battell with his R2 Boba Fett painted droid.

The early bird doors opened and it wasn’t long before people found us lol.

There was lots to see but thankfully the event wasn’t as packed as Saturday. Paul mentioned this as the crowds and the temperature inside the event the previous day were overwhelming!

We went for a drive around the event,
R5 off on his travels...........
Afternoon myself & Paul went to get a cuppa, 20mins later and umpteen photos later lol, we arrived, got drinks and found a corner table to sit down. (Having being stood up nearly all day, as per usual). People wanted photos of R5, so I drove him away from as a short distance. Still in visual and vocal range lol. This was a good laugh as people would stop, chat, take photos with him & R5 would follow people etc and people would be trying to look around to see who was operating him.

R5's transmitter started beeping, so we headed back.....eventually, through the photos lol.

Got back and Brain Herring & Derek Arnold popped over, to catch up with Lee (who unfortunately could be there the weekend). We had a group chat and laugh about recent events lol & they were both kind enough to have a group photo with us and the droids.

There was plenty more crowed entertaining. Including R5 & R2 squabbling over Liz lol... R5 wasn't happy about R2 getting her attention.

Come five o'clock, the crowds started to thin out. So we started to pack up and made our way through the leaving crowds back to our cars. For me it was then a long drive back to Bristol. It was a good day and as always lots of fun.


Solo - Odeon cinema card 3D printed display stand

I had a spare Solo card from the recent Milton Keynes event, so took it into work for my desk area. This got me thinking, why not 3D print a stand for it??

Then a fellow builder had been going to see Solo multiple times and had been asked to pick up the card set for other members lol. So I thought, why not make a stand to hold all four cards.
Solo a star wars story
So I drew up a simple display stand in AutoCAD Inventor. Unfortunately my works 3D printer bed is too small to print as one piece, so I had to cut it up into two. Which they then snapped together, for a perfect fit.

Here's the first piece with two cards slotted in place.
Solo a star wars story
They are a nice snug fit, not loose, but also not to tight that you have to force them in. There was a bit of lifting off the bed on this first print.

Here's an above view.
Solo a star wars story

Then it was on with printing the second side.
Solo a star wars story
The simple, copy and save as second side lol. They snap together perfectly, more luck than expert engineering tho :D

And here are the tow pieces clicked together with just the one card, forgot to bring in the others to work.
Solo a star wars story

I kept the one piece version as well,
so will be posting up both onto my
account if anyone wants to display their cards. Thanks for viewing.


Solo @ Milton Keynes - Saturday 26th May 2018

Early rise for the drive up to Milton Keynes Odeon IMax cinema, for the day's event.
Myself with R5, Mike with his M80 Glynn with his R2-PHT & Adam with his R2. We were joined my fellow R2D2 builders Chris W & later, Stuart B. Joker Squad were kitted up and ready to welcome the first catch of the day lol. Lots of people passed through and had their pictures taken. As usual some were a bit surprised to see us all. Chris has posted lots up on Instagram & also on the R2 Facebook page.


Mid morning myself and Mike were allowed to store our droids safely in the projection room, where we also got the low down on how it all works. Then we went in to watch Solo, in IMax 3D!

There was a few more things spotted the second time of watching lol But for us, the biggest surprise was after the film had finished! Can’t say any more than that lol.

After the film, we powered up the droids and headed back down to the entrance foyer, where we rolled them around for photos and mischief with parents and kids alike lol.

We picked up some of the Solo cards, as these were free.

Later in the afternoon, we all got together for a group photo.

I had to say my goodbyes around 5pm as had to get back, for an early night, ready for my next event on Sunday.

The collection on the day raised for
(Children's Hospice)
was over £300.00!


Trading Cards 2018 - UPDATE

Here are two more cards that I have got hold of, which are of & have ref to R5-D4 on.
I found these on eBay, I can't even remember when I got them now, and forgot to post up.

It's related to event's on Tatooine & R5 is just at the bottom of the drawing. This was created by Katie Cook  Instagram @katiecandraw back in 2013.

The second is an R5-D4 Evolution card from 2001.

Sorry, not the best photo's due to the chrome effect on the card front.
Here's the rear: