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Help with RC "trap door" for gumballs!

 
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mrgad
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Joined: 17 Mar 2008
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2008 12:31 am    Post subject: Help with RC "trap door" for gumballs! Reply with quote

I am new - not just to this forum, but to this line of hobbying. My son is the real budding pro -- he is full of ideas, but as Dad it's fallen on me to help him realize (at least some of) them. His current obsession is a gumball machine he got for Christmas, currently filled with Skittles. He's been completely pimping it out, tricking it out, but now he wants to go totally RC.

His plan is fairly simple (I think) -- he wants a remote control to make the existing gumball machine dispense a Skittle (or ideally, the option of a handful jackpot of Skittles).

He envisions a metal box that would replace the current dispensing apparatus. It would have an opening big enough for a skittle. A thin metal plate would be held in place with a spring, in order to cover the hole. A motor would, when activated, pull the door open (with enough force to counteract the spring). The RC controller would activate the motor. (And, in the "enhanced" version, a second button on the remote would force the door open and keep it open so that a jackpot would descend.) Normal operation would send just enough juice to engage the motor (opening the door) then instantly cut the motor so that the door would slide shut (due to the spring).

I am very handy and have lots of good tools, but absolutely no experience at machining metal -- so I am hoping to be able to help my son build this with existing parts, repurposed from whatever.

Lastly, did I mention my son is six years old? Thus it's my job to type all this to you -- and then to digest all the advice I'm hoping you'll extend as I try to build this remote-control robot gumball machine with him.

Any help would be magnificently appreciated.

Thanks so much,
Mark
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