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Homework Help: Mechanical toy

  1. Jun 4, 2007 #1
    Hello, I need to build a toy car, that will perform the following task:
    Go in a staight line for 5 meters, then follow a semi-circunference (or just turn 180 degrees, but not a about-turn) and go back another 5meters, the turning is around a cone:

    _____________________________________ ---> boundaries


    -------------------cone ---> 0 |

    ----------< -----------<----/


    I am supplied with a electrical engine, and 3 1.5V batteries, I am not allowed to use any other power source, however I can use pretty much any mechanical or electical device I desire (no remote controls, the car needs to perform on it's own)

    I am aware that this is a very simple task, for engineering, but I am in my 1st year and have pretty much only had mathematical classes (calculus, linear algebra, phisics, computing etc) so I am not familiar with the electrical circuits that may accomplish this task....have been brainstorming mechanical solutions for a while now, but nothing really good has come up..

    The problem is that the car needs to have 2 operating "modes" : go straight -- turn...and I need to be able to switch between these modes...

    Any suggestions would be very welcome :)
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 4, 2007 #2


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    1] You could stick a long bar out the right side of the car that hits the cone and do a sharp turn - Batmobile-style. Just an idea for thinking outside the box.

    2] You could use a cam to control the steering (see attached).

    Attached Files:

  4. Jun 4, 2007 #3
    can u send it via pm?i cant see the image...explain more on the 2nd way...seems intresting..
  5. Jun 6, 2007 #4
    Use the motor to drive the car and use it so that it turns the tires on 2 different sides in such a manner so that at the right time they turn in opposite direction and you can make a 180 degree turn. Think about how a Tank turns....:wink:
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