Wooden Dowels for Axles?

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xray328
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Wooden Dowels for Axles?

Post by xray328 » Thu Nov 20, 2008 10:38 pm

We are building 12 cubmobiles for our pack. We ordered wheels with a 5/8" bearing and soon realized that any material suitable for axles in that size was big money. So I was building a mock up, and not wanting to spend big money just for the mock up I decided to use 5/8" wooden dowels sunk 5" into the 2x4 ends. One thing led to another and after I (very) slowly sat on it, I decided to try it down the driveway a few times. I'm 205# and after three times, everything's still solid. Is this a viable option? I mean if that setup supports my weight, it would certainly hold a 60# kid. We're not after speed, we just want every kid to have a ride. Safety is obviously #1 though, so if you guys don't think it would be such, I'd never attempt it.

Thanks in advance!



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sporty
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Re: Wooden Dowels for Axles?

Post by sporty » Thu Nov 20, 2008 11:54 pm

I have never tested with wooden dowels.

However, I do know some dowels are made of maple or oak and the cheap ones of pine.

I see no reason why a 60 pound kid would not hold them.

Thats only 20 pounds on each piece of wood.

Really the weak part is the dowel into the 2x4. I have seen those crack and split. Thats where most of the force and pressure of the load meets at.

If you got on it and did 10 test runs say and went down hill or on the flat for 150 feet. Take it apart and look at the dowel rods. If you seen do cracks or damage. Then You should be okay to use it.


But since i have not tried it, I can not fully recommend it. But it does sound like what you have said. That you could get buy with it.

Seat belt, foot safety boards and seat sides and helmet. I certainly would use, especially with using wooden axles.

You did not mention if it was a push mobile or type of race or fun format was going to be used also.

you did not mention what you are using on each side of the wheel for keeping the wheel on.

This would be a possible fail point also. Where the wood could crack as well.

Glad to see you post and we welcome pictures.

Sporty



xray328
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Re: Wooden Dowels for Axles?

Post by xray328 » Fri Nov 21, 2008 12:19 am

Thanks.

For the mock up I just drilled small holes across the end of dowels and used nails to hold them on. I'd upgrade to a clevis pin if we went with that setup in the race. A simple screw is holding the other end into the car, drilled from above, through the 2x4 and dowel. If these did split or break, they're only $.30 to replace. I'm more worried about the safety aspect though I guess. I'm just using the cheapo ones I got from the wal-mart craft section, so I'm sure the better oak or maple would help here too.

We bought our wheels from harbor freight for only $3.49 each. Funny thing is they weigh 10# each...we bought 56 wheels. So I got this huge pallet from a shipping company this morning with 560# of wheels. Shipping was only $12 though because it's based on the cost of the order. I'm thinking they lost on this deal. Total price was $207. :D

http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/D ... mber=38963

I'm sure they're not the fastest, but they'll sure work for our purpose.



rdlongsc
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Re: Wooden Dowels for Axles?

Post by rdlongsc » Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:47 pm

I do not think you really want to use wooden axles. Way too many scouts hit each other, curbs, hay bales, etc. Even if the wooden axle holds up to normal downhill race stresses, I think these are unlikely to survive a crash.

Our district requires minimum 1/2" steel bolts or all-thread axles. Our rules require lag bolts must extend into 2 x 4 at least 4 inches. We had a couple cars blow out the axles from a high speed hit on a hay bale.
Last edited by rdlongsc on Sat Nov 22, 2008 9:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.



xray328
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Re: Wooden Dowels for Axles?

Post by xray328 » Fri Nov 21, 2008 11:14 pm

Good point.

I'm sure it wouldn't take much of a curb incident to smash these up pretty good.



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sporty
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Re: Wooden Dowels for Axles?

Post by sporty » Sat Nov 22, 2008 6:42 pm

In my initial reply. I had asked what type of race or use they would be used for. I hope you can talk about that some more.

Certainly running into anything would likely have the wooden doll rods fail.


If you do follow per the cub scout guide book, in regards to the cubmobile. that type of race and the ramp info. would only yield a max speed of about 6 miles per hours, with a average speed much closer to 2 to 3 miles per hour.

The inital going down the ramp onto the surface has a good chance also of failure.

But testing should reveal if it will fail right away or will last awhile.


I have seen wheels comes off and cars tip onto there side, even with good axles and wheels.

The safety measures I suggested and shown in my manual are the key to preventing injury.



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