Blakbird

[GBC] The Akiyuki Project

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Out of curiosity, has anyone made the Akiyuki train modules work with a non-motorised truck? I'm thinking of having it so that it can work with a standard Lego train (or better, MOC engine) pulling and pushing it around... but wondered if anyone has done similar?

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But that's the whole point of the Akiyuki train system - the train itself powers the loaders/dumpers.

 

If you don't do that, then you may as well just have a 'dumb train' go around, and trigger dumpers/loaders via levers... Or come up with Mindstorms, or computer controlled.

And as soon as you head down that path, it's no longer an Akiyuki-style train

 

People have been building regular train GBC's for over 15 years, using trains, or monorails

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10 minutes ago, RohanBeckett said:

If you don't do that, then you may as well just have a 'dumb train' go around, and trigger dumpers/loaders via levers... Or come up with Mindstorms, or computer controlled.

And as soon as you head down that path, it's no longer an Akiyuki-style train

?? This Akiyuki although he calls it 'cars' but cars don't run on rails: https://akiyuki.jp/en/works/1667

But I agree, the charm of the system is the train powering and timing it all.

Here is also a discussion going on and I mixed them up :)

And now that I'm at it, the poster may be should have a look at this thread as from the question it seems the function of the trains is not fully understood if to be replaced by standard trains.

 

Edited by Berthil

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I thought @kiwinewt was referring to the main train system...

I almost had CACC running at Brickvention.. but didn't realise that the minimum radius for standard track + 1 straight was wider than our tables!

I have modified the code on the new Powered Up platform, so now, you only need 1 device to control the Boost Loader + cars (I have only enough parts for 2 cars)

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Terminology wise, you do get tramcars, train cars, railroad cars etc. It is mainly American terminology.

"The term "car" is commonly used by itself in American English when a rail context is implicit."

Car just means wheeled vehicle, it becomes what we know as a road going car when you call it a motor car. Often the term car is used for both trains, trams, road cars etc. where it is purely defined by context.

So in a way, his use of the term is more accurate than we appreciate. That said, when it comes to trains, cars usually doesn't relate to the locomotive part of a train, just the carriages. Obviously, these days, some carriages are powered too.

And yes, what makes the Akiyuki system great, is that they are self powered and that power allows them to go vertically up, change direction, powers loaders etc. Without the need for an external control system.

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23 minutes ago, Ankoku said:

Terminology wise, you do get tramcars, train cars, railroad cars etc. It is mainly American terminology.

I'm from Europe and Akiyuki from Japan.

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Yes, but the commonality between the two of you, here, is the English language.

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12 hours ago, kiwinewt said:

Out of curiosity, has anyone made the Akiyuki train modules work with a non-motorised truck? I'm thinking of having it so that it can work with a standard Lego train (or better, MOC engine) pulling and pushing it around... but wondered if anyone has done similar?

It is impossible for a "Dumb Car" pushed or pulled by a standard Lego engine train, to work with the Akiyuki train system.

The Train "car" is the power source that drives everything when it docks with each module.

Edited by Doug72

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Another difference:
Spring_Arm.jpg

In the instructions, it is this:

2825.png

Where as in the image from Akiyuki's website, it is 2 of these:

32449.png

Edited by Ankoku

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This is also different:
Clamp_Slider.jpg

As you can see, there is no axle in that bottom right part of the Technic, Liftarm 3 x 3 L-Shape Thin.

Clamp_Slider_2.jpg

You can also see that in the Akiyuki version, at the bottom, you have a Technic, Axle and Pin Connector Angled #1, not a Technic, Axle and Pin Connector Angled #6 - 90 degrees.

It feels weird that extra support is added here, but removed from the spring mounted part.

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hello all

im also selling the catch and release module, with no motor but complete, my other two modules are also still for sale

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Okay, haven't had much time of late to work on it, but literally, the next page also had differences. This is what is in the instructions:

Double_Antenna_Instructions.jpg

This is the Akiyuki original:

640x201.jpg

And this is a render of what I believe is the original layout:

Double_Antenna_Differences.jpg

The biggest surprise is that the instructions gained a tyre.

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One side is with, other side is without tire. You can see it in your own picture of the Akiyuki original, that's the other side of what you are rendering so you are comparing different kind of 'grabbers'. May be build it first and get it working?

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@Berthil if I just built it, it would be straight up wrong, that is why.

I am rendering the correct grabber, the grabber on the front, exit side. In your version, it has a tyre, in the instructions it has a tyre, in the Akiyuki version, it does not.

Here are the instructions for the front of the Invisible Lift, where you point out that Akiyuki has a tyre on the left and without on the right. That is not what is shown in the instructions, it shows tyres on both sides:

640x458.jpg

So yes, I could follow your advice and build it wrong, where there are blatant inconsistencies. Then spend time, like I have done already, taking it apart to correct it, or I could just avoid this issues in the first place, like I am doing here.

