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Roadmonkeytj

Decoupler Air Operated Idea

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Posted (edited)

So with the recent posts in THIS thread it got me thinking - I came up with this decoupler idea that blocks the wheels.  It runs off an air cylinder (hopefully)  however  I have a slight issue with testing this concept  … I have no air cylinders at all to test it with.  So instead of spending money on all the different legths of air cylinders to test this (to possibly fail)  I come to my fellow trainheads as I have limited budget for "new" lego currently  … perhaps one of you with access to the cylinders could assemble the decoupler and test its operation and get back to this thread with what worked/didn't work.?  

I dropped the idea into LDD tonight to make it easier to replicate.  I am trying to keep the 4 plate elevation of the track.  Also I am aware that I have installed a shock in the LDD file … this is to represent the cylinder 

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LDD File:

https://bricksafe.com/files/Roadmonkeytj/train-related/decoupler.lxf

 

 

Edited by Roadmonkeytj

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Looks to be a good idea for locking the boogies, now how to easily separate the 'cars' with this locking device combined? ( H.O.G. ie. Hand of Grab? )

I would think that somehow "pulling" a car/coach/rolling stock would separate in the wrong place due to the varying strength of the magnets.

I do have all these parts, what parts are you concerned with in either success or failure?

I'm parts shopping today @ my friends LEGO reseller store, I'll construct later today to test.....

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Oh! that's a cool idea! I really like it! Looks like it would work too. However, since the red parts, (Cant remember what they are called) are round, I might be concerned the wheel could climb over them, then you would have a derailed train and not a decoupled one. I just don't know very much about de-coupling or have played around with it beyond the "Hand of God." You can test you mechanism without the pneumatic components so long as you have all the other parts. Once you have everything else working to your satisfaction, then get the pneumatic parts. 

I'm not sure I have all the parts, but I'll see what I can do. Looks easy enough though. It might take some time...I don't get much for building with keeping up with the chores and teaching my 16 month old lad to be careful when playing with dada's Lego trains. 

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That's a neat idea! If you don't mind having the decoupler above the ground level, you could probably modify this design that separates the magnets rather than holding back a wheel. That way the train can't separate in the wrong place.

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1 hour ago, ritztoys said:

Looks to be a good idea for locking the boogies, now how to easily separate the 'cars' with this locking device combined? ( H.O.G. ie. Hand of Grab? )

I would think that somehow "pulling" a car/coach/rolling stock would separate in the wrong place due to the varying strength of the magnets.

I do have all these parts, what parts are you concerned with in either success or failure?

I'm parts shopping today @ my friends LEGO reseller store, I'll construct later today to test.....

Thanks I look forward to it!

Im concerened about the "structure" holding together under strain of the pneumatics.  The mechanism seems to work (although im not testing in a operational sense ... Just a couple boggies on the build bench).  

Another concern I have is weather the "locking tabs" will fold out far enough to not hang up low hanging grab rails and pistons on steam.

As for the pulling apart it will be part of a switching puzzle so the most cars it will be splitting is 3.  And worst case a little hand help from me while they operate the controls

1 hour ago, ALCO said:

Oh! that's a cool idea! I really like it! Looks like it would work too. However, since the red parts, (Cant remember what they are called) are round, I might be concerned the wheel could climb over them, then you would have a derailed train and not a decoupled one. I just don't know very much about de-coupling or have played around with it beyond the "Hand of God." You can test you mechanism without the pneumatic components so long as you have all the other parts. Once you have everything else working to your satisfaction, then get the pneumatic parts. 

I'm not sure I have all the parts, but I'll see what I can do. Looks easy enough though. It might take some time...I don't get much for building with keeping up with the chores and teaching my 16 month old lad to be careful when playing with dada's Lego trains. 

Thank you ... I was insipred ... I was concerned with this originally but it seems to hold as (part i dont know the name of either) red part. Is almost the same height of the center of the axle.  Perhaps with longer trains there might be more vertical lift of the cars

Im well aware of limited time myself ... I have a 4 and 3 year old ... Both boys and both love legos ... However are still not able to play with daddys bricks as they are still working on treating theirs right. Couple that with 60-70 hr work week and time is scarce.

1 hour ago, Pdaitabird said:

That's a neat idea! If you don't mind having the decoupler above the ground level, you could probably modify this design that separates the magnets rather than holding back a wheel. That way the train can't separate in the wrong place.

