Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Testing Water Brake Version 0.2

We have decided to have "Wet Wednesdays" (the day after "Taco Tuesdays") and go to the beach every Wednesday.   So testing of hardware in the water will probably be on Wednesdays.

  Today we tested a new design for a water brake and it works really well.

Cut a section out of a 5 gallon paint bucket and added some hinges so that if the boat goes backward it goes down into the water and slows the boat alot but if it is moving forward it mostly rotates out of the water and adds only a little bit of drag.

Going forward water brake mostly up

Put some red foam cushion any shock

Using some rubber bands it seems about 1/2 lb of force will make the boat go forward  at about 1.5 MPH.  With about 1 lb force against the water brake the boat moves very slowly.   Drifting in maybe a 10 MPH wind the sea brake seemed to keep it down to about 1/8th MPH.  Drifts far faster without brake but forgot to measure that.  :-)   Very happy with these results.

If the robot dies for any reason this water brake should let it wait patiently for us to come rescue it.   Without this, on one side of the island it could get blown into the rocks and on the other it could get blown out to sea, faster than we might get to it in a kayak.  Having an automatic water brake should reduce the risk of loss during development. 

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