May 8, 2019 Rail Bending and Track Assembly

This week we began using our track bender to bend the actual curves for the track. It was a slow and steady process but the rails seem to come out better than they did last year. We are slowly putting the track together and plan to have the four switch sections completed by the presentations on Friday. Looking ahead at next week, we will prioritize the adjustments on the track to allow for optimal traversing of the bogie. Some curves may be a little bit too long and may need to be cut. Other things include leveling the track a little better, filing down some of the uneven rails and such. If time permits, we will attempt to implement the entry and exit rails but if not, we will at least have it cut for next year to implement if they so please.

May 1, 2019 Rail bender Testing

This week we began testing our newly completed rail bender a little. It took some fine-tuning and adjusting to get it to perform to how we would like but we were able to get it to perform how we liked. Other than that, there isn't anything specific to report. Looking into the next week, we will try to get our entry and exit rails laser cut and begin bending the actual curves to be added to the track.

April 24, 2019 Completion of the New Railbender

Over this past week, we have been welding the last few pieces of unistrut that would support the wheels that the rails would roll along. We spent a good amount of time grinding down the welds and trying to make things look as presentable as possible and to smooth the surface out so the rotating shaft can slide along the supports. Upon completion of the welds and the grinding, we completed the assembly of the rail bender. Everything was working as planned until we tested it on one of our rails. Although the rail turned out as we had liked, the processing of bending it wasn't as we had hoped. The wheels would tilt upwards so the rail would begin to have a small spiral and the sliding base would begin to life, causing the threaded rods to bend. We determined that this was all due to the bottle jack not applying its force on the sliding base equidistant from the to threaded rods resulting in a moment. We will spend this week trying to figure out the best approach for a solution to thi…

April 17, 2019 Presentation #2 cont.

During this week's meeting, we finished the rest of the presentations. It's good to hear that all the project groups are finalizing their designs and entering the manufacturing and assembly phases as the parts and other orders come in. It is unfortunate to hear about Makers Faire being cancelled but it is somewhat a relief due to all the unexpected occurrences we've dealt with this semester stemming from the location change, to the water cutter breaking and whatever else. Nevertheless, we look forward to having out own local demonstration to demonstrate the work that we've put in for the past year or so.

On a individual team side of things, we should be finished welding everything in this up coming week. It was unfortunate that our previous setup didn't quite work as expected but we believe that this new setup will be more reliable. We should be done assembling the rail bender during next week's meeting and will begin testing it to see how it bends. Other than …

April 10, 2019: Presentation #2

This week was presentation 2. However, only a few groups had gone before we had to stop and people had to assist full-scale guideway moving some of their old sections into the building. It seems like for the teams that did present, they are doing well but the situation with the water cutter and the central machine shop is rather unfortunate and will probably be a slight set back but hopefully won't be particularly detrimental.

On a individual team aspect, not too much occurred besides preparing for the presentation. We did prepare some of our parts for the rail bender to be welded relatively soon. Once the welding has been completed on these pieces, everything should be ready to be assembled and we are looking forward to testing our new and improved rail bender design next week.

March 27, 2019 Weekly Blog

For this week, there was nothing particularly major to report on. No major changes were made to any of our designs or anything like that. We are steadily putting our rail bender together and hope to be completed by next week. In addition, over spring break and into the first week of April, we will begin to look into aluminum vendors and decide who to purchase from and whether we should commit to switching to 3003 aluminum or continue with the 6000 series. We will also begin preparing for presentation for the week of our return.