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My Dad's "little" Projects


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#1 patrol52

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 04:34 PM

My dad is a mechanical engineer at a company [Formerly Wabash Alloys] that recycles aluminum. They deliver their product in ingot and molten form. In order to safely transport the molten aluminum on the highways, they partnered with several trailer companies to develop these low center of gravity trailers. Both designs allow the "metal pot" to be considerably lower during transit then raise up to gravity drain once they arrive at their destination.

My dad built the first one for the company's display at the local chili cook-off. After building one, he decided that he needed to build one of the other design, so we have been working on it for awhile and finally got it finished. These are both made of steel with tack welds in strategic locations, but JB Weld is the primary glue that holds it together. We made the rear wheels out of rubber casters and sink strainers. Currently, our only problem is that the trailer is 1/10 scale, and we cannot find a semi tractor of the same scale (it would be difficult to scale the trailer down, so we really need a 1/10 tractor [any help appreciated])

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#2 62rebel

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Posted 09 January 2008 - 03:47 PM

egad that is cool. i remember somebody building a car from scratch to match the firestone tires from promo ashtrays!
how "functional" is the trailer? working parts?

#3 patrol52

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Posted 11 January 2008 - 04:54 AM

The first trailer design (top) is made by Talbert, it is designed so that the center section lifts up by four hydraulic cylinders under what can be seen as the aluminum boxes. In the model, we used small air cylinders that could be hooked up, but were not, due to the time constraints we had on it. (it had to be finished for a chili cook off)

The second trailer design (bottom) is made by Nelson, and uses four hydraulic screw jacks at each corner of the lift mechanism. My dad found some small electric motors with a gear reduction (much more torque that way) that we placed at the bottom of each acme screw. They are all powered by a common battery pack that is mounted under the rear of the frame with a small two position toggle switch to run up and down.

#4 62rebel

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Posted 12 January 2008 - 06:43 AM

cool; neat to see functioning models.

#5 Junkman

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Posted 15 January 2008 - 06:38 AM

This is utterly cool and impressive!

The only 1/10 scale tractor I know is the Kenworth from Tamiya in their RC model range. It is an incredible model that really would complement your father's trailers.

#6 novadose71

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Posted 19 January 2008 - 05:50 PM

The only 1/10 scale tractor I know is the Kenworth from Tamiya in their RC model range. It is an incredible model that really would complement your father's trailers.
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And you could drive it around! cool