Deep Space part 2 – motor drives

Now the basic structure is built, I can add the motor drives. I worked out the required turning rates to track low Earth orbit satellites (though that is not the prime purpose of this drive). Geared motors were bought on Ebay from China to suit this, along with toothed drive belt and drive belt pulleys designed for 3-D printers.

It’s all assembled with some scrap aluminium and machine screws – nothing complicated.

The motors will eventually be driven using interface boards and an Arduino to control them; for now, there’s simply a LiPo battery and a two way switch.

Azimuth test:

I have changed the drive tensioning assembly slightly since the test, to provide more tension; as it was, there was the possibility of the belt slipping when the whole antenna assembly was rotated.

Altitude test:

The next step is to assemble it all and check that the motors can drive a slightly unbalanced antenna.