DCC Powered Rotary Snow Plow

tjdreams Jul 8, 2016

  1. tjdreams

    tjdreams TrainBoard Member

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    A few months back while chatting with Stony Smith of Shapeways he mentioned that he would like to see someone power one of his Z scale Rotary Snow Plows. After checking out his site and the pictures of it I accepted the challenge.

    First things first I got some measurements from Stony ordered one of his 3D printed Rotary plows and started looking for a motor that would fit inside the Plow's housing.
    Fast Forward a couple weeks and I had a small gear motor and the plow on the work bench.

    I started by removing the Rotary blade which didn't go so well. I guess I used a little too much force and broke a piece of the firewall in the process. First I cut a couple pieces of .015 styre to fit in the housing to backup and reinforce the area I broke. Then I drilled out the center for a bearing to help support the shaft and allow the blade to spin freely. After making sure everything fit and that the blade was centered it was all glued and left to cure for a few days.

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    David
     
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  2. tjdreams

    tjdreams TrainBoard Member

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    A few days later after Everything was glued up I test fitted the Gear Motor and quickly realized that this was not going to be a easy task. While the motor fit inside the housing the output shaft didn't line up with the plow shaft. After thinking on it i decided to modify the motor housing and gear box by milling down one side of it to the bear minimum. This got the 2 shafts close enough that i could use a piece of surgical tubing to make a flexible shaft connector. Next I used some .030 plastic strips and made a removable Cradle to hold the Decoder, the Motor, and some LED's so that I could remove just the gear motor or the whole cradle (LED's Decoder and Motor) all at once.
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    Now that I had the motor and mount in place a started work on the SMD LED's, A 0804 soft white for the Cab Lights and 0402 for the Head Light. I had to play around with the resistors to get them to the brightness level I wanted. But even after giving the model several coats of black paint the LED's would show through the plastic body so I cut, fit, and glued a piece of foil to the underside of the cab. And while I was at it I also cut and glued in some clear plastic pieces for the windows. Next I drilled out 2 holes for the headlight wires and installed it.
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    David
     
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  3. tjdreams

    tjdreams TrainBoard Member

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    Next came the fun part. Fitting the decoder in place and wiring everything up. I had to trim down the Decoder every place I could to Squeeze it under the motor on the cradle. Once I got everything fit I put some krypton tape over the decoder snapped the motor into the cradle and soldered all the wires in place to insure good contact.
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    With only the power pickup wires left to attach I snapped the cradle into place inside the housing drilled out the base for the bolster pins and drilled out the bolster pins themselves and ran the power pickup wires through. A small speck of glue in each corner to hold the base in place Add some trucks and wire the power pickup to them and this is what you get.



     
  4. Kez

    Kez TrainBoard Member

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    As I've told you before, truly spectacular work. I'm glad you're in my club! ;)
     
  5. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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  6. zdrada69

    zdrada69 TrainBoard Member

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    Great job !
     
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  7. SJ Z-man

    SJ Z-man TrainBoard Member

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    Great conversion. Now where is Hans Riddervold's layout from Lynn St Laurent with all that snow on it? (see 2005 Z-Track magazine)

    Too bad the 3D print is so rough. Some stuff prints really well, some just is really rough/layered look.
     
  8. sumgai

    sumgai TrainBoard Member

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    Extraordinary Craftsmanship!
     
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  9. Kurt Moose

    Kurt Moose TrainBoard Member

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    Just need some snow!!!(y)
     
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  10. tjdreams

    tjdreams TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks for all the Compliments guys. It was a fun project that I thoroughly enjoyed doing.

    David
     
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  11. Loren

    Loren TrainBoard Supporter

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    David,

    A great job. I'm curious as to the gear motor......where, how many RPM, voltage, and how much?
     
  12. tjdreams

    tjdreams TrainBoard Member

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    Hi Loren

    I got the Motor at Servo City.
    It's a
    "Micro GearmotorBlock" (638106)
    Operating Range: 6 - 12VDC $ 9.99
    · Torque @ Stall: 40 oz-in. -.- 45 RPM @ 6VDC
    · Torque @ Stall: 70 oz-in. -.- 90 RPM @ 12VDC

    David
     
  13. kevsmith

    kevsmith TrainBoard Member

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    If you've got an old MTL F7B lying around you can convert it to the BN rotary power unit. Here is mine being propelled by a couple opf Geep 35s

    [​IMG]

    Kev
     
  14. strummer

    strummer TrainBoard Member

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    Great work...nice layout, too!

    Mark in Oregon
     
  15. Loren

    Loren TrainBoard Supporter

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    Thank you David,

    I'm always on the prowl for good, little gear motors for special projects. Much appreciated.
     
  16. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    You guys are doing excellent work! I got to get me a rotary now!
     
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  17. ZFRANK

    ZFRANK TrainBoard Member

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    Great work! Now you will need some Z scale snow to plow through. :D
     
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  18. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Talk about diggin' up bones... I found this thread from the Stony Smith Shapeways site. Wow. some seriously delicate work to make that run, and decoderize it to boot!
     
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  19. Kurt Moose

    Kurt Moose TrainBoard Member

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    This is the old school, cool stuff that got me into Z-scale! :D
     
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