It has been a while since I have updated my blog and a lot has happened since then. This blog post is going be part 1 or 2 of what I have been up to.
Over the christmas holidays I took the time to go to stores for inspiration and to source materials.
One of the biggest challenges I was having with my peanut sheller design was how to make a grate system circular without actually being a cut out piece. To accurately cut out a circle can be one of the hardest things to do with only the use of hand tools.
It took me a while to figure out a design that would work. I ultimately was going to source a pre existing chicken wire mesh that was the right size for my machine. The other way I was going to do it was to use a die to punch out a piece of sheet metal.
The issue with using chicken wire was the idea of being able to source the material from Africa that was the exact right size might become an immediate issue. The issue with punching holes into sheet metal is not all manufactures there have the ability to work with metal in depth.
I ended up being inspired by a tennis racket and how a tennis racket creates a grid by threading through wire through a series of holes.
One of my personal goals of this whole project is to make a design that not just Kio can make but anyone with basic tools can make. I am not there quite yet but I am trying to finalize a design that requires no welding since having a welder is not likely for many in rural areas.
Having a meeting with my instructor Bjarki he came up with a pretty good idea of using small pieces of metal welded to the side of sheet metal in order to make a longer lasting sturdy grate system that could be made completely out of metal. The idea made me think back to one of the ideas I had early on where I would cut identical length pieces of metal tube that are small in diameter. They would fit through a series of holes that would then be caped off at the end to hold them into place.
One of the great benefits of having Kio is he is very diverse in working with metal and I know he could pretty easy make the idea Bjarki gave me. For myself though in order to make this project repeatable in different regions I feel it is important to make it so no welding has to take place to make the device.
I have currently eliminated the idea to make it completely out of a metal housing because of the need for welding.
My current prototype only needed a couple of welds. These welds hold the tire to the shaft of the device.
The big innovation in the second prototype I am working on is going to focus on the wheel. I want to make the wheel most likely out of wood to make it easy to attach the wheel to a wooden shaft. My only concern is if the wheel will be heavy enough to shell the peanuts.
My game plan because of recent ideas is to finish the drawings and the specifications for my second prototype by the end of next week.
I am relived to know my first prototype works very well but I know there is still room for improvement. I also have to look closer at attaching the device to a tricycle and some sort of stand for the device.