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Linear Actuators for tilting antenna mounts?

Discussion in 'Mobile Radio Systems' started by KC8QVO, Oct 29, 2015.

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  1. KA4YKC

    KA4YKC Ham Member QRZ Page

    I saw a neat motorized fold over system that Breedlove Mounts had on display at the Shelby NC hamfest this past Labor Day that was built out of aluminum- dang it was cool. It's not on the website right now, but give him a call for the details on it. It might be a possibility.
    http://breedlovemounts.com
     
  2. WA8ZYT

    WA8ZYT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have the final solution to all of this nonsense. Build a garage with 14' high doors!
     
    NH7RO likes this.
  3. KC9UDX

    KC9UDX Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    I'd like to do that. Then I could have bought those 44" tyres instead of the little 35" ones.
     
  4. KK4YDR

    KK4YDR Ham Member QRZ Page

    Just modify a lift n lay by tarheel. It will work.
     
  5. KC8QVO

    KC8QVO Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have been working on the dimensions and mechanics. I think I have an actuator picked out, the 400lb PA-04 here. The hard part is the dimensions of the actuators. I need to work with the dimensions because the overall length of the actuator is almost 8" longer than the travel. I want to have a decent amount of leverage on the mount so that there is plenty of lifting force. The higher the mount goes as it raises the less force the actuator has to push, but if I don't have the actuator push far enough out on the rotating part (higher up on the top part) the starting force from horizontal will be a lot. With the travel of the actuator not as much in the same length as I was hoping (that extra 8" or so) means I have to shorten the connection on the top part to get enough rotational distance in the top part to make it 90 degrees with the overall length actuator I can squeeze in.

    However, I am thinking if I mount the actuator upside down (motor on top) I can push the mount back, which would be up higher, and maybe maintain the same geometry. I may go higher on the top of the rack to clear the actuator.. I'd rather not modify the frame and platform too much fro my original idea to fit the actuator if I don't have to.
     
  6. K4PIH

    K4PIH Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have the same problem at work in the parking garage. Currently I have mag mount antennas clinging to a sheet of galvanized metal glued to the bed of my Honda Ridgeline (composite bed) but even then the VHF still hits the overhead pipes. I managed to get an automated swing out stop sign off a county school bus that I'm experimenting with. It’s 24 volt but operates slowly on 12. Plenty of torque but mounting is the issue,
     
  7. KL7AJ

    KL7AJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Linear actuators can supply tremendous force these days. They're basically a jack screw on a stepper motor. Or, perhaps more aptly, a stepper motor on a jack screw. A good solution for a lot of problems.
     
  8. KC9UDX

    KC9UDX Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    The pneumatic ones aren't weak neither. :)
     
  9. KL7AJ

    KL7AJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    But Pneumatic actuators only work in a binary mode...which may or may not be an issue. I've done a lot of automation with pneumatics. Cool stuff, but you need to know the limitations. :)
     
  10. KC9UDX

    KC9UDX Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    Right, and building things with defined limitations can be very helpful.

    I used to work with an engineer who refused to use industrial robots. He said you always know where a linear actuator can go.

    Incidentally, pneumatic cylinders can be made to hold a position with a servo not much more complicated than an electric one.
     

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