Step 2: The Non-Theoretical Prototype Plan
The Plan of Action
Problems & Solutions:
- Too Short - Increase the length of the roaster.
- Too Flimsy - Use thicker gauge steel wire for roasting stick to prevent flex.
- Difficult to Turn - Motorize the roasting stick with a small DC motor and switch. Gear the motor down with an extremely high gear ratio of around 1:200 - 1:500 to give it enough torque to rotate a average hot dog. House the motor, batteries, and switch in roasting stick handle.
- Not Awesome Enough - Make the roaster in the loose form of a sword. What kid (kid adults included) wouldn't love the fun of pretending they are some ancient night skewering evil hot dog monsters and ghost marshmallows. I know I do.
- Can a small DC motor be geared down to a reasonable size and last long enough on a few AA batteries to rotate a an average 2oz (+/- 55g) hot dog for a total of 30 minutes to an hour of roasting time.
Once I had those goals in mind, I set off on the nitty gritty of the prototype build.
The Business End of the Roasting Stick: My first issue was I was unsure of how to get a source of cheap straight steel wire without buying expensive steel rods. I was all ready to devise a machine with a series of pulley's that would replicate the industrial machine for straightening wire. If you have read my previous intstructable "Serious Homemade Manufacturing Equipment on a Shoe String Budget" you'll know I have no fear of getting all homemade on traditionally industrial manufacturing tech. Fortunately for me Instructables.com is there to save me from my eagerness. Thanks to rimar2000's instructable I learned an amazing trick on how to straighten wire. Even thick gauge wire. It can even be done fast enough to be a viable cottage manufacturing solution for my weenie roasters. Once that was learned, I went for a spool of old 3/16" thick steel wire left over from a previous project. We'll talk more about the details in the welding step of this instructable.
Now we are on to drawing up the designs and fabricating the parts.