LegoMonorailFan

[WIP] Lego monorails. [Custom Rail Systems (CRS)]

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LMF's Lego monorail system (#1)

Lego monorail (custom system)

Full album with video.

Motor assembly instructions (PDF). Courtesy of @djm :classic:

 

LMF's Lego suspended monorail system (#1)

Suspended Lego monorail

Full album with video.

 

LMF's Lego monorail system (#2)

39000526624_f0171156e6_c.jpg

Full album with video.

 

Masao Hidaka's Lego monorail system

His monorail design is what got me into Lego monorails in the first place! However, the design isn't perfect and can have some problems.

One of the biggest problems with it is the trouble it has taking curves. Even on very long stretches of cured track, the monorail will become very sluggish.

Over some time of experimenting, I've come to two options.

(#1), That the distance between guiders isn't the problem, but the distance between the drive wheels. Ideally the drive wheels should be as close together as possible. Like this for example.

40176471902_6be7f9b770_z.jpg

 

28429544089_0496306f94_z.jpg

This however can cause some obvious problems in itself. Most notably if to much weight is applied to the far front or far back, the monorail may "buck up" when starting.

Option (#2) is to remove one of the drive wheels, and replace it with a guider wheel. Like the example below. @FiliusRucilo uses this method in a similar way for his monorails.

39368959915_7e5a79e176_z.jpg

 

26394180858_949d73718a_z.jpg

Both these examples work very well IMO, and can even take fairly tight curves.

As for non motorized monorail cars, the same principal applies from the first example.

Keep the wheels as close together as possible without compromising stability.

 

LMF's Lego monorail switch track

28156077019_877d994ab8_c.jpg

Full album with videos.

 

 

Edited by LegoMonorailFan

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Posted (edited)

Updated! Like...finally! :laugh: specs and information will be posted about the monorail design(s) shortly. As well as the unveiling of my suspended monorail system which functions much like the first monorail in this topic. Questions? Feel free to ask any questions you may have. :sweet: I'll be adding your questions with my answers to the main post so others will have a quick reference. Enjoy. :classic:

Thanks to @JopieK for fixing some issues I had while trying to edit this topic. :classic:

 

Edited by LegoMonorailFan

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Amazing! This is soooo coool! Have you submitted this to Lego Ideas yet? If not you really should! What parts have you used for the bending-part?

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4 minutes ago, McWaffel said:

Amazing! This is soooo coool! Have you submitted this to Lego Ideas yet? If not you really should! What parts have you used for the bending-part?

Ideas? Hmm. Maybe I'll give it a try! Thanks for the suggestion!

The couplers? An assortment of parts in the order of...

42003.png 42003

61184.png 61184

32013.png 32013

42003.png 42003

4274.png 4274

42003.png 42003

By looking at the picture below in correlation to the order of the pictures above, one can probably picture the assembly. :classic:

Lego monorail (custom system)

I'll post some pictures of the break down assembly soon! :sweet:

The design is important to the function of the monorail, but in turn* does not allow the monorail to make drastic inclines and declines. But realistically, that's not a problem.

(See what I did there? :wink:)

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Could you not e.g. a 10928 and add 2743 to the track (e.g. using jumper tiles / plates) to make up for inclines / declines?

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Looks great - agree it's worth putting up on Lego Ideas.

 

Have you seen this guys work btw?

 

He's got a very cool (though highly complex) solution for switching tracks.

 

I can't wait to see your suspended design btw - how's that coming along ?

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Posted (edited)
On 1/5/2018 at 6:42 AM, ElectroDiva said:

Looks great - agree it's worth putting up on Lego Ideas.

 

Have you seen this guys work btw?

 

He's got a very cool (though highly complex) solution for switching tracks.

 

I can't wait to see your suspended design btw - how's that coming along ?

Yes! Masao Hidaka is who got me into monorails in the first place! His work is awesome! However, his design has one issue that I may have fixed, but haven't had time to test out fully. Most notably, his design has trouble turning even on very long curves. Trouble in the sense that there's resistance. It may be hard to see in some cases, but it's there.

Solution? Pretty simple. Simply move the two drive wheels closer together using a different gear combination. 

I plan on demonstrating this fix as well as showcasing other Lego monorail systems designed by others (possibly with improvements).

