Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Knittin' Crap: Starfleet, Tour 2, Medical Missions

Tier Mission Requirements My report
α: Our first priority must be those who were injured - either in the systems failures aboard the ship or in the shuttles that crashed on the surface of the planet. A doctor trained in emergency situations is capable of quickly discerning who needs the most attention at a particular moment, and who can wait for a while before being attended to.

Your Mission: Demonstrate this ability. Make a plan for the tour. Eighteen missions is a lot to take in at once. Set a goal for how many missions you want to accomplish or what projects exactly that you want to finish. Are there deadlines throughout the tour that you need to keep?
Um, I scrawled my tour mission plan on paper. Most sections are filled in, but a few are blank as I await ideas and/or leave spaces for future swaps or gifts. I have no particular order in mind, other than where required for tiered missions, but the Tactical β and γ missions will encompass my main Ravelympics event, with the α mission (swatching and, as I am trying to resize a Japanese sweater pattern by going up in gauge, doing some math), occurring before July 25.
My SFAC JJA mission plan
Special notes: My Medical β mission will be a re-working of my lemon shark, for which I have had pattern requests, so writing the pattern up and posting it to my crappy pattern site will be the Science γ mission.

As always, I am working projects that were already on my to-do list, except for aforementioned emergent swap and gift needs.

Two of the missions will be met by the ST:TOS finger puppets I offered to make for my RL co-irkers Engineering co-irkers co-workers.
β: Dehydration is a major medical problem we will need to watch out for. Until (or even if) we can find a suitable water source, we must ration our limited water supplies.

Your Mission: Craft something inspired by water.
This device acts as an advanced dousing rod, spinning when it is laid over an underground water source. It also acts as an insulator for very small humanoids, with soothing colors and ripples reminiscent of a slow-moving, tree-lined river in what was previously the southeastern United States back on Earth.
Hypno-Baby Blanket
γ: Mental health is just as important as physical health, especially when stranded on a planet like this. In order to prevent becoming overwhelmed by the possibility that we might never leave, it is important to plan ahead and visualize events that will take place after this ordeal is over. Go ahead: Plan that shore leave trip to Risa; think about taking time off to visit your family; have a goal of something you will do.

Your Mission: Make something that is purely for yourself that you can use/wear when we get off this planet. Indulge and make that shawl you’ve been eying for ages; imagine the food you’ll eat or the entertainment you’ll partake in when we work our way out of this mess. (For fun, really do take an evening to yourself … Cook yourself a beautiful meal or pig out on junk food, rent that movie you’ve wanted to see and knit while you watch it. Share your fun “Me” times when you turn in your mission if you like!)
This pullover integrates transporter-amplifying circuitry, causing the flowing color effects. Those amplifiers may help us get off this planet sooner, and once I get shore leave, I can also wear it on the balmy Wrigley's Pleasure Planet, as the special fibers cause micro-eddies, which have a cooling effect.
Lace Saddle Tee

Blanket adapted from Oat Couture pattern
Pullover pattern by Lisa Rowe

Monday, August 20, 2012

Knittin' Crap: Starfleet, Tour 2, Tactical Missions

Shelter is one of the first things we need to get underway. Since we are unaware of the weather conditions on this planet, we should be prepared for anything. Next, we really need to find food. We can do all we want in trying to get off this planet, gathering will comprise the majority of our efforts toward survival. (Once we build a shelter, it’s pretty much done; but we’ll always be needing more food).

Finally, we need to exercise responsible resource management. We must use what we have wisely: While we are trapped on the surface of this planet, sources of new materials are few and far between.

Choose either Option A or Option B.

Option A is a tiered option. Tiered missions must be completed in order; so to move on to the beta mission, you must complete the alpha mission, and to complete the gamma mission, you must complete both beta and alpha. Option A is intended to be ONE large project. It also needs to take a considerable amount of time (more than a month) to complete, similar to Special Assignments.

