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Mercury Sable RC steering help

  1. Aug 6, 2007 #1
    hey, i need some help with a project i am working on.

    what i am trying to do is take a full size car and turn it into a RC car. however, inorder to keep the car street legal, i need to keep all the controls operable by a person. i am using only off the shelf parts and servos that you can buy at most hobby shops. hardly anything is custom made. i have already successfully set up the control for the pedals, using a cable that pulls the pedal down as it is reeled in by a winching servo. that way i can still press on the pedals manually without interference with the servos. i will include a diagram later to show how that works.

    however, my problem is with the steering. i cant find any way to connect the high torque 3.5 rotation servo to the steering shaft without destroying the streetability of the car.

    ill give you as much information about the car as possible so you might better understand what im doing

    1993 Mercury Sable 179k miles
    v6 fuel injected (blown head gasket)
    automatic transmission with 4 gears
    power steering
    airbags have been removed
    steering wheel attaches with a singe bolt torqued to 23-33 ft-lb
    4000 rpm max before rev limiter kicks in
    8 inches of non turning steering column are exposed. this is where im considering mounting the servo...
    fuel cut off valve has been rewired to a remote starting device, so i can kill the car in the event it losses contact with the transmitter
    wireless camera soon to be mounted on the dashboard
    (as soon as the company sends me one that ISNT defective)
    any thing else you want to know about the car just ask.

    my ultimate goal with this project is turning the car into a drive-by-wire system. i want to do this, because eventually it will become an autonomous vehicle, possibly i will even enter it into the DARPA grand challenge.

    thanks for all your help.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 7, 2007 #2


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    Gold Member

    Sounds interesting, Gigabyte.
    Can't you just include a clutch in the steering servo linkage so that you can de-couple it for manual driving?
  4. Aug 7, 2007 #3


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    You could look into handicap accessible auto modifications.
    Some of these provide joystick control.
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