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hobbytime

Open doors automatically

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Hi!

I am working on a new idea for my Christmas show and am having a problem designing a feature I need. 

In the show I want to have a singing animatronic deer head. This deer head will actually be inside of a box, made to look like a small barn with two swinging barn doors on the sides. The problem is, I'd like for Light-O-Rama to be able to open and close the small barn doors for me at certain times during the show. This would mean that applying power would open the doors and cutting the power would close them. Closing I could probably do with a spring, but how in the world can I design something that, when power is supplied, would smoothly open the doors? Any ideas are welcomed...no matter how crazy!  :)  My brain hurts.

 

Thanks, 

Don 

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Well I can think of three options. Electronic door opener like for a handicap accessible door opener.

Pneumatic using an air cylinder and requires an air compressor.

Hydraulic using a hydraulic cylinder and having a small hydraulic tank. 

All three options can be easily done.

I would choose the hydraulic method using the parts from a convertible vehicle in a salvage yard.

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note: the Handicap door opener expects a Momentary 'push' and just times out (close)

A door opener is just a bigger Servo

Reversible Motor,  actuator (converts rotation to linear motion), Limit Switches to stop the motor at desired travel points,

Remember to make it very weak or include safety cutouts to prevent injuries (similar to what a Garage door opener has)

 

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A handicap opener can be directly wired to activate and has stops/limits  already. It was just an idea. Other openers can be used.

With the options I previously suggested, an LOR controller can operate these when using relays and such.

Edited by Santas Helper

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What optyion you use might be depend on  how how fast you want doors to open.  Don't know how slow you can make aire pneumatics and whether youwant the noise of a compressor. Electirc linear aquatgor might be another option...a slower opening actions. Cost on doing 1 versus 2 doors might play into decision?

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10 hours ago, hobbytime said:

Hi!

I am working on a new idea for my Christmas show and am having a problem designing a feature I need. 

In the show I want to have a singing animatronic deer head. This deer head will actually be inside of a box, made to look like a small barn with two swinging barn doors on the sides. The problem is, I'd like for Light-O-Rama to be able to open and close the small barn doors for me at certain times during the show. This would mean that applying power would open the doors and cutting the power would close them. Closing I could probably do with a spring, but how in the world can I design something that, when power is supplied, would smoothly open the doors? Any ideas are welcomed...no matter how crazy!  :)  My brain hurts.

 

Thanks, 

Don 

Hi go to this website for holloween it has everything you need for your project   WWW.FrightProps.com

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1 hour ago, Dennis Laff said:

Hi go to this website for holloween it has everything you need for your project   WWW.FrightProps.com

Nice site. Thanks for the find Dennis.

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What I don't get is why nobody's mentioned using a Servo or a pair of servos and a Servo dog controller. 

There's many different flavors servos out there including some that are called retract servos( high torque low speed to operate small aircraft retract landing gear). 

With servos you would have full control a both the opening and closing process. 

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12 minutes ago, Ebuechner said:

What I don't get is why nobody's mentioned using a Servo or a pair of servos and a Servo dog controller. 

There's many different flavors servos out there including some that are called retract servos( high torque low speed to operate small aircraft retract landing gear). 

With servos you would have full control a both the opening and closing process. 

I for one, have a problem suggesting material to someone when I have no experience with it myself.

For example - You don't see me giving pixel pointers because I personally haven't used any pixels.

Could you give us non servo dogs some links so we could better understand the products you're suggesting?

Thanks

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Here's a website that has a lot of different options including linear actuators that operate like servos. The servo dog will convert to a pwm signal that should be able to be read by most servos.

https://www.servocity.com

What he needs to use to move the doors would depend on the size and weight of his project. 

Here's a hint the lighter you can get the doors the less money you'll have to spend to move them. 

They also have regular DC linear actuators that have built-in limit switches. Applied DC voltage one way it moves One Direction reverse it it moves the other. A DPDT 110v relay could be used to control this type of actuator off of a regular AC controller with a 12v battery to power the actuator. 

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I would look at an old garage door opener. The drive output gear is relatively slow, they have internal limit switches for both directions and you can use an LOR output to blip a relay to simulate a wall button push. Pulleys or chain & gears to connect to doors. If it's a screw drive opener, some sort of linkage hooked to the tram. A little fabrication is needy, definitely doable.

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Fantastic ideas everyone. I truly appreciate every suggestion. Looks like I have some work to do :)

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