Solar Tracking - construction notes.

(Page 2 of 'Solar Tracking' - construction notes)

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 Parts from eBay or Local..
$20 12V Motor, 1 watt 10 rpm (worm-drive) Eg. JGY370 (eBay)
$25 2x 12V 5W Solar Panels (eBay 'Hobby / Toys')
$6 2x Mercury Switches. eg SM1035 (Jaycar)
$9 Nylon Pinion gear set. eg. YG2632 (Jaycar)

Plus.. 7mm Marine Ply - 7mm Marine grade rope.

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The Main Array must be well balanced.

The video below shows a 'Balanced Array'..

We have two prototypes.. A 'Chain Drive' and a 'Rope Drive'

Click Here for the article on the 'Chain Drive' option..

The 'Rope Drive' system.

Note: After 3 months of use, no wear is obvious on the rope drive or nylon gears. But we suspect that 3 years might be a reasonable life? The 'Chain Drive' option is only $30 dearer and should last 15 years.

The video below shows the 'Rope Drive', Pulley & Motor box..

Sun Tracking Solar Array < Click 'PLAY' to see the YouTube video..
Sun Tracking Solar Array for less than $99!
..

Rope Drive system

The Rope Drive system

The 11 oak fingers above are able to keep the 7mm rope on the edge of the 7mm marine ply disk.
We originally thought more 'fingers' would be needed.

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Pinion, Pulley and Gears

The two guide pulleys shown here are from a $6, 40mm pulley set
shown here..

Pulley set 40mm
(The center pin of this pulley set can easily be drilled and punched out.)

The Pulley shown below is performing well - but shows some 'wear' which indicates it will only last a year or two.. We are planing to upgrade to bicycle chain and metal gear.

Drive Pulley

The Motor box, Pinion & Pulley box are mounted as shown below..

fab gb1

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JGY370 motor

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The small 'Sun Seeking' array..
This array needs to be mounted far enough from the main array so that neither one can throw a shadow on the other..

Sun Seeking array

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wf sp 1

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wip

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