Randim Stackum & Wrackem Inc

For discussion of the issues faced when building a model or layout - how to replicate wood, what glues to use, exactly how much weathering can a Gnat take, a good source of detailing accessories - you get the picture, I'm sure.

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Postby AndyA » Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:48 am

:!: The "grabber" bit it might be more use on Andy's "Cuddle" as a tub extractor/loader.
Got your ears on Andy :?:


I really don't gnow whather to say "thanks" or to curse you. Firstly, for anyone who doesn't know, Mindstorms was what gave rise to the Cuddle project in the first place.

Secondly, the video is a great example of how much fun this stuff can be and also for me a reminder of the heady days consulting for a mobile phone company on home automation. If we wanted to go get a pager, an internet ready server on a SIMM chip (TiNi) and a cheap camera to try make a webcam that could be stuck on a window and accessed via WAP (anyone remember that?) the money came out of a petty cash box and we went and did it. :) :twisted:

I watched it several times because I was having difficulty following hte commentary and their enthusiasm reminded me of the U Utrecht team that built an internet clock using a Mindstorms set to make a clock with moving hour and minute hands, then pointed a webcam at it. Good job my German isn't better, because otherwise I'd have missed the clever bit about the grabber (intentional or not on their part. :) but I think deliberate since I don't see it in the earlier prototype.)

If you look closely at "it starts to work", there's a certain amount of play in the grab head as it runs in and out of the chassis. This actually reduces the number of outputs required by one, allowing the use of the light sensor as well, with a standard Mindstorms without any of the multi i/o kludges that are floating around. (Anyone who's looked at my Yard of Straight Track will recognise the colour combinations :)

I'm not sure if this can be used with a tippler, but I'm on the case. :)

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Postby AndyA » Tue Jun 10, 2008 8:25 am

Okay, dupe post again. This time, I got a white screen of death yesterday (Monday 09 June) at 09:30. Backtracked and left the window open, but uised a new session to check the 'box this morning. No post. So, I submitted again, got 'invalid session' as expected, the resubmitted and immediately got a duplicate post. I'll copy this into 'error messages'.

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Postby Oztrainz » Wed Jul 23, 2008 3:06 am

Hi all,
A quick progress report, construction the pallet racks was completed last night.
At present the racks are under static load test. So far so good - the top deck has not met the bottom deck. :D Photos coming later
John Garaty
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Postby Oztrainz » Sun Aug 03, 2008 10:21 am

Hi all,
here are some photos of the completed, but as yet unpainted pallet racks.
The boss is relieved that the racks have hung together during stress testing.
The fork trucks are lined up ready to commence unloading once the drivers get back from their break.
Image
and a closer view,
Image
The backscene has to grow another storey, with a landing over one or both of the doors. Work continues on the rolling stock.
John Garaty
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Postby dr5euss » Sun Aug 03, 2008 10:38 am

The variety makes for a really interesting backdrop, John; nice one 8)

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Postby Steve Bennett » Sun Aug 03, 2008 10:58 am

Looking good John, makes for an interesting setting in it's own right. Should make a great little showpiece with the forklifts and train adding to the spectacle aswell.
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Postby hartleymartin » Sun Aug 03, 2008 1:26 pm

It looks like an interesting layout. Moreso for me, as I drove a forklift as part of my old job unloading about 1 tonne worth of paper or drinks, depending which day it was! You'd be shocked just how quickly an experienced forklift driver operates!
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Postby Glen A » Sun Aug 03, 2008 9:16 pm

Very effective John.

I can see you are going to have a lot of fun operating it.

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Postby Jon Randall » Sun Aug 03, 2008 9:31 pm

Great work John.
A real operator's layout
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Postby Oztrainz » Sat Aug 23, 2008 1:11 pm

Oztrainz wrote:
The r/c forklift runs on 6VDC. There are 4 AAA batteries hidden under the driver's seat in a concealed compartment.

The r/c forklifts as they are not really controllable in small spaces. The smallest amount of travel forwards/ backwards I can get using the existing controller is about 10-20mm forwards and 20-30mm backwards. The smallest amount of raise/lower I can reliably get is about 10mm. This may be too coarse a limit for such a small layout. My feeling is that the minimum movements should be at least less than 1/2 of these distances for controllable operations in small spaces.