As for my suspended monorail system, it's done! :sweet: I just need to snap some pictures, edit them and post them. 

For those who want some spoilers, it functions much like my first monorail, it uses an L motor, and the monorail track is three wide.

I also plan on doing some simple break down tutorials on the monorail track assemblies and other such things. 

And BTW, I've changed the title of this topic to include the acronym CRS (Custom Rail Systems). An acronym I thought of that I hope will become a popular term used when discussing about custom Lego monorails and other systems like it.

Cheers. :classic:

Edited by LegoMonorailFan

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3 hours ago, JopieK said:

Could you not e.g. a 10928 and add 2743 to the track (e.g. using jumper tiles / plates) to make up for inclines / declines?

Well there are a lot different ways to make inclines and declines, but this monorail system isn't capable of making inclines and declines. And the very thing that doesn't allow it to make inclines and declines is what allows the monorail system to function. 

The coupler design (which can be seen in the picture below) is designed to hold up the cars, which travel on a single guider wheel.

Lego monorail

The entire monorail contacts the rail at three points. The motor.

Lego monorail

And the two car guider wheels. One for each car.

Lego monorail

Once assembled (seen in picture below) the modular setup is ready to have the cosmetic makeup of the monorail added.

Lego monorail

 

The reason this design is important to the function of the monorail is because in order for the monorail to have traction, it needs the weight of the cars.

When I was first designing the system, I would add a guider wheel to both the front and back of the cars. My intention was to have the couplers designed to pivot up and down to allow inclines and declines. But because there was a guider wheel in the back of the car, no weight was being applied to the motor meaning no traction. So that meant the back guider wheel had to go. Which in turn meant the coupler had to be locked from pivoting up or down which meant meant no inclines or declines. :sceptic: 

However (I haven't tested it) the monorail may be able to make gradual inclines and declines by means of flecking the track. 

Cheers. :classic: And thanks again for fixing the topic! :sweet:

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Also, one of the awesome features about this design is its ability to take very tight turns. For example, in the video linked below, there are 15 "links" for each 90° turn. Meaning only 60 links for a full circle which equals 120 studs long for a full circle. Very small when you look at in person. :sweet:

https://flic.kr/p/DwLuQD

 

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2 hours ago, LegoMonorailFan said:

The entire monorail contacts the rail at three points. The motor.

Lego monorail

 

Hey, those tires fit on half bushings! I never knew. That is a very handy trick. Wandering back to topic though, excellent modifications and improvements to the brick built monorail track system. My first lego "trains" as a kid were monorails on 4 stud wide track (no turns or switches) so I am always fascinated to see what can really be done with brick built monorails.

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, zephyr1934 said:

Hey, those tires fit on half bushings! I never knew. That is a very handy trick. Wandering back to topic though, excellent modifications and improvements to the brick built monorail track system. My first lego "trains" as a kid were monorails on 4 stud wide track (no turns or switches) so I am always fascinated to see what can really be done with brick built monorails.

Glad you like it! :sweet: Watch out for some pictures of the motor assembly as well as the unveiling of my suspended monorail system. :wink:

Edited by LegoMonorailFan

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Updated! Check out the suspended monorail! :sweet:

Also, let me know if there's anything on the monorails you want to see pictures of that I haven't already taken.

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From LegoMonrailFan's flickr pages, I reverse engineered the motor assembly and turned it into rudimentary build instructions. LegoMonorailFan has checked them for correctness and (after a tweak) they are available for download as a PDF file, The corresponding LDraw file is also available for download. 

Observations;

  1. the build space is tight. The 12 tooth double bevel to 8 tooth gear is one of the tighter (although valid) gear combinations.
  2. the 20 tooth bevel gear needs to be the mould variation without the two "knob" protutions on the back  (see the image below) i.e. it needs to be the variation in the bottom right corner. The two "knob" variation (bottom left corner) will not work in this build.

3059.png

Regards,

David

 

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Wonderful Designs! I always loved those custom-built monorails and also started using Masao Hidaka's design (https://youtu.be/Dh5wtrhUYds).

The designs shown here are great - thank you for sharing all the details.

34 minutes ago, djm said:

From LegoMonrailFan's flickr pages, I reverse engineered the motor assembly and turned it into rudimentary build instructions.

