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Need suggestions for a way to lift a somewhat heavy prop

897 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Engineerchic
Greetings all,

Just starting to plan some new things for this year's haunt, and saw the 2017 motorcycle rider from Home Depot and wanted to make my own version. I picked up a kid's bicycle that looks kind of like a chopper and plan to modify it and add a skeleton rider. I would really like to rig up something to "lift" the front tire up (like he's going to pop a wheelie), but don't know what would be the best way. It doesn't have to be fast or violent (like a pop-up), just raise up a bit, and then go back down. I thinking probably something pneumatic (unless someone has another idea for me), but I have never worked with pneumatics and don't know the first thing about doing it. The hubby has an air compressor, so there's that...
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Awesome! I think a linear actuator would do the trick. Thanks!
Awesome! I think a linear actuator would do the trick. Thanks!
They are pretty easy to work with. Never underestimate the value of springs to help reduce the load on an actuator, too. I made a skeleton sit up in a coffin last year with an actuator and used a simple Arduino to control a relay to reverse the voltage.
I used the spring like a counter balance, the skeleton still wanted to lay back but the spring was used so it felt lighter. I like using extension springs better than compression ones, so I found a place where pulling on the skeleton helped it sit up and put 2 springs there. On another prop I have been experimenting with using springs to hold an elbow at 45 deg so a servo can push it pull it more easily to swing a knife.
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