I found the following wires under the circuit board that is exposed once you get the body off.

Wires from the circuit board to the motors underneath:
Red & Black - forward/reverse
Blue & White - Left/right - is an electric motor diving a worm gear driving the steering rack with spring return to centre off
Green and yellow - up/down - is an electric motor driving a winch with thread attached on the other end to the forkplate.
With a DC multimeter across each of these pairs of terminals shows +ve for when switched one way and -ve when switched the other.

I am thinking about cutting in some small resistors in across each of the red/black and green/yellow pairs under the circuitboard to reduce the speed of the motor(s) and hence hopefully the amount of over-run.


Hi all,
Well Plan A didn't work all that well for the forward /reverse. Motor current draw was measured at approx 100mA. I cut in a 100K Ohm resistor and the traction drive motor didn't go. Worked OK when I bridged the resistor out - Hmm- go back to Gnatterbox and re-read Doc's comments.

DRAT - I should have got some lower value resistors - NO K required :( I could just as well have wired in an OFF switch rather that a resistor with that high a value. :x
Gnow for Plan B - wait for electronics shop to open tomorrow morning and go get some "ordinary" ohm resistors :oops:

I think I'll leave the hoist part alone until I have the traction part sorted....

Pallet loads have been finalised and hot-glued to their respective timber pallets. Ths was done to prevent loose loads being left scattered all over the layout by inept train and forklift drivers. The pallet loads are significantly heavy at 80 to 150 grammes each. Some of the planned loads have had to be split to give more workable loads. With loads this weight the steering on the radio control forklifts is almost non-existent. REDESIGN REQUIRED to get more weight into the model conterweight at the back of the forklifts. Gnot much room there - thinking cap is now firmly in place..
John Garaty
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Postby Prof Klyzlr » Sat Aug 23, 2008 2:08 pm

Dear John,

RE Resistors

If you measured 100milliamps (0.1 amps) on the motor(s),

then E= I X R says:

6 Volts = 0.1amps X Resistor value in ohms.

= 60 Ohms

This means that the motors have an inherrent internal resistance of 60 ohms.

you need to ADD resistance to that initial 60 ohm load, to reduce the overall current available to the motor(s)

Lower the current, and you lower the available speed/torque at the traction motor.

It's late and my brains fuzzy, but here's some maths...


120Ohm total resistance
(Motor @ 60 Ohms + "slowdown resistor" value at 60ohms),

gives you only 0.05 amps,
(IE HALF what you measured the motor at "normally")

170Ohms TOTAL gives 0.035 amps,

220Ohms TOTAL gives 0.027 amps,

and 330Ohms TOTAL gives approx 0.020amps

SO, I'd reccomend picking up a handful of 47, 68, 100, and maybe 150 ohm resistors for "Mix N Match" testing.

Now, Resistors current-handling capability is rated in Watts.

Watts = Volts X Amps

Ergo, in a WORST case scenario, a stalled motor could require

6Volts X 0.2 Amps = 1.2 Watts

A 1Watt resistor is pretty big,
and you need 1 per motor.

However, 1 Watt resistors are well within "normal" range of available components.

OK, so assuming we need 1 Watt-capable resistors,
(The wattage of the resistor must meet or exceed the expected demand from the motor),

AND we want a variety of values between 100 and 330 Ohms,
here's what you need...

Dick Smth Part #s for 1Watt Resistors

Value : Part # : Color band code

47Ohm : R1442 : Yellow - Purple - Black - Gold
68Ohm : R1446 : Blue - Grey - Black - Gold
100Ohm : R1450 : Brown - Black - Brown - Gold
120Ohm : R1452 : Brown - Red - Brown - Gold
150Ohm : R1454 : Brown - Green - Brown - Gold

all of these are AUD$0.10 ea,
so you should be able to pick up a representative ISO/EU specification "handful" without breaking the bank... :wink:

RE Weight

Gotta say, my first reaction is
(assuming we are talking about the "semi scale" 4 wheel fork,
and not the 3 wheeled Tamiya "Trike" fork),

it primarily needs weight over the rear "steer" wheels to force it to turn when directed, Yes?