Thank you, David!

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5 hours ago, djm said:

From LegoMonrailFan's flickr pages, I reverse engineered the motor assembly and turned it into rudimentary build instructions. LegoMonorailFan has checked them for correctness and (after a tweak) they are available for download as a PDF file, The corresponding LDraw file is also available for download. 

Observations;

  1. the build space is tight. The 12 tooth double bevel to 8 tooth gear is one of the tighter (although valid) gear combinations.
  2. the 20 tooth bevel gear needs to be the mould variation without the two "knob" protutions on the back  (see the image below) i.e. it needs to be the variation in the bottom right corner. The two "knob" variation (bottom left corner) will not work in this build.

3059.png

Regards,

David

 

Thanks again for putting this together man! Now I'm not rushed to snap pictures of the breakdown. :laugh:

BTW, which of the two 20 tooth bevel gears is the "newer" (currently available) version? 

4 hours ago, Asper said:

Wonderful Designs! I always loved those custom-built monorails and also started using Masao Hidaka's design (https://youtu.be/Dh5wtrhUYds).

The designs shown here are great - thank you for sharing all the details.

Thank you, David!

Wow, awesome model you've built there! Thumbs up!

And yes! Thank you David!

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Something to take note on is the suspended monorail track. Particularly the straight section. With the basic tress beam design I've used, it can span quite a distance with the monorail bending the track little to nothing. I'll post a picture when I get the chance.

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3 hours ago, LegoMonorailFan said:

BTW, which of the two 20 tooth bevel gears is the "newer" (currently available) version? 

I believe the newer design of the 20 tooth gear is the bottom right one and it has been out for a long while. I have some oldish LEGO and for my first attempt at the physical build, happened to grab a gear with the older design.

David

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Just now, djm said:

I believe the newer design of the 20 tooth gear is the bottom right one and it has been out for a long while. I have some oldish LEGO and for my first attempt at the physical build, happened to grab a gear with the older design.

David

OK, cool! I'm not a fan of building something which in order for people to copy, would require them to use some old, outdated part. :laugh:

It's also cool that you and maybe others are already adopting my design. :classic:

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On 1/5/2018 at 8:59 AM, LegoMonorailFan said:

The coupler design (which can be seen in the picture below) is designed to hold up the cars, which travel on a single guider wheel.

Lego monorail

The entire monorail contacts the rail at three points. The motor.

Lego monorail

And the two car guider wheels. One for each car.

Lego monorail

Once assembled (seen in picture below) the modular setup is ready to have the cosmetic makeup of the monorail added.

Lego monorail

The reason this design is important to the function of the monorail is because in order for the monorail to have traction, it needs the weight of the cars.

Wait, so are 5- or 7-car (including the motor) combinations possible? If so this could get mind-blowingly amazing really fast

On 1/4/2018 at 6:33 PM, McWaffel said:

Amazing! This is soooo coool! Have you submitted this to Lego Ideas yet? If not you really should! What parts have you used for the bending-part?

Definitely agree, this would have the best chance of becoming a set of any train-related one I have ever seen!

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55 minutes ago, BurkusCircus said:

Wait, so are 5- or 7-car (including the motor) combinations possible? If so this could get mind-blowingly amazing really fast.

I haven't tested it, but I'm 100% sure that yes, you can add more cars. That is, as many as the motor can handle. But what if we did two motors? 5 or 7cars? Easy. :wink:

55 minutes ago, BurkusCircus said:

Definitely agree, this would have the best chance of becoming a set of any train-related one I have ever seen!

Thanks! But I'm fairly sure it will reach 1000 votes tops, and than stop there. :sceptic: 

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Posted (edited)

Awesome monorails, appreciate the update.  I built some track a while back but never built any cars.  Thanks for the motivation to resume it.

Saw another monorail design the other day, video is a bit old, but another take on the monorail:

 

Edited by BrianGT
Fixed link

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Just now, BrianGT said:

Awesome monorails, appreciate the update.  I built some track a while back but never built any cars.  Thanks for the motivation to resume it.

Saw another monorail design the other day, video is a bit old, but another take on the monorail:

https://m.youtube.com

Glad you like it and good luck with your monorail!

BTW the link takes me to YouTube's homepage. :sceptic: Not sure why.

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