Tier Mission Requirements My report
α: Create the “building blocks” of a project by gathering your materials and swatching. I have completed the formulation of the fabric prototype for this special garment, designed to help protect us from the strange light radiation we find on this planet.
Ravelwhatsit Project
Details: This is a pullover from a Japanese pattern book (no English and our Universal Translators seem to be on the fritz).

The front section has interlocking bias sections worked by picking up stitches, all done in one piece, to form a zigzag. The pattern is written for one size only, 88cm (34.5”) which, uh, is a bit too small for me. I’ve used a thicker yarn than called for, but to get a fabric I like, my gauge isn’t that much of a improvement -- I get fewer stitches per inch, but more rows per inch. The back and sleeves, knitted flat in stockinette and reverse stockinette, will be fine with the stitch count, and I can simply add rows, but the front is a little more complicated. I plan to increase the stitch and row counts of the bias sections proportionally. Crossing fingers.

The original pattern calls for 1050m (about 1150yd) of yarn. I have 1250yd minus the swatch, which probably won’t be enough. Given that the resulting knit fabric is pretty lightweight, I am considering making it short-sleeved so I can get more wear in the temperate climate in which I live, which would also mean I will probably have enough yarn.

Oh, and this is my Ravellenic Games entry, so given how busy my job is right now, this will be a major challenge to complete. I may take a couple staycation days.

And my cat disagreed with my assessment of the materials I would need, and so added herself to the pile:
Ravelwhatsit Project
ETA: My other cat came by later and usurped the entire project plan:
Spoon's Project Plan
Looks like I’ll be having an awful lot of “help.” I may never finish :P
β: Actually craft the project you gathered materials and swatched for. I have completed the components for the personal radiation shield, and begun assembly, although I did not manage to complete assembly in time for the Intergalactic Whatsit Games.
Almost there, but not quite
γ: Finish your project by weaving ends in, felting it, blocking it, etc. After having to make numerous alterations to the generic standard Starfleet personal radiation shield to get it to work with the materials on hand, making 3 sleeves in case I grew a 3rd arm because I did not have a working personal radiation shield, and having to redo the neck portal stabilization as the material’s wave function kept turning in on itself, I present my completed tactical mission:
Rav Games FO

Pullover pattern adapted from original by りょう (Ryo)

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Knittin' Crap: Starfleet, Tour 2, Diplomatic Missions

Tier Mission Requirements My report
α: An important part of a first contact is to get to know the new race while not directly interfering. If we’re lucky, they might even help us!

Your Mission: Craft a gift to give to an indigenous species. Make something specifically for someone and give it to that person.
This mini-hologram of the venerable Mr Spock should teach the local indigenous species that we come with peaceful intentions.
Live Long and Prosper
This is KnottyKnerd’s prize for her winning June mission report and will be going out in the next inter-ship delivery capsule!
β: It’s possible we might be stuck here for awhile. In ordinary circumstances, ship-board duty – wherein we are all around each other 24/7 – is frequently relieved by shore leave and visits to other ships and space stations. Here - in close quarters, with emotions running high - it is entirely possible that we might get on each other’s nerves now and then!

Your Mission: Get to know your shipmates, so when they are being irritable or difficult, you can give them something that will cheer them up. Craft something inspired by someone specific serving aboard your ship.
As it turns out, many of my shipmates on the Kitchener are also fond of the domesticated Earth species Felis catus. To help perk them up while we are stuck in deep space, I’ve created a small, portable holo-kitty:

Kitten with a keyboard
γ: We need to inform others about the force field, warn them to stay away, and let them know we’re ok for the time being. The shuttles’ communication capabilities aren’t as powerful as the starships’, but perhaps we can still make them work well enough to get a message out to whoever might be near.

Option A: Craft something to boost the signal on the shuttles’ comm systems.
This space-age material is non-planar, with signal-conducting right-angles to help route and amplify comm signals.
Space-age Material
In a pinch, it can also be reconfigured into an insulating device for very, very small humanoids, which will also help reduce noise intereference because they will be less fussy when they’re nice and snug.
Surprised Jacket

Kitty pattern from Japanese book Amigurumi Cats & Friends
Baby Surprise Jacket pattern by Elizabeth Zimmermann