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Zen 6DOF Motion Simulator

Discussion in 'DIY Motion Simulator Projects' started by pooh, Apr 27, 2020.

  1. pooh

    pooh Member

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    Hi guys,

    After waiting 11 years (as you can see from my join date) i've finally decided to make my own motion simulator.
    This thread will be constantly updated as i progress with the build and i hope it can be kind of our mutual work (at least when it comes to ideas and theoretical matters).
    Firstly, i'd like to say that i will try to take the best from Peacemakers and FlyPT designs.
    My idea is to make it little bigger than those 2. i've decided to go with 650mm 2010 ballscrew which should arrive this week. i'm also waiting for some aluminum parts and bearings.
    As recommended in Peacemakers thread, i've played a little with FlyPT Mover but to be honest i'm not sure i understand well what to look for when it comes to all those measures...
    If any of you guys could put the following dimensions in and let me know if that makes sense - actuator size is fixed (parts already ordered) but i still can change base and upper cage size if that makes sense:

    IMG_7049.jpg
  2. Ads Master

    Ads Master

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  3. pooh

    pooh Member

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    ok, so here comes couple of photos of what i've done so far and the conclusion is that it's extremely hard for me to cut and drill aluminum without proper tools at home...
    you should be able to see what's the idea for an actuator design from the photos but i've decided to change it from aluminum plates to 3d printouts and are waiting for a printer now - should be there this week.
    btw, no one commented on the dimensions i'm planning from the screen above so i'd like to ask you one more time to see the dimensions and say what you think about it - it will be needed soon...

    IMG_7113.jpg

    Attached Files:

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  4. pooh

    pooh Member

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    some more questions - do i need some kind of special steel pipe so it won't get scratched by ball bearings? after just couple of moves inside the linear ball bearing i can clearly see and feel scratches on the steel pipe...
    here comes photos of 3d printed mounts:

    bottom mount.png

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  5. pooh

    pooh Member

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    more progres with prototyping. strugling with hot bed adhesion issues with 3d printer :(


    IMG_7179.jpg

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  6. wannabeaflyer2

    wannabeaflyer2 Well-Known Member

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    My Motion Simulator:
    2DOF, Arduino, Motion platform, 6DOF
    HiYa @pooh Nice work and shows Promise , Welcome to the Madness that is DIY sim Actuators ,, Great to see another variant being constructed and Using simple to Make parts .. Nice .. ;-

    Forgot to ask , What Motors are you thinking of using ,, My 2 Cents worth would be to jump on the AC servo motor Bandwagon , Far easier setup and almost Plug n Play in terms of System setup .... it all depends on Motion Controller interface used but check out what a lot of guys have done to see which options suit Budget , im biased when i say Look at Thnaos's AMC-AASD15 Interface when you get closer to making that decision. Great Product and service support ...Did i mention im Biased and NO i dont get commission :) lets just say im a very happy customer .
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    Last edited: May 16, 2020
  7. pooh

    pooh Member

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    yes, i'm planning on using Thanos controller and 750w AC servos. my ballscrew is 2010 and 650mm. travel should be around 520mm and this thing should be a beast when done. i'm hoping for 500mm/s speeds.
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  8. pooh

    pooh Member

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    more progress. still waiting for more ball screws, bearings and couplings from China but they should be here this or next week.

    IMG_7230.jpg

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  9. pooh

    pooh Member

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    quick update - i'm almost blocked now while waiting for FK15 bearings from China - i can't assemble actuators...
    i made good progress with base and cage welding as you can see on photos below. i've decided to use 2 bearings instead of one per mount to counteract the issues Peacemaker had with dislocated bearings.

    i have one concern though - i wonder if i need to orient upper mount of actuators like everyone else does (1st photo) or can it be 90deg rotated like on the 2nd photo below? that would simplify cutting and welding greatly and allow for higher degree of freedom for the joints. i think it should be no problem - what do you guys think?

