Saturday, February 5, 2011

Center Foot Complete

The paint on this foot has been drying since last Sunday in the garage with other parts and today I put all the pieces together for assembly. So I'll show how I put this together. Here is inside the center foot shell with the bend steel plate screwed on. I already fastened the center ankle before I attached the side plates and half moon details.
This is the lower steel plate. I drilled and taped 8 1/4-20 holes. I used grade 8 bolts in the outer area. On the inner area I don't have much room so I used steel hex head since they are close to the other holes. I even grinded them down so it all fits very, very tight.
This is the other side of the plate. Since my 2.5 inch casters are only 5/8 of an inch off the ground I changed the 8 bolts to be 1/4-20 by 1 inch in length. Then added  steel 1/2 inch spaces (not pictured) so the casters should clear 1.2 inchs off the ground matching the height of the JAG drive system.
Now that lower steel plate is screwed on. Note how those inner bolts nearly touch the screws. Next time I do this I'm going to make sure no predrilled holes are on these steel plates. That way I can use whatever casters I wish and not have to deal with holes I'm forced to use. I made the best of it and this foot seems pretty solid.
The casters are now bolted on to the steel plate. I didn't use any loctite yet and want to do some testing later to see how this all works out. I can take all of it apart in a few minutes if I need to do other things later. I filed down the footshell just enough so the casters can rotate. PROTIP: Don't file down while casters are in place. Also blow out all the shavings you filed down or later they'll find there way to the grease on your casters. Then you'll have shavings in the bearings screw up how they spin. Ask me how I know!
There is maybe 1/8 and no more clearance between the casters and the footshell. I feel happy to have this done and feel like some real light at the end of the tunnel is coming. When I started this project I couldn't see why it takes years to make just 1 droid. Now I understand. There is a hell of a lot of manual labor and work. Even if you buy some premade aluminum parts there's lots of stuff you have to do.
Nice! Here is a side view of the foot before I install it and it gets weathered. All I'm missing is the cylinders that attach to the center ankle. I have no idea how you get small hands to screw those on anyway.
Here is a front view of a nicely made center foot. Eventually I hope to upgrade R5 to steel feet. These are aluminum foot shells. One day on this blog I'll be painting these black and R2-Q5 will have these instead. But for now its cool enuff for my main tank droid with the Comm8A frame.
I didn't measure how high the foot is off the ground now but I'd guess its about an inch. I was hoping to get more done today besides this. I wanted to tap some holes on Q5 and cut some styrene skins that will go on Q5 and later be painted black. Thats alot of careful razor blade cutting I need to do. I only have a few days left then some foot drives will arrive and I'm back to work on R5. There is alway something to do on one of these droids. There is a ton of work to do in the next 2-3 months until 2 major Cons take place.

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