Sunday, February 5, 2012


If you remember from back in the fall or summer, I reworked a portion of the lower works trackwork.  One of the additions to this branch was spur that led to the highline, the iron foundry, and a hole in the benchwork for a future ore dumper.  I plan to make this fully operational, maybe, and a big maybe, even make it fully automated using an NCE Mini-panel, or maybe an Arduino micro controller.  For now, I'm just in the planing phase, but will probably start glueing things together tomorrow.

I've done plenty of research into these machines and gone back and forth as to what type of design to use as the basis for this model.  I like the older style machines where the whole cylindrical section actually rolls, as opposed to rotates.  While this would look cool, there is too much chance for error while operating.  The more modern rotary dumpers would be easier to engineer, but the operation of the machine would still be dependent on the proper meshing of the large ring gear.   While leafing through that latest Bethlehem Steel book I came across a few dumpers, one of them, for coal, struck me as a good prototype to model, abet, for ore not coal.  This dumper, pictured below, has a car cradle that pivots on fixed trunnions and would certainly be more likely to not malfunction.  

Machine at Bethlehem Steel

Sketching it out - working out the geometry

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