 

To put it simply, on the Akiyuki original, you have tyres front and back on the entry side, no tyres front and back on the exit side. You can see this here:


640x505.jpg

On your version, you have tyres on both front and back entry side, then tyres on the front, but not the back on the exit side.

640x350.jpg

This makes the whole thing uneven and I have no idea why that would have been seen as a good thing worthy of straying from the original.

As I mentioned before, much like with the Ball Factory, I am interested in building his version. I made the mistake of building the Ball Factory without questioning it and I have no desire to do that again.
I will be building the original ball path around the front and I will most likely change it, like you, if it is fragile. That is a good and justified mod. Thus far, what I am seeing doesn't have any justified reason for being different.

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Okay, so it seems that the returner for the differing grabber, is also different.

Here is what the instructions show:

Front_Right_Grabber_Returner_Instruction

Where as what appears in the Akiyuki original seems to be this:

Front_Right_Grabber_Returner.jpg

Where the original uses 2 x Technic, Liftarm 2 x 4 L-Shape Thick, the instructions have replaced this with 1 x Technic, Liftarm 1 x 4 Thin and also replaces 2 x Technic, Liftarm 1 x 3 Thick with 1x Technic, Axle and Pin Connector.

The latter replacement is a pattern of behaviour also seen with Cup-to-Cup - Type 1. In that case, it made the module work less efficiently than the original. In this case, I don't think it makes much odds, but both parts are common and I think the original is a sturdier design choice.

The Blue Technic, Axle Pin with Friction Ridges Lengthwise I am less sure about. I can only assume that is has to be there, since you can't see it and I can't imagine it would be left only supported by one side. In the video, all you can see is blackness and with no view from behind, you can't see what is being used there. My suspicion is that he has used a black one, which is rare. That said, he has used black bushes on occasions on this module, which are also fairly rare.

The use of the Technic, Liftarm 2 x 4 L-Shape Thick doesn't make any difference to the function of the module, but does add redundant visual clutter.

Again, I am not quite sure why these choices were made. It does reduce the part count, but the parts which are replaced are very common. In some respects more common than what it has been changed to. Width could be a reason, but this is negated by the use of the Technic, Axle and Pin Connector whose width caused problems with Cup-to-Cup.

Here you can see the black hole.

If you look closes, you can see the end of what looks like an axle.

So it is either an axle or a black axle pin.

640x264.jpg

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Amazed I never noticed this before, but Akiyuki, at events, powers the invisible lift with 2 motors.

800x295.jpg

Having looked through the entire thread, there have been a number of discussions about more than one motor.

@plingboot powers his resigned hopper lifter separately.

@FernandoQ used 2 XL motors when he displayed his, basically mirroring the entire left arrangement, mirrored on the right. Which means 4 x Torque gears which is kinda terrifying. Props for actually removing the errant tyres on the exit side of the module. He noted the use of 2 motors at the 2015 event in Japan.

@Berthil mentions that the module will kill an XL motor in about 80hrs.

So here, in 2015, you have Akiyuki displaying the module at an event. With an extra module on the right.

Amazingly though, it is a L motor, not an XL one. Certainly looks like a bit of a hack job. It is still only using 1 torque gear, but the L motor is connected directly, which is even more scary. The bit which gets me, is that the XL runs at 220rpm and the L runs at 390rpm. Which suggest the gearing just happens to work out for him in this respect.

Less attractive or not, I am certainly moving more towards the idea of using 2 motors, rather than 1. Not sure whether it would be 1XL and 1L or 2x XL. 2x XL seems wiser.

@FernandoQ also mentions using a split axle instead of a whole one. I am hoping that by using @Berthil's axle tester is enough. If not, I will certainly consider that idea.

 

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Interestingly, the ReBricker version is for the most part correct for the bits mentioned earlier. e.g. He doesn't use the Technic, Axle and Pin Connector, he doesn't have a tyre on it either. That said he does use the Technic, Axle and Pin Connector for the axle runners. Ironically, this is the thing causing him issues with sticky runners.

So I am starting to wonder whether the difference between those with and those without tyres, is down to whether they followed the ReBricker videos or went with BlakBirds instructions. It almost feels like Chinese whispers. Where each version of the instructions strays a little bit more from the original with changes and mods.

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heres my video from brickvention the invisible lift has the tires on it and we had issues with one set of grabbers not moving back smoothly

 

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I think the grabbers not moving back smoothly is the weakness of the model. The constant battle for all who have it.

Love the hats on the Catch & Spin module.

