Ramp Creation

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Re: Ramp Creation

Post by MoMoney$$$;)0) » March 26th, 2020, 12:51 pm

brookeklynn wrote:
March 26th, 2020, 11:37 am
I think the hardest part of creating the ramp was figuring out what would excel the vehicle the farthest. The plan was to make a tall ramp with a steep incline to hopefully speed up the car using its own mass. The one big issue we ran into was what material to use for the ramp, we decided to use sheet metal. The issue of using sheet metal was cutting it. We got it figured out with the help of teachers, but without it would've been very difficult. I love the science olympiad because of the community and working with my friends.
The car is trickier than the ramp since many more things can go wrong with the car than the ramp, and ramps can be cut out and put together fairly simply, although if you were using sheet metal it would have been tricky. And as what you were saying that the community will always help you when you need it. ;)
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Re: Ramp Creation

Post by MTV<=>Operator » March 27th, 2020, 3:46 pm

I don't know, I found the ramp to be the hardest thing to assemble at least. I used sheet metal for the surface and it was really hard to hold it down to drill it while keeping it aligned with the ramp. Also the sheet metal somehow formed a U shape at the part that touches the ground so that only the middle was actually flush with the ground. We needed to weigh the ramp down on the underside with dumbbells to force the metal to be completely flush with the ground. Is there an easier material to use for the surface that isn't wood? Although sheet metal was hard to work with, it is thinner than any usable wood so it allows for a smoother exit.
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Re: Ramp Creation

Post by MoMoney$$$;)0) » March 27th, 2020, 5:24 pm

MTV<=>Operator wrote:
March 27th, 2020, 3:46 pm
I don't know, I found the ramp to be the hardest thing to assemble at least. I used sheet metal for the surface and it was really hard to hold it down to drill it while keeping it aligned with the ramp. Also the sheet metal somehow formed a U shape at the part that touches the ground so that only the middle was actually flush with the ground. We needed to weigh the ramp down on the underside with dumbbells to force the metal to be completely flush with the ground. Is there an easier material to use for the surface that isn't wood? Although sheet metal was hard to work with, it is thinner than any usable wood so it allows for a smoother exit.
Our teams used a CNC to cut all the ramp parts so that was easy, (not exactly a trade secret) but a foam board with one of those smooth sides on it. I think ours was about 3mm thick, and it doesn't break or warp or cut you or anything like that, which sheet metal might, and you can cut holes in it sand it down, nail it, and you can have a ramp that exactly aligns with the floor below it. For this reason, we never had to worry about any problems that might arise with using "dangerous" materials like sheet metal.
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Re: Ramp Creation

Post by Things2do » March 27th, 2020, 7:16 pm

I used a whiteboard on a 2x4 frame, with the 2x4s cut at a angle to, theoretically, allow the ramp surface to cleanly meet the floor. I screwed it to the boards with washers on the screw heads to spread the load. It flexed easily, cut easily, required no special tools, required no sanding, didn't break even when significantly bent beyond what's necessary for a ramp, and it was less than $15 for a sheet big enough for two ramps, in case you mess up on the first one or something.
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Re: Ramp Creation

Post by knightmoves » March 28th, 2020, 7:07 am

MoMoney$$$;)0) wrote:
March 27th, 2020, 5:24 pm
Our teams used a CNC to cut all the ramp parts so that was easy, (not exactly a trade secret) but a foam board with one of those smooth sides on it. I think ours was about 3mm thick, and it doesn't break or warp or cut you or anything like that, which sheet metal might, and you can cut holes in it sand it down, nail it, and you can have a ramp that exactly aligns with the floor below it.
I've seen ramps made out of this sort of foam board, clear acrylic sheet, hardboard, a plastic diffuser for strip lights in a drop ceiling, sheet metal, something that looked like melamine or something similar, plywood, and corrugated plastic of the sort used to make yard signs. They've all been similar in shape, and I've not noticed much difference in the performance of the cars based on the material the ramp was made from.

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Re: Ramp Creation

Post by MoMoney$$$;)0) » March 28th, 2020, 11:03 am

knightmoves wrote:
March 28th, 2020, 7:07 am
MoMoney$$$;)0) wrote:
March 27th, 2020, 5:24 pm
Our teams used a CNC to cut all the ramp parts so that was easy, (not exactly a trade secret) but a foam board with one of those smooth sides on it. I think ours was about 3mm thick, and it doesn't break or warp or cut you or anything like that, which sheet metal might, and you can cut holes in it sand it down, nail it, and you can have a ramp that exactly aligns with the floor below it.
I've seen ramps made out of this sort of foam board, clear acrylic sheet, hardboard, a plastic diffuser for strip lights in a drop ceiling, sheet metal, something that looked like melamine or something similar, plywood, and corrugated plastic of the sort used to make yard signs. They've all been similar in shape, and I've not noticed much difference in the performance of the cars based on the material the ramp was made from.
Yeah it doesn't really make a big difference as long as it does the job, and does it right, and as long as it fits the dimensions it's on the car that makes a difference.
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Re: Ramp Creation

