LegoMonorailFan

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

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Just now, LegoMonorailFan said:

Glad you like it and good luck with your monorailh!

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

Sorry, fixed link. 

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Just now, BrianGT said:

Sorry, fixed link. 

I actually just saw that one recently as well! Very unique. But that Zsnap is so strange! However the monorail itself appears to be a very cool design! :classic:

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1 minute ago, Paperinik77pk said:

My congratulations for this fantastic monorail :grin:

Thank you! I'm glad you like it. :classic:

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I've seen on Youtube the Japanese version, the track is amazing. I think I will retry to develop the Aerotrain idea! 

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Paperinik77pk said:

I've seen on Youtube the Japanese version, the track is amazing.

In Lego bricks or real life?

If in Lego bricks, do you mean this guys work?

 

Edited by LegoMonorailFan

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In Lego Bricks :classic: -  Yes exactly this video. Re-reading better the thread I understood you are working on the same project. Awesome work.

I've always liked monorails, and other systems based on a proprietary rail system :wink:

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Paperinik77pk said:

In Lego Bricks :classic: -  Yes exactly this video. Re-reading better the thread I understood you are working on the same project. Awesome work.

I've always liked monorails, and other systems based on a proprietary rail system :wink:

Yes, Masao Hidaka's design is what got me started on monorails in the first place, but afterwards I started thinking of other concepts leading to the two that I've showcased.

I have a couple of other ideas (as well as some improvements on preexisting designs) one which worked fairly well until to much weight was added. 

It functioned like a typical train with rotating bogies. But the cool thing about the function was that the point of origin where the bogie rotated was where the drive axle went and delivered power to the wheel! It was a very simple* but efficient design. So to put it simply, the motor delivered power to the drive axle via bevel gears, and the drive axle traveled down thru the train base to the bogie which then delivered power to the wheel again via bevel gears. The main issue with the design was that for some reason it was necessary to have a sufficient amount of weight (aka the battery box) close to (if not on top of) the drive wheel in order for the monorail to have enough traction once the weight of pushing and pulling cars was added to the mix. 

This meant design limitations and other things that are to complex to describe in words, and if you know me I'm a perfectionist when it comes to designing these things. So, I wasn't having it.

In the end I set the project aside, and haven't thought of it till now. However, now that I've remembered the design, I'll plan on assembling an example of the design so I can show you guys. And in the process, I might solve some preexisting issues. :wink:

 

[Want to design your own monorail? Well a word if advice.

Keep it simple. 

The best functioning design will likely be the simplest. Don't unnecessarily over complicate things when designing. (I know I did when I started out :look: :grin: ) ]*

Cheers. :classic:

 

Edited by LegoMonorailFan

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From Masao Hidaka's "how to" video to build a switch, I reverse engineered the switch as a LDraw design. I then created build instructions for the design and followed said instructions to test the build. Colours aside, the video below shows the build resulting from the build instructions.

I am trying to contact Masao Hidaka to get his permission to make the build instructions available for downloading. Assuming his permission is forthcoming, I will post a link to the build instructions as appropriate.

Based on another of his "how to" videos, I have also reverse engineered his monorail engine and carriage and created building instructions. I am seeking his permission to make the instructions available for download.

Regards,

David

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11 minutes ago, djm said:

From Masao Hidaka's "how to" video to build a switch, I reverse engineered the switch as a LDraw design. I then created build instructions for the design and followed said instructions to test the build. Colours aside, the video below shows the build resulting from the build instructions.

I am trying to contact Masao Hidaka to get his permission to make the build instructions available for downloading. Assuming his permission is forthcoming, I will post a link to the build instructions as appropriate.

Based on another of his "how to" videos, I have also reverse engineered his monorail engine and carriage and created building instructions. I am seeking his permission to make the instructions available for download.

Regards,

David

Wow, awesome! His monorail concept is pretty straightforward, but his switches are quite a masterpiece! And in turn, hard to copy without instructions. Hopefully he'll accept. :sweet:

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On 1/5/2018 at 10:36 AM, LegoMonorailFan said:

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

 

Hey,  I've been following this thread since I got back to EB after a long hiatus, and you've inspired me to look into this again.  I'd seen Masou's work on this a few years ago - I actually still had a plastic storage bin in my closet that had the track I'd made for testing.  At one point, I had a working system, I was just not very happy with how it ran (the engine was big, rather clunky, and used larger tires that have traction on them so it didn't run smoothly... also, the "car" was quite long and didn't handle curves well).

