Suspension Tutorial #2 . . After receiving lots of positive feedback from my first tutorial, I present my second suspension tutorial. If you have not seen my first one I would sugest you check it out, here. This tutorial features 6 different and new suspension types 4 of which are built for tracks. I also have a video at the end, and a LDD file containing all the systems. So with out further adieu lets get started.
Types of suspension covered in this tutorial:
Rubberband pull up
Solid track frame
Inside track dual bar
1: Rubberband pull up
Basically it does what the name implies. The tire pulls down on the rubberband, and it springs the wheel back up. Very easy to build.
Simple, compact design
Can be built on very small vehicles
Rubberband and arm can be adjusted to get the right squish
Not good for larger vehicles
Have to add stops on the arm
Not intended for steering axles
This design can be used as a sort of independent suspension, with each wheel having it's own arm and rubberband.
If you were to add a drive, I would sugest hooking the arms together as to make a more efficient drive, and so your axles don't twist as much.
2: Torsion bar
I would not recommend this suspension, but I received a comment on my last tutorial stating I had not done this type, so here it is. It's more of a joke than a actual viable suspension. Now you maybe thinking, where are the rubberbands, shocks, something to provide the spring. No, it's not a unfinished build. The black axle provides the spring to this one. A torsion bar is a bar that is fixed to the frame at one end, and twists to provide spring. I have fixed this one by two ends, so that it is a little stiffer. This is susposed to be for a roller on a tracked system.
Requires only techinc pieces, no rubberbands, springs ect.
Can be built for small creations.
Very stiff design for heavy vehicles
Can be hard on your pieces, especially the axles
Hard to make torsion rods twist
3: Solid track frame
I'm not too creative with the names of these systems. This one features a solid undercarriage system. This means that the tracks don't expand and contract according to the suspension. The gray rods in the center must be added, or else the frame will pivot around the shocks, and fall down.
Tracks are solid
Can be built for a variety of tracks, High tracks, tank tracks, straight tracks.
Have to make frame to account for springs.
Tracks don't contour to terrain, providing less traction.
4: Inside track dual bar
I'm very pleased with this one. My friend wants me to make a half track with the suspension that follows this one, but I found a picture of a half track with suspension similar to this one, and I will be making a halftrack featuring this suspension. It is a simple consept of putting the shocks on the inside of the track from the top main bar to bars below that move. Having two bars gives it an independent feel.
Lots of suspension travel
4 way independent feel.
Track moves a lot around sprockets, and can slip.
Requires space for springs
5: Independent roller
I wish I could say I came up with this idea, but I did not. It came from Zackhariah Macasaet, who in my opinion is a professional tank builder. He has some awesome tanks, and this very cool suspension design. An important note, he uses the smaller black tracks for his tanks, and I have found out, these bigger tracks don't work as good as those for this suspension system. The reason being, the bigger tracks don't have very much bending backwards motion.
I modified it a little, changing the position of the rubberband.
Very independent track suspension
Excellent design for tanks
Doesn't work well with larger tracks
Requires quite a few rubberbands
Limited to spacing such that the rollers don't collide
Anybody building a tank, I would recommend trying this system out, and seeing how it works.
6: Sideways Independent
I saved the best for last. My friend sent me a picture of a suspension in which the springs were mounted parallel to the frame. This was for a model RC car. He wanted me to build it for my raptor, but it is too wide.
From the photo I found out, the springs were attached to rockers, which were in turn attached to bars attached to the A arms. Lots of attaching. The main benefit of building it this way is that you don't have shock sticking up from your frame, and you don't have to build your frame around them, ect.
An added bonus is that the lever action of all these parts combined produces high amounts of travel, with very little shock travel. I have equipped this on my Barracuda, a rugged off road vehicle.
Great suspension travel.
No shocks perpendicular to frame
Can be used for steering or drive axles
Hard to adde steering and keep wheels from towing in or out
Limits width of vehicle
Lever action makes spring power weaker, must use double shocks, or different levers for larger vehicles
I would sugest this suspension system for medium to large vehicles. Some examples being race cars, jeeps, ect. If you want to make this for a heavy duty vehicle, I would suggest repositioning the spring and bars so that you have stiffer suspension. I found out that when dealing with independent suspension systems, it is best to move the steering rods as close to the A arms as possible, this gets rid of the towing when the suspension is pushed down and up.
Check out the travel on this thing, it's simply amazing!
Here is the video
The LDD file contains all the suspension systems. I did not add the A arms to the Sideways independent, because I could not find the right ones. I think that they are the only part missing. If you use these suspension systems, credit would be appreciated. Thanks for looking, I put a lot of time into these tutorials, feed back is greatly appreciated!