Now, for a GAS powered fork,
(That LPG style GAS, not what a US bod calls petrol/petroleum/"Gasoline" :wink: )

isn't there meant to be a dirty great big LPG tank on the rear deck, or hung from the cab cage?

Make one out of styrene tube and fill it with lead shot, or even better, find a whitemetal casting for an LPG cylinder,and that should go some way to "keeping the steer wheels on the ground"... :D

Remember that most prototypeforks have a heavy cast weight over those rear steer wheels
1 - to keep them on the ground
and
2 - to counteract the weight on the forks

The model forklift doesn't have that weight, but if there's room between the model steer mech and the rear of the body casting, some more pourable lead may need to be glued inside the body to "bulk up" that Faux weight casting... :wink:

Just thinking out loud....
Happy Modelling,
Aim to Improve,
Prof Klyzlr

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Postby Oztrainz » Sat Aug 23, 2008 11:36 pm

Thanks Prof,
I'm off to Tricky Dicky's as soon as they have their doors open this morning.

It looks like my forkies will gnow run on LPG after their "conversion". Large capacity gas tanks are being fitted to allow for full shift operation.
(Well that's my excuse :wink: )
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Postby Willow Creek Traction » Sun Aug 24, 2008 3:48 pm

Oztrainz wrote:It looks like my forkies will gnow run on LPG after their "conversion". Large capacity gas tanks are being fitted to allow for full shift operation.
Hey, it's something that's done!

(My dad used to call Pres. Richard Nixon "Tricky Dick": he have a chain of electronics stores these days?)
later, Forrest Today's scientists have substituted mathematics for experiments, and they wander off through equation after equation, and eventually build a structure which has no relation to reality. -- Nikola Tesla, July, 1934

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Postby Prof Klyzlr » Sun Aug 24, 2008 11:05 pm

Dear Forrest,

Yep, check

http://www.dse.com.au

and for their founder, Richard Smith,
(who happens to be a 2'gauge tramway fan, and has his own diesel and steam loco running on his private "estate tramway"),

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick_Smith
Happy Modelling,

Aim to Improve,

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Postby Oztrainz » Mon Oct 27, 2008 2:12 am

Hi all,
Time for a "progress" (or lack of) report.
The pallet racks are now painted.
The electronic "board" from the Bachmann tram has been modified to power a red flashing LED for near the drivers cabin of the self-propelled flatbed. It also now powers some souped up "headlights" in place of the small LED's that provided the tram's original headlights.
Construction of the body of the self-propelled flatbed in plastic has commenced after several mock-ups in paper.
The wiring loom to the Tamiya forklift has been tidied and provision has been made for a flashing red LED to be attached to the top of the roll cage.

Current projects:
more experimentation is still required to get finer control of the hoist motor on the radio-controlled forklift trucks
modify the most recent arrivals to match the testbed forkie
add additional weight under rear of radio controlled forkies
attach flashing red LED to Tamiya forkie
modification of the second tramcar board for a flashing red LED and headlights for the battery loco
build battery electric loco - mockups now look OK
finalise layout of train controller and build it (needs to be able to control track access doors as well)
build and weight flatcars
build a test bed for the track access doors.

Still "loads" more to do....
John Garaty
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Postby Prof Klyzlr » Mon Oct 27, 2008 3:29 am

Dear John,

Check http://home.cogeco.ca/~rpaisley4/556Stall08.html ,

and scroll down to "Alternating Input Circuit"

One of these per "door" would allow
- a single "push button" per door on the throttle

- only require 3 wires Throttle <> layout
(GND, and 1 "switch line" per door)

- allow easy extra "trigger buttons" to be added anywhere on the layout
("Administrator" door triggers on the rear of the layout,
in case someone closes the door on a moving train???)

