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Old 09-10-2020, 07:05 AM
garymck (Gary)
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Motorizing roll off roof?

Hi,
I've just finished building a small roll off roof obs measuring 1.5m x 3m for my wedge mounted CPC925. As a first step to automating it, I'm setting up an AAG Cloudwatcher which can trigger a roof closure. Looking for options to motorise the roof - cheaply if I can. Thinking about using a garage door opener - is this feasible? If so, are there some models that are easier to use than others? Other options?

TIA
Gary
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Old 09-10-2020, 07:34 AM
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Gary,

I was planning to use old Nice gate opener, mechanically similar to this one (a friend gave it to me when moving house) for my observatory in Mount Pleasant (you saw it...).

It has a cog on the rear side, pitch matches the standard bicycle chain, so I will machine it (it has to be thinner) and use it when this lockdown is over.... hopefully soon.
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Old 09-10-2020, 08:39 AM
garymck (Gary)
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Hi Bojan,
tehy are nice but a bit rich in price new for me. Hoping to find a solution under $300 (Bunnings door opener or some such). Wondering is I could use something like this with a cog on it?
https://www.bunnings.com.au/chamberl...pener_p0133219

or adapt something like this:
https://www.bunnings.com.au/chamberl...pener_p0133217

Gary
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Old 09-10-2020, 09:13 AM
glend (Glen)
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There are many reduction gear electric motors that could work. Electric bikes are actually governed for low speed, something like this could be made to work:

https://www.ebay.com.au/i/223988350418?chn=ps
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Old 09-10-2020, 09:14 AM
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It's hard to see how exactly to do it from Bunnings images.. most likely possible.
Also, you can consider old bicycle chains and sprockets...
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Old 09-10-2020, 09:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glend View Post
There are many reduction gear electric motors that could work. Electric bikes are actually governed for low speed, something like this could be made to work:

https://www.ebay.com.au/i/223988350418?chn=ps

Yep
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Old 09-10-2020, 09:26 AM
glend (Glen)
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Originally Posted by glend View Post
There are many reduction gear electric motors that could work. Electric bikes are actually governed for low speed, something like this could be made to work:

https://www.ebay.com.au/i/223988350418?chn=ps
You could use a simple PWM motor controller rated for the motor, like this one,

https://www.ebay.com.au/i/112713952838?chn=ps

There are plenty of PWMs to choose from. Install a cutout switch near the end of the run to trip. Now reversing it will require a bit of thought.
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Old 12-10-2020, 06:19 AM
garymck (Gary)
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Thanks for the suggestions guys. I've decided that I don't think I have the expertise to roll my own using motors and controllers bought as separate items. I've decide to go for a sliding gate opener with a pinion/rack drive. Just have to save a few more dollars as about $400 seems to be the going price for one.
cheers
Gary
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Old 12-10-2020, 08:36 AM
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Ryderscope (Rodney)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garymck View Post
Hi,
I've just finished building a small roll off roof obs measuring 1.5m x 3m for my wedge mounted CPC925. As a first step to automating it, I'm setting up an AAG Cloudwatcher which can trigger a roof closure. Looking for options to motorise the roof - cheaply if I can. Thinking about using a garage door opener - is this feasible? If so, are there some models that are easier to use than others? Other options?

TIA
Gary
Hi Gary,

I have automated my roll off shed observatory using a Merlin 230T panel lift garage door opener. Whilst my obs is a roll off shed the same concept can be easily applied to a roll off roof. I purchased the garage door opener off eBay second hand for $150. To automate the opening and closing I purchased the Sky Roof controller system from Innovative Astronomy in the US.

I have links to a number of photos that I have taken and some videos as well. I will start a separate thread on my obs rather than hijacking your thread.

Clear skies,
Rodney
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Old 12-10-2020, 09:08 AM
garymck (Gary)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryderscope View Post
Hi Gary,

I have automated my roll off shed observatory using a Merlin 230T panel lift garage door opener. Whilst my obs is a roll off shed the same concept can be easily applied to a roll off roof. I purchased the garage door opener off eBay second hand for $150. To automate the opening and closing I purchased the Sky Roof controller system from Innovative Astronomy in the US.

I have links to a number of photos that I have taken and some videos as well. I will start a separate thread on my obs rather than hijacking your thread.

Clear skies,
Rodney
Look forward to seeing the details....panel lift garage door openers are a lot cheaper than sliding gate units....

cheers
Gary
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Old 12-10-2020, 09:57 AM
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Ryderscope (Rodney)
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Look forward to seeing the details....panel lift garage door openers are a lot cheaper than sliding gate units....

cheers
Gary
That is what I found and the panel lift motor is more suited to roll off roof installations.

I have finished posting my thread on my installation. Link here.

Best,
Rodney
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Old 12-10-2020, 10:24 AM
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I used cheap 4wd winches. I needed two so the roof did not go sideways. I got one on special for $150 but when I went back for the second one it was up to $200.. still you have all your controls etc.
Alex
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