I am thinking about building a motor test stand. Something where I can try different props/motors/batteries/ESCs... and measure the current, voltage and thrust. I already have a WattsUp Meter which should be able to give me some Volts/Amp/Power readings that I can use. I'd like some ideas on how to build a mechanical stand that can safely hold a motor and can measure thrust.
There is an old thread here which shows Dr.Kiwi and RagBag's setup. Is anyone doing anything different or are they basic variations of this idea?
Right now I only have realtively small motors to test. My biggest motor is 11/12 V with a max rating of 38 amps (3542-10 from HeadsUpRc.com) This is the motor I need to test, but other smaller motors as well. But who knows what the future will bring!
When I was all wet, I built a test stand by putting one of those wood motor stands on some drawer slides, and using a digital fishing scale had thrust. With the laser temp gun and a syringe, I had fuel consumption and temp readings. It was a real nice rig.
When I got into electric, I tossed it to a friend.
All my test stands now have wings.
I would be interested in seeing what you work out, if it isnt a big project, I may tag along with ya and do it too.
Electricity... It's not just for light bulbs anymore.
Thanks for the links on RcGroups. I haven't gotten around to searching over there yet. Right now I'm thinking of building something like your setup, but I need to do some more searching and research.
I have a couple of goals.
1st is to perform some basic tests on motors before I mount them into a plane. This is to make sure the motor/prop/ESC/Battery are all working OK and are a good match for the target plane. Not serious motor testing, but more of a system validation of all components before being installed in a plane. Also a place to trouble shoot when a system is not acting as expected.
2nd is to spend no money on the test rig. (Well, the least possible.) I'm hoping I can scrounge up enough materials from stuff that's just taking up space. It also needs to be able to be stored away easily....
Nitro Blast, I'll keep posting my thoughts and progress. Please feel free to follow along and offer suggestions. I know I could use the help.
As you can see from the attached pictures, I have rounded up the following parts.
1. Base: Old Particle Board shelf cut to 12 x 24. It's about 3/8 thick.
2. Motor Attachment Lever. Old Tree Stake cut down to 11 inches. It's 1 1/4 x 3/4.
3. Lever to hit the scale is an old drum stick.
4. 2 Pieces of 1/2 pine cut to 3 1/2 square for base attachment pieces.
5. I did buy a 3/16 x 12 in steel rod and sleve and a 12 tube it slides into for about $3 at the local ACE.
6. A couple of drill bit depth collars that I'm using lke wheel stops to keep the steel rod in place.
I have started on building the lever assembly. The one tool that I need that I don't have is a drill press. My holes are not 100% straight and this is causing some issues. The steel rod hole to drum stick hole is at about a 90 degree, but all of this is not square with the tree stake. So when I mount a motor I'm going to need to add in some offset to keep it square. I'll post some pictures of this when I get that far.
Hopefully I'll get this finished up today.
Hmmmmmm. I can't seem to upload pictures anymore. I'll try again a little later.
Ahh, Picts can now be uploaded again. Someone (one of the kids?) changed the picture sharpness on the camera to superfine and this must change the jpg file size just enough that it causes issues. Same overall picture resolution (1600x1200).
Anyway, here are the picts of my crude motor test stand. It does what I need it to, so I’m happy. I have a way to quickly try out props and see current draw and get a crude guess of static thrust. It’s also for initial try outs of new motors and ESCs and debugging….
I also have now tried a PowerUp 450 sport motor also from HeadsUpRc.com I tried a GWS EP1050 prop and got very similar results to what was posted on their web site. I saw 36 oz thrust 18.5 amps and the HeadsUpRc.com web site lists 37 oz thrust at 19 amps. These again were peak values, but this time I started with a battery that was at an 80% state of charge.
If you look on the drum stick, there is a black line. This is the same distance to the motor on the other stake. Moving this around does impact the force seen. Keep them at equal distances for the best measurements!
Thanks to Dr.Kiwi for posting plans on test stands!