Introduction: 2 Axis Solar Tracking Pad, Useful Things to Make at Techshop. Www.techshop.ws
What you are about to see is something I haven't actually made out of PVC yet.. That's the beauty of this lesson here. I will guide you with skematics. Then you'll design a method to mount the actuator motors you custom ordered online. Sound challenging??? Good this exercise will make you less stupid. I will provide specific important information so you don't screw up and waste material. When it is complete you will have created a 2 axis full range device that can focus the suns energy into parabolic mirrors or solar pannels. Dont screw this up!!
Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.
Step 1: Hunt and Gather
Get some old stinking pair of roller skates. With the plans rollerblade to your local hardware store and get the hardware and materials you need, when you get home take off the stinking pair of old roller skates and dismantle it, until all 8 wheels are free.~ Now All you really need is .... •measuring tape! •PENCIL & sharpie. •Straightedge •Anti-eye gouging glasses• Anti get shirtsleeves twisted in drill chuck mangling flesh shirt.(short sleeve shirt that says nonya and argo(anti bother me I'm WORKING! T-shirt.)• Drill press• Bandsaw (optional)• Table saw,or handsaw, or jigsaw don't matter just, stay outside the lines!!!• 8mm drill bit !!!• PVC drill jig~ •1x7"x 12" wood •1x3"x 12" wood PVC cutters• PVC glue(don't glue till it all fits right!)• Equal to or More than 20 feet of 1 inch •diameter PVC pipe!• Four 2'x8mm dowels• 4 L shaped 1" inner Di fittings.• 11 T shaped 1" inner Di fittings.• 2 TL shaped 1" inner Di fittings.• 3'x3'x3/4'' plywood• Sand paper and lacquer • 1x Skate deck grip-tape.• Eight 1 1/2" screws and one 6 inch screw• four 8mm Di 3" bolts/ nuts(metric)• One 8mm Di 5" bolts/ nuts(metric)• two 8mm Di 6" bolts/ nuts(metric)• Outer diameter collar spacer for horizontal axis bearings.(electric tape or if you wanna get fancy stick a piece of scrap 1 inch Di pipe, glue and bore 22mm hole)
Step 2: The Specs Guide
Note: Although the drawing looks perfectly scale, it is not! But close enough to estimate roughly how-much raw material need! You dont want to spend too much, and you definitely don't wanna be SHORT!!!! I have no idea what size diameter wheels you have, I don't know what electronic equipment you'll have. BTW have everything gathered before you build it.!!!!!!!!!!!!! So you can measure for the mounting brackets need for the last step Especially the fittings, I'm not a plumber and idk if your hardware store has different dimensions for fittings. All you gotta do is decide how big you want the PVC base (not the platform!! plat form is measured according to wheel base width.) Precisely measure your fittings( flush depth of female adapter, etc. related to blueprints. Be interactive. Record what you have and plug your numbers into the FORMULAS i have already created for you. Your welcome. Cutting the correct lengths of PVC takes sequential steps. Its already been simplified so don't freak out if you've taken basic geometry.
Step 3: Cutting PVC to Specific Length
Formulas 1. Measure length of T fitting and female Depth. add those numbers up and youll get sum that is equal to what will be the length of cut (2.) Find length from the outside edge to edge of the entire frames base for Cut (3.)is = 1/2[(L.)-(2Xa+2Xb-(2.))] Cut (4.)= W-2X Hypotanus squared= (1/2L.)squared + (1/2L)squared. Or find square root of (1/2L.)squared + (1/2L)squared. Once the hypotenuse is acquired you can now move on to.. Cut (5.)= H-(xa+xb)+ 2x 2x represents the female adapter depth times two. Cut (6.)= W-(2xc+xb) Congratulations if you used your memory from basic algebra and geometry with the drawings you should have come up with answers for measuring labeling and cutting,That is great just Great!!
Step 4: Drilling
Now that you've cut your PVC Piping with either a chop saw or pipe slicer, you must accurately Drill an 8mm hole on the absolute center of cuts (2.) and cuts (4.) To do so one must utilize a Jig that is suited for a 1 inch pipe. Get a 1x7x4" piece of wood, then cut two 3x1"x 4"s and lay them onto the 1x7 and sandwich Some pvc in between and screw it flush and firmly. Next measure and mark the center between the two and drill. If its not near-perfect make another-one. Take another screw 6 inches long and screw like your going to go into the pipe, this will be the clamp to keep your pvc in place. So if the jigs length is 4" inches then mark 2 inches from any side of the center of the Cut PVC. Clamp and tap by using the hole in the jig to guide the drill into the pvc. Funk yeah! your holes are perfect every time!!! Remember! Dont glue till i say so!!
Step 5: The Platform
With 20 feet of PVC you'll want to cut square a three quarter sheet of ply wood 3x3 Mark the center of the ply by drawing straight lines corner to corner. then take a hand drill and put an 8mm hole on your mark. coat it with lacquer finish.
Step 6: The Wheels Axels and Bearings Explained.
Drill a 1/2" hole in the bottom of the T-fitting.. Without gluing, assemble all the components. align the vertical axis centered on the platform. Cut four 8mm dowels long enough to extend from the exact center point of the platform plane out to the holes drilled into pvc 2 and 4. Place rollerblade wheels onto the dowels. As you see in the picture you are truing the alignment so the wheels naturally roll around the axis
Step 7: Pre Glue
This part is pretty simple. Have everything pre-assembled without dowels and wheels flat on a table outside or inside a well ventilated area. IMPORTANT. PVC cuts (2.) and (4.) should not be touched by glue until everything else is glued together and cured or else you wont be able to true the wheels alignment!!! Before the frame cures, save time for straightening by gluing only one end of cut pipes to a fitting throughout the whole assembly. Best way to start out is 5+Bearing hub. Central mount fittings clamp to table and use scrap pipe to make sure its at 90 degrees. One flusher stub for each right-angle. 3+6 with T fitting.
Step 8: Final Glue
Now that the pre glued groups are cured it is time to join the rest. Keep fully intact on flat table. Start by joining UPPER quadrants. 3 to right-angle to T to group 5 on all sides. 6 to central mount fitting. Same thing for lower quadrant and join to central mount. Make sure it is all straight. LET CURE Align 2+ 4 with dowel+ wheels Start with 2 then 4 and your done son!!!