Post by MTV<=>Operator » March 28th, 2020, 12:35 pm

MoMoney$$$;)0) wrote:
March 27th, 2020, 5:24 pm
Our teams used a CNC to cut all the ramp parts so that was easy, (not exactly a trade secret) but a foam board with one of those smooth sides on it. I think ours was about 3mm thick, and it doesn't break or warp or cut you or anything like that, which sheet metal might, and you can cut holes in it sand it down, nail it, and you can have a ramp that exactly aligns with the floor below it. For this reason, we never had to worry about any problems that might arise with using "dangerous" materials like sheet metal.
Yeah I may have cut myself once or a few times using sheet metal :lol: . I wanted to use my school's CNC to cut the wood but it isn't big enough to fit a 1 meter piece of plywood. I ended up using the laser cutter but it required 2 passes at 130 watts and overheated every 10 minutes of cutting :cry: . Does anyone know how to guarantee an accurate cut with a jigsaw?
knightmoves wrote:
March 28th, 2020, 7:07 am
I've seen ramps made out of this sort of foam board, clear acrylic sheet, hardboard, a plastic diffuser for strip lights in a drop ceiling, sheet metal, something that looked like melamine or something similar, plywood, and corrugated plastic of the sort used to make yard signs. They've all been similar in shape, and I've not noticed much difference in the performance of the cars based on the material the ramp was made from.
I want to use clear acrylic sheet for my ramp next year because it could make it easier to align the ramp, but I have no idea how I would attach it to the plywood side panels. Based on what I've looked up it's a real pain to drill through.
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Re: Ramp Creation

Post by MoMoney$$$;)0) » March 28th, 2020, 12:57 pm

MTV<=>Operator wrote:
March 28th, 2020, 12:35 pm
MoMoney$$$;)0) wrote:
March 27th, 2020, 5:24 pm
Our teams used a CNC to cut all the ramp parts so that was easy, (not exactly a trade secret) but a foam board with one of those smooth sides on it. I think ours was about 3mm thick, and it doesn't break or warp or cut you or anything like that, which sheet metal might, and you can cut holes in it sand it down, nail it, and you can have a ramp that exactly aligns with the floor below it. For this reason, we never had to worry about any problems that might arise with using "dangerous" materials like sheet metal.
Yeah I may have cut myself once or a few times using sheet metal :lol: . I wanted to use my school's CNC to cut the wood but it isn't big enough to fit a 1 meter piece of plywood. I ended up using the laser cutter but it required 2 passes at 130 watts and overheated every 10 minutes of cutting :cry: . Does anyone know how to guarantee an accurate cut with a jigsaw?
knightmoves wrote:
March 28th, 2020, 7:07 am
I've seen ramps made out of this sort of foam board, clear acrylic sheet, hardboard, a plastic diffuser for strip lights in a drop ceiling, sheet metal, something that looked like melamine or something similar, plywood, and corrugated plastic of the sort used to make yard signs. They've all been similar in shape, and I've not noticed much difference in the performance of the cars based on the material the ramp was made from.
I want to use clear acrylic sheet for my ramp next year because it could make it easier to align the ramp, but I have no idea how I would attach it to the plywood side panels. Based on what I've looked up it's a real pain to drill through.
Well using a jigsaw usually isn't a problem as long as you know what you're doing. What CNC and Laser Cutter do you use as well since I'm curious, at school we have a shopbot which cuts 129” x 61” x 8”, and another 5 axis CNC for smaller items. The we have a laser cutter that cuts 24"x12", and we use that to make our cars from MDF and Cardboard (Which are very sturdy and accurate, they can actually hold up a persons body wieght :P).
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Re: Ramp Creation

Post by MTV<=>Operator » March 28th, 2020, 3:10 pm

MoMoney$$$;)0) wrote:
March 28th, 2020, 12:57 pm
MTV<=>Operator wrote:
March 28th, 2020, 12:35 pm
MoMoney$$$;)0) wrote:
March 27th, 2020, 5:24 pm
Our teams used a CNC to cut all the ramp parts so that was easy, (not exactly a trade secret) but a foam board with one of those smooth sides on it. I think ours was about 3mm thick, and it doesn't break or warp or cut you or anything like that, which sheet metal might, and you can cut holes in it sand it down, nail it, and you can have a ramp that exactly aligns with the floor below it. For this reason, we never had to worry about any problems that might arise with using "dangerous" materials like sheet metal.
Yeah I may have cut myself once or a few times using sheet metal :lol: . I wanted to use my school's CNC to cut the wood but it isn't big enough to fit a 1 meter piece of plywood. I ended up using the laser cutter but it required 2 passes at 130 watts and overheated every 10 minutes of cutting :cry: . Does anyone know how to guarantee an accurate cut with a jigsaw?
knightmoves wrote:
March 28th, 2020, 7:07 am
I've seen ramps made out of this sort of foam board, clear acrylic sheet, hardboard, a plastic diffuser for strip lights in a drop ceiling, sheet metal, something that looked like melamine or something similar, plywood, and corrugated plastic of the sort used to make yard signs. They've all been similar in shape, and I've not noticed much difference in the performance of the cars based on the material the ramp was made from.
I want to use clear acrylic sheet for my ramp next year because it could make it easier to align the ramp, but I have no idea how I would attach it to the plywood side panels. Based on what I've looked up it's a real pain to drill through.
Well using a jigsaw usually isn't a problem as long as you know what you're doing. What CNC and Laser Cutter do you use as well since I'm curious, at school we have a shopbot which cuts 129” x 61” x 8”, and another 5 axis CNC for smaller items. The we have a laser cutter that cuts 24"x12", and we use that to make our cars from MDF and Cardboard (Which are very sturdy and accurate, they can actually hold up a persons body wieght :P).
I'm not sure what CNC it is since I've never used it, I just know that it is 36"x 24" and the robotics team uses it to cut polycarbonate. The brand of the laser cutter is Full Spectrum and its 48" x 24" but I couldn't find the model on their website.
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