View Full Version : Snowcat Idea
01-20-2009, 11:47 PM
This is a conceptual idea I came up with for my portfolio [for applying to uni]. Basically the cab and two sets of tracks run on a large curved track, and they counter balance eachother to allow the cat to "step" over obstacles like crevasses that would stop a normal cat dead in it's tracks.
Currently I don't think this would be possibly to build without incredibly advanced batteries and powerful motors, but at the rate batteries are being refined it shouldn't be horribly long before something like this is possible.
Let me know what you think!
01-20-2009, 11:54 PM
Cool idea. I'm gonna go ahead and be mean by saying its a good idea, but its a solution or a problem that rarely occurs. Every crevasse ends somewhere, and it would be cheaper and safer to motor around than to develop, test, build, etc a whole new machine. Then again I'm just stating the obvious. But yeah, cool stuff man.
01-22-2009, 04:21 PM
I really like the lift up and swivel portion where it sets its own tracks down in a 360 circle. The same might be accomplished with simply a straight I-beam frame and some well placed weights, or even water or some other heavy liquid (bromine?) that could be pumped to one side or the other. :headbang:
01-26-2009, 02:15 PM
I like it. It's mental, so universities will like it too. Plus having a video of it working is excellent, they'll really like that.
What course are you hoping to get on? I've applied for vehicle design at Coventry, which is somewhere between engineering and aesthetic design, with lots of human interfaces and ergonomics thrown in. I don't have much of a portfolio at the moment (working full time and I left school years ago so my teachers can't help me (plus I've lost all the stuff I did for design technology a-level too, err, shit)).
01-26-2009, 10:25 PM
I'm looking into industrial design, if I'm lucky I'll get to focus on a variety of fun stuff when I graduate. I like snowboarding a lot, so dream job would be designing bindings or something, but I don't want to constrain myself now.
Sponno- This would have other abilities that let it go almost anywhere. If you think about it, this vehicle can use it's "stepping" ability to climb up gaps as well, even something like a set of stairs. I was thinking that on a real version the big curved central track would be a lot longer and more slender, with maybe 2 bars instead of 4, allowing the cat to cross gaps up to twice the distance the treads cover while in normal driving mode. This would really make it an unbeatable vehicle, that could easily cross formidable terrain including very wide crevasses, gaps where the two shelves are at different heights, and probably keep traction on incredibly steep grades. I might make more videos eventually to illustrate what I'm thinking.
Yttr- I chose to curve the main track so they wouldn't interfere with the ground when the cat has to lift one of its drive tracks. I could raise the space inbetween the drive tracks and the main track with some supports, but then that also means the whole vehicle will have a higher center of gravity and therefore weaker stability. I'll give it a shot though, maybe it wouldn't interfere as much as I imagine.
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