Need a Conveyor

Discussion in 'Other metal working projects' started by Jason, Apr 23, 2022.

  1. Jason

    Jason Gold

    I need to build a conveyor about 15ft long. Nothing fancy, just a belt and a motor so I can send 37yards of soil up into a trailer. I'm thinking of using C pulling for the sides. Any words of wisdom on this one? Thanks!

    Buddy of mine gave me this 16" wide roll yesterday. I think it's long enough for the job. Lacing it could be a whole other issue.... :rolleyes: The stuff is pretty flexible, but how do I know what diameter to make the end rollers?? Farting in the wind makes me think 6" should do??

  2. The big mining conveyors have a tracking adjustment just like a giant belt sander on the end roller. If it's for limited use maybe make the rollers out of larger diameter PVC pipe with a thick enough wall thickness. Maybe check out some brick conveyors for design ideas.
  3. Jason

    Jason Gold

    I found a good setup for tracking. I'm guessing it doesn't need to be on both ends. I was kinda thinking put the drive wheel and the motor on the bottom and the driven wheel at the top with the tracking adjustment. You sure about PVC pipe? This biggest I've found so far without hitting up the plumbers is 4" PVC. That's about the smallest diameter I can roll this belt. I'm kinda leaning towards some 5 or 6 inch pipe. I know there has got to be some tech data for these decisions, but I can't find it. You know me by now, I can monkey see monkey do like mofo! Just need to see it!:D

    This dude put all thread on the left of the photo to adjust the roller for tracking. I like that.
    Screenshot 2022-04-23 at 19-08-40 Making mobile Gas-Powered Belt Conveyor - YouTube.png
  4. Jason

    Jason Gold

    Everyone of these I see have larger rollers.

  5. I'm lucky that my friend's foundry is next door to a plumbing wholesaler: they have instructions to toss over the fence any large bore broken PVC as we use a lot of 8" bore for packaging the product to provide vertical crush protection. I think for light use, some mass produced 10 ply washers could be spaced on some steel bar, say 3 x 10 ply washers on some 1" bar with the plywood tube slipped over and secured with screws on the ends. The steel bar provides the strength and is the axle for the bearings, you may get lucky at the steel merchants and find some bar lengths going cheap as a wrongly cut order and make to suit.

    There's many different PVC grades and wall thicknesses, over here there's water mains pressure, rainwater and sewer pipe all with slightly different wall thicknesses and different bores to make interconnection difficult. Amateurs connect their rainwater down pipes that should route to the street gutter to the sewer: the local council has banned this and occasionally comes round and blows smoke back up the sewer to see which houses have smoke rising and fines them. The excess rainwater in the tropics makes the pumps run non stop and damages them.

    If you had a disc sander you could hole saw the bore and mount on a dowel screwed to a plate clamped to a disc sander to make a concentric outer diameter that is a snug fit for the PVC. Three discs per steel axle and a PVC pipe cover with those cheapo pillow block ball bearings on the ends.

    How much of this hole could be dug with a mini rubber tracked excavator?. I've seen one model up close made in Japan that could bring the tracks close so it could fit through house doorways and small enough to ride elevators. It was designed for rooftop gardens common to penthouse suites.
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2022
  6. GTS225

    GTS225 Silver

    Is this going to be an ongoing affair, or is it a one-time event? If it's a one-time thing, then I might suggest you rent one from a farmer somewhere.

    Just sayin'.....Roger
    Petee716 likes this.
  7. Jason

    Jason Gold

    Couple things come to mind with a mini-ex. First is the door opening height is only 7ft, second big hurdle is the depth of the hole. Mini-exs don't really go that deep. Then there is just the mechanics of digging inside and getting the dirt removed. My friends mini has legs on it and it won't operate without them being down so that adds to the monkey motion big time. There isn't enough room to swing around and get the material in the trailer outside. I'm not saying I'm not going to at least try it. After I get the slab up, I'm sure I'll drag one home from the home depot for a day or two to see if it's remotely possible... Either way, the conveyor is going to be priceless getting the material up into a trailer. If' it's long enough, having 6ft of it down in the hole will become priceless during the hand digging phase. And that is the why I don't want to rent one right there. By the time I'm done with a rental, I'll have 2grand in it for a couple of weeks when I can build one for a couple hundred bucks! Then I'll sell it off when finished. I'm sure I'll have no problem flogging it off to someone for a grand. Remember, Time, Speed, Quality>>>>>> PICK TWO!

    Notice a big green object missing in this photo? The IRS went back in and I took it around the block before putting it back to bed in a storage unit. I think the gear swap was the right move to make. By changing the final drive from 3;54 to 2:88, the car still pulled off the stop with plenty of ass. That's the beauty of a british "square" engine, plenty of torque! Anyways, this is what 16ft looks like here! The lift measures 8x16ft:eek::eek:

    I'm not sure Mark I'm following you with the disc sander... I'm not afraid to chuck up some wood in my lathe and turn what I need. I have an amazing scrap yard here so when it comes to materials, I can get whatever you can imagine. It's that good! This yard is going to save me a fortune on materials that's for sure. I do like your idea of fat ass washers for some smartly placed cheap rollers. Something V shaped under the belt would probably keep more dirt heading in the right direction.

