Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Briquette Press Built

The press is built!  Sam and I (Breckel) did the final assembly today, and it looks great!  Just a little bit of final polishing up to do and we can start producing briquettes with it.  
And it only took one extra trip to the hardware store. Lots of lessons learned during the prototyping, it's been a great experience.  

Monday, March 28, 2011

New Member of Our Team

Simon Arends, a former member of the Peru Kitchen Project and a junior mechanical engineer, will now be joining the PUC Ghana Briquette Team. Due to major communication problems between the Peru team and Santa Cruz, Peru, the project had to be discontinued and their members have decided to join other PUC teams. We look forward to working with Simon and are excited to what he will bring to the team!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Rapid Prototype of the Press!

We have a working model of the press! Much thanks to team member Marc Nestenius for drafting the prototype in SolidWorks, and to Prof. Billy H. Wood for allowing us to use the the Engineering and Computer Graphics 3-D printer to create a rapid-prototype plastic model of the press.

The picture (below) shows our model, with pencil to scale. The lever arm on the right side of the press moves up and down, which in turn moves the horizontal beam downward to press the briquettes, which will be plunged inside a 3" PVC pipe in the full-scale press. The model even has the full range of motion that our full-scale design will have (see video).

With this proof-of-concept design under our belt, we will be building the first full-scale press in the upcoming days after Spring Break. Stay tuned!