So I took the bin out and started taking a look at what I had done and what I can do to make it better.

One thing I'm interested in is making it four wide.  I think, given the width of the track, it's a better scale.  If I can seat only a single figure across - perhaps using panels so that arms will fit - I think I could make a public transport for my city and be happy with it.  That makes the motor and engine harder to figure out - your design would be too tall, but my design was too clunky.  I think I'll have to figure something out where the motor runs along the train instead of up and down.  Anyway, that's just me musing about stuff... using the tires on the bushings will go a long way to make it work, though, so thanks for that.

EDIT: I also watch the Kyushu Brick video posted above - and it seems like a lot of the problems I encountered are still there, even in Masou's work.  It seems to crawl around curves, and even on straights seems to wobble.  Those were things that just made me pack it up to try another day.

The reason I quoted the post above is, while I certainly believe you about the radius you made the track, I picked up a 15 block section of what I made, and 90 degrees seems WAY too tight; I feel like I'm going to break some bricks long before I get there.  I can't imagine any less than twice that for 90 degrees... 

Edited by fred67

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32 minutes ago, fred67 said:

Hey,  I've been following this thread since I got back to EB after a long hiatus, and you've inspired me to look into this again.  I'd seen Masou's work on this a few years ago - I actually still had a plastic storage bin in my closet that had the track I'd made for testing.  At one point, I had a working system, I was just not very happy with how it ran (the engine was big, rather clunky, and used larger tires that have traction on them so it didn't run smoothly... also, the "car" was quite long and didn't handle curves well).

So I took the bin out and started taking a look at what I had done and what I can do to make it better.

One thing I'm interested in is making it four wide.  I think, given the width of the track, it's a better scale.  If I can seat only a single figure across - perhaps using panels so that arms will fit - I think I could make a public transport for my city and be happy with it.  That makes the motor and engine harder to figure out - your design would be too tall, but my design was too clunky.  I think I'll have to figure something out where the motor runs along the train instead of up and down.  Anyway, that's just me musing about stuff... using the tires on the bushings will go a long way to make it work, though, so thanks for that.

The reason I quoted the post above is, while I certainly believe you about the radius you made the track, I picked up a 15 block section of what I made, and 90 degrees seems WAY too tight; I feel like I'm going to break some bricks long before I get there.  I can't imagine any less than twice that for 90 degrees... 

Hi @fred67! Glad to hear my models have inspired you!

Masao Hidaka's design is very popular when it comes to CRS, but it has some flaws. Most notably, (as you've mentioned) turning.  While this can be fixed, if the curve is to tight and the model is top heavy, the monorail will tend to want to fly off the track due to the centrifugal force. In short, this means design limitations. 

As for four wide monorails, I've contemplated that idea but haven't researched it enough to decide whether or not a system of that sort is possible. One wide track may be necessary.

As for flecking the track, I know the feeling. However, it's a much different story once a full circle and/or oval is actually assembled. You'll see what I mean once you've assembled a full circle and/or oval.

[Also, (not really sure about this) new bricks may have more trouble flecking compared to pre-used bricks.]

Edited by LegoMonorailFan

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Yeah... I did the circle several years ago, and it was much bigger than 60 blocks (counting the 2x2 bricks)... not a big deal to make it different (or any arbitrary radius - one of the beautiful things about this technique).  I may push the limits, though - I'd like a monorail to run within the confines of an oval of train track in my city (said as if it "my city" actually exists anywhere but my head, but it's closer than ever - I have the train, the track, and more than enough buildings and plates, I just need to make room).  Of course, crossing over the track is interesting, too.  My imagination is running wild, and I fear I will get caught up in work again before I can do anything.

 

 

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7 hours ago, fred67 said:

Yeah... I did the circle several years ago, and it was much bigger than 60 blocks (counting the 2x2 bricks)... not a big deal to make it different (or any arbitrary radius - one of the beautiful things about this technique).  I may push the limits, though - I'd like a monorail to run within the confines of an oval of train track in my city (said as if it "my city" actually exists anywhere but my head, but it's closer than ever - I have the train, the track, and more than enough buildings and plates, I just need to make room).  Of course, crossing over the track is interesting, too.  My imagination is running wild, and I fear I will get caught up in work again before I can do anything.