    Yes, I only run AVGAS in this car. (Blue fuel in a prist jug at the door) In fact even after sitting for more years than I want to admit... (5+)
    That car started on the 2nd crank of the key!

    Jason likes this.
  9. Jason

    Jason Gold

    Nice sander. Nope don't own or wanna own one of those! Space is at a premium that's for sure.:(
  10. Melterskelter

    Melterskelter Gold Banner Member

    With some hesitation I will offer a contrary suggestion:

    Conveyor belt?! Seems like a complicated solution and maybe a very difficult one given the depth of the hole compared to the relatively short length of the hole. That will make the angle of the belt steep. Not to mention the likely problem of dirt rolling down the steep vibrating belt. That belt should not be flat but should have a flat center with inclined sides to keep the dirt from rolling off the side. Yikes, lots of engineering and I fear some trials associated with errors until it can all work passably.

    If I needed to get dirt out of such a hole I'd just use an electric hoist on an overhead track like a barn door track and trolley. (I use such a system routinely in my foundry) It will easily carry more than 500 pounds. Then simply fill a welded-up bucket of convenient size with the hoist. (The custom bucket could have pivot points near its CG so that it is easy to dump.) Traverse with the trolley and dump. If the trolley track is extended to or even out the door, life is easier yet. From there it is a rented skid steer on a Saturday (that will fit under a 7' door) to fill 3 dump truck loads of dirt. All components are simple, available,cheap, and proven.

    The trolley allows positioning of the bucket wherever it is needed at the moment in the hole. The conveyor, once operable, will be very limited in its location and not easily moved.

  11. Jason

    Jason Gold

    I bought a hoist a month ago. I do need to make a gantry to trolley it from the back of the hole to the conveyor. Keep in mind, this back wall is over 17ft from the door, It wont be steep at all. The plan is to only raise the door a couple of feet so I can dig in the luxury of air conditioning. It will be 100 before I know it. There is no way I'm lifting 100lb+ tubs of dirt by hand out an 8ft deep hole. The trailer will be out in the driveway to catch the dirt from the conveyor. I've been buying these things when I can find them. While shitty looking, they will hold some serious weight! That's the tubs furze has been using for his tunnel.


  12. Al2O3

    Al2O3 Administrator Staff Member Banner Member

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  13. Petee716

    Petee716 Gold Banner Member

    This thread’s got my imagination going. Unless there was a hopper/auger to feed the belt conveyor, I don’t think the belt conveyor would handle the initial dump from the excavator bucket. Of course my experience is only limited to corn, hay, and manure.

  14. Jason

    Jason Gold

    Kelly, I hadnt considered using wood for the gantry. Metal at my scrap yard runs about the same price as new lumber. Now if I can get lucky at the cull cart at home depot.... I scored a 2x6x16 at HD for 9bucks recently. A few more of those and I'm out the door super cheap! It only has to hold a couple hundred pounds of dirt and hoist. God I hope I dont hit rock down there. :eek: From what I've been told by the locals, I should be good. Fingers crossed.

    Pete it will probably depend what kind of soil I scoop up. If its solid packed clay, maybe. A hopper on the bottom is a must. Just a sheet metal funnel to catch the tub of dirt dumped on it should help keep things moving.

    Anyone that's seen furze with his tunnel build might notice a piece of the show is missing. He hoists the dirt up the shaft in tubs. He collects about 20 of them, then wheels them off. You never see where they go.o_O

    The better excavation is lee anderson on YT that digs out his basement. While not flashy, he did a great job on that series detailing every step of a very difficult job. His electric mini ex is the perfect tool for a basement.. It would never work in my hell hole.:oops:

  15. Jason

    Jason Gold

    Anyone remember who it was that made that overhead steel gantry that rolled on the X and Y direction?? I seem to remember seeing it under the ceiling in his work shed with a hoist under it. It was a few years ago and might have been on the Avenue...

    Meanwhile, Sourced a piece of fat well pipe for the rollers. Hope it's not magnetized. I hear that happens to pipe when it comes out of the ground and can be a pain to weld. We will see I guess.

    I know I read something somewhere about stickout.. lmao. This worked, but god was it slow going.:oops:

  16. Tobho Mott

    Tobho Mott Administrator Staff Member Banner Member

    Was it maybe Indiscrimintate Scavenger?

    Bill's got something similar in his shop too:

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  17. Jason

    Jason Gold

    Bullseye Jeff! Thanks, it was Justin. Good memory!
  18. crazybillybob

    crazybillybob Silver Banner Member

    Engage safety squints. Fresh clean undys on standby!
  19. Melterskelter

    Melterskelter Gold Banner Member

    No kidding!

    If ever there was an indication for a steady rest, this is it. It would markedly increase safety and speed of cut. I am amazed you can make any cut with that kind of setup. Having that part come flying out, a near inevitability, is just plain scary and unecessary.

    No steady, you say. Well, they have been very successfully made of plywood for one-off situations.

    This one is more complex than needed as simple end grain of wood bearing against the oiled tube would work fine. The arms could be simply held in place with drywall screws. But this shows the general outline of a working steady . It could be simplified and fabricated quickly.
    There are plenty of historical examples of one-off wooden steadies being used to good advantage on metal lathes.

  20. Jason

    Jason Gold

    Nahh, it was turning at 90rpm. An internal spider on this would have been better, but I dont have one. Not being a precision part, it's plenty good enough!

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