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    • CommentTimeJul 21st 2009 edited
    If you're interested in making the "wedge jacks" I showed in the last tip, it will help you to understand how to lay out an effective cam. There's a common misconcpetion that a cam is just a disc with an off-center pivot, but it's a little more involved than that. To lay out a cam, you must first draw a spiral, a curve whose radius increases steadily around a pivot point. The easy way to do this is to wind a string around a dowel and tie the free end to a pencil. Center the dowel on the pivot mark and swing the pencil around it, unwinding the string. If you want the radius of the spiral to increase slowly, use a small dowel. For one that increases quickly, use a larger dowel.

    Once you've drawn the spiral, add a lever so you can easily rotate the cam. If you want to turn the cam to the same position every time you turn it, ad a small "flat" at that point in the spiral curve. The flats helps you find the correct position and prevents the cam from turning further.

    With all good wishes,
    • CommentAuthorAijca
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