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I was doing a Home automation project for my PCL class and wanted to make a machine that dispensed coasters. The reason I wanted to do this was because I noticed how no one ever seems to use coasters and thought it they would be more fun if they came out of a machine. Even though my attempt you are about to read is kind of bad I still think the idea works.
First I tired to do a vertical design but I realized that due to the weight of my coasters and gravity it was unrealistic.
After that I went for a horizontal design to get around gravity and went for a conveyor belt.
Even though a conveyor belt is better that a vertical design I still ran into problems with the weight of every thing so my contraption never worked properly but the idea still stands and if you want to build one I would suggest either a stronger motor or more of them. Additionally I personally had to shrink down the size of the belt but that was due to the motor's strength.
On to building the machine though the first thing I did was work on the code to get the motor to turn from both a physical and online button. the physical button to get a coaster normally and a online button to be passive aggressive if a guest or someone is not using a coaster.
I also did all the wiring for the project with one jumper wire going to ground on the argon into the negative line of the breadboard, then a jumper wire from one pin of the button to the negative line of the breadboard, next one jumper wire from a pin on the other side of the button to D7 on the argon, then for the motor it is one male/female wire(grey) to the negative line of the breadboard and one male/female jumper wire(light grey) to the USB pin on the argon, lastly it is four male/female jumper wires(green, brown, yellow, blue) on the 1N1, 1N2, 1N3, 1N4 pins on the motor connected to D2, D3, D4, D5 in that order.
Next I started to cut my cardboard first cut a 59in by 4in rectangle then realized it was too big and made it around 28 by 4in. Then I cut ridges into the cardboard about every inch for flexibility. Finally I put little pieces of cardboard every other section in-order to gain more traction. Lastly I hot glued the 2 ends together and made ridges down the middle of those 2 sections.
Next I made a + shape out of cardboard, hot glued that to the end of a old mechanical pencil and put that on to the end of the motor,
Next you should make a L shape out of cardboard to put everything on and cut 2 holes in the side one to tape the motor to(see above image) and one to stick something to support the conveyor belt(I personally used a sizable cardboard tube I had. Then cut another piece of cardboard to match the other wall of the L and cut 1 hole in it to accommodate the support and slide it on. Finally make a back and with space to roof and leave space to insert coasters and leave the front open to dispense them.
Here is a video of the conveyor belt turning (note: there is no coaster because mine were just too heavy but if you were to change up my design a bit you could probably get it to work much better than my dumb self can)
Also here is a video that shows my thing not working because of my coasters being heavy and my craftsman ship probably was not the best