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ExploraDome progress

Started by NebSteve, 02/08/2010 05:21AM
Posted 02/08/2010 05:21AM | Edited 02/08/2010 05:27AM Opening Post
Hi All,
I was able to do a little work on the dome yesterday before kickoff. The ABS track is now bolted to the underside of the dome. There are four sections that don't fit hand-in-glove, but are not difficult to install.

The hardware supplied boarders on too short, so off to Ace I went. It seems like the nice people at ExploraDome also shop at Ace Hardware, because they had the extact sizes and types of stainless steel screws and bolts necessary. I used some extra screws to be sure of two things. First that the track sat as flat as possible on the rather rounded inner edge it seats onto, and second to make sure the number and spacing of the screws would not be coincidental to the number and spacing of wheels. I used seven for each of the four sections.

I had intended to increase the number of wheels but ten ought to do. These should be installed on the ring prior to installing the ring on the building. I did the opposite to ensure my out-of-round ring could be corrected. It's within an 1/8th inch of a perfect circle. Easily within specs, and also level. That's inportant too. The vertical wheels are easy to install and there was enough hardware. The horizontal wheels were missing a few bolts. (Ace was the place)

Those keep the track of the dome, and so the dome centered in its rotation. The only problem I'll have is their method of installing these with through-bolts and nuts won't work if you've already installed the big ring on the building. OK, I used two layers of nine-ply plywood to rest the ring on, so I'll use self tapping screws to hold down the brackets those wheels ride on.

Another problem with those wheels is once the dome is installed, there's no way to adjust them without lifting the dome off again. Certainly not a single handed job. I don't intent to correct that problem, unless some adjustment seems necessary. If so, a hammer and drift pin can knock them towards the outside. The dome might have to be lifted to adjust them to the inside. It might be possible to invent a hook that can pull them with enough force to overcome the friction of the screws.

There's a three day weekend coming up, so...
More to follow.
Posted 04/16/2010 06:48AM #1
Steve Adjust the horizontal wheels so the dome does not rub the ring. Do not adjust them so they all touch. The secrete to an easy turning dome is the less that touches it the better. This changes some if you are going to motorize it but for turn ing it by hand less is better.
Magic Man