Thanks!  Ive seen your decouple design and do like the way it works ... I am trying to keep all the mechanicals at or below track level (track is elevated 4 plates)

In my original designs i was using a 4L arm to do the same from between the track ... However you can over torque the arm movement if you dont shut it off quick enough.  And since im dealing with general public i dont want to rely of the "clicking sound" to trigger them to shut it off.  

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38 minutes ago, Roadmonkeytj said:

Im concerened about the "structure" holding together under strain of the pneumatics....

Im well aware of limited time myself ... I have a 4 and 3 year old ... Both boys and both love legos ... However are still not able to play with daddys bricks as they are still working on treating theirs right. Couple that with 60-70 hr work week and time is scarce.

Lol the pneumatics do not provide much strain. In your example it looks equivalent to the small cylinder which extends only 2L. 

Learning how to treat the bricks right sure can be hard to learn. Too bad he already sees the difference between his Duplo train and mine. He likes mine better.

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35 minutes ago, ALCO said:

Lol the pneumatics do not provide much strain. In your example it looks equivalent to the small cylinder which extends only 2L. 

Learning how to treat the bricks right sure can be hard to learn. Too bad he already sees the difference between his Duplo train and mine. He likes mine better.

It amazed me how much of my childhood bricks had teeth marks on them ... I understand now watching my boys with their legos ... I think its human instinct to use your teeth lol.  

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Just now, Roadmonkeytj said:

It amazed me how much of my childhood bricks had teeth marks on them ... I understand now watching my boys with their legos ... I think its human instinct to use your teeth lol.  

lol No kidding! They did not have brick-separators back then...so it is no wonder. Now they are almost included in every set over a certain number of pieces so hopefully that should help reduce the number of pieces. Just training T(oddler)FOL's and CFOL's to use them might take some patience. 

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1 hour ago, ALCO said:

lol No kidding! They did not have brick-separators back then...so it is no wonder. Now they are almost included in every set over a certain number of pieces so hopefully that should help reduce the number of pieces. Just training T(oddler)FOL's and CFOL's to use them might take some patience. 

That is trueI remember the first one i got ... It was the old style big and bulky.  I built the whole set and was like where does this wierd brick go?  Now ive got a bin just of seperators lol

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@Roadmonkeytj Sorry took so long to test.......

I found the lowest of plates under the 'driving axle' would separate at full cylinder extension during it's movement. I would try an additional plate layer to hold the dual 1x2 plates that support the 1x2 brick w/two holes, that support this axle.

Also I didn't have a good selection of pneumatic cylinders, so I used the ol' square based one to test.

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Picking the correct "throw" of a cylinder would help in it not tearing everything apart, during it's operation. 

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9 hours ago, ritztoys said:

@Roadmonkeytj Sorry took so long to test.......

I found the lowest of plates under the 'driving axle' would separate at full cylinder extension during it's movement. I would try an additional plate layer to hold the dual 1x2 plates that support the 1x2 brick w/two holes, that support this axle.

Also I didn't have a good selection of pneumatic cylinders, so I used the ol' square based one to test.

Picking the correct "throw" of a cylinder would help in it not tearing everything apart, during it's operation. 

No worries! Thank you for testing and replying!

I have been holding off buying the cylinders just in case lol.  Im glad to see it was easy enough to reproduce!  Alas I have questions though lol!

Just to clarify ... The Drive Axle are you refering to the 11L or the two sides?

If the 11L do you think extending the plate to a longer one and support with bricks either side would help?

Also if the track were connected to a baseplate do you belive it would force the track/supports from it?

The reason im trying to keep the 4 plate thickness is if the switching puzzle works as I intend then the plan is to ballast the track. 

Would you recommend a shorter or longer throw based on what you saw?

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Apparently the 'quote' feature isn't working for me today....I'll try to answer your questions though.

Yes, the 11L axle would push the plates off the bottom, either due to the cylinder throw being too long or the short mechanical build to support this cylinder(ie. longer mechanical build to support the distance moved)

Support on the ends of the axle would help, but you still need to match the 'throw' of the cylinder so the assembly wouldn't tear itself apart.(since you can't control very well the position of a pneumatic cylinder, either full "on" or full "off" )

Using a base plate would help too, use same answer as above.

Using multiple plates would help in strength of whole assembly, although the 'swing' of the cylinder could catch on passing rolling stock/locomotives with low hanging parts, if placed too close to tracks. You might be able to use a longer axle away from tracks with proper support and strength.

If you use a shorter arm to rotate the axle, you might have to match a cylinder with a short throw or change gear ratio.

The 'throw' will depend on which double-acting cylinder style you pick, not a whole lot to pick from for what you are wanting to do.The small one should work instead of the one I used, but this will work!

 

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