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Wind Car - Defy the Wind

by TheDukeAnumber1, published

Wind Car - Defy the Wind by TheDukeAnumber1 Aug 1, 2015

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14157Views 3792Downloads Found in Engineering

Summary

Defy the wind with this little wind powered car! Take an opposing force and use it's energy to move against it. This tiny car demonstrates that you can harvest the winds energy and transform it into motion directly against that very wind. :)

  • Challenge Objectives
    Harness the power of the wind
    Engineering connections
    Energy transfer
    Movable assemblies

  • Force Breakdown

    1. The wind cups use their large relative surface area and cone shape to harvest the wind as a force acting into the cup, creating clockwise rotation and preventing counterclockwise rotation.
    2. The wind cup shafts transfer the force to the top fitting. Their long relative length creates a larger moment and translates to higher torque.
    3. The top fitting directly transfers this torque to the first vertical shaft and "small gear".
    4. The "small gear" and "large gear" work together reversing the direction of rotation and they gear down which increases torque further.
    5. The "large gear" shaft brings the torque to the transfer gears which rotate the axis of rotation 90 degrees to the axle.
    6. Finally the axle sends the torque to the wheels bringing the winds energy to the ground resulting in forward motion.
  • Revisions & Challenges
    (1/22/16) - User green_horn designed a support for the shafts to help the gears mesh. I added it to the files list but you can also find it here - http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1284996

All of the gears were tested and revised (3) or more times to ensure solid connections. The wind cups were revised from circular to cone shaped and increased in diameter for better wind performance.

  • Concept Introduction
    This model is a great example for engineering connections and energy transfer. One possible assignment could include requiring students to estimate how many times the wind cups will rotate when the car travels a specified distance. This can be calculated after measuring the wheel and gear diameters.

The video link of it in action - http://youtu.be/eJ2HLBYwLqE

Video close up of the gears in motion - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m45Ot9xe7VM&feature=youtu.be

Instructions

I will eventually revise the design and upload revised STL models to make this model easier to construct and run. Atm I'd say it requires a moderate level of model building skill to construct.

  • Parts Required
    (4) Wind Cups
    (4) Top Shafts
    (1) Top Fitting
    (2) Vertical Gear Shafts
    (1) Small Gear
    (1) Large Gear
    (2) Transfer Gears
    (2) Axles
    (2) Sides
    (1) Top
    (1) Bottom
    (4) Spacer Rings
    (1) Mid Support (designed by green_horn)
    (#) Small Spacer Rings
    (#) Wheel Spacer Rings
    as needed = #
    Adhesive - I.E. - Epoxy, superglue, ect
    Sandpaper/Rotary Tool (recommended)

  • Printing
    All of the parts have been designed to print without supports.The shafts all have a slight flat edge along the length so that they can be easily printed on that side. This way the shafts are very strong and print very quickly.

  • Building
    There is no required order of construction and the parts locations are shown in the pictures so I will leave that bit of freedom up to you, but I do have some suggestions and will share my experience. I only had to use adhesive on a few parts since most of them fit snugly. I prefer two part epoxy, but I'm sure super glue would work too and be a lot quicker. I used adhesive on the top, bottom, and sides to assemble the vehicle body. I also used adhesive to attach the top spacer rings to the vertical gear shafts and to the top fitting. You will want to ensure all of the rotating parts move smoothly as you progress with the build, if they do not then sand down the part until it rotates smoothly. Finally the transfer gear spacing can be adjusted and held using the small spacer rings to prevent them from binding. To limit axle movement wheel spacer rings can be used or the axle itself can be shortened for a tighter tolerance.

Project: Wind Car - Defy the Wind

Objectives

The biggest takeaways of this project is learning about moment arms, gearing down to increase torque, and harnessing wind power.

Harness the power of the wind
Engineering connections
Energy transfer
Movable assemblies

Audiences

6th grade or higher
A moderate level of dexterity/model building skill is required

Preparation

No prior knowledge is required to be able to complete this project. Adhesive and possibly sandpaper(depending on your printer) will be required to build the model.

Steps

Print the required parts

  • Parts Required
    (4) Wind Cups
    (4) Top Shafts
    (1) Top Fitting
    (2) Vertical Gear Shafts
    (1) Small Gear
    (1) Large Gear
    (2) Transfer Gears
    (2) Axles
    (2) Sides
    (1) Top
    (1) Bottom
    (4) Spacer Rings
    (1) Mid Support (designed by green_horn)
    (#) Small Spacer Rings
    (#) Wheel Spacer Rings
    as needed = #
    Adhesive - I.E. - Epoxy, superglue, ect
    Sandpaper/Rotary Tool (recommended)

  • Printing
    All of the parts have been designed to print without supports.The shafts all have a slight flat edge along the length so that they can be easily printed on that side. This way the shafts are very strong and print very quickly.

  • Building
    There is no required order of construction and the parts locations are shown in the pictures so I will leave that bit of freedom up to you, but I do have some suggestions and will share my experience. I only had to use adhesive on a few parts since most of them fit snugly. I prefer two part epoxy, but I'm sure super glue would work too and be a lot quicker. I used adhesive on the top, bottom, and sides to assemble the vehicle body. I also used adhesive to attach the top spacer rings to the vertical gear shafts and to the top fitting. You will want to ensure all of the rotating parts move smoothly as you progress with the build, if they do not then sand down the part until it rotates smoothly. Finally the transfer gear spacing can be adjusted and held using the small spacer rings to prevent them from binding. To limit axle movement wheel spacer rings can be used or the axle itself can be shortened for a tighter tolerance. I recommend placing the car on a yoga mat for traction.

(1/22/16) - User green_horn designed a support for the shafts to help the gears mesh. I added it to the files list but you can also find it here - http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1284996

Results

The students should have completed a working model. This model is a great example for engineering connections and energy transfer. One possible assignment could include requiring students to estimate how many times the wind cups will rotate when the car travels a specified distance. This can be calculated after measuring the wheel and gear diameters.

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could you upload a more clear image? I can not assemble it because I don't where the parts should be assembled.

I uploaded (4) more pictures. GL!

Jan 22, 2016 - Modified Jan 22, 2016

This was a fun project. I had trouble with mine getting the gears to correctly mesh due to the unsupported shafts. I got it to work but it was fiddly. Great idea and I thank you for posting.

Eventually I designed a shaft support plate that snaps in place. Keeps all the shafts in place and ensures proper gear mesh. Really helped it out. If you are interested it is here;

http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1284996/#files

cheers

Wind car shaft support mod
by Perry_S

Thanks for designing that, I'll add it to the instructions and give it a try myself.

You may have to adjust shaft length a bit. I did it in Slic3r.

Good job. Great idea..

This is incredible! Very amazing work my friend.

s frikkin brilliant :)

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