    IMG_7338.jpg

    IMG_7339.jpg

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  10. Cheecheman

    Cheecheman New Member

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    excellent cant wait to see it move:popcorn
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  11. Erik Middeldorp

    Erik Middeldorp Member

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    I think both orientations require rotation between the top and bottom actuator halves, but from your build thread it looks like the ball nut is prevented from rotating inside your actuator? I suggest you try bolting the top and bottom clevises (I think that's the right term, the actuator ends) directly together and connect a top and bottom joint so you can test how they'll move in relation to each other. Or you could make a rough model in Fusion 360.
    I'm a little concerned about the distance between the pillow blocks and the clevis attachment. If you look at the attached sketch, the large distance 'a' vs the thread diameter 'c' would create a fair bit of leverage and stress on the bolt. Also the bigger 'a' is relative to 'b', any small play in the bearings will create a larger movement at the clevis attachement point.

    clevis pillow block joint.png
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  12. pooh

    pooh Member

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    hey Erik, thanks for your comment.
    when it comes to inside of actuator - ball screw has to be blocked otherwise it will rotate together with the ball shaft and therefore not move up and down. it is like that in other designs on this forum - i was looking in particular at what Peacemaker did in his thread.
    as for rotation - it's easier to show it on video so i made one:


    please let me know what you think.
  13. Erik Middeldorp

    Erik Middeldorp Member

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    You really need the top and bottom joints connected together to see how it doesn't provide enough degrees of freedom. Here's an assembly in Fusion 360 trying to show the problem:
    Peacemaker's rig uses rose joints at the top which allow a certain amount of tilting. Dirty's hexapod has joints at the top similar to yours but the ends of his actuators have another bearing allowing them to rotate which you can see in this post. I think the easiest solution for you would be to use rose joints like Peacemaker at the top, provided you can mount them in a way to give you sufficient range of motion without binding. If not that, then something similar to Dirty. I think my suggestion of letting the ball nut rotate inside the actuator is not the best idea as it would make the actuators extend or retract unintentionally (although it might not be noticeable) and also because it would rely on the knuckle joints to transmit torque.
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  14. pooh

    pooh Member

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    Unfortunately :) you are right!
    now i need to figure out how to redesign top mount to incorporate bearing inside it...
    is my understanding correct that if i exchange those 2 nuts that are "hidden" inside the mount with ballbearings it should work?

    here's the mount:
    IMG_7212.jpg
    IMG_7231.jpg
  15. pooh

    pooh Member

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    quick video with an idea on how to modify it:
  16. Erik Middeldorp

    Erik Middeldorp Member

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    I think both those solutions sound ok. I like the idea of just using the nuts as bearings as it's simple. The joint is only moving a small amount and fairly slowly so maybe it will be good enough. I don't think I have the experience to give more of a definitive answer than that though.
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  17. Damien602

    Damien602 Member

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    Have you tried using blue painters tape on the hotbed and printing to that. It works a treat with my printer.
  18. pooh

    pooh Member

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    Damien, i've actually tried it with regular masking tape (not blue) without much success.
    Finally, i've found info over the internet that the best solution is to go to Rossmann and buy ultra strong hair gel in spray (it's called hegron). it is extremely good - sometimes it's even too hard to remove the print :)
    i think it may be Polish thing so you guys would need to find your local equivalent though hegron.jpg
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  19. pooh

    pooh Member

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    updated design on photos below. thanks again for pointing it out - it saved a lot of time on troubleshooting and probably even actuators that could potentially break due to that...
    i've also considered your comment about length of rod and removed one nut to make it shorter.

    IMG_7355.jpg

    IMG_7356.jpg
  20. Erik Middeldorp

    Erik Middeldorp Member

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    That was quick! Good luck. I don't know if that will be strong enough and I don't think I can comment more on the design suitability as I lack experience. The thought of the actuator end failing makes me nervous as it could potentially result in the occupant being skewered by the actuator which could cause serious injury or death.
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    Last edited: Jun 18, 2020
  21. pooh

    pooh Member

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    some more progress as i've finally got the FK15 bearings from China and therefore i've been able to finish actuator assembly. i need to weld those 3 mounts tomorrow and then disassembly entire thing and pain it all black. it's huge. bigger than i expected...

    IMG_7380.jpg

    IMG_7382.jpg

    Attached Files:

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