- use of high reliability/slow motion "stall motor" drives for the door mechs
(Think Tortoise, or Micro-Mark "SwitchTender"
http://www.ares-server.com/Ares/Ares.as ... t&ID=83201 )


Alternatively, you could use
- 1 X DPDT toggle switch per "door"

- wired up just like a "reversing switch" on a throttle

- taking DC from the parent throttle circuit

- and using 4 wires to get the "door signal" back to the layout

The 2nd option is maybe "simpler",
but it uses more wires,
and may affect the operation of the throttle circuit proper.
(Esp if you are NOT using motors which are designed for stall-type operation...)

Just thinking out loud....
Happy Modelling,

Aim to Improve,

Prof Klyzlr

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Postby Oztrainz » Wed Oct 29, 2008 10:21 pm

Oztrainz wrote:Hi all,
The wiring loom to the Tamiya forklift has been tidied and provision has been made for a flashing red LED to be attached to the top of the roll cage.

Current projects:
attach flashing red LED to Tamiya forkie


The Tamiya forkie is now growing headlights (2 by 1600mcd white LED's)
Photos coming once I get the "lid" with the LEDs stitched on and the driver and new cab floor fitted.
John Garaty
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Postby Oztrainz » Thu Nov 06, 2008 10:07 am

Hi all, I tried some dusk photography to try and show off the Tamiya forkie's new lighting rig

First up is view from front right - unfortunately this doesn't really show off the the headlights but I managed to catch the flashing red LED alight.
Image

Perhaps a better view is this one from the high left front....
Image

Here's a closer look at the forkie's roof with flasher and headlights attached.
Image

The next photo shows how the headlights pick up the vertical rack supports when you are correctly lined up. They also pick out the back wall of the middle level.
Image

And here's the view that you don't want to see from the ground - blazing headlights and too much ironmongery in the way for the driver to see you in front of him.....
Image
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Postby chris stockdale » Thu Nov 06, 2008 11:47 am

Coo ---- L


8)



cheers

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Postby michael » Thu Nov 06, 2008 3:45 pm

Looking pretty neat John, I take it that the wires are temporary. looks like you need to add a lintle to those bricks in the background :wink:
Regards Michael
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Postby Oztrainz » Thu Nov 06, 2008 7:58 pm

michael wrote:Looking pretty neat John, I take it that the wires are temporary.


No - the wires to the forkie are fixed to the control box hiding behind the backscene. This is the remote controlled forkie. It will probably be the "weapon of choice" for this layout as it is more agile and controllable than the r/c forkies have been so far in a confined space

michael wrote: looks like you need to add a lintle to those bricks in the background :wink:


This is the trial unit. The final backscene will be double the length and it has to grow another storey with an office (more Macton - thanks again) and a landing over at least one of the doors (both if I can time it right :wink: ). The landings should help camourflage the joins between storeys. Joins on the same level will be hidden by the pallet racks. :wink:

Next move is to build the SuperH first then the battery loco and flatcars. SuperH gets the nod as it is higher than the battery electric, so that I can accurately build my opening doors without decapitating drivers or warning lights. Warning lights and headlights are now sorted for the SuperH. Plastic welding has commenced - Photos to come soon.

The test rig for the doors is under way using straight DC and limit switches to prove the motor and mounting mechanisms first. Control circuitry will be built once I prove to myself that I can get things to move and stop reliably on demand.
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Postby Oztrainz » Tue Nov 18, 2008 1:55 pm

Hi all, time for another update....
This time a first mockup of the full size backscene. Here's a teaser
Image

Here's the full backscene - Thanks Michael
Image

Still to go in are the sliding track access doors and tracks under the yet-to-be-built walkways at the doors on the backscene. Track access lights will be mounted on the handrails of the walkways. The doors are yet to be labelled as "Office" and "Crib Room" Access lights will be red unless the track access doors are fully open

Here's a look at the Tamiya forkie after its seat mods, lights and some paint.
Image
Still to do is fitting the driver and driving controls with console, build driver access stairs on each side, and paint the cab floor and stairs.

