Shuttle Distress Picture Page

At the starting line at the 1998 Great Port Townsend Bay Kinetic Sculpture Race. That's me on the right carrying the pump.

Heading for the flotation test launch area the previous day, with my daughter Aria inside protected from the drizzle.

Pedaling as fast as we can down the main street. Steve Hastings (one of my friends who helped build the vehicle) is wearing a Star Trek Next Generation uniform and riding alongside me. Note that the pontoons came out not quite as long as I had originally planned due to a miscommunication with the fabrication company.

Steve Hastings, me (far side) and my son Christopher as we cruise in the waters of Port Townsend Bay.

The tire chains did not provide quite enough traction in the mud. Placing more weight on the rear wheels would also help. Anyway, none of the passengers got dirty!

Me taking a break in the back while Steve and Christopher pedaled.

The pictures above are of the Shuttle Distress all terrain kinetic sculpture I built with some help from friends and raced in the 1998 Port Townsend Kinetic Sculpture Race in Washington State.

Below are some pictures taken during the construction of the Shuttle Distress.

Sometimes it was easier to flip the vehicle over to work on the bottom. Note that the frame is constructed from aluminum, so is relatively light in weight. Also note the silvery colored framework on the top. These two box like structures swing from a pivot point near the front, and provide a long swing arm suspension framework for each of the rear wheels.

The rear drive has two independent axles, with beefy industrial chains, sprockets and ball bearings. The rear axles are 1 inch in diameter. The automobile wheel mounting plates were made from steel circles, with standard wheel bolts welded to it. The plates were welded to the ends of the axles, with three or four 0.125 inch thick vanes used as gussets. The sprockets are keyed, as are the axles. Motion Control Systems cut the key slots in these axles, as well as the keys in the 3/4 inch diameter intermediate drive shafts.

The vehicle has independent suspension for all four wheels. The front has a captive spring, and uses trailer axles and hydraulic drum brake hubs. They are quite heavy duty, certainly more than needed for this 800+ pound vehicle.


Last updated June 23, 2014 by webmaster