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Personal Tracked Vehicle


94STXRanger

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Has anyone seen one of these?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GRPHT9wm5cI

This is a pretty simple tracked vehicle.

My idea is to build something a bit more robust as an engineering project.
I'd like to use tracks like mini excavator or ditch witch rubber tracks, or maybe make some steel tracks.

I had thought about using a large zero turn mower for the hydraulic drive, but im just not sure if it would be enough torque, or that it would be to slow. I'm going to try and build something that can plow snow, but also have a little bit of speed. I'd like to do a suspension possibly using some four wheeler rear shocks.

Basically, I'd like to know if you guys have any ideas for a reliable drive system that isnt crazy expensive, i.e. an open diff, hydrostat, clutched drive etc. And any suggestions for track type.

So far this is just brainstorming so any ideas would be great.
 


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85_Ranger4x4

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What I would love to do is stumble apoun a couple snow mobile tracks and skis and make a half track out of a lawn mower for snow and leave it so I could put wheels on the front for summer.

Not for pushing snow, but so I don't have to stumble around in a couple feet of snow to get around.
 

koda6966

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AlaskanRider

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That does look pretty neat. You should do your ranger!

Seriously I was fantacizing about making mine tracked so I could use it for logging.

In alaska we have alot of these older tracked rigs, http://alaskaslist.com/1/posts/10_Transportation/52_All_terrain_Vehicles/181064_J5_Bombardier_Track_Rig.html

Stuff like that, and if you look at the tracks they are usually salvaged from old conveyor belts. The steel cross pieces are bolted to the conveyor straps.

This is a tucker sno cat, my boss uses one every winter for hauling fuel, and it actually uses Dodge running gear, some semi tractor parts and a few other things for its undercarriage. It has the same kind of tracks as the thing above.



If you could separate the right and left brakes on your ranger, they would steer you. You could probably use your original tires, and a track system like the first machine I posted. Use trailer tires and axles as rollers? Itd be bad ass, and Id love to live my dream out through someone else.
 

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If I could figure out the drive and steering it would be fun to make one of these things... wouldn't work really well for pushing snow but it would be very handy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zBjlSJf4274
 

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i want a rip saw. i wish they still had there show they built some cool stuff
 

94STXRanger

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Yes, the Ripsaw is awesome. They have a proprietary design on those tracks of theirs, and the are able to rotate at speeds of 60 mph, so they are pretty stable. Im trying to think of something more like their mini rip:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XKgi2g-uUBI

My biggest issue is coming up with an efficient power delivery system, and motor. I dont want to have some honda four cylinder. It would be much easier to use a mower engine of some type, and maybe some small open differential were both axles could be braked individually, but then i lose the ability to reverse and zero turn...
 
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heptofite

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you could run two lawnmower engines, one throttle for each track and a pair of reversing gearboxes.
 

CHKNFKR

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you could run two lawnmower engines, one throttle for each track and a pair of reversing gearboxes.
The problem with that is the two engines would have to be perfectly tuned to each other or else you'd never be able to drive a straight line. Thats why real tracks don't use this method.

The absolute only advantage tracks have over wheels is weight distribution, if that is your primary purpose for tracks then its worth it. Otherwise their inefficiencies, and maintenance requirements outweigh their ability to distribute weight. The only reason machines like the ripsaw exist is for the cool factor.
 

85_Ranger4x4

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The problem with that is the two engines would have to be perfectly tuned to each other or else you'd never be able to drive a straight line. Thats why real tracks don't use this method.

The absolute only advantage tracks have over wheels is weight distribution, if that is your primary purpose for tracks then its worth it. Otherwise their inefficiencies, and maintenance requirements outweigh their ability to distribute weight. The only reason machines like the ripsaw exist is for the cool factor.
You have two throttles, just vary them to match like a multiple engine aircraft.

The old Euclid dozers had two detroits, each one ran a track. Same as a zero turn lawn mower on a hill, both sticks in the same position and you will be going downhill. A "zero turn" wouldn't be very handy with a twin engine setup though.

Could you use the drive off of an old bobcat/skid loader?
 
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LearjetMinako

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An idea that I just thought of is to use a simple driving lawn mower for the powerplant. Change the pulleys for higher speed and use the gear box to adjust the amount of torque for that speed. Then you can use a brake rotor system for each side to make it turn by the steering wheels. Use a second brake rotor system for a more balanced stop without it messing up your steering input.

I would love to be able to build something like that. I would make it about ATV size with the driver placed in between the tracks and the engine in the rear. And it would need a multi-point suspension to really soak up those bumps at high speed. Be like a mini tank, except it would be a really fast, go more places and go further mini tank. Maybe even make it float with a simple prop & rudder system. Oh the ideas I'm coming up with. :D
 

85_Ranger4x4

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An idea that I just thought of is to use a simple driving lawn mower for the powerplant. Change the pulleys for higher speed and use the gear box to adjust the amount of torque for that speed. Then you can use a brake rotor system for each side to make it turn by the steering wheels. Use a second brake rotor system for a more balanced stop without it messing up your steering input.
Just use both steering brakes at the same time, I do it all the time with tractors. Only using one at flank speed will get you in the ditch.
 

94STXRanger

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Two engines is too difficult to match the output, like CHKNFKR said.

The purpose of making a tracked vehicle is just to make a tracked vehicle, not a vehicle specifically for one purpose or another. Its more of an engineering project.

Using a mower engine and diff would work, but if its a hydrostat, do they use a solid axle or two axles that could be individually braked?
 


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