Here's a reprise of both forkies head-to-head at full stretch.
Image
That'll do for now, more later featuring the SuperH palletmover
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Postby Oztrainz » Fri Dec 19, 2008 10:22 pm

Hi all
The RS&W has had a recent addition to the forkie stable:
[url:*count*]http://www.trademe.co.nz/Toys-models/Radio-control/Trucks-tanks/auction-193373384.htm[/url:*count*]
This 3-speed unit is a [b:*count*]WHOLE LOT MORE [/b:*count*] controllable in small spaces than the single-speed radio-control units I was working with. I am now confident that the radio-control option can be done in the space confines of the RS&W. This one may relegate the Tamiya unit to the "reserve bench" :?

After some testing over the past day here are the results:

So far in testing I have the following results when "blipping" the controller
Low speed 5>15 mm minimum travel (with steering hard over down to 2 mm "nudges")
Med Speed 30>40 mm minimum travel
High Speed 45>60 mm minimum travel
versus 60>90 mm minimum travel with the fixed speed unit

The raise and lower capabilities are also a lot more controllable. The extra 30 mm lift (approx 150 mm vs 120 mm) means that I am picking up and placing loads away from the kickback on the mast that happens with the other single-speed units right at where I am trying to clear the upper deck edge at about 100 mm from floor level on my pallet rack.

The turning circle diameter is also much reduced;
for the old units - 460 mm diameter forks first and 580 mm forks trailing
for the 3-speed unit 400>430 mm diameter forks first and 380>400 mm forks trailing

With the pallet rack set up on the 1/2 size mock-up, I can reliably load and unload the palletmover, turn and put loads into the rack on either the first or second row WITHOUT going outside the confines of 1/2 the area that I actually have available. This 3-speed unit is the one that I need to make the Randim Stackum & Wrackem work with radio control. :D :D :D

I'll post some comparison photos later today hopefully. The 2 different units look remarkably the same and this is a cause of major confusion when talking/enquiring about 1:20 scale radio-control forkies

Gnow, what do I do with 3 less-than-controllable r/c forkies :?: :?:
John Garaty
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Postby Oztrainz » Sun Dec 21, 2008 4:09 pm

Oztrainz wrote:Hi all
I'll post some comparison photos later today hopefully. The 2 different units look remarkably the same and this is a cause of major confusion when talking/enquiring about 1:20 scale radio-control forkies


WARNING - for anyone planning on buying a r/c forkie, on a lot of websites, the photos of the various r/c forklifts are being used interchangeably. Just because the photo on the web site looks like a 3-speed unit, the actual unit being sold/discussed may actually be a single-speed unit.

The first photo shows the difference in packaging (single speed on the left is #B039, triple speed on the right is #FK - 318:
Image

Here's a closer look at the packaging of the 3-speed unit FK - 318:
Image

Here's what I mean about them both looking the same:
From above and behind, 3-speed Mini Jack is on the left:
Image
and head to head with the 3-speed Mini Jack on the right;
Image

Now here's the main differences:
1 - The 3-speed Mini Jack has operating headlights
Image
2 - For the 3-speed Mini Jack (yellow) on/off switch is beside the seat, for the single speed units it is under the forkie
Image
3 - The extra reach of the 3-speed Mini Jack also comes in handy on the R S & W.
Image
4 - But the main difference (and advantage) is the ability of the 3-speed Mini Jack to be make small controlled movements. This photo shows the results when the controllers are "blipped", both units started with the rear wheels against the the track. The 3-speed Mini Jack using low speed has barely moved. This is important when you are working in close to the pallet racks and also when you are trying to accurately place loads on the flatcar or palletmover.
Image

Thanks to the the assistance of DCRFan Paul, I gnow have the r/c forklift I gneed to make the R S & W a workable warehouse layout. It already has had a mention here:
http://www.carendt.com/scrapbook/page80/index.html
I think that perhaps with some minor mods and a 3-speed forkie, Carl's planned shoebox warehouse is also possible.

Gnow back to building the rest of of the Randim Stackum and Wrackem and having it all bedded in by Easter next year. Merry Christmas to all Gnatterboxers from Down Under
John Garaty
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Postby MOG » Sun Dec 21, 2008 6:22 pm

Great stuff - very inventive and enertaining (and educational if I consider buying an RC forkie!).. the electronickery lost me completely .. which leaves me all the more impressed! :D
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