Monday, March 19, 2012

Good at building. Bad at Posting.

It's been hectic. I've got a lot going on personally, so it's been hard to keep the posts flowing. However, progress is happening! I'm assembling my power cube! There are parts that still need to be ordered and assembled, but things are beginning to look up.

The Cube
I've assembled the Cube (above). It is the frame that holds all the components in place. After welding the corners together, my professor said that it could handle being dropped from an airplane.

The Reservoir
The hydraulic reservoir is air tight and ready to rock (above). I had to fix leaks twice during the leak tests. My PVC plugs held up to high pressures (60 PSI or more) without a problem-- still be careful if you're doing this yourself.

Reservoir in CubeTacking the Reservoir

I mounted the reservoir into the cube. It fit nicely so I tacked it in place. With it secured, I was ready to start positioning the engine mounting plate.

At least I thought I was ready. I had already assembled the engine mounting plate and its supports. The plate with the hole will receive the engine-- the engine shaft goes through the hole. The other plate is a vertical support which holds the plate up.

When placed into the cube I saw the image below. Can you tell what is wrong?

It turns out that the instructions were out of date. The holes they described placed the engine too close to the tank outlet. The intake hose that connects the hose to the pump can't make that sharp a bend. So I had to drill a new hole and move the engine mount away from the tank outlet.

Here is the plate after it has been moved and tacked. Can you tell what it wrong? The horizontal plate is no where near level. I didn't think it would be a problem but, the engine wouldn't fit right with this sag. I cut my tack welds and used a level to get everything square. Below you can see the scoring from the grinder and the new location of the support.

This made the engine fit nicely. You can see in the next image the thin slice of light coming between the engine and the tank. When the plate wasn't level, this clearance was taken up and the engine was resting on the reservoir.

So things are starting to look real. I'm very happy with my progress, though there is still a long way to go. My next post will include a really great trick for locating the holes that the engine bolts will go through.