 

 

:laugh: Well best of luck to you! I'd hope to see some pictures of your city when it's finished! :sweet:

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43 minutes ago, djm said:

This part

35480.png

looks promising to enable smoother curves. Refer to  

David

 

 

 

Quite possibly! I'm eyeing those 318 bar holes. Very useful piece.

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So.. I put together the track I'd made several (probably at least 4 years ago); just a loop (120 2x2 segments).

I didn't bother with the engine I made before because it's why I just packed up the whole thing and left it for another day - I wasn't happy with how wobbly it was.  It was completely my own design, I didn't follow Hidaka's designs, and it used larger wheels and tires.

So, after looking at LegoMonorailFan's engine, I decided to try again.  It's no secret I wanted a little smaller - I was hoping 4 wide (with maybe some pates on the side, which would add a little to the thickness) would be good.  I mounted my smaller tires on half bushings, figured out a pattern of gearing that finally allowed me to use a medium motor to drive the train.

I was not really very happy.  The drive wheels (only two of them) were not under the engine - otherwise the design would have been way too tall, and so I didn't get a lot of traction, even with just the battery and IR receiver on another "car."

So I recalled that a year or two ago, I bought third party connector for a standard 9v battery (the squarish kind); that helped a lot, but I had to stick it on top of the drive wheels to get any traction.  Still, it ran - but was still really wobbly.

So I pondered for quite a while about how I could use the larger tires and possibly make it less wobbly.  I can't think of how I can keep it four wide doing that - there's then very little room to gear an axle.

Still, while I was trying to think of how to make it work, I rummaged through my PF drawer and found a PF train motor and thought I might just give it a whirl and see how it faired - obviously not the solution I want, but I just used a technic chain around the gears on the outside, and it actually ended up operating pretty good... more speed (1:1 ratio), and slightly less wobbly than what I've seen before.  Unfortunately I'm not sure how to realize this in a manner that will actually work aesthetically.

I really wish we could have some proper track - I know TLG is not going to do this (well, I don't know what they're thinking, but I certainly doubt it), but I don't see why they don't do what they did with trains migrating to PF to amortize the electronics across multiple themes.  It seems to me they'd only have to make track and perhaps a couple of new gears to make something that would run smoothly and make a lot of us happy.  Like trains, a molded straight and curve, and gearing that could likely work just fine for other themes.

Anyway, I am now thinking of how I can realize using the larger solution in a way that I will be happy with.

EDIT: BTW, as frustrating as I find trying to make this work smoothly, this is really the spirit of the hobby, isn't it?

Edited by fred67

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This weekend I've worked on reverse engineering Masao Hidaka's monorail double switch, based on his youtube videos. I've got the substrate and gearing sorted and have created corresponding building instructions. The next step will be to add the track elements. In the meantime, here's a video showing the switch build-to-date in operation.

Regards,

David

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4 hours ago, djm said:

This weekend I've worked on reverse engineering Masao Hidaka's monorail double switch, based on his youtube videos. I've got the substrate and gearing sorted and have created corresponding building instructions. The next step will be to add the track elements. In the meantime, here's a video showing the switch build-to-date in operation.

Regards,

David

Sweeeeeeeeeet!!! *oh2* :sweet:

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Just catching up on this thread - really interesting to see how much interest there is in custom monorails with some great projects in the works - keep it up!

 

On 13/01/2018 at 12:17 AM, djm said:

This part

35480.png

looks promising to enable smoother curves. 

 

Completely agree. Do you have a part number - I'd love to get hold of some to play around with

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10 minutes ago, ElectroDiva said:

Just catching up on this thread - really interesting to see how much interest there is in custom monorails with some great projects in the works - keep it up!

I know, it's awesome! I'd hope that this topic becomes a collective project which anyone can add to when they're experimenting with a new idea or concept. 

17 minutes ago, ElectroDiva said:

Completely agree. Do you have a part number - I'd love to get hold of some to play around with

It's part number 35480.

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Just now, ElectroDiva said:

Cheers @LegoMonorailFan - will get hold of some as soon as they're available and see if I can come up with something to add to this collective project :)

Awesome! Looking forward to it. :sweet:

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Fully built double switch (please pardon the parts' colour selection!).

Regards,

David

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