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Help with mechanism choice please

  1. Dec 12, 2012 #1
    Hello, I hope you super-geniuses will please take a moment to point a layman in the right direction. If I can get past this sticking point I can complete the rest of this project myself.

    I need something small (tennis ball sized or smaller, smaller is better), lightweight, fast, electric, and capable of producing downward force of about 15 lbs, more force is better. The travel distance need only be about 1.5cm. An actuator for an electric door lock for vehicles is close (and cheap,$5) but lacks the force (it produces 10 lbs) and does not seem robust enough.

    The force does not necessarily need to go straight down, a small rotary motor with an arm that rotated would work, but I'm guessing the torque on a small motor would not be capable of producing significant force.

    I really have no idea even what is available, any input is greatly appreciated, TIA.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2012
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 12, 2012 #2
    ...another method might be a rotary motor powering a screw drive. The response needs to be fast tho, perhaps 1/8 sec. My travel distance of 1.5cm was on the long side, I may be able to get away with as little as 1cm. Is there a way to calculate how long it would take for a motor/screw combination to travel 1cm? Again I'm not an engineer but my instinct is that this method would also produce more force.
  4. Dec 14, 2012 #3
  5. Dec 14, 2012 #4
    Thanx for the response. I stumbled around on my own & found that a solenoid is exactly what I was looking for.
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