The tyre differ from the original model, but if it is working for people, there is zero reason to remove them. That said, only have tyres on 3 sets out of 4 is weird. 2 out of 4 is the original, 4 out of 4 would make sense. 3 out of 4 just seems like a mistake.

Also noticed this difference:

800x413.jpg

He seems to be using this:

32054.t2.png

Instead of a normal pin.

I would like to say it is to provide support for the liftarms to the left, but that doesn't make much sense. Maybe just to make it easier to build?

Considering it is impossible to build it as presented in the instructions, I think that is it. e.g. I had to take it apart to get those thin liftarms in (The Technic, Liftarm 1 x 11.5 Double Bent Thick get in the way). Just on the entry side, using that piece would make it a lot easier.

Edited by Ankoku

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58 minutes ago, Ankoku said:

I think the grabbers not moving back smoothly is the weakness of the model. The constant battle for all who have it.

Love the hats on the Catch & Spin module.

The tyre differ from the original model, but if it is working for people, there is zero reason to remove them. That said, only have tyres on 3 sets out of 4 is weird. 2 out of 4 is the original, 4 out of 4 would make sense. 3 out of 4 just seems like a mistake.

Also noticed this difference:

800x413.jpg

He seems to be using this:

32054.t2.png

Instead of a normal pin.

I would like to say it is to provide support for the liftarms to the left, but that doesn't make much sense. Maybe just to make it easier to build?

Considering it is impossible to build it as presented in the instructions, I think that is it. e.g. I had to take it apart to get those thin liftarms in (The Technic, Liftarm 1 x 11.5 Double Bent Thick get in the way). Just on the entry side, using that piece would make it a lot easier.

he does this quite often with parts that are tricky to remove, like the gearing on the catch and spin

 

so these where the modules i had in the akiyuki section,

screw type 1,2 and 3 were flawless

wheel and steps had no issues apart from a couple of dropped balls

stuck ball lifter was good it dropped a few balls though

ball sorter ran great

the V3 ball factory had a couple of minor issues which i have let @Berthil know about, but once they were sorted it ran very well

the peanuts and hockey stick lifter where great

the Heart chain was Alan's and ran well mechanically but did drop alot of balls

the catch and spin was built by @RohanBeckett and ran well most of the time but dropped the odd ball

the container transporter was a pain to get running right and i had to pull it out because it was sitting on a table join and the containers would fall off all the time

 

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Used Sariel's Gear calculator to see what was going on with the 2 motors.

http://gears.sariel.pl/

The ratio ends up being 1:3

That means the main transmission axle through the module is running at 660 RPM at full speed. 3 x 220 RPM of the XL motor. I could be wrong here, but as far as I can tell for the central axle, the only change in speed is between the motor and the first pair of gears it powers. Everything from that point on remains the same.

The L motor, at full speed is 390 RPM and connects to that axle at that speed. e.g. it goes through 2 x 24 Tooth gears and 2 x 8 tooth gear, but in that order where the speed is never actually changed. (You can see how it is connected in the 2015 video as the camera passes by the module and then you see it from the side)

Thus I don't understand how this is working. The only arrangement where this would work, is where the controller speed is much higher for the L motor, than it is for the XL motor.

Better to just use an XL motor, a torque gear and an 8 tooth gear and connect it to the main transmission axle. This allows for the same ratio with the minimal amount of gears, whilst still retaining the torque functionality.

Ultimately, for not crunching the machine on a jam, it is better to have the two XL motors next to each other and then go through a single torque gear. The down side of that is the further away you get from the motor, the more twist you get in the system. Which is why it is nice to have power coming from both ends.

Edited by Ankoku

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Found another difference. This time it is the alignment of the box which lifts the ball. In the original version, you can see that the slots on it align front to back.

Box_Position_Akiyuki.jpg

In the instructions, it is from side to side:

Box_Position_Instructions.jpg

This may seem minor, but the change occurs during the ReBricker video. Whilst testing it, he find that the bottom antenna is catching on it.

Problem is, he doesn't look into why this is the case. He just rotates the box and moves on.

This leaves me wondering. Is the box at the wrong height in comparison to the original version?

Between 2014 when Akiyuki created the Invisible Lift and 2015, where he displays it at an event, he never changes it. So he never had an issue where the antenna is snagging. Why does the reverse-engineered version snag?

A 2015 event mod has Akiyuki adding a Technic Wedge Belt Wheel (Pulley) to the picker to make it sturdier. Much like the motor, I wonder if this is a quick and nasty hack. It is certainly ugly.

Picker_Strengthening.jpg

I think he has to use this, as it allow the rotation of the axles.

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According to Akiyuki it’s just for demo purposes and not to be used in a GBC setup currently.

Here’s the link to the video: 

 

 

Edited by tismabrick

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