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To explain the meaning of this further I will provide an example. Picture one of those toy light sabers that elongate/extend when you whip them/pull them out. Or an even easier example would be a tv antenna. What kind of mechanism would I need to create that would be able to automatically/electronically extend and retract aluminum type cylinders starting at a diameter of about 12in a height of 6in and a thickness of about 2cm. In the end I would like it to be a height of about 4.5ft. PLEASE ANY IDEAS?
Perhaps something like a scissor lift. A screw that squeezes the base together and pushes the top up. Think of that joke toy with a boxing glove on the end.
This could be modeled after an automobile's retractable antenna: <br>Picture a spool of semi-rigid wire (relative to the size you need) and a motor that spins the spool. The end of the wire is connected to the smallest piece of your tube. The motor will likely need a gearbox also, so it doesn't turn too fast. The spool will need to be encased with a bit of guide tube to get the wire headed in the right direction. You will need mini limit switches or some way for the motor to turn of at both extremes - fully extended or retracted. If you've never seen the antennas I'm talking about, try to get to look at one - it might make a lot more sense if you can see one. Good luck!
You could seal everything and pump air or any fluid to extend the tube. Use an electronic valve.

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