Saturday, October 3, 2009

Making room for more battery capacity

As mentioned previously, the Lambert 2-3-2 system was removed since I was completely out of space for the larger batteries I had purchased.

One option I had pondered was going back to the static center leg plate, which bolts into place in the frame. However, I would need to craft a way to fit the batteries on top of it.

As usual, I wandered around Lowe's looking for something to create a simple battery tray out of. After some looking, I found the angled plates that are used on the frame work of homes. It was pre-bent and large enough to handle the weight plus bracket the batteries into place.

On my first try, the problem I encountered was simply mounted straight on the plate, the electronics tray winds up flush onto the batteries, which cause the power leads into the AX3500 to bend. Not good!

One option was to move the location of the AX3500 on the electronics tray. However, doing so leaves less room on an already small tray to mount things.
I decided to try something else...move the position of the battery tray a few inches forward. This worked out really well! The bracket pieces are bolted into the thick, aluminum mounting plate. I drilled and tapped some 4-40 holes into it. I then used 4-40 screws that extended beyond the plate, so they would be secured by a lock washer and nut. I figured that would hold everything in place!

Now the wires on the AX3500 do not bend nearly as bad as before.

With that obstacle out of the way, I need to come up with a means to secure the batteries so that they do not move around side-to-side. I am thinking something as simple as a car battery strap or similar would work.
Once this was done, I did some work on the rear skins. The door for the control panel had busted off on the trip home last week. I have replaced the Hobart hinges with a tall door hinge made by Jerry Greene.
More tomorrow!